Limit Driving Speed to Save on Gas, U.S. Senator Suggests

Will driving slower really save gasoline and “ease fuel prices”? Sen. John Warner believes it will. No indication yet if Congress would support such an initiative in 2008, though the idea isn’t without precedent.

Alternatively, couldn’t people simple drive less?

An influential Republican senator suggested Thursday that Congress might want to consider reimposing a national speed limit to save gasoline and possibly ease fuel prices.

Sen. John Warner, R-Virginia, asked Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman to look into what speed limit would provide optimum gasoline efficiency given current technology. He said he wants to know if the administration might support efforts in Congress to require a lower speed limit.

Congress in 1974 set a national 55 mph speed limit because of energy shortages caused by the Arab oil embargo. The speed limit was repealed in 1995 when crude oil dipped to $17 a barrel and gasoline cost $1.10 a gallon.

As motorists headed on trips for this Fourth of July weekend, gasoline averaged $4.10 a gallon nationwide, with oil hovering around $145 a barrel.

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6 thoughts on “Limit Driving Speed to Save on Gas, U.S. Senator Suggests

  1. Hector

    Please DO NOT bring back the National Speed Limit, instead Congress needs to come together and come up energy independent bill(s). I remember the ’74 fuel lines, the truckers complain about gear ratios, fuel tax breaks, etc… Wait until there is a “real” fuel shortages at the pumps, there be rationing, prices fixing, and cops at the pumps. If get real worse wait until you have use fuel coupons like in WWII era. Beside like the song said “I do not drive 55!!!”.

  2. Jon Crispin

    The 55 mile an hour national speed limit is as reviled as prohibition. In both cases, we learned our lesson about the effects of well meaning, but poor legislation. Let’s not make the same mistake again.

    Higher fuel prices mean fewer drivers on the road. That alone offsets any gains in fuel conservation savings without turning a nation of drivers into potential speeder offenders.

    Increased productivity of goods transport due to less traffic caused by higher fuel prices will also offset productivity losses caused by higher fuel prices.

    To offset higher fuel costs by artificial conservation means is a misdirected effort purported by lawmakers who not only don’t drive their own vehicles (I’m sure Warner hasn’t driven himself in 30 years!) and if they did, are not bound by any speed limit due to their lawmaker status.

    Let’s ask our lawmakers to get real and focus on important issues that require their governance, like what to do in Afghanistan and Iraq, education and so forth. Putting shackles on the American people with this legislation is small minded and mean spirited. As voters, we must not let that happen.

  3. Paul

    The cheapest way to lower prices is to allow oil companies to pump more oil from Alaska and use our own oil till we get a better source of energy .
    If the DEMOCRATS will allow it ?
    putting an extra tax on oil as Obama wants to do will only raise the price of oil or will create long lines at service statrions .
    There is PLENTY OF OIL in this great country with out filling the pockets of foreign countries which are trying to put us under them . We also should get oil from Iraq in trade for the money we spent there to give them freedom

  4. Keith Poulloin

    I am a trucker.
    Ask this idiot if he could drive around the country every day at 55. I suspect not.
    All this would do, is raise the States revenues as most people couldn’t or wouldn’t drive 55.
    Has this moron been on any interstate in the country recently?
    Leave us the hell alone and figure out a REAL solution to the extortionate gas prices.

  5. Treuj

    No No No freaking way. I drive across country regularly, 55 mph is dangerous, plain and simple. It keeps everyone bunched up on the highway, and you cannot get separation from the idiot drivers on the road. Leave it to a Republican to come up with a band-aid solution.


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