Aggressive Driver Response Team busy on the bridges (etc.)

SPD Blotter is updated tonight with a couple more lists of warnings/citations from special patrols by the Aggressive Driver Response Team. This time, they were out on the newly opened lanes of the westbound Spokane Street Viaduct, where they say someone was doing 59 mph in the stretch where the speed limit is now 25 mph; on the West Seattle Bridge, where the list is topped by 72 mph in a 45 zone; and on Admiral Way. Those lists ahead:

Spokane Street Viaduct – 25 mph Construction Zone

1 at 59 mph
1 at 57 mph
1 at 53 mph
1 at 51 mph
1 Cell Phone

West Seattle Bridge – 45 mph zone

1 at 72 mph
2 at 65 mph
1 at 63 mph
1 at 60 mph

SW Admiral Way – 30 mph zone

1 at 50 mph
2 at 49 mph
2 at 48 mph
1 at 47 mph
5 at 46 mph
3 at 45 mph
1 at 43 mph
4 at 42 mph
4 No Proof of Insurance

They were also on 1st Avenue South, according to the post on SPD Blotter.

31 Replies to "Aggressive Driver Response Team busy on the bridges (etc.)"

  • Local resident December 29, 2011 (10:51 pm)

    I applaud this effort. I am tired of excessive speed. It kills people.

  • jno December 29, 2011 (11:51 pm)

    The 25mph limit is seriously ridiculous. So is 50+, don’t get me wrong, but limiting *the* main east-west thoroughfare into and out of West Seattle to the speed of a residential street is SDOT insanity.

  • Jasperblu December 30, 2011 (6:08 am)

    Driving home last night from Cap Hill around 7:30p, in the pouring rain, with my 5 year old in the back seat, it was appalling how fast people were going on the Viaduct & the WS Bridge. I could hardly see the lanes, it was that dark & that wet (why doesn’t Seattle have reflective raised lane markers?)! I was driving the speed limit & people were ripping past me, tailgating dangerously close when they couldn’t pass, and changing lanes aggressively when they saw an opportunity to zip around me, or the Metro bus in the lane next to me. I get that people want to hurry home, but pressuring another driver to speed – when I’m choosing to drive safely – is reckless & puts MY life in danger, not to mention my kid. Absolutely infuriating that the people who insist on driving like maniacs think so little of anyone but themselves. Slow down!

  • CandrewB December 30, 2011 (6:09 am)

    jno, agreed

  • teachergreg December 30, 2011 (6:38 am)

    This story is the same every time and so are the comments. People are going to drive highway speed on a highway, get over it…and people are going to feel like it it is their civic duty to go 40 in the left lane, just pass them on the right like everyone else. Problem solved.

  • JD December 30, 2011 (7:37 am)

    I saw that 25 MPH sign and just laughed as everyone was doing the usual 40-50. If you can’t navigate a bridge or keep up w/ the speed of traffic you are a danger to others and the majority of people on the road.

  • Local resident December 30, 2011 (7:40 am)

    And the aggressive response unit is going to continue to ticket drivers whose excessive speed and aggressive driving endangers others. Get over it… Pay your fine and try your luck again. That’s reality for you.

  • NFiorentini December 30, 2011 (7:56 am)

    I’d like to see fines substantially increased and a much higher level of enforcement of the speed limits than we currently have, especially if the fines went directly to road maintenance and/or hiring more police officers. Compared to other places that I’ve lived, posted speed limits are not taken seriously in Seattle and, considering how densely-populated Seattle is, this is a major problem in many areas of town.

  • Bligs Mander December 30, 2011 (8:08 am)

    Jno, agreed. How do we get that fixed? Who do we petition to get the speed raised? Really feels like W. Seattle is taking it in the shorts with all this road construction.

  • PG December 30, 2011 (10:06 am)

    I really disagree with all of these comments complaining about the 25 mile per hour speed limit. This is a temporary situation due to narrowed lanes, odd angles and changing conditions. It really feels unsafe thru that section with people whipping by. You are held to 25 miles per hour for what, less than a mile? Is it really that much of a trial to lose 30 seconds to make everyone’s commute home safer?

  • Beth December 30, 2011 (10:47 am)

    If everyone literally crawled at 25mph for that less than a mile, the resulting back-up during rush hour would be horrendous… 25mph on any highway for any reason is unrealistic and as many of the “safe” drivers here are attesting, unsafe for practicality. The road should be functional as what it is. A major thoroughfare and life blood to West Seattle. The speed limit should be at least 35-40 and the construction should be planned in a way that sharp turns etc are not required on a roadway where 25mph is an unrealistic speed. It is poorly planned road work that leaves this ridiculous situation.
    Enforcing this lame 25mph zone is simply a way to collect a virtual “toll” on people who live in West Seattle.

  • carl December 30, 2011 (11:15 am)

    “limiting *the* main east-west thoroughfare into and out of West Seattle”……what are you talking about?
    It’s a construction zone for about 6 blocks, westbound only!
    People can’t drive 10 mph less than the original 35 mph zone for 6 blocks?

  • JEM December 30, 2011 (11:16 am)

    Agree with PG – this is temporary, due to construction. Every construction zone has a reduced speed for safety reasons. Either that there are workers present or the conditions warrant slower speeds. That is a very narrow stretch and the roadway is very uneven. People should slow down. Once the project is completed and we have 3 lanes each way we will zip along and all will be fine.

  • Peter on Fauntleroy December 30, 2011 (11:19 am)

    Thank you SPD!

    Tickets are a good start, but the fines are not nearly high enough, and anyone driving 20mph over the limit – especially in a work zone – is clearly a threat to public safety and should have their license permanently revoked.

    It’s time to choose to grow up and obey the law, kids!

  • Carole December 30, 2011 (11:35 am)

    I wish they had been on 35th this morning for the silver Acura that was screaming down the road, changing lanes back and forth, turned onto Roxbury and continued whipsawing between lanes at a high rate of speed.

    And folks, get those headlights on! At 7:00am and 4:30 pm it is DARK…driving with just the running lights is not appropriate. Tons of cars out there every day in the dark without lights.

  • Rumble December 30, 2011 (11:53 am)

    So the 25 mph might seem slow to some, but it is for a relatively short distance. Perhaps WSB can ask for a little feedback from a traffic engineer at SDOT as to the rationale behind the speed limit. I suspect that there is some sound science behind the restriction, despite the fact that it is a bit of a pain to us all in the short term.

  • GTI December 30, 2011 (3:15 pm)

    Keep up the good work SPD!

    As for the whiners, lighten up. The construction has been very smooth and the posted speed limits are prefect. Why so irritable?

  • Walnut December 30, 2011 (7:38 pm)

    I’ve lived in other states where infractions (speeding, etc) in construction zones equals significantly higher penalties.
    I’m sure if you surveyed the construction workers on the opposite side of the jersey barrier they would agree with the speed reductions.

  • Mel December 30, 2011 (8:03 pm)

    I think even before the reduction it was too slow. Even with the reduction the only “sharp” change is when the construction ends. The “uneven line” business is absurd, they are the same as before is not smoother IMO. Also, from my view, there’s no possibility for construction worker injury unless there was severe negligence on the workers part. You have not only a huge concrete barrier, but considerable space past that and where they work. Unless people are flipping their cars over these two obstacles, injury is unlikely at any speed under 50.

    I personally don’t see why it cant be a 50 mph area, let alone the original 35 mph. Actually the whole thing should be faster for westbound in general since there’s no bus lane. It ought to be 60 at the point where the current construction ends, seeing that the remaining exits are weave lanes and trail offs.

    The people supporting this reduction are the same people who drive too cautiously and cause accidents themselves. If you’ve worried about safety you probably aren’t a very good driver- its not something a good driver would be thinking about. Knowing how to handle rain (it’s Seattle for Christ’s sake- protip: if you cant see, you probably need new wipers), and how to be in the appropriate lane for your speed are things good drivers just know.

  • JN December 30, 2011 (10:05 pm)

    Of course then you get the people who are way too overconfident in their ability to drive, i.e. the geniuses who hit 80mph on the West Seattle Bridge because “that’s what I’m comfortable doing!”. It’s the law for a reason, you can’t cherry pick which speed limit you want to obey and which you don’t.

  • TeacherGreg December 31, 2011 (7:52 am)

    According to this site ( from 2001 to 2009 there were 6 fatalities on the West Seattle Bridge/Hwy. One was a 39 year old man who drove off the open lower bridge, 3 were killed in a 2:45am accident negotiating the turn off of 99 on to the bridge in 2005 (the driver was 18), 1 was killed in a 3am single car accident, and the final one was a woman who fell out of the back of a catering truck.

    The site does note include information from 2010 or 2011.

    Based on my brief research, I’m not seeing a whole lot of evidence to support the notion that people going 55 mph on the West Seattle Bridge/Hwy are killing people left and right.

  • coffee December 31, 2011 (11:09 am)

    Its a construction zone people. How about all the commenters that think it should be much faster all go to work out there and see what its like. Think of it this way, if you are going say 35 and have an accident it has a much greater impact on the construction zone area, pushing the temporary barriers further, etc, into the workers. At a lower rate of speed the impact is much less. All of these speeds have been studied for years hence the limits. Perhaps all of the comments are done by people that have degrees in engineering and construction?? Or better yet, perhaps you would all like to be out there working with the big trucks zooming by at 40? Really get over it.

  • keith December 31, 2011 (11:11 am)

    while I don’t really care about the speed limit lowering for x months, what’s frustrating is how narrow those lanes are during the temporary construction. I’m predicting multiple side scrapes between vehicles and or the barrier due to the narrowness of those lanes. noone I’ve spoken to is comfortable driving along that 1 mile now. I just cannot wait for the return to regular sized lanes for safety. The speed demons are always whipping by regardless of speed limit and the more space between my vehicle and theirs would be nice.

  • Tracy White December 31, 2011 (11:18 am)

    It’s the law for a reason, you can’t cherry pick which speed limit you want to obey and which you don’t.

    I hear this a lot from people who drive continuously in the passing lane at the speed limit, not passing anyone. But somehow…. because they’re breaking a law to “enforce” another one… it’s OK in their book.

    It’s entertaining how people view this as a simple issue and there must be one simple answer. Both my parents are good drivers, but for different reasons. My Dad used to race cars and knows how far he can push them; my Mom just never even comes close to pushing their or her own limits. The real issue is that you have a whole spectrum of skill and ability out there and everyone’s going to feel a bit self-righteous about their frequency on the spectrum.

  • TeacherGreg December 31, 2011 (7:16 pm)

    Its interesting if you read the actual studies about speed limits and accidents. I have found some fascinating information today. First, there are a number of studies that show that the slowest 5% of drivers have the highest accident rate. So all you camry drivers out there going 20 mph in the left lane with your turn signal stuck on, you are (statistically speaking) the biggest hazard on the road for both you and other people.

    Second, what makes roads dangerous is not the posted speed limit per se, but the difference between the posted speed limit and the so-called 85th percentile speed (which is the speed at which 85% of the traffic is driving). So in other words, as the difference between the posted limit and the rate of speed of 85% of the drivers on the road grows, so does the risk of an accident.

    The West Seattle freeway for example, is an example, in my opinion, of a road with a fairly high differential between the posted limit and the speed at which the vast majority of drivers drive. This is what makes it dangerous.

    My opinion, raise the speed limit on the West seattle freeway (after the construction is done) to make it comply with the 85% standard recommended by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the number of accidents and fatalities will decline.

  • NotMe December 31, 2011 (8:24 pm)

    I actually do see a little of what TeacherGreg is saying on the 2nd comment about the 85%… but, when I read the first one about only 6 fatalities being ok with him, I had to laugh (at the lack of reasoning, not the deaths.) What number of people killed on the WS Bridge in one year will make you do 45mph and stop b*tching about it? Do you really not see that the limit is 45 so that the number of deaths will hopefully be ZERO? Of those 6 deaths, did you see how many were a result of speeding? I seem to remember 2 of these accidents being in excess of 65mph.

  • RenaissanceRed January 1, 2012 (11:19 am)

    I drive back and forth on the Viaduct and the new lane configurations…I am one of the few actually following the speed limit. People do NOT follow the 40MPH rule and I’m stymied why I don’t see some motorcycle cops monitoring this area. There are multiple signs posted about the correct speed but I wonder if a couple of strategically placed patrols would get people to REALLY slow down.

  • JO January 1, 2012 (3:03 pm)

    I say Horray for SPD!! Seriously, the difference between 25 and 45 in that short distance will not get you to your destination much more quickly but it will potentially keep an accident from happening or one of the road workers from being injured. It’s temporary, it’s aimed at a common denominator: bad drivers, good drivers, nervous drivers, confident drivers…doesn’t matter. For now, just slow down, turn up your radio and relax for the extra couple of minutes it takes to get through the construction zone.

  • 365Stairs January 3, 2012 (2:20 pm)

    The difference between the 25 mph vs the standard 35ph over a mile stretch is about 42 seconds.

    42 seconds people…

  • michelle January 3, 2012 (4:08 pm)

    Any one witness an accident at the intersection of Delridge and Andover st in west seattle Occuring aprox 5:00pm or so on january 2 2012 your statement would be a help to determine which was at fault or the percentage of shared fault. please email.

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