Drivers Push The Limit On Central Ohio Roads

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Speed limits are in place for a reason.

But 10TV has found that more and more people are breaking the law – and putting their lives and the lives of others in danger.

Some people have even been clocked at almost 150 miles per hour.

In February, police chased a driver topping speeds of 100 miles per hour in a Hilliard neighborhood.

A month later, police tailed a 14-year-old behind the wheel from Bellefontaine to Urbana with speeds reaching 100 miles per hour.

Whether it’s someone running from police or just someone speeding along the highway, the Ohio State Highway Patrol says they are all putting innocent people’s lives at risk.

“These extreme speeds can hurt or kill someone,” said Lt. Anne Ralston with the Highway Patrol.

10TV News obtained OSHP records for the entire state.

In 2011, there were a total of 9,749 violations of people going 90 miles per hour or more.

In 2012, that number increased about 10 percent to 10,812.

High speed drivers pulled over for going only 90 mph jumped almost 12 percent from 2011 to 2012.  In 2011, there were 2,827 violations, and in 2012 there were 3,203.

Over that same time period, 518 people were caught going 100 mph.One hundred people were nailed at 110 mph. Thirty people were cited at 120 mph.

The highest clocked speed was 147 mph, data showed.

The most serious high-speed violations represent only about three percent of the patrol’s annual speeding citations.

Still, the patrol says that is too many. Most of the drivers are pushing the limits on the interstates.

“I think I may have had one in the 120s,” said Trooper Shane Meddock.

Meddock is armed with his radar gun every day.

The 12-year veteran has pulled over nine people since 2011 going 100 mph or more.

“I do shake my head sometimes when I see these people out there going that type of speed,” Meddock said. “It’s just an everyday thing. I think people just get in a hurry. They want to get home from work or whatever the case may be.”

Meddock said that there is never a good excuse, though, and he has heard them all.

In central Ohio, Licking County ranks third in the state, with a total of 856 high-speed violators driving 90 mph or more in 2011 and 2012.

Madison County ranks sixth with 715, and Franklin County ranks eighth with 662.

Meddock patrols Interstate 70 in Madison County.

Despite the new 70 mph speed limit on rural interstates that went into effect last week, Trooper Meddock is finding people are pushing the limit of the state law.

State numbers show that more than 1,300 violations happened along I-70 through Licking, Franklin and Madison Counties in that two-year time period.

That number compares to 361 on Interstate 270, 284 along Interstate 71 and 15 on Interstate 670.

“You never want to see anybody get in a crash, and you definitely don’t want to see anybody become a fatality, but hopefully people will take that extra time and use a little bit of common sense and take time to get where they need to be,” Meddock said.

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