Ministers from around the world are set to send out a ‘clear and unambiguous message’ that the default speed limit on all residential roads should be 20mph.
On 19-20 February, transport ministers from more than 100 countries will meet at the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm.
The ministers will agree on the ‘Stockholm Declaration’ – described as an ‘ambitious and forward-looking’ road safety plan.
The declaration has a focus on speed management, promising to ‘mandate a maximum road travel speed limit of 20mph in areas where vulnerable road users and vehicles mix in a frequent and planned manner’.
It says that efforts to reduce speed will have a ‘beneficial impact on air quality and climate change as well as being vital to reduce road traffic deaths and injuries’.
There will be an exception where ‘strong evidence’ shows higher speeds are safe.
The move has been welcomed by campaign group 20’s Plenty for Us, who says 20mph limits are ‘becoming the standard for best practice in communities around the world’.
Rod King MBE, director of 20’s Plenty for Us, said: “This declaration by transport ministers worldwide will endorse 20mph as the appropriate limit wherever vulnerable road users mix with motorised vehicles.
“This sets a clear and unambiguous message that adoption of 20mph limits as a default is necessary on urban and village streets where people live, work and visit.
“It also endorses the wide benefits of such lower speeds beyond just road safety to include air quality, public health and climate change.”