When Different Speed Limits Collide on Area Highway

The in basket: David Ledbetter says in an e-mail that there is a short section of road that has two speed limits. 
“When you leave Port Orchard along the water going toward Gorst, the speed limit is 45 until the speed changes in Gorst to 40.  When you are on Highway 16 coming in from Tacoma the speed is 60 then it slows to 50 until you get in Gorst and it changes to 40.  There is a section where the road from Port Orchard and Tacoma merge where the traffic from Port Orchard has a speed limit of 45 and the traffic from Tacoma has a speed limit of 50. 


The in basket: David Ledbetter says in an e-mail that there is a short section of road that has two speed limits. 
“When you leave Port Orchard along the water going toward Gorst, the speed limit is 45 until the speed changes in Gorst to 40.  When you are on Highway 16 coming in from Tacoma the speed is 60 then it slows to 50 until you get in Gorst and it changes to 40.  There is a section where the road from Port Orchard and Tacoma merge where the traffic from Port Orchard has a speed limit of 45 and the traffic from Tacoma has a speed limit of 50. 
“This only started when the speed was changed on the road from Port Orchard from 50 to 45,” he said. “Why would the road department design a road with two separate speed limits for two separate merging lanes of travel, even though it is only a short section?”
 The out basket: I would guess that a differential between vehicles of 5 miles per hour or even more is common on multi-lane highways even where the official speed limit doesn’t vary between lanes.
Lisa Murdock of the Olympic region of state highway replies, “Highway to highway connections frequently have different speed limits on each highway.  Shortly after the highways join, a speed limit sign establishes the limit,” in this case, the 40 mph through Gorst.
“To (our) knowledge, drivers in this area adjust their speed and traffic movements accordingly,” she said.

 

One thought on “When Different Speed Limits Collide on Area Highway

  1. Regarding the item on the Route 16/166 Speed. Since coming from Port Orchard Route 166 merges with Route 16 it is only logical that, at the point where the traffic on Route 16 can legally move left into the lane that comes from Port Orchard, all vehicles are then on Route 16 and subject to the 50 MPH limit until it changes to 40 MPH. Route 166 ends where it merges into Route 16.

    Just another perspective.

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