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Hilton Head might remedy speed trap

A South Carolina road that many area motorists consider to be a speed trap might eventually see state officials tweak its speed limit. The stretch of road on the Charles E. Fraser Bridge, located on the Cross Island Parkway, is currently 40 mph. However, this is a speed limit that even members of the Hilton Head Town Council feel is too slow, especially considering the design. Drivers have a tendency to drive over this speed limit, becoming at risk of garnering a speeding ticket.

But that might all change. Recently, the town council voted in favor of making a recommendation to the state that it raise the speed limit from 40 mph to 45 mph in some parts. The decision passed by a vote of 6-1.

The proposal would suggest that the stretch of Palmetto Bay Road to the Bridge Shoppes would increase to 45 mph while other areas would remain at the same speed limit. The current speed limit is 30 mph on the toll plaza, moving to 35 mph as it nears Sea Pines Circle. This network of roads has long since been the center of debate over an appropriate speed limit. It was built back in 1998, and earlier this year, the Greater Island Council asked the council in Hilton Head to figure out some changes to implement.

While the decision passed almost unanimously, not everyone is in favor of the increased speed limit. The one councilman that opposed the decision argued that residents in the area do not want to see this happen. He claims that because motorists already go over the posted speed limits, they will continue to do so, making for a dangerous pace of traffic. The councilman also claimed that the higher speed limits were unsafe for drivers.

Source: The Island Packet, "Hilton Head council OKs request for faster speed limit," Tom Barton, Dec. 20, 2011

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