Senedd debate on plans to lower speed limit to 20mph in Wales

By Dylan Davies   |   News editor   |
Tuesday 12th July 2022 2:17 pm
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20mph speed limit sign in Aberdyfi
(Jaggery/Geograph.org.uk )

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MINISTERS will this afternoon discuss £32 million proposals to reduce the default speed limit on roads in Wales to 20mph.

The proposal to drop the speed limit from 30mph on residential roads and busy pedestrian streets with streetlights fewer than 200 yards apart, to 20mph will go before the Senedd this afternoon.

Ministers putting the proposals forward say a lower speed limit will reduce collisions, emissions and will encourage more people to walk or use bicycles.

The new law, if passed, will come into effect in September next year.

Public Health Wales gave its backing to the plans last week, saying : “The switch from 30mph to 20mph doesn’t make a significant difference to journey times; the increase in journey time for urban travel is just 17 seconds per mile and could be less in rural areas.”

Dr Sarah J Jones, consultant in environmental public health at Public Health Wales said: “Travelling at 20mph has been shown to reduce the risk of crashing and the severity of crashes that do still happen.

“It also produces less noise pollution and reduces fuel consumption.

“It encourages people to walk and cycle, helping to fight obesity and improve mental well-being.

“All of these are likely to contribute to improvements in health and reduction in the demands for health services, which will help the NHS recovery from Covid.”

Russell George, MS for Montgomeryshire, is against the proposed new law, telling the Cambrian News: “I am supportive on introducing 20mph speed limits outside schools, playgrounds, places of worship and high streets, but a blanket roll-out is not appropriate.

“With a price tag of more than £32 million, is this really money well spent at a time when the Welsh Government should be focused on tackling the big issues at hand such as the cost-of-living’’

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