The Florida Department
of Transportation has decided against U.S. Rep. John Mica's (R-Winter
Park) request to restrict truckers' use of the state's sections of
I-4 and I-95, according to FDOT's letter to the congressman.
In August, Mica
urged Florida transportation officials to consider pulling semis off
I-4 and I-95 during rush hours and possibly lower the speed limit
for big rigs.
do not support lane restrictions or lower speeds for trucks on Interstate
4 through the Orlando area," Michael Snyder, district secretary
of FDOT District Five, said in the Jan. 2 letter. "Restricting
trucks to one or two lanes would impede traffic flow in the urban
area due to high traffic volumes and closely spaced interchanges.
a lower speed limit for trucks, studies have shown that differential
speeds increase certain types of crashes. Therefore maintaining uniform
speeds for all vehicles would increase safety by reducing the potential
showed that truck drivers are statistically safer than other motorists
on Interstate 4 through Central Florida."
Vice President Todd Spencer found the report results "refreshing."
this report was clearly based on safety without regard for political
pressure," Spencer said.
to I-95, the letter says the task force will review lane restrictions
for I-95 once the highway's six-lane projects are complete.
letter acknowledged "incidents involving trucks are potentially
more severe," the letter explained FDOT's proactive efforts to
manage such incidents and reduce the impact to traffic flow.
By Rene Tankersley, feature editor