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Not all trucking companies support speed limit hike bill

Semi Truck
Semi Truck

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - If Wisconsin raises the speed limit to 70 on rural Interstates, at least one trucking firm says it won't speed up. 

Marten Transport of Mondovi says its drivers will keep going 65 no matter what. 

Susan Deetz tells the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram that her company's vehicles are geared for 65 -- and an increase to 70 would hurt safety and fuel mileage. 

The Assembly passed the 70 bill on Tuesday, but it's not certain whether the Senate would pass it -- or if Governor Scott Walker would sign it.  

It includes a study of whether non-Interstate four-lanes should be raised to 70 -- and if Wisconsin should have split speed limits of 65 for trucks and 70 for the rest of us. 

Marten Transport opposes that idea.

Schneider National of Green Bay cites a 20 percent increase in traffic deaths when the speed limit is raised by 5 miles an hour, like all of Wisconsin's neighbors have done. 

Freshman Assembly Democrat Katrina Shankland of Stevens Point said GOP legislators, "didn't do their due diligence." She tells WSAU Radio in Wausau that she tried getting more in-depth information, but was stymied. 

Freshman Assembly Republican John Spiros of Marshfield said the same thing. With two large trucking companies in his area, he cited safety concerns. 

Shankland also said it would cost $130 a sign to make changes on over 1,200 miles of rural Interstates.  

But not all carriers are opposed. The Chippewa Valley Airport Service, which shuttles people from Eau Claire to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport, said it would be a great time saver for its customers.

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