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Speed limit ‘too high’ on Britain's most dangerous roads

Experienced motorists are setting their own speed limit - well under the official limit - on some of the UK's deadliest roads, according to new research from Quartix.

The study applies to rural, single lane carriageways with a 60mph speed limit. The roads are widely known to be the UK's most dangerous, with more deaths and serious injuries occurring on them than any other.

It shows that more experienced drivers are aware that it is not always safe to drive at or near the speed limit - something learned over a period of years.

Below is a table detailing 10 of Britain's deadliest roads, with exclusive data from Quartix revealing the average speed of the road or the 'free flow' rate when there is no congestion.

Location

 

Road

Speed Limit

Average Speed

Sussex

 

A285

60mph

46mph

Central Scotland

 

A909

60mph

47mph

Oxfordshire

 

A361

60mph

45mph

Plymouth

 

A3121

60mph

42mph

Hampshire

 

A32

60mph

42mph

Surrey

 

A217

60mph

44mph

Buckinghamshire

 

A40

60mph

49mph

Lancashire

 

A588

60mph

42mph

West Wales

 

A44

60mph

40mph

Shropshire

 

A529

60mph

45mph

Quartix telematics devices measure how fast a vehicle is travelling based on the ‘true’ safe driving speed of a particular road which, as the table above indicates, can be up to 20mph slower than the speed limit.

Andy Walters, Quartix CEO, said: "This research shows that experienced drivers are ditching the statutory speed limit and driving at what they consider to be a safe speed on rural roads.

“The problem is young drivers are often taught to drive 'to the limit' and this, put simply, is dangerous and often life threatening.

“In many ways, parents telling their children to 'stick to the speed limit' is the worst possible advice they can give. In an ideal world parents would be in the car alongside their children at all times to advise them on when to slow down and when it's safe to go faster. We know that's impossible and that's why Quartix is deploying virtual parents to fill that gap." 

Jae Pearce, director of Sky Insurance Brokers, which specialises in insuring young drivers, added: "We've now insured around 4,500 drivers whose vehicles are fitted with Quartix devices. Every time a young driver goes above the average free-flow speed we call them to discuss their driving style and remind them about how to be safe.

“The first two thousand miles of a young driver's career are the most dangerous, accounting for 80% of all claims. But we believe this new technology based on the average flow rate of rural roads rather than the technical speed limit is genuinely saving lives. Since we've been using contextual speed scoring we've had no serious accidents." 

 



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Comments

  • john4870 - 03/08/2017 15:13

    Author is mis-informed - actually, young drivers are encouraged to get up to the limit "where it is safe to do so" because all too often in the early days they drive slowly holding up others and stimulating risky overtakes. 'To the limit' is an incomplete or ill-informed misquote. And driving below the limit is what drivers have done for years where necessary, it is nothing new.

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