Lehigh Valley

PennDOT turns down North Whitehall speed reduction request again

NORTH WHITEHALL TWP., Pa. - The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has turned down a request to reduce the speed on a certain stretch of Mauch Chunk Road for the third time since 2005.

Township Secretary Brenda Norder reported at Monday night's board of supervisors' meeting she received a response letter from PennDOT District Manager of Traffic Studies Chade Sankari. The letter, dated July 16, turned down the township's request to lower the current 45 mph speed limit to 35 mph based upon three automobile accidents in the neighborhood in the last three years and speeding trucks.

According to Sankari's letter, the speed reduction request is denied because as per results of speed limit and traffic studies conducted, no reduction is warranted. In addition, vehicle crashes which have occurred in the 3300 block of of the road were not attributable to excessive speeding following reviews of the accident reports by PennDOT.

Dick Getz, who lives at 3333 Mauch Chunk Road and initiated the request, said two of the three crashes occurred on his property. He said the third was directly across the street from his residence.

Sankari also wrote according to the studies, 85% of the road's travelers drive at or near the designated speed limits which vary at intervals between 35 mph and 45 mph along most of the route north of Allentown.

Norder noted previous speed reduction requests were made in 2005 and 2012.

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