WisDOT: Speed limit reduction to 60 mph on sections of Interstate 39/90, Beloit to Madison

Steven Theisen
WisDOT Project Communications Manager
(608) 884-1230, steven.theisen@dot.wi.gov

A speed limit reduction to 60 mph will be implemented on sections of Interstate 39/90 from just south of the US 12/18 (Beltline) interchange near Madison to the Wisconsin-Illinois border. One portion of I-39/90 between the Rock River bridges and the US 51 interchange (Stoughton Exit 156) will remain at 70 mph since construction is completed in this area. Two lanes of Interstate traffic are maintained in each direction during daytime hours and weekends.

Motorists are advised to obey the posted speed limit. The new signs will be posted in advance of traffic being shifted to one side of the Interstate. The reduced speed limit of 60 mph will be more prevalent in I-39/90 work zones over the next few weeks as projects complete the necessary traffic switches.

The Wisconsin State Patrol will be increasing efforts of surveillance along this corridor. This will include additional troopers patrolling the corridor and conducting aerial enforcement to enforce speed limits and other traffic laws.

Work zone safety is one of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s top priorities and the penalties for careless driving are steep.

  • In work zones, penalties are doubled. Penalties for speeding may range up to $600. For motorists, a second violation within a year may carry a penalty of up to $1,200.
  • Careless drivers may face fines of up to $700 and a possible 3 ½ years in prison if they injure someone in a work zone. The fines for vehicular manslaughter are even higher, as are the prison terms – as many as 10 years. These punishments may increase if the driver was intoxicated or a repeat offender.
  • It is illegal to talk on a handheld mobile device while driving in a Wisconsin work zone. Drivers caught in violation face fines of up to $40 on first offense and $100 for subsequent offenses.

Remember, when you enter a work zone, be patient and pay attention to your surroundings.

  • Eliminate distractions like eating, drinking, talking on the phone, or using other electronic devices.
  • Expect the unexpected. Speed limits may be reduced, traffic lanes may be changed, and people and vehicles may be working on or near the road.
  • Give yourself room. Rear-end collisions are the most common work zone crashes, so don’t tailgate.
  • Allow about four seconds of braking distance. Look for signs. Orange, diamond-shaped signs usually give you ample warning of lane closings, construction areas, and flaggers and other workers ahead.
  • Be patient. If you don’t see workers, that doesn’t mean they’re not there. Observe the signs until you see one that says you’ve left the work zone.
  • Plan ahead. Leave early or map out an alternate route. Find the latest road conditions and work zone news at 511 Wisconsin.
  • Follow the law. Slow down or move over, if possible, when you see flashing lights.

Information on the I-39/90 Expansion Project can be found at www.i39-90.wi.gov.