Louisiana senators signed a bill to curb speeding on the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge in order to reduce the frequency of accidents.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed Senate Bill 435 on June 15 to designate the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge carrying I-10 as a “highway safety corridor.”
The law takes effect on August 1, 2022.
As a “highway safety corridor,” the usual speeding charge of $175 would be increased to $350 after a one-time warning. Following speeding infractions would result in a $1000 fine.
The new rule also requires transportation officials to install “camera safety devices” on the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge in order to enforce the bridge’s speed limit.
The measure will also require greater bridge speed limit signage, as well as six sets of “Trucks Right Lane Only” signs evenly spaced on the eastbound portion of the bridge and six sets of “Trucks Right Lane Only” signs equally spaced on the westbound portion of the bridge.”
Louisiana Senate President Page Cortez wrote the bill. Cortez uses the bridge frequently as part of his commute to Baton Rouge. Cortez told the Senate Committee on Transportation, Highways, and Public Works that he frequently witnesses semi truck drivers exceeding the speed limit and disregarding right-lane limits.
According to Cortez, there will be 269 crashes on the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge in 2021, with two deaths and 89 injuries.
On March 22, 2022, a huge crash happened on the bridge.