20’s plenty: Sustrans backs Welsh Government review of residential speed limits

Speed limits on Welsh residential streets will be reviewed

Speed limits on Welsh residential streets will be reviewed.

8 May 2019

Sustrans Cymru has welcomed an announcement from Welsh Government that speed limits on Welsh residential streets will be reviewed. In a question from Welsh Conservative AM David Melding, the first minister Mark Drakeford announced a special Welsh Government taskforce would be set up with local councils to look at how 20 mph zones could be rolled out in residential areas.

Sustrans welcomed the cross party support in the Assembly and urged ministers to press on with its plans. Sustrans supports lowering the default speed limit on urban streets to 20mph, arguing the move would make Welsh roads safer.

Currently the default speed limit on streets in built-up areas is 30mph, and last year powers to alter the rules were devolved to Wales. Campaigners, including Sustrans, have called on ministers to use their news powers and implement a lower, safer speed limit in Welsh towns and cities.

Sustrans warmly welcomes the cross-party support for the Welsh Government review. Evidence shows that where lower speed limits have been introduced, there has been a significant fall in road causalities.

- Steve Brooks, National Director Wales, UK Policy & Public Affairs Director.

Welcoming the news, Steve Brooks, director of Sustrans Cymru said:

“The thought of your child being hit by a car is every parent’s nightmare, yet we know we could make Welsh roads safer if we reduce the speed limit on our residential streets.

“The grim reality is that if you’re hit by a driver travelling at 30mph you’re 5 times more likely to die than if the driver was going at 20 [1]. That’s why the government’s own independent public health advisors back this move”.

“Sustrans warmly welcomes the cross-party support for the Welsh Government review. Evidence shows that where lower speed limits have been introduced, there has been a significant fall in road causalities. A recent study in Bristol showed a 40% drop in casualties, with the biggest fall amongst the number of children being killed or seriously injured.” .

Notes to editors

1. Rosén, E. et al. (2011) ‘Literature review of pedestrian fatality risk as a function of car impact speed’, Accident Analysis and Prevention, 43: 25-33.

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