Texas puts pedal to metal with 85 mph speed limit

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas will soon open a stretch of highway with the highest speed limit in the country, giving eager drivers a chance to rip through a trip between two of the state’s largest metropolitan areas.

The Texas Transportation Commission has approved a speed limit of 85 mph for a 41-mile toll road several miles east of the increasingly crowded Interstate 35 corridor between Austin and San Antonio.

“I would love it,” Austin resident Alan Guckian said. “Sometimes it’s fun to just open it up.”

But while some drivers will want to test their horsepower and radar detectors, others are asking if safety is taking a backseat.

“The research is clear that when speed limits go up, fatalities go up,” said Russ Rader, a spokesman for the nonprofit Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

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