20mph speed limit on residential roads in PortsmouthLast updated: 05 November 2009 16:41 UK
Portsmouth has become the first city in Britain to have a 20mph safety limit on almost all residential roads.
The new speed limit, designed to protect pedestrians and cyclists in residential roads, became citywide by the end of March 2008.
Portsmouth City Council is the first in Britain to make almost all its residential roads 20mph. Its plan, funded by the government, has attracted national attention and stimulated interest from other councils.
The 20mph limit is for roads where the average speed is already 24mph or less. We have installed prominent 20mph signs where drivers enter the new speed restrictions, as well as 'repeater' signs as reminders. It has been found elsewhere that this method reduces speeds by 3-4mph. Road humps are not part of the scheme, although if speeds do not drop on particular roads, then residents will be consulted again to see if they want additional measures. In most cases the 20mph limit will be self-enforcing and further speed enforcement measures will not be needed.
Cllr Alex Bentley, Executive Member for Environment and Transportation when the scheme was launched, said: "On most of our residential roads, it's not safe or appropriate to drive at more than 20mph, because they're narrow and lined with parked cars. What we want to do is target the small number of drivers who drive at inappropriate speeds without regard for road safety or respect for anyone else. A pedestrian hit by a car travelling at 20mph is likely to suffer slight injuries, but at 30mph they are likely to be severely hurt. At 40mph or above they are likely to be killed.
"This scheme has won Portsmouth lots of attention for its boldness in improving safety for our residents. I'm sure it could save lives, particularly those of children and elderly people, and get more people cycling. We believe the scheme will be mainly self-policing. If the new limit isn't respected on some roads, we will look at other measures or get police involved. We want to change the culture in the city so that speeding in residential areas is seen to be what it is - dangerous and anti-social."
The majority of residential roads are covered by the 20mph limit, apart from major north-south and east-west routes including London Road, Northern Parade, Mile End Road, Eastern Road, and the seafront - which will keep their current limits.
Below are some frequently-asked questions with answers that may help you.Traffic Regulation Order No 39 2006 (0.19 MB) Traffic Regulation Order No 40 2006 (0.17 MB) Traffic Regulation Order No 53 2006 (0.06 MB) Traffic Regulation Order No 03 2007 (0.06 MB) Traffic Regulation Order No 09 2007 (0.05 MB) Traffic Regulation Order No 10 2007 (0.05 MB)