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Dan Ryan - 45MPH. Watch it!

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Topics:  Interstate Highway System

Dan Ryan - 45MPH. Watch it!

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
October 26, 2007

The Dan Ryan is open for business. Read all about it in today’s Chicago Tribune.

And check out the speed limit on the new, modernized, widened roadway between 31st Street and the Chicago Skyway. Hey, how about 45MPH? What rocket scientist decided on 45MPH???

Is this one of the most stupid decisions made by IDOT? 45MPH??? Drivers didn’t even slow down to 45MPH in the Construction Zones or before construction began. With the new lanes, why would they ever drive at 45MPH now?

Capt. Peter Negro of the Illinois State Police told Tribune reporters that troopers will strictly enforce the speed limit. Yeah, sure… When pigs fly… that’s when. Now, it would be nice if that were true. But the two troopers he has for the Dan Ryan don’t stand a chance against the thousands of speeders.

I drove on the Dan Ryan at midnight on October 15, and drivers thought they were at O’Hare and attempting take-off speeds. I drove at the 45MPH speed limit in the Construction Zone. Fortunately, I’m alive to write this and my car is not in the body shop!

One driver roared up behind me and slowed barely in time, as I accelerated to avoid being rear-ended. As he passed me, his passenger and he glared at me. Now, I won’t make any racial slurs or comment on his handicap license plate. I felt lucky that I was not staring down the barrel of an AK-47 or Saturday Night special.

Should I carry a gun in the car (even though it’s illegal in Illinois), just in case someone takes some shots at me for poking along (at the speed limit) in the right-hand lane? I am sorely tempted to break the stupid law in Illinois that prohibits me from defending myself with equal force.

So, I say to Capt. Negro: “Enforce the law. You’ll need the entire State Police force to do so on the Dan Ryan. And, as soon as you break for a meal or gasoline, the speeds will go right back up! When the speed limit is set artificially low, it guarantees violators. Get a 2x4 and knock some sense in the IDOT engineers who dreamed up the stupid 45MPH speed limit and raise it to 55MPH. And then enforce it with zero-tolerance.”

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