A report has been produced by Blake (the road and safety charity) exploring the current evidence on 20mph speed limits and their effects on the pedestrians and cyclists.
While Britain has one of the best road safety records in Europe, per mile travelled, you are more likely to be killed on foot or bicycle than in many of our European neighbours.
If Britain walked and cycled as much as people in Sweden or the Netherlands, Britain would fall down the road safety rankings significantly. In other words, our road safety record is skewed by the fact that so few people walk and cycle compared to other countries.
Surveys indicate that danger from traffic is one of the main factors preventing families and commuters from walking and cycling. Britain also ranks among the lowest in Europe in terms of how well people know others in the local area.
This way there is much more that can be done to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists, both to reduce casualties and enable more people to use these non-harmful, non-polluting, sociable and affordable modes of travel.
- Reducing the default speed limit from 30mph to 20mph across Britain would have a significant and meaningful impact in reducing crashes and serious injuries. Pedestrian and cyclist safety would particularly benefit.
- As a worst-case scenario, it is reasonable to expect a 1mph reduction of average speeds with an associated 6% reduction in crashes and collisions in these areas.
- It is reasonable to expect that reducing the default limit from 30mph to 20mph could aid wider efforts to encourage active and sustainable travel, and therefore help deliver significant health, wellbeing and environmental benefits.
- The guidance provided by central government to local authorities on 20mph limits, while giving the councils the opportunity to introduce widespread 20mph
- limits, does not show the leadership to make broader changes, and certain elements pose a significant barrier to some local authorities moving towards area-wide 20mph limits. This contributes to the implementation of 20mph limits across councils being mixed.
- There are still unnecessary costs associated with local authorities implementing 20mph limits at local level (as opposed to a national change in the default limit), especially related to present signage regulations.
Full report click here
Original source Learning for Public Health West Midlands