2014-06-19 / Editorial

Speeding vehicles a danger on the bridge

We’d like to praise the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority board of directors for deciding to install a hard median on the Newport Pell Bridge.

The concrete barrier is expected to be installed next spring and would replace the reflective rubber median that is now in place. The hard barrier would help to prevent the dangerous head-on collisions that have occurred on the bridge, at times claiming lives.

Now we urge the RITBA board to tackle another important issue relating to the bridge that could prove a valuable lifesaver. Speeding vehicles are all too common on the bridge these days as motorists are finding the 40 mph speed limit too slow for their tastes. The bridge was not designed for high-speed traffic. Excessive speed is a danger to everyone crossing the bridge.

Unfortunately, police cannot patrol the bridge and ticket speeders. That means another method must the used to curb speeding – traffic cameras.

The technology is in use all across the United States and it works well, although it is not popular. RITBA should install traffic cameras to monitor the speed of vehicles and issue citations. It wouldn’t take long for the traffic to slow down to the posted speed limit once people start receiving tickets.

With proper signage, traffic cameras to ticket speeders would be a fair way to enforce the speed limit and help keep the bridge a safe crossing.

— Jeff McDonough

Return to top