New Speed Limit Increase

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You may have noticed people driving a little faster on Interstate-65 today, July 10, 2007. The speed limit on rural stretches of interstates and parkways in Kentucky has been raised from 65-to-70 M.P.H and the signs were replaced this morning. But what does an extra five miles an hour really mean for you?

If you're driving to Nashville, normally it would take you about an hour to get there. Several drivers said the new speed limit would help them get places quicker. But in fact, your drive time will only be cut by about five minutes.

"You're going to go five M.P.H. further in one hour then you would at 65 M.P.H.," said Terry Alexander, a Kentucky State Police Trooper.

K.S.P. says the increased speed limit will effect your driving in many ways, but your drive time isn't one of them."

"Studies show increasing your speed by five M.P.H. significantly decreases your gas mileage," K.S.P. Trooper Holder said.

Even though the increase won't help your gas tank, Trooper Alexander said it will help the flow of traffic. The new speed limit is now the same as all the surrounding states, but most drivers said they've already been driving 70 M.P.H., if not faster.

Trooper Alexander said speeders need to watch out. Even though studies show increasing the speed limit won't increase fatal accidents, it can cause other problems.

"You're going to have a decreased reaction time during a crash at a higher speed and the slower the speed, the less damage you’re going to have," Alexander said.

Kentucky State Police says Kentucky residents have wanted this increase to happen for a long time, but the main reason state legislature changed the speed limit is to help commerce travel through Kentucky a little faster.