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March 9, 2020

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Road safety

New 20mph speed limit imposed in London to reduce road deaths

All roads in central London, managed by Transport for London (TFL), will now have a speed limit of 20mph in a bid to reduce road deaths and increase road safety.

20 mphThe new speed limited was imposed and introduced on 2 March, on all TFL roads within the Congestion Charging Zone (CCZ).

In addition to increasing safety, Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan also aims to encourage more people to walk and cycle in London by decreasing the speed limit.

Strong public support was given for the proposals, and the new speed limit was imposed on these roads:

  • Albert Embankment;
  • Lambeth Palace Road and Lambeth Bridge;
  • Millbank;
  • Victoria Embankment;
  • Upper Thames Street, Lower Thames Street, Byward Street and Tower Hill;
  • Borough High Street and Great Dover Street;
  • Blackfriars Road;
  • Part of Druid Street, Crucifix Lane and part of Bermondsey Street;
  • Part of Tooley Street, Duke Street Hill and part of Queen Elizabeth Street.

However, some critics believe the 20mph limit would make no difference, as traffic already moves slowly in those areas.

New signage and road markings with raised pedestrian crossings are also being installed in locations where a high number of people walk, including near the Embankment and Tower Hill Tube stations, TfL said.

Steve McNamara from the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association critiqued the new law and said the limit would make little difference.

 He said: “Most people would love to go as fast as 20mph in the middle of London,” he said.

“Average traffic speeds are 6mph in the centre. I can’t think of anywhere in central London it would make any difference at all, at least in the daytime. Those roads are all at a virtual standstill.”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “I am determined to do everything I can to eradicate all deaths and serious injuries on London’s roads and these new measures are a vital step along the way to helping us to achieve this.”

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David Wolfenden
David Wolfenden
4 years ago

Slowing traffic will possibly have a direct impact and improve accident figures. I am concerned that in the long-term vehciles going slower in lower gears will produce more pollution and so the long-term health effects could be negative. There is also the worry that at 20 mph drivers may be more complacent and pay less attention of their surroundings as they are going slower and feel safer themselves, so the accident figures could remain similar, though the harm caused may be less. I would like to see the underpinning science and risk assessment to know that both long and short… Read more »