While various media reports suggest a 20mph scheme in Bath & North East Somerset has led to a rise in deaths and serious injuries, 20s Plenty for Us says the data produced by the council is ‘so compromised that it would not be reasonable…to make any decisions based on the report’.
The Telegraph says Bath & North East Somerset (BaNES) Council spent £870,000 introducing the zones 12 months ago, and is now ‘refusing to reverse the scheme because it will cost too much’.
The Telegraph says that since the 20mph zones were introduced the number of people killed and seriously injured has gone up in seven of the 13 zones covered by the scheme.
The local Bath Chronicle says the council report refers to ‘a national trend’ which ‘suggests local people are less diligent when walking and crossing roads within the (20mph) zones because they think they are safer’.
Talking to the Bath Chronicle, councillor Patrick Anketell-Jones, deputy leader of BaNES Council, said: “There are some roads where it still might be a good idea to have 20mph zones, for example around schools and vulnerable residential areas.
“But in other areas there is no evidence that the 20mph limits have made a difference to the statistics.
“However we are in a relatively early stage still and need more information to be able to make a better judgement about this. After all we’re talking about three years of information and ideally you really need twice that.”
Commenting on BaNES Council report, the campaign group 20s Plenty for Us said: “Whilst we believe that assessing the results of 20mph limits is important in order to better implement on going schemes and formulate local authority policy, this must be done in a reasonable, balanced and objective manner.
“20’s Plenty for Us refutes the findings and conclusions in the (BaNES) report and advises members that the report is so compromised that it would not be reasonable for them to make any decisions based on the report.”
20s Plenty for Us goes on to describe the report as ‘biased, lacking in statistical rigour and not meeting several local authority duties on competency and equality’.