20’s Plenty launches call for “Flexi 20”

12.00 | 18 February 2014 | | 8 comments

20’s Plenty for Us will use its annual conference to launch a new campaign to persuade the Government to “end the needless imposition of 20mph repeater signs”.

The conference, It’s Time for 20, is being held today (18 Feb) at Camden Town Hall in London.

20’s Plenty for Us says that the UK’s road speed signage rules are “out of date” and is putting forward a new ‘Flexi-20’ system as a proposed solution.

20’s Plenty says that while the DfT encourages 20mph limits for residential streets, its “needlessly stringent repeater signage regulations” are a barrier to the introduction of the lower limit.

20’s Plenty is calling for local authorities to be given the power to choose whether or not to put repeater signs on 30mph and 20mph limited streets.  It suggests that where the default speed is 20mph, this can be reinforced by entry gateway signs saying that the limit is 20mph place unless otherwise shown.

It suggests that a “Flexi-20” approach would reduce signage costs for authorities wanting to introduce 20mph limits, and enable local representatives to make decisions “without the negatives of the cost or clutter of needless signage”.

Rod King MBE, founder of 20’s Plenty for Us, will tell delegates at the conference: “Our Flexi-20 initiative is a call for a change in signage to allow traffic authorities to choose to simply put repeater signs on the roads which are not 20mph.

“This will substantially reduce costs, reduce signage clutter and prepare the way for a national adoption of what most people believe is eminently sensible.

“It requires no change in legislation but merely a change in signage regulation. Once done we would expect the majority of local authorities to set 20mph limits for most of their streets.

“It really is “Time for 20” and it’s time for Government to consider and respond to the needs of local communities and authorities.”


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    do you have a reference for your “4 times” anecdote? According to William Plowden “Between 1909 and 1925 the only figures kept were for fatal accidents (i.e. disregarding the number of deaths in any one accident)” As the total number of fatal accidents involving motor vehicles was 2,010 in 1920 it would seem that:-

    a) the number of child fatalities was not recorded.
    b) Given the 2012 figure of 1,754 deaths it was probably not of a 4 times greater magnitude
    c) Given that nearly all children walked everywhere then the deaths per mile walked were probably a fraction of today’s

    Rod King, 20’s Plenty for Us, Cheshire
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    This entire debate could be resolved with the simple act of dropping any 20mph proposal. The speed limit within built up areas is 30mph. There are many times when less than 30 is enough, and driver rider assessment when educated sufficiently, is enough. No where or when, just one limit because that is all it is – an upper limit, not a speed that should be driven at – period. Juggling with variable limits and expecting road users such as pedestrians and cyclists to ‘tell others to slow’ is not possible it is destructive to all. All these campaigns do is play into the hands of those who would have one element of society become aggressive to another element of society thereby hastening the breakdown of peoples interaction and ability to see the real dangers on the roads and elsewhere.

    Derek Reynolds, Salop.
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    I happened to read today that four times fewer childen are killed on our roads now than in 1922, despite massively greater traffic volumes and population. Mind you, in 1922 there was a national 20mph limit….

    Idris Francis Fight Back With Facts Petersfield
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    Our proposal calls for better signage than we have at the moment. Repeater signs are all based on most roads having a 30mph limit and then putting repeater signs on the exceptions.

    With complete Traffic Authorities as large as Lancashire, Birmingham etc having or planning for 80+% of roads with 20mph limits it make little sense to treat them as exceptions.

    Our proposal still keeps gateway signs wherever a speed limit changes and the presence of 30mph repeater signs on arterial roads will be a key reminder that all un-repeated streets will be 20mph. In addition such areas would have a “20mph Town” banner/sign at its borders.

    There would still be the requirement for TROs for any 20mph limits and those at 30mph would be considered exceptions. Of course the biggest benefit of Flexi-20 is that it provides a transition to a national 20mph limit for restricted roads unless higher limits are set by TRO.

    Rod King 20’s Plenty for Us
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    Some signs and lines do change some drivers behaviour. How about a new one-way street? Most drivers will follow the one-way arrows and not try to go through the no-entry signs. Enforcing the rules is part of driver education, and more drivers are learning to obey some signs.

    David S
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    If the street scene in a twenty limit looks the same as a street scene in a thirty limit, how then are drivers, cyclists and pedestrians going to tell them apart if not by the way of adequate signage?

    Duncan MacKillop, Stratford on Avon
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    In part I agree with M Johnson, in that regardless of signs etc, motorists tend to drive at the speed that they decide is appropriate for the road (if 20mph signs on an otherwise straight and wide road are the only indicator that it is 20mph, then it is unlikely that motorists will adhere). 20mph schemes do therefore need to be well designed in order to visually indicate to the driver that the maximum limit for the road is 20mph. Driver education would also assist with this. Of course more cyclists and walkers would also help indicate to drivers that they should slow down.

    Rebecca Leeds
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    Signs and rules don’t change driver behaviour. If we spent as much time and money on meaningful driver education, there would be no need to introduce these unenforceable measures.

    M Johnson
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

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