Michigan Rep. Wants to Change the Way Speed Limits are Set [VIDEO]
A Michigan lawmaker hopes to give communities more flexibility when it comes to setting speed limits on the road.
A current Michigan law mandates that speeds be based on the 85th percentile of the average driver's speed. But if communities feel that the limit should be set lower, they are not permitted to do so.
Rep. Bradley Slagh, a Republican from Zeeland says communities should not be forced to "round up" to the 85th percentile when assigning local speed limits.
“If it comes in at 37.6 miles per hour, so more than halfway between those two, the 35 and 40," Slagh explained. "You have to round up to 40 miles an hour, you have to there is no choice.”
Slagh says there's another component to the bill he's introducing, saying that engineers should be able to make a case for a lower limit near certain facilities.
“Any example would be maybe there is a park, maybe there is a school, maybe there is a church something that should impact the speed limit more than just the 85th percentile,” said Slagh.
Matt Penniman of the League of Michigan Bicyclists tells WXYZ that his organization supports the bill.
"Cars get better every year at protecting drivers and passengers," Penniman said. "But people who are biking and walking don't have that metal cage around them and bones break and flesh tears the same way today it did 100 years ago."
Opponents of the bill are more concerned about its wording, so a second draft is being created to present to the House Transportation Committee.