Speed Limits and Tailgating
Realistic speed limits have been set by Jefferson County on all named roads in Genesee (these are county roads; private drives are owned by Genesee Foundation and not under Jefferson County jurisdiction). Unless otherwise posted, the speed limit on county roads in Genesee is 30 mph. On county roads that are curvy and/or narrow, like Currant Drive and Bitterroot Lane, the speed limit is 25 mph.
Jefferson County does not have jurisdiction over speeds on our private drives. However, most are quite narrow and safe speeds would generally be 20 mph or less.
The speed limits have been established to:
- Provide guidance to drivers, especially strangers to the area, regarding the suitable speed for normal conditions.
- Reduce the speed difference between vehicles. The accident rate is less when the majority of vehicles are traveling at about the same speed.
- To provide consistent and fair enforcement actions for enforcement personnel.
Do not tailgate. It’s never a good idea, but especially not in Genesee with its prevalence of wildlife which can cross the road unexpectedly. The car in front of you might have to brake suddenly to avoid a collision with a large animal crossing the road (see below).
Respect our Wildlife
Think about these statistics:
- 89% of all wildlife collisions occur on roads with two lanes.
- 84% of all wildlife collisions occur in good weather on dry roads.
- The average repair cost of car-deer collision is $2,800.
To avoid deer and elk collisions:
- Stay alert, especially at dawn and dusk.
- Slow down to increase the time you have to react.
- Scan ahead and watch for movement along roadsides.
- Look for more animals after you see one animal.
- Brake. Don’t swerve. Be ready for animals to change direction.
- Use high beams at night to improve visibility, but remember to dim them for oncoming vehicles. Watch for shining eyes in your headlights.
- Slow down on blind curves.
Share the Road
- Walk on the edge of the road or road shoulder, facing traffic. This will help increase your visibility to drivers, and increase your awareness of an approaching vehicle and any safety issues that may exist. Consider this scenario: you are walking on the wrong side of the road, near or on the roadway. You are not aware that a car is approaching behind you (it could be an electric car, or you could be involved in a conversation, or have headphones on). The driver may feel s/he needs to swing into the other lane to safely pass you, but can’t because there’s a curve ahead with limited visibility. This is a potentially dangerous situation that would be avoided if you were walking facing traffic and aware of what was happening.
- Avoid walking in the roadway. Groups should be mindful and walk single file off the roadway if possible when traffic from any direction approaches.
- If you are walking a dog, consider stopping and shortening the dog’s leash so that approaching drivers don’t feel they have to go into the opposing lane of traffic in case the dog walks or jumps onto the road.
- Make sure you’re visible to drivers at all times. This is especially important at night, in low-light conditions such as dusk or dawn or in inclement weather. Wear light-colored or reflective clothing at night and bright-colored clothing during the day.
- Stay alert and avoid distractions. Put down your phone. Smartphones and handheld electronic devices command your attention and cause you to take your eyes off of the road.
- Don’t wear headphones or earbuds. Your ears will tell you a lot about what is happening around you, if you use them.
- Follow the rules. Know and follow all traffic rules, signs and signals. This way you can properly anticipate what drivers will do. Never assume a driver will give you the right of way. Make every effort to make eye contact with the driver of a stopped or approaching vehicle before entering the roadway.
- Ride with the flow of traffic.
- Be sure you can be seen.
- Obey traffic laws – you’re a vehicle too.
- Ride single file whenever possible.
- Focus on driving. Avoid using cell phones and other personal devices.
- Keep your eye on cyclists and pedestrians and keep track of them in your rear and side mirrors. They have the right to use all the roads in Colorado unless expressly prohibited.
- When passing a bicyclist, be sure to give at least 3 feet clearance between your car and the bike.
- Consider the conditions. The posted speed limit is not necessarily a safe speed under all possible conditions.