A new campaign has been launched this month to enforce 20 miles per hour speed limits outside school across Wales.
The ‘20mph Rule Outside Schools’ campaign was launched by GoSafe, the Wales Road Casualty Reduction Partnership, and aims to reduce the risk of young people being injured, or killed, in road traffic accidents by enforcing lower speeds.
GoSafe will be focusing enforcement of 20mph zones outside schools throughout September and educating road users about the importance of adhering to speed limits.
Research has proven that decreasing speed limits dramatically reduces the number, and severity, of road traffic accidents. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) has shown that the risk of fatal injury, as a result of a collision with a vehicle, falls from 20% to just 2.5% when the vehicle is travelling at 20mph, rather than 30mph.
Louise Westlake, a serious injury solicitor based in Thompsons Solicitors’ Cardiff office, said: “Evidence from across Wales and the UK has consistently shown that lowering speed limits and initiatives such as introducing 20mph zones has a direct impact on the number and severity of road traffic accidents.
“From our work with victims of road traffic accidents, we know the potential dangers of getting behind the wheel. Indeed, driving is the most dangerous things most of us do on a regular basis, and any measure that aims to reduce the risk of potentially fatal accidents on our road should be welcomed.
“However laudable this initiative is it will only have a genuine impact on road safety if the 20mph zones are enforced in the long-term, not just for the duration of the campaign.
“Local councils and police forces should be working together to ensure that drivers know the limits are there and to prosecute those found to be exceeding them, only that way will there be genuine, long-lasting improvements in road safety that protect the most vulnerable in our society.”