New speed-monitoring installed on I-74 bridge

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Illinois State Police will begin monitoring traffic speed on the I-74 bridge from the sky.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014, IDOT crews will begin installing white strips on both sides of the I-74 bridge. They will have to close down one lane of the bridge in each direction from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday.

This is how it works; White strips are placed on the road. Police fly above the marked zone in an aircraft, usually a helicopter. Using a stopwatch and a number chart, police time how fast it takes a driver to pass from one line to the next. Using a simple equation, police can calculate the driver's speed.

"On the bridges, you can't really have any squad cars sitting up there safely during daylight hours," said Jason Wilson, a State Trooper with the Illinois State Police. "Obviously, we all know there is a problem on the I-74 bridge with people obeying the 50 mph speed limit."

From both sides of the river, drivers approaching the I-74 bridge have an abrupt speed drop from 65 to 50 mph. Police say often times, drivers are not slowing down in, what police consider, an already a high-risk driving zone.

"With the increase of speeding and the construction zones in that area, there has been an awareness that some speed enforcement needs to continue on the bridges," Wilson said.

Police are also expecting more traffic in the upcoming months on the I-74 bridge due to the maintenance on the Centennial Bridge. They hope adding more police surveillance to the I-74 bridge will help drives develop safer habits when behind the wheel.

Related:  Which lanes will close, and when, on the Centennial Bridge

"We want to hit those speed zones so we can develop good driving habits now, before it becomes a critical or fatal crash later," said Wilson.

Wilson also said that aerial speed zones have been implemented previously in the Quad Cities.

IDOT is expected to begin work on the I-74 bridge at 9 a.m. Tuesday, July 8, and finish the job by noon Tuesday.



    Why dont you put those white strips across our border and see how fast the illegals are invading our country before you put them on a bridge to arrest American citizens I am also sure it can be fixed to omit illegal immigrants, we wouldn’t want to inconvenience them from spreading thr diseases would we. ? Beings they cant read road signs or speak English.

    • Mr. Boots

      That is an impressive rant you just went on that had nothing to do with the article. Bravo. I’m sure you’re fun to be around.

    • Ronnie

      Really bad idea Jondo. The illegals are coming in so fast that Obama’s busses will have the paint worn away in the first hour.

  • John Lovaas

    Yes, Jondo- we need to put white strips down- at the doorways of the schools you attended.

    It is clear they are producing citizens who are unable to spell, structure correct grammar, or form concrete ideas.

    What kind of name is Jondo, anyway? Ethnic, for sure! How did your family sneak in?

  • Chester

    I am torn between it being a good or bad idea, it’s good because it could help prevent accidents and fatalities, but us taxpayers are going to be the ones paying for it all. A helicopter is crazy expensive to run, (which we will end up paying for as well) plus whatever officers that get to fly around all day are going to make a good salary,

  • Ronnie

    WQAD’s journalist Shane Simmons needs to make a correction to this article. All of Iowa’s I-74 is currently restricted to 55 mph between I-80 and the I-74 bridge, NOT 65! It’s been that way for some time now. Shane should have included details from Trooper Wilson on just how Illinois Troopers are going to ticket W/B drivers? Their authority ends at the Iowa side of the bridge. I think to legally issue a citation an Iowa squad would have to make the arrest but only after the Illinois Trooper signed a complaint with the Scott County State’s Attorney, charges approved and an arrest warrant issued to the violator. Pretty clumsy way to enforce the law. Better to put marked squads in traffic to slow things down rather than a helicopter hovering over the traffic. People will quickly figure out that “No Helicopter = No Cops = No speed limit to worry about”. Government seems to display less and less horse sense with each new issue.

    • Patrick

      not all of it is restricted to 55 mph. there is a stretch from the junction at 80 until about hundred yards south of the emergency vehicle u-turn access because of the overpass construction. that contention zone ends, though, and it becomes 65 again until the crest of the hill between 53rd and Kimberly rd where it permanently drops to 55.

  • Rommel

    You know what more dangerous than speeding in I-74? People who don’t know how to merge and worse, the ones who stop on the on-ramps!!!!!

  • KKC

    I’m sorry, I must be missing the whole point to the development. We already have a problem with all these mouth-breathers doing 30 – 35mph or less over that bridge. Add to that mess, the Centennial closing.

    How about we enforce people doing the speed limit. I mean seriously, if you can’t drive at speed, get off the road.

  • Suzy

    What a waste of taxpayers money! Surely they can find better things to do with their time and money! Next it will be time to clean or paint the thing again at our expense. Never ending crappy bridge. Get going on the new one! And up the speed limit! Time for the QC to move forward!

  • JustaOpinion

    I don’t think using a stop watch and math is a very good way to speed track someone..

  • Linda Lootens

    I heard a helicopter earlier today, but heard they cancelled the bridge painting today as too dangerous, but went from the bridge to Atkinson and Woodhull. What was the old CB saying – “A bear in the air”?

  • Lola Challoner

    And how many wastes tax dollars will this cost. Fix the roads instead! I don’t need to be policed anymore!

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