Higher speed limit tested on parts of I-15

Higher speed limit tested on parts of I-15

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Weather has hampered the Utah Department of Transportation's efforts to test a higher speed limit on Interstate 15 in central Utah. It hopes to know by the end of the year what drivers are doing with the go-ahead to drive 80 miles per hour.

Signs went up last Dec. 31, but there have been months of snowy and then rainy weather during which drivers, for the most part, slow down.

UDOT Transportation Planner Eric Rasband says department officials think this study will show that people won't push the pedal past 80 miles per hour. The speed limit previously was 75 mph.

"History would show that speeds are probably sitting close to where they were prior to raising that speed limit," he said.

Rasband says it's OK for people to go slower than 80 as well. "The driving public; many studies have been done and they basically drive the road for what they feel comfortable."

The test zones, which are part of House Bill 406, were authorized by the Utah Legislature in 2008. The zones cover a total of 34 miles along I-15 between Cedar City and Nephi.

UDOT will present its findings to the Legislature after the year-long study is complete.

E-mail: mrichards@ksl.com

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