ETSC Speed Monitor (14) - March 2014
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Speed Monitor
Policy update from ETSC

Momentum builds for 30km/h limits

30 km/h zones are increasing in popularity across Europe as evidence grows of the wide-ranging benefits the schemes bring.

  • Reducing almost every 30mph speed limit in Britain to 20mph should be the top priority for local authorities if they want to improve their population’s health, according to Professor Danny Dorling of Oxford University. See study for the British Academy 
  • A majority of British people support the introduction of 20mph speed limits in urban areas, but worry about the need for better police enforcement.  See University of the West of England paper.  Meanwhile Scotland has announced a trial of 20mph zones in five towns across the country. See report 
  • The city of Paris is increasing its number of 30km/h zones from 74 to 104, and introducing priority pedestrian zones with a 20km/h limit. See report (in French) 
  • An Italian local governments association has recommended the widespread adoption of 30km/h limits across Italy, with 20km/h in certain areas. See report

Speed cameras cut injuries by a fifth

Speed cameras cut the number of serious injuries in road collisions in the areas where they are placed by an average of more than a fifth, according to research carried out for the UK-based RAC Foundation and based on data from 551 fixed camera sites in nine areas of England. The study found that after cameras were installed the average number of fatal or serious injuries fell by 22%, but also noted that in a fraction of cases, problems increased.  The research was carried out by Professor Richard Allsop of University College London, who also sits on ETSC's board. See RAC Foundation study
  • The Southern Belgian region of Wallonia says that fatal collisions were cut by 19% between 2009, when speed cameras were first introduced, and 2012. See report (in French).
  • The Scottish government has announced plans to introduce an average speed camera system on a 136-mile stretch of the A9 highway, which would be the longest permanently-installed average speed control zone in the UK. See report
  • Cyprus is set to clamp down on speeding with a new network of speed cameras expected to be installed on the island's roads.  A public tender to install the system is expected before the Summer.  See report 

EC eyes next steps on speed assistance for HGVs

A review of current EU policy on speed limiters recommends further work to assess how intelligent speed assistance (ISA) could be rolled out to lorries, buses, and also vans - which are not currently required to fit speed limiters. See ETSC reactionFAQ and EC study

Traffic offences enforced across EU borders 

Enforcement authorities in a member state where a speeding offence has been committed can now pursue and fine drivers of vehicles registered in another EU country thanks to new rules that came into force in November. See ETSC reaction

Germany: reduction in speed-related deaths

Half-year results from the German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia showed fewer speed-related deaths, but an increase in pedestrian deaths according to the European traffic police network TISPOL. The number of road deaths declined in the first six months of 2013 by 18 percent across the state, compared with the same period in 2012. See TISPOL

Variable speed limits effective in Scotland

Road collisions on the congested approaches to the Forth Road Bridge near the Scottish capital Edinburgh have been dramatically reduced since the introduction of the country's first variable speed limit system a year ago. The number of crashes that caused injuries has been cut from 12 a year to two “slight injury” incidents, according to a senior official from Transport Scotland. See report

EU consultation on real-time traffic data

Organisations and individuals have until 14 March to reply to an EU public consultation on provision of real-time traffic information. ETSC is calling for data on speed limits to be collected by public authorities across the EU in a standardised way, and for that data to be made available for applications such as intelligent speed assistance (ISA). See consultation

The New South Wales Centre for Road Safety has launched a free iPhone application that uses the Australian state's database of speed limits to provide drivers with accurate and up-to-date information on speed limits while driving.  See Transport for NSW 
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