Bill to raise speed limits on Utah interstates passes the House

Published 02/07 2014 08:32PM

Updated 02/07 2014 08:44PM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - The push to raise the speed limit on some of Utah’s interstates just passed a major hurdle.

Under the bill the speed limit could increase five miles per hour in some parts of the state. Like Interstate 70, east of Green River where it could be bumped up to 80.

Friday the house passed the appropriately named House Bill 80.

Sponsor, Representative Jim Dunnigan says five years of data has gone into this bill...

He says it shows drivers only increase speed by one to two miles per hour when the speed limit changes from 75 to 80.

Simply put it will make it legal to drive as fast as many people are anyway.

Dunnigan even looked into the potential impact on air quality.

“The summary from the Division of Air Quality is if you increase these from 5 to 10 miles per hour it has negligible change on air pollution. What causes air pollution is cars idling or cars getting up to speed or starting your car this morning,” said Dunnigan.

Right now we have almost 400 miles of interstate in Utah where the speed limit is already 80 miles an hour.

The bill easily passed the House and is now off to the Senate.

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