UK set to get its first 15mph speed limits

UK set to get its first 15mph speed limits
UK set to get its first 15mph speed limits

A 15mph speed limit is set to be introduced in the UK for the first time.

Many towns and cities already enforce 20mph limits but the City of London is now to get even lower limits as part of a “radical” transport strategy.

The City of London Corporation has voted to reduce the speed limit in the Square Mile from 20mph to 15mph in an effort to protect cyclists and pedestrians by reducing the likelihood and severity of collisions.

According to government figures, the number of pedestrians killed by motor vehicles rose to a nine-year high in 2017.

Forward thinking

The proposed new speed limit must be approved by the Department for Transport (DfT) but could be introduced as early as 2021.

Alastair Moss, the chairman of the planning and transportation committee at the City of London Corporation, said: “We are working tirelessly to support the 513,000 workers that commute to the Square Mile every day, and to deliver the forward-thinking City that Londoners want to see.

“These radical plans will ensure the continued success of not just the City, but wider London and the UK as a leading global business and cultural destination.”

The Square Mile will become the first part of the UK to enforce 15mph limits if its proposal is approved by the Department for Transport. (Picture: Shutterstock)

Little difference

However, the impact of the reduced limit was questioned by AA president Edmund King, who said it was “not likely to make much difference” as traffic in the City of London has “moved no faster than a horse and cart for 100 years”.

He added: “All road users and pedestrians being more alert, abiding by the rules of the road and putting away their phones would probably be more effective than reducing the limit.”

A spokesperson for the DfT said: “We are proud that the UK has some of the safest roads in the world but we are always looking at ways to make them safer.

“We await the application from the City of London Corporation and will respond in due course.”

The City of London’s move comes in the wake of calls to review rural speed limits by road safety charity Brake, which claimed the current 60mph is unsuitable.

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