|You are in: Road Safety News: 2 April 2007
Speeding on the slide?
Statistics published by the DfT last week show a marked increase in speed limit compliance in built up areas.
National Statistics of vehicle speeds in Great Britain in 2006 is a study of the speeds at which drivers travel in free-flow conditions across the road network.
A report in The Times picked up on the fact that 'more than half of car drivers are complying with 30mph speed limits for the first time, which suggests that speed cameras have altered drivers' behaviour'.
The report went on to say that 'the proportion of drivers who break the limit in built-up areas fell from 72% in 1996 to 49% last year', adding that 'the improvement in compliance appears to have contributed to a sharp fall in pedestrian deaths'.
Other key findings in the report included:-
*The level of cars exceeding the speed limit varies considerably between road types. The highest level of cars travelling over the speed limit occurred on motorways (54%). The lowest level (11%) was on single carriageway roads, with a speed limit of 60 mph.
*In 2006, 49% of all car drivers on 30 mph built-up roads exceeded the speed limit compared with 65% in 2001 and 72% 10 years earlier. On 40 mph built-up roads, 28% of car drivers exceeded the speed limit - an increase of 4% on the 2005 level.
*The percentage of motorcyclists who exceeded the speed limit was similar to that of car drivers. However, the percentage of motorcycles travelling at more than 10mph above the speed limit on all road types was higher. 25% of motorcyclists travelled at 80 mph or more on motorways, compared with 17% of car drivers.
*On major, non-built-up single carriageway roads, 76% of articulated heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) exceeded their 40 mph limit. The average speed of articulated HGVs on these roads was 46 mph - just 2 mph less than the average speed of cars, for which the limit is 60 mph.
The statistics are available at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/