Emergency legislation to raise the speed limit on the Intercounty Connector from 55 mph to 60 mph has been filed by two Montgomery County state senators.

Democrats Jennie Forehand and Nancy King want the speed increased on the 18.8-mile toll road between Interstate 270 in Gaithersburg and Interstate 95 and U.S. 1 in Laurel to take effect immediately because it is "necessary for the immediate preservation of the public health or safety."

The majority of the road opened in November 2011, and almost immediately critics demanded a speed hike.

An engineering study by the Maryland Transportation Authority, which operates the all-electronic toll highway, concluded the speed limit could be raised, and a final review of accident statistics is nearly completed. Agency Executive Director Harold Bartlett said he would make a decision by the end of February.

candy.thomson@baltsun.com