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Speed limit raised to 70

Jessica Cuffman • Oct 3, 2013 at 12:20 PM

The speed limit bumped to 70 mph from Bay View to Vermilion on Ohio 2, from 55 to 60 on U.S. 20 from Woodville to Norwalk.

In total, more than 600 miles across the state will see limit increases, two-thirds of those to 70 mph rural freeways.

Almost another 200 will bump to 60.

For villages like Monroeville and cities like Clyde and Bellevue, where truckers and other highway traffic go through town, police forces will continue to be diligent at corporation limits to make sure drivers are slowing down for posted city speeds.   “There’s no doubt there will probably be people coming in a little faster than they already are,” Monroeville police Chief Gary Lyons said.

“I’m always concerned when the speed limit is raised. Reaction times are reduced and the potential for an accident is increased,” he said.

Even though the speed limits don’t increase inside corporation limits, small departments will be challenged with getting drivers to slow down.

Part of the way Lyons tackles the issue: Stationing police cars at the edge of town.

“I think everybody slows down when they see the cruiser,” he said.

For Norwalk and Fremont police departments, where U.S. 20 bypasses have been built around the cities, the increase likely won’t be an issue.

“Just because of the way the layout of the bypass is, you have to slow down to get off the bypass into the city,” Fremont police Chief Tim Wiersma said. “People are used to a slower pace.”

“I don’t believe we should have any problems,” he said. “But we will keep a watchful eye.”

Short stretches of freeways in the Register’s coverage area also will see increases, including the short jog on U.S. 6 between Ohio 2 and Ohio 13, which increases to 55 mph, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation.

The U.S. 20 bypass around Fremont will increase to 65 mph, as will sections of Ohio 2 in Ottawa County, for both cars and semi-trucks.

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