New Texas traffic laws start September 1

By: Dia Wall Email
By: Dia Wall Email

SHERMAN, TX - Starting Thursday, September 1st, some changes are coming to Texas highways.

"The 65 and night where it's normally 70 during the day will be gone. And different speeds for the trucks is also being eliminated," said Trooper Mark Tackett, with Texas Highway Patrol.

The maximum speed limit is also increased to 85 miles per hour, the highest in the nation. Although right now, no roadway in Texas has a limit higher than 80.

"Increased speeds will lead to more accidents whenever you have heavy traffic volume. That's why the engineers are going to go out and they're going to survey the particular areas to see if it's safe to do so," Tackett said.

David Selman, area engineer for TxDOT said, "It will be based on the speed study. The speed limit may stay to 70 miles per hour."

State Representative Larry Phillips said the law was overwhelmingly popular, with only 2 nays in the house and no objections in the senate. "We've raised the speed limit out in West Texas on some of the interstates and there have been no adverse conditions. Our vehicles can handle faster speeds so generally there only going to be roads that can accept faster speed that they go into effect."

TxDOT is now in the process of hiring a consultant to do a speed study, a process that takes a few months. Selman said, "they'll take the 85th percentile and based on that, and the terrain, the profile of the roadway, they'll determine if the speed limit needs to be raised."

As for enforcement, Trooper Mark Tackett says for them, it's business as usual."We've been told that beginning September 1st, the speed limits could possibly be increased on certain highways but we're going to have to wait for TxDOT to come out and change those signs and make it official."

Speed limit signs that have a daytime and nighttime speed limit could be up for weeks or even months across the state. And although the law changes Thursday, drivers should adhere to the posted signs. Phillips says the law gets Texas up to date.

"Texas is the last state that has a nighttime difference. No other state does. So we need to be consistent," Phillips said.

A contractor has been hired to change all the road signs that are no longer valid by December 15th. The deadline for the consultant to complete the speed study is December 31st.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by wainjjo Location: lago vista,tx on Jun 25, 2012 at 09:32 AM
    GREAT IDEA.To Georgia:if a teen is driving and cannot read the signs they have a lot more problems than this.Just a suggestion;your son should learn how to drive. To Lisa:suggest to people they start paying attention. I just came up with what I think is a catchy phrase: "THE LIFE YOU SAVE MAY BE YOUR OWN.
  • by Georgia Location: Loving on Nov 8, 2011 at 09:01 PM
    I think changing the speed is only asking for trouble. Our teenagers today don't know how to read the speed limit signs.People don't pay attention to their driving because of being on the phone or music or someone in the car with them. I think it needs to be left alone.My son is 33 and has to many tickets to count and he is the one who told me about the change. He was really excited and that is not a good thing you know.He has already had three or four bad wrecks and only God brought him through them.So leave it alone!!!!
  • by Bob Location: Lubbock on Sep 26, 2011 at 09:31 AM
    Think the new speed law is good except that Trucks should be at a lower speed than cars. Stopping a semi at 75 or 85 will be difficult. With the number of blown truck tires on the highway now @ 70 what ill they be @ 85? Finally trucks should not be allowed to run as fast as cars.
  • by Lisa Location: Texas on Sep 22, 2011 at 05:59 AM
    I think they need to leave it alone. It's bad enough that people don't pay attention to what their doing on the highways anyway.We already don't feel safe!!
  • by Hezekiah Location: Centex on Sep 11, 2011 at 07:37 PM
    No, Bea you're not alone. I grew up and learned to drive in Texas on 80 MPH rds and 70 mph two lane blacktops. Got my drivers license at 14 and didn't have a wreck for two years - not my fault btw. Sadly for today's population common sense and courtesy that made it feasible have almost disappeared from the road. People didn't get "aggravated" when behind a slower vehicle because a flash of the lights and or tap on the horn and you were allowed to pass. Today, touching the horn will get you anything from an obscene gesture to a flying bullet. Goes right along with all the name-calling: "moron, redneck, Libtard, NeoCon and much of the common rudeness would have gotten the user a justified beating, with no charges or lawsuits because you started it with that rudeness. Possibly related, courts weren't overcrowded, there wasn't a state jail or prison on every corner... yet the population grew to the overcrowded and unruly mob we now live with.
    • reply
      by Bea on Sep 22, 2011 at 02:19 PM in reply to Hezekiah
      Well Amen! I never in my life have heard and seen so much drama, if ones don't like drama,stopping setting the stage
  • by shane on Sep 5, 2011 at 10:55 AM
    hey heres an idea for all those ingenius morons. Do a speed survey first then change the laws. This is Texas' way of getting some drivers who think it's now legal to drive 85.
  • by Reallity Location: San Antonio on Sep 4, 2011 at 12:32 PM
    People...tires are very well able to handle the higher speeds. Those speed limits are only going to be on new roads, designed for the purpose. Existing roads CANNOT, by law, be raised to that limit. as far as eliminating the noght time limit; Texas was THE LAST state to have a different speed limit at night. Obviously they took a look at the other 49 states and decided it would be safe to follow suit. Those of you spewing your hate towards the politicians who voted for this probably blame the Republicans, right? (Seems to be the way things go on mainstream media sites.) Guess what? there were only 2 "nay" votes. I guess liberal Dems thought it a good idea too.
  • by Common Sense Location: the Brain on Sep 4, 2011 at 07:26 AM
    People act like every city street and road will suddenly pop up with 85MPH speed limit signs. /facepalm
  • by Sherman Guy Location: Sherman Texas on Sep 2, 2011 at 12:37 PM
    Most cars / tires on the lower price range are not made for this speed. I see more deadly accidents due to tire blow-outs and poorly maintained cars. Also fuel economy drops at faster speeds. Yes I know about the Autobahn, most cars on that highway are engineered for that, which are non-American cars.
  • by Bea Location: Mayberry on Sep 2, 2011 at 12:00 PM
    Am I the only one that remembers the speed limit being 85 back in the 70s? I was aggravating when they reduced it.
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