FEBRUARY 18, 2010

Hwy 12 speed limit remains at 50 mph through Riverside

   Speed limit on Highway 12 through the Riverside business area has been 50 mph since 1970 when construction was completed on the highway, turning the two lane highway into the four lanes as it is now according to Dave Couch, district traffic engineer for the Idaho Dept. of Transportation (IDT).

   Couch said Friday if any changes were ever made the speed limit would be more likely to be increased rather than decreased along this stretch in an effort to maintain costs in money and opportunities for the motorists.

   He said there were more deadly accidents on Hwy 12 when it was a two-lane road than there are now. He said the multiple lanes and turn lanes have made the highway much safer than before 1970, when the three year road construction was completed in Feb. of 1970.

   Couch said speed limits are established by monitoring slow, normal and high speeds on a road to learn what 85% of the reasonable and prudent drivers are traveling and then shoot for the posted speed which is safest condition for that area.

   The remaining 15% is for law enforcement to work with he said.

   He said “IDT is always trying to monitor safety and efficiency both trying to make roads to safely move traffic as fast as we can.”