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Only 13% of drivers stick to 20mph limits

By / 11 months ago / Latest News / No Comments

The vast majority of drivers continue to ignore 20mph speed limits despite the growing use of such ‘slow zones’ in the UK.

Accidents on 20mph roads accounted for nearly 10% of all accidents in the UK in 2018; the BookMyGarage.com heatmap shows where the most accidents happened

Analysis by BookMyGarage.com of Department for Transport figures on speeding found 86.88% of drivers in the UK exceed the speed limit on 20mph roads, with the average speed measured at 26mph.

Recent research from the Department for Transport suggests 20mph zones work best when the average speed is already below 24mph.

The analysis suggests that, as the number of 20mph zones rises, so do the average speeds of motorists using them. Since 2017, the average speed of motorcyclists in 20mph zones has increased from 27mph to 30mph, while van drivers’ average speed has also gone up from 25mph to 26mph during the same period.

The analysis by BookMyGarage also found accidents in 20mph zones have risen by 148% in three years, likely also to be the result of their increased use by councils looking to curb road accidents.

The latest DfT Road Casualty Report shows that there were 10,661 accidents in 20mph roads in the UK in 2018, accounting for nearly one in 10 of all road accidents for the year.

BookMyGarage.com head of marketing Jessica Potts said: “It’s been proven that 20mph zones help improve traffic flow and cut down on accidents.

“But the zones have been largely despised by motorists, who find it painfully slow going to drive through them, which is probably why the limits are being roundly ignored.”

The firm has also published a heatmap showing where the most accidents happen in 20mph zones across the UK.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.