Safety proposals will force drivers to slow down
Plans for new 20mph limits in built-up areas
Drivers could be forced to obey new speed limits after roads bosses backed plans to place 20mph restrictions on builtup areas.
Renfrewshire Council supports Green Party proposals to slow traffic in urban streets.
A Scottish Government consultation on the changes closes tomorrow.
Local authority chiefs signalled their approval for a shift in a report to its environment board.
It stated: “The proposal introduces 20mph speed limits in built up areas through a small national legislative change.
“The national 30mph speed limit for urban areas was set back in the 1930s, at a time when our understanding of road safety was very different, and has never been changed.
“Dropping the speed limit from 30mph to 20mph in residential areas delivers benefits from making it easier to cross the road to cutting air pollution.
“Lower speed limits have been shown to reduce vehicle speed and that reducing speed saves lives.
“A Transport Research Laboratory study found that the number of accidents could be expected to fall by between four per cent and six per cent for each 1mph reduction in average speed.”
Green MSP Mark Ruskell, member for Mid Scotland and Fife, raised a private member’s bill calling for the change.
Councils have been urged to make their views on reducing the limit known.
They have the power to slash limits, but it can prove costly due to changes in road signs and markings.
Ministers claim a nationwide shift would create a sea change without putting strain on individual local authorities.
All roads defined as C-class or those which are lit by streetlights no more than 185m apart would be affected.
The proposals allow a 30mph speed limit to be maintained on throughroads.
Renfrewshire Council says the change would reduce accidents, create a better environment for pedestrians and cyclists and save fuel and car maintenance costs for drivers.
The report added: “The free flowing traffic conditions likely to be created by a 20mph limit will help prevent stop-start motoring which increases emissions.
“Pedestrians walking alongside the traffic and cyclists are less likely to be intimidated and more people may be attracted to these modes of travel.
“It should be noted that the bill does not cover A and B roads because they are not restricted roads.”
A decision on the plans is due in the coming months. BUILDING CONTRACTORS. EXTERNAL WALL INSULATION SPECIALISTS.