20mph speed limits are being ignored by 80% of motorists

New study reveals that drivers are most likely to speed in areas with a lower limit

 
A new study has shown that many drivers in the UK are ignoring the tightest traffic calming measures but despite this, the total percentage of motorists exceeding the speed limits has fallen.

According to government figures, eight out of 10 drivers ignore the 20mph speed limits.

The Department for Transport (DfT) claims that 20mph zones which can be found all over the country are not working, with motorists stating that they “don’t believe in them”.

New study reveals that drivers are most likely to speed in areas with a lower limit

20mph speed limits are being ignored by 80% of motorists © Copyright Albert Bridge and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 

The new study has found that many motorists are most likely going to speed in an area where the limit is low – almost one in six confessed to doing over 30mph in a 20mph zone.

President of the AA Edmund King said: “These statistics indicate that blanket 20mph speed limits aren’t particularly effective. Where they are targeted, like outside schools these lower limits work because people can see the point of them. But if 20mph limits are simply imposed over a whole area, people just don’t believe in them and it’s no surprise they then fail to comply.”

The study discovered that 53% of motorists exceeded the speed limit in 30mph areas, whilst 46% admitted to driving over 70mph on the motorway. It’s on single carriageways where most drivers stay within the national speed limit – only 8% said they drove faster than 60mph.

Despite these figures, which were collected via hundreds of traffic counters placed on various roads in the UK during 2016, the total percentage of drivers exceeding speed limits has fallen a little since 2011.

“Research shows that 20mph zones in the right areas can save lives and we have made it easier for councils to introduce them. It is for councils to set speed limits in their area and police to decide how best to enforce them,” said a spokeswoman for the DfT.

The first ever 20mph speed zone was introduced in the UK back in 1991. Since then the rules have eased and it’s now up to local authorities to decide which of their roads would benefit from such a zone being implemented.

 

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