OSHKOSH - Most people traveling this weekend will do so by car. And many will be using the newly reconstructed Highway 41 in Winnebago County.
Now with three lanes in each direction from north of Oshkosh to Neenah, many will see it as a license to cruise. But local law enforcement has plans to make sure that's not the case.
It's a beautiful Friday on a holiday weekend. Many people are itching to travel. But authorities say speeding while doing so, will get you nowhere fast in Winnebago County.
"Now we're back to 65 mile per hour posted speed limits throughout most of our county, but the sheriff's office is still continuing to do enforcement up there, we don't want to turn it into a raceway," said Winnebago County Sheriff's Department Patrol Captain Todd Christie.
While much of the work here in Winnebago County is already completed there is still some ongoing and getting busted trying to save a few seconds in a work zone will cost you double.
"In excess of $200 tickets start, so it's not cheap. There are better ways to spend your money," said State Patrol Sergeant Tim McGrath.
And even though the highway is now divided with a median barrier, law enforcement will still be on patrol both on the ground in the air. The State Patrol will use four planes and 12 pilots to patrol the highway this summer. Using a special radar, the planes clock drivers in one-eighth of a mile increments, marked by white lines on the highway.
"That pilot can radio his observations and violations down to the ground cars that will make the traffic stops, so it's a very effective tool for us," said McGrath.
Christie says the goal is to curb speeding on the new highway before it becomes habit for drivers. From October of 2012 through this week, the sheriff's department has written 468 citations during 700 hours of special traffic enforcement funded by DOT grants. That doesn't include normal patrols.
"With the new design, the barriers are an improvement, it doesn't hinder our enforcement but it just requires us to use different tactics."
Keeping the highway safe this Memorial Day and everyday.
The peak times for travel this weekend are between noon and 8 p.m. Friday and on Monday.
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