GEM offers tips for staying legal on London’s expanded network 20mph speed limit

Monday, March 2, 2020 - 09:55
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Road safety and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist is reminding drivers and riders that a blanket 20mph speed limit comes into force on Monday 2 March across all roads managed by Transport for London (TfL) in the central London congestion zone.

20mph speed limitA total of 19 new roads have been added to TfL’s list of 37 roads, which includes Victoria Embankment, Kings Cross Road, Whitechapel High Street, Southwark Street and Upper Thames Street.

GEM road safety officer Neil Worth commented: “Figures from TfL show that speed is a factor in at least 37 per cent of collisions where someone is killed or seriously injured on a London street. Also, a pedestrian hit at 30mph is five times more likely to die than someone hit at 20mph.

“Research from Imperial College London has shown that there is no net negative impact on exhaust emissions, and that vehicles have been shown to move more smoothly in 20mph zones, with less speeding up and slowing down.

“No one chooses our speeds for us – it’s always personal choice. So don’t take a risk. If you know you tend to be a bit quick, work out what makes you do it. Are you in a hurry? Do passengers encourage you to speed up? Does your choice of music affect how fast you go? If you know what could make you speed, you can take control and ensure it doesn’t happen!”

Although the new limit won’t apply to every road inside the congestion zone, many boroughs set 20mph speed limits anyway.

In 2018, 154,785 people were penalised for speed-related offences in London, including 38,878 on 20mph limit roads.

GEM’s tips for staying legal:

  • Leave plenty of time for your journeys. If you’re not in a hurry, you’re less likely to feel under pressure to ‘press on’.
  • As well as making regular checks of your speedometer, get used to the sound and feel of your car engine at 20mph.
  • Watch out for road signs, so you know when you’re in a 20 zone. It’s easy to miss signs when you’re negotiating busy junctions, so make a positive point of looking for them – and for further signs that repeat the limit.
  • If you know what factors could make you speed, such as choice of music, or always running late, then you are more likely to be able take control and ensure the risks associated with speeding are reduced.

A full list of TfL’s 20mph roads in central London can be seen here.

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