Some island residents would argue that the first
sign of summer is not the first wave of vehicles along NC Highway 12,
the opening of businesses and the local piers, or even the initial
appearance of our beloved seasonal mosquitos – instead, it’s that
subtle change along the highway when the speed limits go down.
Reports have trickled in that this change has
indeed occurred, by cautious and conscientious drivers who noticed on
Monday morning that those white signs along the highway now say 35 mph
instead of the wintertime 45 mph.
The speed limit is reduced by an average of 10
mph within the town borders of Avon, the tri-villages, and areas of
Buxton / Frisco in the summer months, when the area traffic along the
island is noticeably higher. In the winter months, when motorists can
sometimes share the road with just a couple other cars and a deer or
two, (if that), the speed limit is higher to cater to the few local
motorists on the road.
The speed limit typically remains at the 35 mph
level until the fall, when the summer swell of visitors dissipate, and
the seasonal population goes down.
Like daylight savings time, it often takes locals
a few days to get used to the change, so be sure and set your cruise
control, and try and keep your foot off the gas.
Apparently, summer has officially arrived.