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Androvett Blog

by Robert Tharp at 2:52:29 pm

Top New Texas Laws Countdown: Lead-footed motorists, nocturnal truckers rejoice

Truckers, start your engines. HB1201/HB1353 bumps up the maximum speed limit in Texas to 85 mph. The higher speed limit will be applied to stretches of Texas roads deemed suitable by state officials – Texas currently has more than 520 miles of interstate highways where the speed limit is 80 mph. The law also does away with a separate, lower nighttime speed limit for big trucks. So as of tomorrow, big rigs and four-wheelers will have the same nighttime speed limits.

Writes the USA Today: According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, high speeds were a factor in about one-third of all fatal crashes in 2009. The faster you're traveling, the greater the distance needed to bring your vehicle to a complete stop and the longer it takes a driver to react to emergency situations, according to IIHS. If an accident does occur at a higher speed, there is a strong likelihood that the crash impact will exceed the protection available to vehicle occupants. On top of safety concerns, speeding increases fuel consumption. Every 5 mph you drive over 60 mph is like paying an additional $0.24 per gallon for gas, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

“Even though the law says that the 85 mph speed limit will be permitted only on highways designed to accommodate travel at that speed, this doesn't account for human errors that we know are common in driving, as well as the mechanical failures that are bound to happen at such high speeds,” says Steven C. Laird, whose practice at The Law Offices of Steven C. Laird includes trucking wrecks caused by driver carelessness, sleep deprivation, intoxication, fires, bad brakes and other preventable events.