PUT SAFETY FIRST: PRACTICE THE DEFENSIVE DRIVING ABCs
In recent months, drivers have reported and the Mobility Authority has witnessed, an increase in preventable crashes occurring on MoPac, many caused by drivers attempting to illegally cross the delineators and enter the Express Lane. This is particularly dangerous as Express Lane drivers do not anticipate merging with general-purpose lane traffic outside of the official Express Lane entrances and exits. In response, we have risen to action. This spring, we partnered with the Austin Police Department to monitor vehicles traveling on MoPac. During peak travel times within the corridor, the following violations were observed:
*Following too close, failure to yield, etc.
**Expired registration, no insurance, failure to update address, etc.
Speeding was by far the most common violation. Fortunately, speeding is also the most easily preventable infraction and can be addressed by adhering to signage and respecting the posted limit at all times.
The Express Lane speed limit will soon be adjusted to a maximum of 70 MPH and a minimum of 55 MPH to keep the lane moving efficiently. Minimum speed limits help the Express Lane operate as intended by ensuring individual motorists do not unreasonably impede the flow of traffic.
Want more tips on safe driving? Follow the ABCs.
ABCs of Driving
Pay Attention: Take in your surroundings and be present. Driving conditions can change in an instant. Keeping your wits about you and be aware of other vehicles, weather impacts and traffic conditions.
Be cautious: Speed limits exist to keep you and your fellow drivers safe. Slow down, maintain a safe following distance and always check twice for blind spots before turning or changing lanes.
Cut out Distractions: Austin is a hands-free city. Put down the phone and pay attention to the road. Remember, it can wait.
Over the past year, nearly 50 percent of crashes on MoPac are reported to have been caused by a contributing factor of following too closely, driver inattention, or excessive speed. Don’t become a statistic and help reduce the number of accidents in our city.