Road Safety News
 

Localism - a threat to road safety?

Wednesday 23rd February 2011

The Association of British Drivers (ABD) has warned that localism could bring the setting of speed limits into disrepute, and potentially cause a road safety issue.

ABD has cautioned that while handing power to local councils and local people may sound good in theory, there are some issues when national strategy is essential. This is particularly pertinent when speed limits are concerned, reports ABD.

Nigel Humphries, ABD spokesman, says: “A small minority of people have come to believe they have the right to dictate the speed at which vehicles pass their house — whilst in most cases being quite happy to drive past other people's houses at higher, but still perfectly safe speeds.

“This conflict of interests can only be resolved by having national rules on setting of limits in place. We cannot have the situation where a speed limit changes purely because the road enters a different county. Such arbitrary changes bring speed limits into disrepute.

“Local councils have a long history of caving into local pressure and ignoring the advice of the police and other experts when setting limits. Far from improving road safety this undermines compliance and respect for the law.”

Click here to read the full Association of British Drivers report.

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Maybe this is the reason why a block of some 16 streets in just off central Blackpool have been earmarked by the Road Safety Officers for traffic calming measures.

Whilst one of these streets has a junior school on it and another [a major in road] has a park the others are just interconnecting and make a larger block up.

There will be a 20 mph limit, with which I have no problem, but not only that, all the roads and streets will be subjected to road humps in order to slow ie calm traffic down.

I have known this area for about 10 yrs and there has been no serious injuries or kills, certainly not in the last three years and if I required info from the LA under the Freedom of Information Act I am sure this fact would be supported.

So I can only presume that some person or persons have complained about some form of speed related problem or it's just the Road Safety Officers justifying their jobs.

I have no idea how much this is all going to cost but at a time of financial crisis it seems Blackpool just wants to throw monies, ratepayers monies away.

They have just completed some traffic calming measures on Central Drive by placing half humps in the road but at the same time have increased the height of three pedestrian crossings to the same height as the pavement making them effectively full humps, I didn't know that it was legal to do that to a pedestrian crossing.

They have also manufactured about four other non-regulatory crossings along the promenade which are completely illegal. When it was questioned about their legality the answer was, well they look good.

Is that the way it's going to be? Are these the people we want in charge of our future? Can they act in this way without fear of accountability? I think, or at least hope, not.
Bob Craven, Lancs

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