New Law: Cross Atchafalaya Basin Under 18 Minutes, Get a Ticket
I am not saying I have EVERY done this before, but I have recently taken a lot of trips to Baton Rouge for chemo. It became a challenge started by my dad. That's right, I'll blame him first. I can remember crossing the basin bridge as a teenager with just my permit, being scared to death to go over the speed limit there. My uncle in Baton Rouge would tell me sometimes they fly planes over the bridge to catch speeders. Course, then I discovered the Waze app and all bets were off. The speed limits on the Basin bridge are 60 for normal vehicles and 55 for commercial vehicles. This makes it the slowed game of "can I pass you" in the world!
The bridge itself is 18 miles long and with the speed limit set at 60 mph, a vehicle traveling at the set speed should be traveling a mile per minute. Therefore, you should not be crossing the end of the bridge any faster than 18 minutes. There's no argument with that, it's literally science. Some commenters have said they can go across the bridge faster than that doing 60 mph, however. I won't touch on that scientific lie, but instead, we will just move on with the story.
The bill signed by Gov. Edwards not only allows cameras to be placed on the bridge to check for speeders but also makes it a "highway safety corridor". This means that normal fines along the basin bridge will be authorized to double, no questions asked. According to the bill, violators would be warned and then fined a $350 citation for their third offense. Any offenses after that would bring in a $1,000 fine!
The reason to crack down on speeding on the bridge is the fact that more accidents are starting to happen on the bridge. According to Senate President Page Cortez, almost 270 accidents happened on the bridge last year alone, including almost 90 injuries and 2 deaths. The thought of being able to further regulate speeders on the bridge will be to make sure that drivers maintain a safer speed and therefore decrease the number of accidents that happen along the bridge.
The bill goes into effect on August 1 of this year. Motorists can expect more speed limit signs, warning signs, and cameras on the bridge shortly after that August date.
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