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Brake welcomes reported halt to 80mph plans

The Daily Star has reported that Prime Minister David Cameron was ‘ready to put the brakes on raising the motorway speed limit to 80mph’ following comments from new Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin that ‘safety is paramount’.

Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive, said: “We are extremely pleased by this news and hope to hear further confirmation from government soon. Evidence shows 80mph limits would cause more people to be killed and seriously injured on motorways, as well as creating more CO2, while it is doubtful they would lead to significant journey time savings.

“We warmly welcome Mr McLoughlin’s comments that his priority is the safety of road users, and his acknowledgement that managing traffic speed is crucial in preventing needless deaths and injuries. We look forward to hearing more from the new transport ministers on how they will usher in a better era for safety on roads and help to counter the recent increase in casualties.”

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  • James Walker - 22/09/2012 22:17

    This is a very unfortunate decision. Posting 80 mph on most Motorways would improve safety and reduce the total fatalities in the UK. The 85th percentile speed on Motorways is about 79 mph per DfT data. Engineers and students of this issue know that posting the speed limit at the 85th percentile speed of free flowing traffic under good conditions almost always results in the smoothest and safest traffic flow with the fewest accidents. In addition, making today’s normal travel speeds on Motorways of 75 to 80 mph be legal would draw more traffic off the A and B roads and onto the Motorways where the fatality rate per mile traveled is two to four times lower. This was a terrible and anti-safety decision. James C. Walker, National Motorists Association (USA), http://www.motorists.org, Ann Arbor, Michigan USA (frequent visitor to Britain to see family in West Yorkshire)

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