In Britain more than half of road deaths and serious injuries occur on roads with 30 mph limits. Britain has the highest percentage of pedestrian road fatalities in Europe 22.5%. Britain has one of the lowest levels of children walking or cycling to school in Europe. Speed limits on Britain’s urban roads are 60% higher than Europe. (30 mph compared to 18.6 mph)
British parents consistently cite traffic speed as the main reason why their children are not allowed to cycle or walk to school. Lowering urban and residential speed limits to 20 mph has been found to increase a urban journeys by just 40 seconds maximum, whilst decreasing child pedestrian accidents by up to 70%.
For cyclists, 20mph traffic speed limits make urban roads more cyclable. Of course, simply putting a speed limit on an otherwise unchanged road is not enough. Such a move needs to be part of a wider aim of re-humanising our streets, and reclaiming them from the motor vehicle.
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