As the state Department of Transportation begins a six-month study of raising speed limits on Pennsylvania interstates, we offer these words of advice:
Take it slow.
Just because the transportation spending bill approved this month allows the department to hike the maximum speed to 70 mph, that doesn’t mean it should give the green light to lead foots everywhere.
Officials say they’ll now review the state’s interstate system to see which areas are suitable for higher speeds, but already some local legislators are suggesting Interstate 83 through York County as a prime candidate.
The posted speed on I-83 ranges from 55 to 65 mph, depending on the area.
State Rep. Ron Miller, R-Jacobus, supports bumping up the limits on the 65-mph stretches because traffic isn’t heavy there and they can safely handle the increase.
Too often, congestion in the metro York area is too heavy for the 55 mph speed posted now. “It seems like every day … some portion of it is closed for an accident,” said state Rep. Stan Saylor.
The Pennsylvania AAA Federation doesn’t oppose the move to 70 mph as long as PennDOT adequately studies the safety impact.
We hope the department takes the time — longer than six months if necessary — to do a thorough study and also solicits input from residents in areas considered for speed limit increases. The last think thing we need is to trade more deaths and injuries for a bit of convenience.
The York Dispatch