WV Senate proposes to raise interstate speed limit to 80 MPH - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

WV Senate proposes to raise interstate speed limit to 80 MPH

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MERCER COUNTY, WV (WVVA) -

The West Virginia state Senate introduced a bill that could raise the speed limit along interstate highways and four-lane limited highways in the state, changing it from 70 to 80 MPH.

The bill states that "This increase speed limit does not apply to portions of interstate highways and four-lane limited highways that pass through the city limits of municipalities."

West Virginia State Trooper Derek Graham says he thinks the change would increase the chance of danger on the highways. 

"If you're going faster than 80 MPH you're taking your own life into risk and you're taking others into risk as well," Graham said.

Of the nearly 35 million vehicles that pass through the WV Turnpike per year, 76% of those drivers are from out-of-state, according to a 2015 report from the State Parkways Authority. 

Graham says that those visiting drivers aren't used to the curvy roadways, and an increased speed makes the drive unsafe.

"A lot of our roadways are traveled by out of starers, especially the turnpike, so if you're not familiar with that roadway. It can be very dangerous especially at a high rate of speed," Graham said.

The bill is currently in the state senate. If the house and senate both agree to pass the bill, it would take affect in July of this year. 

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