Safer Streets FAQs

How much safer is driving at 20mph?

You are 7 times less likely to die if hit at 20mph than 30mph or 10 times if over 60 years old.
In the distance a 20mph car can stop, a 30mph car will still be doing 24mph.

Are fewer people injured in areas with 20mph limits?

Yes, about 20% fewer:

Does 20mph mean a lot more humps?

Not necessarily, there are many ways to educate drivers on 20mph including speed activated signs, road markings and community engagement. A national campaign ahead of the change would be brought in to reinforce the change.

Is this a blanket 20 mph limit across all urban areas?

No, the default speed limit would change from 30mph to 20mph, but councils would be free to exempt roads that need to remain at 30 mph to improve traffic flow for example. However these roads would be the exception rather than the rule.

Isn’t 20mph around schools enough?

No, slowing the last 100m when most children travel over a mile to get to school is less effective than wider 20mph roll outs:

How does 20mph affect the environment?

Reducing speed helps lower air pollution from exhausts, it can also encourage greater walking and cycling, allowing the car to be left at home: and

How could 20mph be enforced?

The same way 30mph is enforced. One of Police Scotland’s top priorities for safer streets is speed reduction. Cutting the speed limit would be treated in a similar way by the Police to the reduction in the drink driving limits. Roads with persistently high speeds can be targeted by the Police. In Edinburgh, trials are underway using average speed cameras on some roads to remind drivers to drop speed.

Is there support for this?

Yes, a recent Scotland wide survey found that 55% of people supported the introduction of 20mph speed limits.

Will journey times increase?

Not significantly. Research shows minimal impact on journey times by car and bus where 20mph limits have been put in place – a matter of seconds, not minutes.

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