This paper presents an experimental and numerical characterization of ductile damage evolution in steel subjected to large plastic deformations. The main objective of this research is to better understand damage initiation and evolution in structural steel throughout the deformation process at different strain rates. The proposed study relies on a continuum damage mechanics approach that involves characteristic parameters to describe the accumulation of plastic strain, the damage variable, and the strain rates. The work was divided into experimental, and simulation phases. The experimental phase involved testing under monotonic uniaxial tensile loading under varying strain rates. The obtained material parameters are then used as the basic data in the simulations that are performed afterwards. Finally, this model was implemented as a new user defined material in the finite element analysis software ABAQUS where damage was quantified. Initial results of this research showed that a simple model with substantial cost and time saving can be developed for damage assessment in steel. The rate of loading is a main sensitive parameter that affects both damage initiation and propagation, as they increased significantly with increasing loading rate. Beyond the ultimate load, the strain energy was sufficient to cause the damage to increase without any further applied load.