A 41-mile stretch of highway in Texas will soon have its speed limit raised to 85 mph.
Last year, the Texas Legislature approved 85 mph limits for some areas of the state. The first stretch of highway expected to see the increased speed limit is a toll highway that stretches between Austin and Seguin. The speed limit change is expected to take place in November.
“The toll road is a 41-mile stretch of Texas State Highway 130 known as Segments 5 and 6, running from Mustang Ridge near Austin to Seguin outside of San Antonio. If motorists drive at the speed limit, they’ll cover the 41 miles in less than a half hour,” CNN reported.
According to CNN, “‘There will be no toll plazas on segments 5 & 6 of SH 130. Tolls will be collected electronically at certain points along the roadway, meaning motorists will not have to slow down or stop. Traffic will be 100% free flowing,’ according to The SH 130 Concession Co., which was formed by the Spanish construction company Cintra and the Texas company Zachary American Infrastructure.”
In the United States, a majority of highways top out at 75 mph, though some rural areas of Texas and Utah have 80 mph speed limits.
While some are excited about the change, others are expressing concern over safety.
“The research is clear that when speed limits go up, fatalities go up,” said Russ Rader, a spokesman for the nonprofit Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. He said higher speed limits get people to their destinations faster, “but the trade-off is more crashes and more highway deaths.”
Drivers, what do you think of the increased speed limit?