The British speed limit in towns and villages should be slashed from 30mph to 20mph, argues road safety charity Brake
The British speed limit in towns and villages should be slashed from 30mph to 20mph, argues road safety charity Brake. The “20's Plenty in Communities” campaign therefore calls for the Government to encourage – and of course fund - the lower limit, and for motorists to recognise it is the “compassionate and responsible way to drive”. Brake is also calling for local authorities to construct more pavements, paths, and crossings to protect pedestrians and cyclists - and for the wider enforcement of urban limits courtesy of average speed cameras. Brake also believes that “people should be able to walk and cycle safely in their communities without fear” which is “good for health, well-being, and the environment”.
Brake has a “Rural Roads Are Not Racetracks” message too. The charity therefore says – based on reports from Direct Line and The Transport Research Laboratory – that some drivers have a “false sense of security on rural roads” and that “a 10% increase in mean average speed results in a 30% increase in fatal and serious crashes”. Brake is therefore calling for motorists to “drive as though someone or something could be round any corner” and to stay “well under speed limits”. Brake also claims that the Government should lower the default rural limit from 60mph to 50mph and require local authorities to implement limits of 40mph, 30mph and 20mph where there are particular risks. This - in Brake's ideal world - would complement new off-road cycle/walking paths, wider speed limit enforcement, and campaigns focussed at school children which explain the risks of overtaking on rural roads.
Brake also has a “No to 80mph Motorways” message as the Government is considering increasing the limit. The charity therefore claims - based on a report by Professor Rune Elvic in The Guardian - that the proposal is “predicted to lead to more crashes, deaths and serious injuries”. Furthermore, Brake says a Transport Select Committee report concluded “higher speeds would do little to reduce journey times” and “it would mean a bigger speed differential between commercial vehicles and faster-travelling traffic which could cause bunching and congestion.” Brake is therefore calling for the proposal to be scrapped.