Illinois Lawmakers Approve Uniform Speed Limits for Four-Lane Non-Interstate Highways

May 9, 2011

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Legislation which received final approval today by the General Assembly and was sent to the Governor would expand the uniform 65 MPH speed limit to those 4-lane divided highways outside of the Chicago-area that currently have a split speed limit.

Two years ago, the Illinois General Assembly passed legislation to allow for a uniform speed limit on "rural interstates", but it did not include certain four-lane divided highways, many of which are built to interstate standards. SB 1913, sponsored by Sen. John Sullivan and Rep. Dan Beiser, allows for a uniform 65 mph speed limit for both cars and trucks on these divided highways that are not classified as Interstates. Currently, those roads, such as US 51 from Bloomington to Decatur, Illinois 255 in the Metro-East area and the newly completed Illinois 336 in Western Illinois, still have a split speed limit of 55 for trucks and 65 for cars.

"Our position has always been that a uniform speed limit is the safest way to travel. Split speed limits have always encouraged unnecessary and dangerous lane changes, rear end collisions and cut-offs," says Don Schaefer, president of the Mid-West Truckers Association, who pressed legislators for passage of the Bill

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