20 mph speed limits are going to introduced as the default speed limits in built-up areas throughout Wales. How long before the rest of the UK follows suit?
There have long been 20 mph speed limits in zones in residential areas, which local councils could apply to introduce. The tables have now turned however. It is now up to the local authorities together with their communities, to apply for permission to keep a 30 mph in place on road which are considered ‘unsuitable’ for a lower limit.
Many thousands will now need to spent on new traffic signs. Drivers will need to know that a 30 limit is in force on roads which previously needed no signage at all.
The authorities claim that it will encourage more people to walk and cycle within those communities. But to date, no traffic reduction scheme has ever been successful in doing that. If people have to travel long distances to reach their destination, particularly when the weather is bad; then there will never be a reduction in car users unless there are drastic improvements in public transport reliability and affordability.
They also claim that it will improve our health and wealth being; but most drivers probably find that being held to a crawl when in traffic actually greatly increases stress levels.
It will also apparently be better for the environment which will be safeguarded for future generations. The big problem with this is that car engines are designed to run must efficiently at low speed in low gears. They actually burn far more fuel and create far more pollution this way.
That pollution could possibly create a much more toxic atmosphere which will probably cause more people to be reliant on the NHS, rather than the smaller number they claim that this scheme will result in.