CACHE COUNTY – Thanks to the Cache County Council, the speed limit on some rural roads in Cache County will be going up.
Temporarily, at least.
On Mar. 31, the members of the Cache County Council voted to amend Section 12.01.020 of the Cache County Code to delete the provision setting a speed limit on county roadways that do not have a posted speed limit.
County Executive Craig Buttars explained that the vote was necessary to resolve discrepancy between a longstanding county ordinance that set a 45 mile-per-hour speed limit on those roadways and state statutes setting the speed limit on unposted roads at 55.
According to the County Public Works Department, Cache County has 200 miles of paved roads and 400 miles of gravel/dirt roads that include 160 miles of mountain/forest service roads.
County Public Works Director Matt Phillips said on April 6 that he was unsure of exactly how many of those 600 miles of roads did not have posted speed limits. But he’s going to find out soon.
Prior to the vote on this issue, Councilman David Erickson emphasized that a 55 mph speed limit was unsafe on some county roads, especially those that are unpaved. Other council members agreed.
To resolve that concern, Buttars said that he would task the county’s Road Department with identifying roads that might be unsafe to travel at 55 mph. The county will then post those roadways with lower speed limits and necessary caution signs.
While agreeing that a speed of 55 mph is unsafe on some county roads, Phillips said that identifying those specific locations and posting lower speed limits is a daunting challenge.
That effort, he explained, will be a long-term process that the County Works Department will accomplish in conjunction with its routine work over a period of months.