Motorists urged to slow down despite open freeways

If you’ve been on the roads at all you know that overall traffic is down and that’s giving drivers more opportunity to speed.

That’s true on surface streets and on the freeways and it’s led to what police call an alarming increase in traffic fatalities.

Officials say drivers are taking advantage of reduced traffic on the roads due to the state’s Stay at Home order, but while there are fewer cars, there are more pedestrians and cyclists.

To make their point, LAPD cited speeding drivers near Imperial Highway, where a traffic collision on May 1st claimed three lives. 

The driver involved in the accident was speeding, police say. The speed limit on this stretch of Imperial Highway is 40 mph.

LAPD is not the only agency worried about speeding drivers. The first couple of weeks of the Stay at Home order, traffic accidents and fatalities went down. But over time, traffic increased and so did the speeds.

“Statewide we have recorded an 87 % increase in citations for speeding over 100 mph,” said CHP Commander Mike Alvarez. 

Alvarez, who heads the CHP's San Gorgonio office in Beaumont, said his officers have issued 44 speeding citations to drivers going in excess of
100 mph since March 19.

Officials emphasized that penalties double for motorists caught speeding through construction zones.

Caltrans has activated overhead message signs warning motorists to
reduce their speeds, and the men said paying heed to the signs could save not only money, but prevent injuries or deaths.