How fast do objects falll?

Objects accelerate as they fall. Their speed increases at a rate of 9.81 m/s2 on or near the Earth's surface. So, after falling for one second, an object (in a vacuum) will be moving 9.81 m/s, or roughly 32 ft/s. This is, at least, the theoretical speed.

This seems like a very fast number, and it is, because a number of factors have been ignored. Real objects displace air as they fall (causing turbulent and viscous flow), which slow them. The amount of air displaced and how much this effects the object depends on the object's shape and density. For example, a crumpled sheet of paper falls faster than a new sheet, and a bird's feather falls more slowly than a lead feather.

Also, if an object falls 1m (about 3ft) to the ground, it will be moving at about 4m/s (~13ft/s) when it hits the ground.