Speed limit to be lowered throughout Farmville
Photo Courtesy of Hawthorne Law
There have been some changes to the roads in Farmville recently such as new crosswalk and stoplight being installed on West Third Street . However, there is one change that citizens may not be so happy about.
Farmville residents can expect to see the speed limit change throughout town. The decision comes after the Farmville Town Council voted unanimously on Oct. 11 to reduce the speed limits around town.
Town Manager Gerald Spates said that they felt the change was necessary due to an increase in traffic and development throughout town as well as feeling that the current speed limit of 45 mph was “a little bit too high”.
Mayor David Whitus also said that he felt changing the speed limits could be a life saving measure.
The changes to the speed limit will mostly be slight with most areas having the limit reduced by 5 mph. The area receiving the most significant change will be Hudson Drive where the limit will be reduced from 35 mph to 25 mph.
Some Farmville residents have voiced their displeasure with the vote feeling that it was not only unnecessary, but will create more problems as well.
“It doesn’t seem like they had good reason for reducing it other than they wanted to. There are already enough problems with traffic around here and I feel like this is only going to make things worse.” Anthony Weyland, a Farmville resident said.
“I heard they changed it, but I didn’t hear much about it.” Robert Engle another Farmville resident said. “I think there should have been more of a conscious effort on behalf of the town to inform us that they would be changing.”.
While many would assume that decreasing the speed limit would be beneficial in preventing accidents, research has shown that claim is not entirely true. A study conducted by the Office of Safety and Traffic Operations found that lowering the speed limit by small amounts such as 5 mph had only minor effect on drivers and did not reduce accidents.
Another study by the Federal Highway Administration also found that in most accidents involving fatalities that drivers were going drastically over the speed limit.
While the decision to lower the speed limit is well intentioned, statistics show that lowering it by only a small amount won’t have much of an effect on reducing accidents as well as creating more issues in the area where traffic is already congested.