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Pauma Reservation Road speed limit reduced

Joe Naiman

Village News Reporter

The speed limit on Pauma Reservation Road between State Route 76 and Adams Drive has been reduced.

A first reading and introduction of the ordinance to reduce the 45 mph speed limit to 40 mph and certify the speed limit for radar enforcement was approved by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors on a 5-0 vote Sept. 14, and a 5-0 vote Sept. 28 approved the second reading and adoption. The 40 mph speed limit will be enforceable Oct. 28, although the county’s Department of Public Works may install signage earlier.

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. Periodic recertification, including a supporting speed survey, is required for continued radar enforcement and DPW or a contractor typically conducts speed surveys every seven years.

The speed limit may be rounded either up or down from the 85th percentile speed. The speed limit may also be rounded down an additional 5 mph if findings are made that the road has conditions which would not be apparent to a motorist unfamiliar with the road. 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.

Pauma Reservation Road between State Route 76 and Adams Drive measures 0.65 miles and is a striped two-lane undivided highway with a pavement width of 21 feet. The road has a double yellow centerline which prohibits passing and also white edge line striping. Pauma Reservation Road also has signal, curve, and intersection advisory signs. It is not classified on the Mobility Element of the county’s general plan.

A traffic survey on Pauma Reservation Road 150 feet west of the Casino Pauma entrance was taken on March 22. The average daily volume of 3,621 vehicles consists of 1,813 westbound and 1,808 eastbound motorists. The previous traffic survey taken in December 2014 indicated an average daily volume of 3,615 drivers. No collisions on Pauma Reservation Road between Highway 76 and Adams Drive were reported in the 36-month period from Nov. 1, 2018, to Oct. 31, 2021.

The speed limit of 45 mph was last justified after a 2014 speed survey 1,450 feet east of State Route 76 produced an 85th percentile of 47.0 mph with 61% of the drivers within a 10 mph pace of 37‑46 mph. A speed survey at that location was taken on March 25, 2022, between noon and 1:03 p.m. The 125 drivers had an 85th percentile speed of 43.9 mph with 64% of the drivers within a 30-39 mph pace. The most common speeds were 38 mph with 14 motorists, 37 mph with 13 vehicles, and 30 mph with 10 drivers. Three vehicles at 52 mph and one at 50 mph were the fastest while two drivers at 27 mph and four at 28 mph were the slowest.

The April 22 meeting of the county’s Traffic Advisory Committee included a unanimous recommendation to lower the speed limit and certify it for radar enforcement.


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