Nevada eyes 85 mph speed limit

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 27, 2013

LAS VEGAS – Nevada state Sen. Don Gustavson knows how long and boring some of those drives across the Silver State can be. So he wants to speed things up a bit.

On Monday, he introduced a bill that paves the way for Nevada to increase the maximum speed limit to 85 mph in those areas where state transportation officials determine that speed is safe. If enacted, the new speed limit would match the one in Texas for the nation’s fastest.

“I drive on rural roads a lot here in northern Nevada – my district is huge,” he noted. “There’s 37,000 square miles in this state. It’s a big, big place. The way I see it, this new limit just paves the way for a speed people are already doing out there anyway.”

In the state capital of Carson City, Gustavson has a reputation as a pie-in-the-sky thinker. His previous effort to repeal the state’s motorcycle helmet law garnered little support from his legislative colleagues. But this one has a shot.

Currently on rural highways in Nevada, the top speed is 70 mph. On interstates it’s 75.

Only Utah and Texas have speed limits exceeding 75 mph. In Texas, 80 mph is common, and one toll road has a posted limit of 85. In Utah, 80 mph is allowed in several places across the desert state.


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