by: David Ham Updated:Near Mount Vernon, Wash. —
It's been a week since the new temporary span of the Skagit River bridge has opened, with a new speed limit. The Washington Department of Transportation lowered the limit approaching and on the temporary span from 60 mph to 40 mph. A spokesperson for WSDOT says it's because the lanes are narrower. They went from 12 feet wide to 11 feet wide. "Even though it's only a foot narrower, it's still obvious you're up against the side. You don't want to make a mistake," said Greg Carpenter, who lives in Mount Vernon.
After buying a radar gun we stood on the side of an area approaching the bridge in the new 40 mph zone. Most of the cars were traveling at speeds between 45-55 mph. "Everybody was going faster than me and the speed limit's 40," said Michelle Nations of Mt. Vernon.
Washington State Patrol said despite what we found, troopers don't think speeding is a problem near or on the bridge. While there are regular patrols near the bridge, there are no plans for any special enforcement efforts.
Since the bridge reopened last week, there have been no crashes related to speeding.