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Opposition to Raising Ohio Turnpike Speeds due to Truck Accidents

According to recent blogs and news sources, the Ohio Turnpike Commission is attempting to increase the speed limits on the Ohio Turnpike. The Commission would like to raise the speed limit for cars and truck to 70 miles per hour from the already posted limit of 65. However, not everyone is thrilled about this idea and many believe that the number of car and truck accidents will increase on the Ohio Turnpike as a result of the proposed change.

Some opponents claim that the Commission is “playing with harmful public policy.” One blog expressed, “Six years ago, when the commission boosted truck speed limits from 55 mph to 65 mph, the same as cars, semis were already traveling at least that fast. Once they could legally travel 65 mph, trucks routinely tacked on another 5 to 10 mph.”

The worry is that if the limits are set higher, truckers will travel even faster, increasing the probability of truck accidents. Since truck speeds on the turnpike were raised, the number of truck accident has increased, as well as the number of deaths, according to one online source.

“According to the State Highway Patrol, collisions involving trucks and other commercial vehicles went up 32 percent in the 18 months after the speed limit was increased in 2004. During the same period, a patrol report noted, the number of accidents causing deaths or injuries involving trucks jumped 56 percent.” Furthermore, in about 27 percent of fatal truck accidents, where the dirvers were at fault, speeding was involved.

No timetable has been set for the adoption of this new limit change.

Source: Toledo Blaze “For the sake of public safety, don’t raise turnpike speeds” 12/16/2010