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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2007 23:04 
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I found out today that in the past month, Derbyshire CC, not content with wrecking the A515, have also reduced the speed limit on their section of the A57 Snake Pass road from NSL to 50 mph. This led me to wonder where all this was heading.

According to the new DfT guidelines on speed limit setting, the following criteria should be used for setting speed limits on rural single-carriageway roads:

Quote:
Upper tier A and B roads

• 60 mph: high quality strategic roads with few bends, junctions or accesses. When the assessment framework is being used, the accident rate should be below a threshold of 35 injury accidents per 100 million vehicle kilometres.
• 50 mph: lower quality strategic roads which may have a relatively high number of bends, junctions or accesses. When the assessment framework is being used, the accident rate should be above a threshold of 35 injury accidents per 100 million vehicle kilometres and/or the mean speed already below 50 mph.
• 40 mph: where there is high number of bends, junctions or accesses, substantial development, where there is a strong environmental or landscape reason, or where the road is used by considerable numbers of vulnerable road users.
• 30 mph: should be the norm in villages where appropriate.

It is not difficult to see in a few years' time that we will reach a situation where the vast majority of "normal" rural A-roads have 50 limits, with 60 being confined to limited stretches of new-build roads, bypasses and roads that have been substantially upgraded, such as the A361 North Devon Link Road and the A303 Ilminster bypass.

Yet there will still be a sprinkling of minor A-roads and B-roads that have not been reduced simply because the local authorities haven't had the time or money to get round to them yet, and most unclassified roads that realistically they never will.

So we will have the absurd situation where there is a "reverse rural speed hierarchy" with, broadly speaking, the lower quality roads having the higher speed limit. And the countryside will be blighted with vast numbers of expensive and unsightly speed limit signs.

What a wonderful policy :x

If you were starting from scratch arguably it would make more sense to follow the Irish approach of having 50 mph as the default rural limit and specifically signing a higher limit on those roads appropriate for it. Obviously I and most others here would vehemently oppose such a retrograde policy, but at least it would have a certain amount of logic and consistency. At present the government are avoiding any open debate on the subject and, effectively, are introducing a 50 mph single-carriageway NSL by stealth.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 00:07 
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Is there really such a massive difference between 50 and 60 on roads such as this, where you can't reasonably get to 60 for the most part? However, I can understand the annoyance when they put 50s on straight, graded dual carriageways.

I think they are trying to realign themselves with Europe - 50 is the norm outside built up areas, and it's only high quality motorways, etc which have the 70/80/90+ limits.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 00:15 
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mpaton2004 wrote:
Is there really such a massive difference between 50 and 60 on roads such as this, where you can't reasonably get to 60 for the most part? However, I can understand the annoyance when they put 50s on straight, graded dual carriageways.

On the contrary, I would say 60 is easily and safely achievable on long stretches of the A515. Likewise on roads in Cheshire which you may be familiar with such as the A535, A50, A49, A34 etc. Outside very hilly country there are few single-carriageway rural A-roads not good for 60 for at least half their length.

Also sticking to a 50 mph limit makes it well-nigh impossible to safely overtake anything going quicker than a tractor.

mpaton2004 wrote:
I think they are trying to realign themselves with Europe - 50 is the norm outside built up areas, and it's only high quality motorways, etc which have the 70/80/90+ limits.

90 km/h is the norm on rural single-carriageway roads, which is 56 mph and nearer 60 than 50. And they don't generally have our anal approach to speed enforcement.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 15:38 
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I'd rather we just added new national speed limits, e.g 50 for A roads, 40 for B roads, 30 for Unclassified etc., instead of wasting so much money on repeater signs for needless speed limits.

Of course what we had before the speed limit cutting craze was perfectly fine.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 16:24 
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madroaduser wrote:
I'd rather we just added new national speed limits, e.g 50 for A roads, 40 for B roads, 30 for Unclassified etc., instead of wasting so much money on repeater signs for needless speed limits.

Of course what we had before the speed limit cutting craze was perfectly fine.


which is ofcourse fine, untill you realise that some roads aren't obvious an A, a B or Unclassified, so your plan would not only need more signs as do you honestly know what the classification of any county lanes is, also if you rely on a map then your info and hence legal speed could be out, i can't see many map manufacturers wearing your idea as one typo on a road classification and a raft of speeding fines are generated


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 16:42 
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madroaduser wrote:
I'd rather we just added new national speed limits, e.g 50 for A roads, 40 for B roads, 30 for Unclassified etc., instead of wasting so much money on repeater signs for needless speed limits.

Of course what we had before the speed limit cutting craze was perfectly fine.


That does not take into account the actual standard of the road. Some B roads are of a higher quality than some A roads. I can think of several unclassified roads that are completely straight and wide with just fields either side so why would they need a 30 limit?

What we need is to get away from the obsession with speed limits and cameras and back to proper road safety.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 18:11 
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mpaton2004 wrote:
Is there really such a massive difference between 50 and 60 on roads such as this, where you can't reasonably get to 60 for the most part?

Most of the snake certainly you are more than likely to be at 45-55 because its quite twisty, but there are a couple of straights, dead straight, about a mile long, where 75 would not be over the top (pace the NSL) why should these be unnecessarily be reduced to 50? In other words where the limit could make a difference to peoples speed, it's unnecessary, and where it might arguably be necessary it is extremely unlikely to make a difference.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 19:41 
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This is all pretty academic really because, no matter what limit is set on these rural roads, it is pretty unenforceable. The only possiblity is using the proposed road pricing transponders to check speed.

Apart from the occasional blitz everyone can still carry on as normal - especially late at night. Of course, the police will probably insist on using planes, helicopters and other ludicrously over-the-top methods to catch people doing 5mph over an artificially low limit while drug fuelled muggers maim people in city centres.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 19:46 
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I have just read that the Dorset Way is to get a 50mph speed limit "on the approaches to" the Holes Bay North roundabout. And we all know how long "approaches" are.
The Dorset Way is one of the best quality roads in Dorset.

But on the country lanes I was driving down on Sunday, about 4 or 5 cars (out of 5 or 6 that I saw) seemed to be doing 45-55... :o

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 18:32 
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BRAKE were on BBC Radio Cumbria today, with a cal for the default rural limit to be reduced.
Apparently 30% of fatalities are on rural roads.

However they didn't say what the CAUSE of those accidents was!

Catch it here - about 6.45 minutes into the program. Don't use your best radio set in case you throw something at it! :roll:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p00d7bfn/Ian_Timms_01_02_2011/

I you have time, listen to the rest of the program at the various responses sent in! :scratchchin:

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 19:14 
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Ernest Marsh wrote:
Apparently 30% of fatalities are on rural roads.


Someone ought to ask them how many of the remaining 70% are on urban roads, where the speed limits are even lower :loco:

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 20:50 
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Well I'm sorry Brake, if that's the best spokesperson you have to influence people against 60MPH limits, I could always lend you my neice's two year old daughter, to give you a better hand.

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My views do not represent Safespeed but those of a driver who has driven for 39 yrs, in all conditions, at all times of the day & night on every type of road and covered well over a million miles, so knows a bit about what makes for safety on the road,what is really dangerous and needs to be observed when driving and quite frankly, the speedo is way down on my list of things to observe to negotiate Britain's roads safely, but I don't expect some fool who sits behind a desk all day to appreciate that.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 22:31 
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Ernest Marsh wrote:
BRAKE were on BBC Radio Cumbria today, with a cal for the default rural limit to be reduced.
Apparently 30% of fatalities are on rural roads.

However they didn't say what the CAUSE of those accidents was!



Well, if they succeed in getting the speed limit lowered by enough, they'll be able to say it was "exceeding the speed limit"! That's where mistakes were made last time - people just assumed that exceeding the speed limit caused (oh, from memory, I think it might have been, er, 30%! :wink: ) of accidents and they then ended up in the embarrassing position of not being able to substantiate it. This time, as long as the limits are low enough, they're bound to be in with a better chance of being right!


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:38 
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Brake ought to be split into two sections:

One should remain as a charity, and be devoted exclusively to supporting road accident victims and their families, and on that basis they would have my admiration and support.

The other should be the rabidly anti-car section, which should not have charitable status, and they should be fought and condemned until such time as they start to offer contructive proposals for improving road safety.

Best wishes all,
Dave.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 16:06 
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How much of the former do they actually do?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 23:26 
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mpaton2004 wrote:
Is there really such a massive difference between 50 and 60 on roads such as this, where you can't reasonably get to 60 for the most part?


Yes, you can get prosecuted for doing 60 on the bits where it is safe to do so.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 23:57 
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madroaduser wrote:
I'd rather we just added new national speed limits, e.g 50 for A roads, 40 for B roads, 30 for Unclassified etc., instead of wasting so much money on repeater signs for needless speed limits.

Of course what we had before the speed limit cutting craze was perfectly fine.


Just noticed this --THEN we look at some roads like the Fosse Way and some Roman Roads - one in particular up near Hadrians Wall comes to mind - straight as a DIE - to me first time I drove them ,I couldn't believe roads like this existed.
As for the classification by A/B/C ETC - I remember one A road that ha the distinction of being the only single track A road in the UK ( was up to about three years ago)--in the home counties it wouldn't even be classified ,yet it was for forty plus years the sole access to several communities -and yes there were places that speed in excess of the now NSL could be exceeded ---

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2011 22:44 
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PeterE wrote:
mpaton2004 wrote:
Is there really such a massive difference between 50 and 60 on roads such as this, where you can't reasonably get to 60 for the most part? However, I can understand the annoyance when they put 50s on straight, graded dual carriageways.

On the contrary, I would say 60 is easily and safely achievable on long stretches of the A515. Likewise on roads in Cheshire which you may be familiar with such as the A535, A50, A49, A34 etc. Outside very hilly country there are few single-carriageway rural A-roads not good for 60 for at least half their length.

Also sticking to a 50 mph limit makes it well-nigh impossible to safely overtake anything going quicker than a tractor.

mpaton2004 wrote:
I think they are trying to realign themselves with Europe - 50 is the norm outside built up areas, and it's only high quality motorways, etc which have the 70/80/90+ limits.

90 km/h is the norm on rural single-carriageway roads, which is 56 mph and nearer 60 than 50. And they don't generally have our anal approach to speed enforcement.


100kph in Germany on A roads :)........

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 20:01 
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That's the big problem. I regularly travel quite big distances on A roads - the A66, A69, the A595 and the A596 for example. People who live in well-populated areas that aren't far from motorways or dual carriageways tend to forget just how important overtaking is. In a 40 mile trip to Carlisle, it can make a significant difference to jurney time (like doubling it)! On a 100 mile trip to Scotch Corner or Newcastle, the difference can be bigger again. I'd be interested to know how many legislators regularly make trips of over 50 miles without seeing motorways!

As soon as you lower the speed, you reduce the speed differential betwen cars and lorries. That, combined with the fact that (coincidentally, I'm sure! :wink: ) the best and safest overtaking opportunities are on the long straights where the camera van sites are most likely to be located, mean that people will be discouraged from overtaking quickly and decisively. That leads to frustration amongst following motorists, where queues quickly build up behind the slower vehicle and people tend not to leave gaps sufficiently large to allow following vehicles to overtake and pull back in. I have actually seen (on many occasions) "lunatic" overtaking manoeuvres that apper to be motivated by nothing more than sheer frustration. I'm sure many of them DO end up in accidents, but I can see the authorities then using it as a justification for taking the short-sighted view that speed limits therefore need to be reduced.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 23:19 
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Our local paper has one of it's regular, "motorists are terrorising the locals on country roads at 120MPH" stories, running at the moment...seems to be a monthly occurence.

The reaction to stopping the 120MPH "speeders"..cut the limit to 50MPH.....How on earth is that going to get rid of all these "speeding drivers", on this "lethal" road?
Do people who allegedly ignore a 60MPH limit, suddenly feel guilty about exceeding a 50MPH limit and slow down or does it just make the local busibodies feel good cos they've "done something useful for the community"? :headbash:

http://www.shropshirestar.com/news/2011 ... ent-114743

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My views do not represent Safespeed but those of a driver who has driven for 39 yrs, in all conditions, at all times of the day & night on every type of road and covered well over a million miles, so knows a bit about what makes for safety on the road,what is really dangerous and needs to be observed when driving and quite frankly, the speedo is way down on my list of things to observe to negotiate Britain's roads safely, but I don't expect some fool who sits behind a desk all day to appreciate that.


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