Speed Limits

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Push It to the Limit
Many things cross your mind while you’re traveling down the road. But have you ever wondered why do we have speed limits? Or maybe you do and you’re the grandma driver that everyone is stuck behind in a no passing zone. Everyone has their own speeds so why shouldn’t you be able to go how fast or how slow you wanted to go. Should we strike down every sign that the government has put up to regulate the speed limit in the thousands of highways around the country? And should we trust the driving ability of each and every person to drive within a reasonably safe speed? People automatically assume the speed limits are posted on our highways of our own protection, but are they? The definition of speed limit is the maximum speed legally permitted on a given stretch of road. Speed limit discussions come up all the time about several factors, fuel prices which is the most common and speed which effects safety. Many people wonder if the federal government should return to having a say in what the speed limit is in every state. As of today each state has a say in what the speed limits are for their rural roads, highways, school zones and city streets. (Johnson, 2011)
The national maximum speed law (NMSL) was a provision of the 1974 emergency highway energy conservation act, which prohibited speed limits higher than 55 miles per hour. This all started in 1973 when most states had already adopted statewide speed limits of 50 or 55. Texas governor Dolph Briscoe recommended the adoption of a 55 mph statewide limit. The vote was 3-0 because the board had cited unsafe speed differentials between the flow of traffic and people driving slowly to comply with governor Briscoe’s requests for voluntary slowdowns. As an emergency response to the 1973 oil crisis in November 1973, president Nixon proposed a national 50 mph speed limit for passenger vehicles and 55 mph speed limit for trucks and buses. That was also combined with a ban ornamental lighting, no



References: Badger, Sarah 2011 The Importance of Speed Limits in a School Zone. Retrieved from http://www.ehow.com/info_8708369_importance-speed-limits-school-zone.html Highway safety 2011 Speed and Speed Limits. Retrieved from http://www.iihs.org/research/qanda/speed_limits.html Highway safety 2011 Speed law enforcement. Retrieved from http://www.iihs.org/research/qanda/speed_lawenf.aspx History channel 2006 National speed limit law. Retrieved from http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/nixon-signs-national-speed-limit-into-law Johnson, Karen 2011 Speed limit speech topics. Retrieved from http://www.ehow.com/info_8215349_speed-limits-speech-topics.html

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