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70mph speed limit dangerously close to another limit that could lead to “explosive” results on the road

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MADISON/PEWAUKEE (WITI) -- With the stroke of his pen, Governor Scott Walker on Wednesday, May 20th made it official. Soon, the speed limit will increase to 70 miles-per-hour on some roads in Wisconsin. But 70 mph is dangerously close to another limit that could lead to "explosive" results on the interstate.

The new 70 miles-per-hour speed limit won't take effect until the Wisconsin Department of Transportation physically posts it on Wisconsin roads. But FOX6 News is learning 75 miles-per-hour is actually the breaking point for some truck tires.

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Matt Eisert is a man who knows his limits.

"When the speed goes up to 70, cars are going to go up to 70 or higher," Eisert said.

And as a commercial driver's license instructor at Waukesha County Technical College, Eisert is issuing a warning after Governor Walker signed the 70 miles-per-hour speed limit bill into law: Don't speed up. Slow down.

"Give trucks room. We need room to stop. When you`re pulling 80,000 pounds down the road, it`s going to take a football field to stop a truck at 55 miles-per-hour," Eisert said.

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The speed limit will soon increase on more than 700 miles of rural interstate -- jumping from 65 miles-per-hour to 70 miles-per-hour for cars and semis. The bill passed the Senate and Assembly on voice votes earlier this year.

"It`s just a safer way to travel," Rep. Robin Vos (R-Rochester) said.

But Eisert worries about trucks' big wheels, which are built for a maximum sustained speed of 75 miles-per-hour.

"They`ve recapped tires for a long time. What tends to happen is the recapped tires on a hot day, overloaded and underinflated -- those will heat up and blow," Eisert said.

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But before you get too worried, Eisert says many trucking companies limit their drivers' speed.

"Most companies -- bigger companies are going to govern their trucks to 60 or 65 miles-per-hour anyway," Eisert said.

On-board computers will even monitor and record speed and braking for safety purposes. Eisert says the students in his class always go five under the speed limit if they're driving 45 miles-per-hour or more, just to ensure things stay safe.

"Don`t be in a hurry. You`re going to get their just as fast at 70 if you are at 60," Eisert said.


  • Rick G

    Here we go with the scare tactics! I drive at a speed of about 70 already and I have trucks and cars flying by me like I am standing still!

  • Duke Ganote

    Wisconsin’s rural interstates accounted for 2.2% of traffic deaths in 2013 — despite carrying 8.5% of vehicle-miles-traveled. The law always and already requires everyone drive within the capabilities of their vehicles and for conditions present.

    Federal Highway Administration “Highway Statistics”, 2013, Tables FI-10, FI-30, VM-2
    “Speeding Counts On All Roads”, Federal Highway Administration

  • Dan N

    “β€œDon`t be in a hurry. You`re going to get their just as fast at 70 if you are at 60,” Eisert said.”
    Someone obviously failed math class.

    • jayson

      Technically if you drive 70mph instead of 65
      Over a hundred miles your literally going to save yourself less than 10 minutes. Which flies out the window as soon as you pull off the highway and hit a stop light. Over long distances 70 oh will make a big difference. But for the average long distance commuter who drives less that 45 miles one way. It won’t even save you enough time to grab a coffee

  • chris

    Bit our company don’t use recapped tires. We use all vergin tires. It just more things to complain about trucks. Like the old saying says. If you don’t like truck stop buying stuff. Problem solved.

  • 2ECOND

    They`ve recapped tires for a long time. What tends to happen is the recapped tires on a hot day, overloaded and underinflated β€” those will heat up and blow,” Eisert said. sounds to me like a driver that needs to be fined as he obviously hasn’t done his pre checks before getting out on the road. maybe its time that the state passes a law that semis are to stay out of the left lane. there are so many times when there is some a-hole truck driver that gets in the left lane and purposely slows down….

  • Henry

    That’s a very interesting, but wronheaded take on truck tires and speed limits. States have been posting 70 and 75 mph speed limits for years and we did not hear a word about truck tires. According to national statistics, carriers who govern their truck speeds actually have higher accident and death rates than independent truckers who don’t.

  • Kevin

    Oh the carnage in all the surrounding states, the devastation in Montana with their 80 mph limit. Let us cower and wring our hands in fright.

  • Keith V French Sr

    Theres absolutely no truth in this.recaps are not designed to explode at a certain speed.if theyre under inflated than that is a lack of maintenance from the trucking company.if they are overloaded thats illegal. If recaps are so dangerous then outlaw driver wants recap tires.Slow vehicles are more of a danger because they cause others to take unsafe chances to get around them.

  • Lee

    I disagree the roads were designed for faster speeds. For example Montana had NO daytime speed limits until just recently. Speed limits were only implanted because of the proposed “fuel” shortages not for safety reasons.
    Furthermore all truck drivers know that you have to drive the speed that is safe for the conditions. When it’s hot you slow down regardless of the speed limit. When it’s 70 below zero and icy you don’t do the speed limit.

    It’s cost prohibitive for driver to lose tires. Down time, missed delivery dates/time and lost loads

    European speeds are much higher then in the states because there are less accidents. People are more alert and not prone to day dreaming.
    People poking along and truck speed limits that are different then for cars frustrate other drivers so they pass them. This causes more accidents then higher speed limits.
    I know because I’m a heavy wrecker driver lean up the mess. Also a commercial driver for 30 yrs.

  • Nhat

    they need to stop worrying, every else i see in the south is 70, Texas is already 80 and i see no one have problem down there

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