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As virus lockdown brings most of U.S. to a halt, drivers caught speeding over 100 mph nationwide

While most Americans are staying home amid the coronavirus pandemic, the wide-open streets are bringing out the worst in some drivers. States across the country have reported spikes in speeding and police say crashes are more often severe.

California's average speed is up 30%. In Minnesota, traffic deaths have more than doubled. Virginia state troopers caught a driver doing 111 mph on Interstate 95, usually one of the most gridlocked roads in the country. 

New York City saw speed camera tickets in March more than double. In Memphis, a driver was seen in a video hitting 127 mph.  And a group was seen driving recklessly on ATVs in Washington, D.C. 

Police are trying to slam the brakes on the sudden spike in drivers racing to over 100 mph, CBS News transportation correspondent Kris Van Cleave reports. The California Highway Patrol has started posting pictures of the speeds some are hitting and the tickets they're getting. One driver was caught going 117 mph without insurance.

"We just recently had a speed over 150 mph," said CHP Officer John Fransen.

Fransen said in the Bay Area alone, coronavirus hasn't stopped officers from writing 100 more tickets than usual for these extreme speeds.

"We still have a job to do, but what we would ask is that people do their part. Slow down," he said. 

Georgia officers used images of a crash to remind drivers to slow down.

In Colorado, troopers clocked one driver in a sedan at 130 mph, which is 75 mph over the speed limit.

"If they get into a crash, not only are we now exposed … but we have EMTs, nurses, doctors," Colorado State Patrol Trooper Josh Lewis said. "[We] could have been utilizing those resources to actually fight this virus."

The penalty for going over 100 mph in many states can be a big fine and suspended license.

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