The County’s Traffic Advisory Committee (TAC) recommended that the 45 mph speed limit on a 1.8-mile segment of Gopher Canyon Road be recertified for radar enforcement.
The TAC’s unanimous June 7 recommendation is scheduled to be ratified by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors on Aug. 7. The radar certification covers the Bonsall road from Spa Havens Way to East Vista Way.
In order for a speed limit to be enforceable by radar, a speed survey must show that the speed limit is within the closest 5 mph increment to the 85th percentile speed, although the speed limit can be reduced by 5 mph if findings of special circumstances not apparent to a typical motorist are made. Periodic recertification, along with a supporting speed survey, is required for continued radar enforcement. The county’s Department of Public Works conducts speed surveys on a radar-enforceable road segment every seven years.
Gopher Canyon Road is a two-lane through highway which varies in width from 42 to 54 feet. It has edge striping along both sides and is classified as a Major Road on the county’s Mobility Element network. The road also has a seven-ton weight limit.
The May 2013 traffic survey taken at Gopher Canyon Road west of Little Gopher Canyon Road had a two-way average daily volume of 14,990 vehicles while the road west of Valle Vista Drive had a two-way traffic count of 14,980 average daily trips.
The previous traffic survey was taken in September 2004, when the location west of Little Gopher Canyon Road had an average volume of 16,480 vehicles and the road west of Interstate 15 had a two-way average count of 7,870 daily trips. In July 1995, the traffic survey west of Little Gopher Canyon Road indicated an average volume of 8,270 vehicles.
The 2006 speed survey taken 1,540 feet east of Fairview Drive resulted in an 85th percentile speed of 52.0 mph with 78.1 percent of drivers traveling within a 10-mph pace of 44-53 mph. A May 3, 2013, speed survey covered 664 vehicles between 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. The 85th percentile speed was 48.3 mph with 79.9 percent of drivers traveling within a 40-49 mph pace.
The most common speed was 44 mph with 74 vehicles while 65 vehicles crossed the location at 45 mph, 63 drivers were traveling at 46 mph, and 61 motorists had speeds of 43 mph. Three vehicles at 55 mph were the fastest while the slowest motorist drove at 35 mph.