Southbound I-17 speed limits lowered north of Phoenix for holiday

Posted at 12:20 PM, May 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-29 16:16:17-04

State transportation officials are trying to cut the number of traffic-clogging crashes along part of Interstate 17 north of Phoenix by lowering speed limits on Memorial Day.

The southbound section of highway between Flagstaff and Phoenix sees extremely heavy traffic as holiday weekends end. The Arizona Department of Transportation says it is cutting 10 mph off the usual 65 mph speed limit Monday between New River and the Sunset Point rest area.

The 25-mile stretch of highway often sees bad wrecks that close lanes and snarl traffic on busy holiday weekends.  ADOT Director John Halikowski says slowing down can actually get drivers home sooner by cutting accidents.

A state study snows more than 40 percent of crashes along that stretch of highway were caused by driving too fast for conditions.