Highways England will increase the basic speed at which motorists can drive through roadworks to 60mph.
After extensive research and trials, the organisation has confirmed that where it is safe for road users and roadworkers, and where shown on road signs, vehicles can be driven at up to 60mph.
That is 10mph faster than the current 50mph limit.
The move comes in response to feedback from road users who said they were frustrated at not being able to go quicker. The trials showed that as well as saving time, more people were sticking to the higher speed limit bringing safety benefits.
Jim O’Sullivan, Highways England chief executive, said: “All of our research shows that road users benefit from 60mph limits in roadworks. They have shorter journey times and feel safe.
“Road users understand that roadworks are necessary, but they are frustrated by them. So testing 60mph has been about challenging the norm while ensuring the safety of our people working out there and those using our roads.
“We have a huge programme of work planned, so being able to use 60mph where safe will continue to improve everybody’s experience of our roads.”
Highways England recently completed delivery of the Government’s first road investment programme. It was found to have delivered most of its commitments and to have made good progress over the first road period, but the programme set out for major improvements was too optimistic, according to latest Office of Rail and Road (ORR) report.
The ORR had made observations on the delivery risk of the programme which saw re-planning from 112 schemes that were due to have started construction in the first road period to 73, agreed with the Department for Transport (DfT).