Arkansas officials not ready to OK 75 mph limit on highways

AP News
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Posted: Aug 01, 2017 7:25 PM

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas legislators authorized a 75 mph speed limit on some major highways beginning Tuesday, but state highway officials say "Not so fast."

Engineers are still studying road designs and traffic patterns to determine whether motorists can travel 75 mph safely, according to Arkansas Department of Transportation spokesman Danny Straessle. It's possible that no part of the state's 16,432-mile highway system can handle that speed. Many western states already have speed limits at least that high, and some let motorists hit 80 or 85 mph.

Research conducted by the U.S. insurance industry says higher speeds result in worse traffic accidents and more fatalities.

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The 2017 law says the highway department can raise the top speed limit from 70 mph to 75 mph if studies show it can be done safely.