Wales to trial default 20mph speed limits

11.29 | 18 February 2021 | | 1 comment

Plans for a default 20mph speed limit on Welsh roads have moved a step closer, after the Welsh Government announced trials will take place in eight pilot areas.

The trials will get underway this summer and come ahead of the planned national rollout for April 2023. The Welsh Government hopes the trials will help develop enforcement arrangements and overcome any unforeseen issues before the full rollout.

The areas chosen for the trials are intended to be representative of the different locations found across Wales including villages, towns and cities.

The trials will also focus on community engagement by communicating the benefits of the lower limit and explaining that reduced speed leads to safer and more cohesive communities.

The Welsh Government says it is introducing the new speed limit to improve safety and help make Welsh streets a more welcoming place for cyclists and pedestrians.

Lee Waters, deputy minister for economy and transport, said: “Making 20mph the default speed limit in residential areas is a bold step that will save lives.

“We have made progress on reducing deaths and serious injuries on our roads over the 21 years of devolution, but despite our considerable efforts the highest proportion of all casualties, 50%, occurred on 30mph roads during 2018.

“This cannot be tolerated, so a reduction to 20mph on our residential and other busy pedestrian urban roads has to be the way forward.

“Decreasing speeds reduces accidents and saves lives, and alongside this the quality of life will improve, making room on our streets for safer active travel. This helps reduce our environmental impact and has a positive outcome for our physical and mental wellbeing.”



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    On the basis that the current administration in Wales has decided to go ahead with the Default 20s, pilot area trials are a very sensible idea.
    It is very likely that “Rumsfeld’s Wisdom” will apply to Default 20s, namely: There are known knowns. There are known unknowns. But there are also unknown unknowns.
    Much will depend on how many of the pre-conditions of the 20mph Task Force Group report are met. I will be looking on with interest to see if the outcomes to the pilot schemes will help replace spin and rhetoric with something of substance.

    Pat, Wales
    Agree (4) | Disagree (1)

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