Friday, July 11, 2008

55 mph speed limit

Mostly Cajun has posted about Senator John Warner (R) VA suggesting we re-institute the national 55mph speed limit. It didn't work during the 70's and 80's and it won't work now.

However, note my personal experience. We returned last night from our trip to Indiana. On the trip up I pretty closely followed the speed limit (70-75 mph) in Mom's Lincoln, returning about 24 - 24.5 mpg. We fueled up in a suburb west of St. Louis, and without engaging the cruise control, I followed the speed limit through St. Louis and all through IL (50-65 mph). The Lincoln has an instant mpg reading on its trip computer, and as we were crossing into IN from IL we were reading 27.5 mpg. On the return trip I set the cruise at 65 mph and averaged over 25.5 mpg from IN to western OK. Just dropping my average speed about 5 mph netted about a 5% fuel savings. From now on longer distance trips in the Lincoln will be at 65 mph and in my Jeep (Just Empty Every Pocket) will be at 65 mph, unless I'm towing, then it will be 60 mph.

I believe driving slower will save fuel, but I don't want any government legislating a lower speed limit. If you can afford the gas cost drive the speed limit. If you're like me, leave a little earlier, slow down and enjoy the savings.

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