Speed limit lowered on Rancho California Road

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New limits for Fern Valley Road, Maddalena Road, Via de Oro

The Riverside County Board of Supervisors lowered the speed limit on a portion of Rancho California Road in unincorporated Temecula, while establishing speed limits for segments of Fern Valley Road in Idyllwild, Maddalena Road in unincorporated Murrieta and Via de Oro in unincorporated Temecula.

The supervisors voted 5-0, Tuesday, Aug. 25, to reduce the Rancho California Road speed limit between Butterfield Stage Road and Glenoaks Road from 55 mph to 50 mph. That vote also established new speed limits of 35 mph for Maddalena Road between Benton Road and Auld Road and for Via De Oro between De Portola Road and Chaparral Drive, and the speed limit for Fern Valley Road between South Circle Drive and 1,400 feet north of Forest Drive will be 30 mph.

In order for a speed limit to be enforceable by radar, a speed survey must show that the speed limit is within an adjacent 5 mph increment to the 85th percentile speed. If speed surveys are taken at more than one location along a reviewed segment a “speed zone” for the entirety of the speed surveys can be used.

Rancho California Road totals 4.26 miles between Butterfield Stage Road and Glenoaks Road. The average daily volume for that segment is 12,500 vehicles. During a two-year period that portion of the road had 16 reported collisions, which results in a rate of 0.41 collisions per million vehicle miles. On July 10, 2019, speed surveys were taken 800 feet east of Butterfield Stage Road, 250 feet west of Anza Road and 400 feet west of Anza Road. The three locations in the speed zone had an 85th percentile of 43.75 mph.

Fern Valley Road between South Circle Drive and 1,400 feet north of Forest Drive measures 1.72 miles. There had not been a posted speed limit, although by state law the maximum allowable speed for a two-lane highway is 55 mph. In the past two years that segment of Fern Valley Road has had one reported collision for a rate of 0.93 per million vehicle miles. The average daily traffic volume for that portion of Fern Valley Road is 860 vehicles. Three speed surveys for Fern Valley Road were taken Sept. 18, 2019. The surveys 150 feet east of Lodge Road, 700 feet north of Dickenson Road, and 550 feet north of Encino Road produced an 85th percentile of 32.67 mph for the speed zone.

The distance of Maddalena Road from Benton Road to Auld Road is 0.50 miles. The average daily volume is 1,600 vehicles, and the road segment has not had any reported collisions over the past two years. The Feb. 27, 2020, speed survey 800 feet south of Benton Road created an 85th percentile of 38.4 mph.

No accidents along the 0.53-mile segment of Via De Oro between De Portola Road and Chaparral Drive were reported in a two-year period, and that portion of the road has an average daily volume of 990 vehicles. The Dec. 18, 2019, speed survey taken 2,200 feet east of De Portola Road determined an 85th percentile of 38 mph.

Joe Naiman can be reached by email at jnaiman@reedermedia.com.