Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

SPEED LIMIT ON MOTORWAYS TO RISE TO 80MPH

The speed limit on motorways will rise to 80mph, it will be announced tomorrow.

More roads in built-up areas will be covered a 20mph limit.

The plans will be presented as part of the Coalition’s attempts to boost the economy, with ministers arguing that shorter journeys on major roads will help businesses.

However, the increase to 80mph for motorways will be criticised by environmental groups, who say that higher speeds mean much higher greenhouse gas emissions.

The new top speed has also alarmed safety campaigners, who said it will mean more accidents and deaths on the roads.

The plans will be confirmed by Philip Hammond, the Transport Secretary, at next week’s Conservative conference.

He will present the move as a boost to British business.

He will also point out that the new rule simply brings the law into line with the reality on the roads.

According to the Department for Transport statistics show that half of cars exceeded the 70 mph limit on motorways last year and 14 per cent were recorded travelling at 80 mph or more.

Mr Hammond has been pushing for the higher limit for several months, but has faced resistance from Liberal Democrat ministers.

As part of a compromise deal between the Coalition parties, the Government will also expand the use of 20mph zones in many urban areas.

Brake, a road safety campaign, said the 80mph move was a mistake.

“The government should be looking to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on our road not putting forward proposals which are likely to increase them,” the group said.

“We work closely with families of those who have died in car crashes and for every statistic there are real people who are suffering.”

According to the Parliamentary Advisory Council on Transport Safety, another campaign group, raising the limit to 80mph would increase motorway casualties by between 5 and 10 per cent.

Britain’s speed limits are lower than many other countries in Europe, with France and Italy both imposing a maximum of 81mph, while Germany has no restriction at all.

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Obtained from The Telegraph

This is being billed as a big victory for Hammond and the Guardian stated he had to fend off concerns from Chris Huhne that the higher limit will 'increase pollution' which is the same Chris Huhne who Essex traffic cops know extremely well.

In reality i think it means very little, most people do 80 odd anyway. What i want to know is whats the tolerance level for exceeding it? At 70, the police's guideline generally was to ignore those doing under 85, will that now rise to 95 or will the tolerance be much stricter now? Also will the 30mph over the limit rule for points/disquals still remain? Meaning you could get away with doing 100?

What do we think? Just a meaningless gesture which at least sees reality recognised by law and limits more 'in line with Europe' as the fashionable line goes or does it actually mean something?

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - misty2011

I can see the sense in making journeys shorter but accidents are more likely to increase with the new law. Plus with the price of petrol not getting any lower...is it really sensible to encourage speeding...burning more fuel and burning a bigger hole in peoples pockets. I get good mpg by doing 50 - 65 on motorways...80 mph speed limit is just insane

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

Read my post above misty to see why accidents will not increase, thats a simplistic assumption which works on the basis of higher the speed limit = more people die, when stats disprove that notion.

Also its not 'encouraging' speeding, people already exceed 70 anyway. So long as the tolerances for exceeding it are stricter than now to deter people doing 100 odd it should be fine. Its just law recognising reality.

Also nobody is saying you have to drive at 80. Its 70 now and you've just said you drive at 65, so why would a rise to 80 suddenly force you to do 75? It wont 'burn a hole in peoples pocket' as they're not forcing you to go faster and use more fuel. My car is more economical at 80 than it is at pedestrian in town speeds of 10-15 i know that much but all cars have what i call 'peak efficiency' speed. Yours may well be 60-65 but nobodies forcing you to go any faster.

This is a rare glimpse at the Conservative's old fashioned sensible view of believing people have a brain and can make their own choices and are not just mindless drones driven by a constant barrage of laws.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Roly93

I think this is a sensible move as it was the de-facto limit anyway. However will the new limit mean the average speed goes up to 88 now ?

Also, from an environmental viewpoint I must say I'm surprised as most cars I know have quire a noticeable dip in economy from 70 to 80. In my car at a steady 70 on a level road I probably get 50-51 mpg, at 80 this probably goes down to 44-45.

Also, I'd like to see an answer to the question will you be able to do 100 now without too much aggro happening ?

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745
That's what I want to know also. Currently doing more than 30mph above the speed limit is big fine and disqual etc, will this be revised to enforce lower tolerance of exceeding the limit? I suppose that's what the consultation is for, to answer these questions.
Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - SteveLee

If they want to speed up motorway traffic and reduce road-deaths at the same time there's a simple answer. Ban HGVs from anything but the inside lane, however they can use the second lane in "green zones" one mile either side of a junction.

This move is purely to rake in more fuel duty.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

Do we have any numbers on how many of those 6% of deaths which occured on the motorway involved a HGV? The only major issue i can see here is in speed difference, as only cars and motorcycles would be permitted to do 80 (and car derived vans i think, my highway code is a little fuzzy now if anybody wants to correct me) you could have 56mph traffic on the left and 80mph traffic on the right which obviously occurs now anyway so 'whats the problem?' i hear you ask, again we harp back to what will the tolerance be for exceeding it.

Not that you can get up to 90 particularly often anyway.

The Guardian have now altered their page from this afternoon which stated the limit would be introduced tomorrow into a story about the consultation process but this bit caught my eye

Hammond said: "Britain's roads should be the arteries of a healthy economy and cars are a vital lifeline for many." he blamed Labour's "shortsighted and misguided war on the motorist" for penalising drivers.

"This government has already scrapped the M4 bus lane, cut central government funding for money-making speed cameras and announced new measures to crack down on boy racers and reckless drivers while standing up for the decent majority," he said.

And

Greenpeace's senior transport campaigner Emma Gibson said: "The

I think we can cut that one off there. You can probably fill in 90% of it yourselves.

:)

There was a bit earlier along the lines of 'Hammond is looking to show his parties main activists that he is on the side of the motorist after successive Governments sought to discourage driving' or something like that which the Guardian has now cut.

I dont think this rise to 80mph will make any practical difference to anything, and Hammond needs to acknowledge councils and police forces are finding ways to keep speed camera's on but just to hear someone in Government, a minister, actually acknowledging that its really ok to drive is like music after the likes of Prescott.

Edited by jamie745 on 29/09/2011 at 22:08

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - daveyjp

I'm still yet to hear any valid arguments about why this should happen and Ministers do need to be better briefed before spouting to back up why it should happen.

Mr Shapps was on Question TIme last night suggesting the motorway limit in 'most of Europe' is 140 km/h (or as he said "about 80mph", it is actually 87.5mph!) which is complete and utter nonsense. No European country has a max limit of 140 km/h , 110-130 is the norm - we have 112 - if we want to be all "European" about it raise it to 75mph (120kmh).

The ability to go 10 extra miles in every hour won't get people to their destination that much quicker, so that's a poor argument. At the times when it is safe to do 80, drivers do it anyway and the police rarely take action, so no issue there.

Dual carriageways should not be 80, they are often very old roads which were simply widened and not designed for 80+mph. The differential between a HGV top speed and a car will go from 14mph, to 24mph (potentially more due to 10% + 2 guidance) - a huge difference when the driver of a HGV following a HGV decides to pull out.

If someone is overtaking the HGV at 70mph "Mr Outside Lane Owner" will be up their bumper flashing away because they want to do 88mph as it is 'legal'.

So Mr Hammond really does need to work on this much more if he is to convince me.

Edited by daveyjp on 30/09/2011 at 09:18

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - dieseldogg

ERm,

From my recent de-restricted Autobann experience.

Very very few cars driving at more than 130/140kmh, I was surprised at myself in that I found that I "went with the flow" sitting at about 130kmh, it was a far more relaxed experience than attempting to "push on" at 150kmh plus.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - OG

Whatever Hammond says this is just part of the EU's desire to harmonize traffic law and enforcement which in itself is wrapped up with their project to halve road casualties by 2020. The other side of the coin will be more 20 mph limits in urban areas and single track roads with no cycle lanes. The introduction of these blows Hammonds claim that Motorway speed limits are being raised to boost the economy. If true then lowering them anywhere else must have the opposite effect.

Expect tighter enforcement, a lowering of the drink drive limit, regular eye tests, more cameras, an outright ban on radar detectors and much else.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - 475TBJ

Just leave it as it is. Most cops are not interested unles someone is doing at least 80-85 plus. Cars are better than 20 years ago but driver reactions are no better.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

The Conservatives published a paper on raising the limit to 80 before the 2005 General Election so its been banded about the party for a while, its not suddenly been thought of. Whats notable is the EU are trying to harmonise traffic law in their bid to halve casualties by 2020 but compared to alot of European nations, in general our laws are less restrictive and we beat our target of a 40% drop in casualties by 2010 which the Government laid down in 1999. Notably despite fast rising traffic levels which were not anticipated.

Of course the economy argument is flawed and 20mph limits are similar to the pedestrian limits in some European countries which incidentally also have a worse road safety record than we do, Holland for starters. We've managed to break records on road safety in a positive way without the vast majority of measures Europe has, so to force their methods onto us when we've already seen they dont work would be a very bad idea.

We already have a higher drink drive limit than most of Europe and indeed the world. As for eye tests, whats notable is in Europe the numberplate eyesight test is around 18 metres, here its 20.5 and theres been rumblings on lowering it to 'be in line with Europe.' Motorway speed limit is really the only thing we're stricter on than the Europeans but our enforcement isnt as strict as theirs so it goes both ways and our road safety record is still much better than theirs.

We often bleat about what we dont like here but we are alot more free with our motoring than alot of Europe. Barring fuel prices, current insurance issues and a low motorway speed limit we're pretty free on what we can do and drive here. Its not that bad really.

Expect tighter enforcement

Nail, hit, head. That concerns me. If they put it up to 80 but with very low tolerance level of exceeding it and police it with average camera's we'll have people going faster but staring at their dashboard. Lane discipline and general driving observation then decreases with the higher level of enforcement, the one thing that nutcase behind 'shared spaces' actually agrees with me on. Well he's dead now but you get the point.

On the whole, my conclusion is, just leave it alone. Its fine as it is. Its the Bus Lanes and 20mph limits in urban areas is what need scrapping.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Avant

I'm all in favour of an increase to 80 mph on motorways (not other dual carriageways), largely because a modern car is much safer at 80 than a Sixties car was at 70.

But it does need effective policing, as our motorways are too crowded during the day for 90 mph to be safe. That policing should concentrate more on people who drive too close to the vehicle in front, which causes far more accidents than speed on its own.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

I'd rather see slower speeds and better flow, lane discipline and sensible following distances than a higher limit with dangerous bunching and all the other nonsense which goes on. If a jam happens, the faster people are going the sooner they'll reach the jam and the sooner it spreads so in those instances it wouldnt help ease congestion or journey times at all.

The consultation will probably come down to 'it'll use more fuel' 'it'll cause more accidents' and police saying 'we've got better things to do' and they'll probably do nothing. If a scaremongering 'fuel crisis' hits they'll be discussing lowering it never mind anything else.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - sb10

I dont know why were harping on about increasing the speed limit,no one does 70mph now so what difference 80 going to make apart from it being legal,no change otherwise!

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - HF

I dont know why were harping on about increasing the speed limit,no one does 70mph now so what difference 80 going to make apart from it being legal,no change otherwise!

But isn't that just like saying, everyone breaks every law these days so what's the point in having any?

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - sb10

I dont know why were harping on about increasing the speed limit,no one does 70mph now so what difference 80 going to make apart from it being legal,no change otherwise!

But isn't that just like saying, everyone breaks every law these days so what's the point in having any?

Yes,what law, how many police do you see around,and how many drivers you see breaking what laws there are,drivers know they arent going to get caught (after all few do)

penalties for those who do get caught arent worth the cost of police time anyway,so where is the incentive to prevent speeding/dangerous driving, these days as has already been said you have to treat other drivers as idiots and avoid

bringing a speed limit higher than it is will IMO not change anything

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Bilboman

Just as a "blanket" 70 mph limit is wrong, a blanket 80 mph one would also be wrong. What is sorely needed is intelligent traffic management and variable speed limits; on my recent trips to Britain I have seen no evidence of this whatsoever. I refer to the increasing or decreasing of speed limits according to traffic flow, time of day, weather conditions etc (motorway speeds instantly drop during rain in France); switching traffic lights on busy urban stretches to flashing amber at night time (Italy, Spain,...) ; converting bus lanes into normal lanes for all traffic outside periods of heavy bus usage (e.g. 6am!) - in Barcelona they manage this with flashing yellow cats' eyes on the lane markings. Similarly, parking restrictions, yes even double yellows, could be "lifted" at certain times by intelligent use of LED panels, stating e.g. "free parking NOW till 8am".

As *most* intelligent drivers will agree that speed which is INAPPROPRIATE FOR CONDITIONS is dangerous (and high speed per se is not), we must accept that conditions change, and therefore technology could and SHOULD be used to adapt to these conditions, rather than blindly going for a "one size fits" all approach, be it speed limits, parking restrictions or whatever.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Sofa Spud

If the speed limit is raised to 80 mph all that means is that those who already do 80 mph will do 90 mph instead.

Most people think in terms of how they, as individuals, want to be allowed to drive at 80 or 90 mph, but they forget that if the limit is raised, most other drivers, whose abilities vary considerably, will want to do the same.

If the motorway limit is raised to 80 mph, it should be much more rigidly enforced that the 70 limit. Also there should be mandatory 6 month disqualification for anyone exceeding 90 mph.

Edited by Sofa Spud on 03/10/2011 at 21:28

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

If given the choice between a lower limit or staying the same with slack enforcement or a higher limit with very strict enforcement i'd take the former. When people are staring at their speedo and more worried about camera's and plod than about their driving is when you end up with a serious problem. I know when im going past a speed camera is when im least concentrating in the road and going through 50mph zones with average camera's is even worse, thats when everyone rigidly does 49, staring at their speedo and paying zero attention to anything.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - rjwilmsi

The increase to 80 mph is probably just a standardisation with EU policy, and the government are writing it up as a benefit for businesses and general vote-winner to motorists.

Drivers who want to can currently, when traffic is light enough, drive at ~90 mph on motorways (when clear of roadworks) without much chance of receiving a speeding ticket. And I don't think that's a problem in itself; I'm not opposed to any particular speed provided it is reasonable and safe for the conditions. What is sadly lacking in some or many drivers on the roads is the ability or willingness to make a good judgement on what is actually reasonable for the traffic, road layout, other road users and weather conditions. The short or very short distances between other vehicles that many drivers leave at motorway speeds is much more dangerous than the raw speed (on motorways where the road is known to be clear of children, parked cars and so on).


As Bilboman says the real need for traffic policy changes is the use of technology and changing rules to suit the current driving conditions, in either direction per his examples.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Bobbin Threadbare
I'm not opposed to any particular speed provided it is reasonable and safe for the conditions. What is sadly lacking in some or many drivers on the roads is the ability or willingness to make a good judgement on what is actually reasonable for the traffic, road layout, other road users and weather conditions.

Therein lies the counter-argument to the proposed new limit - too many idiots.

I am in favour of upping the limit as long as it is policed very carefully; I'd also like to see new data on the accuracy of speed cameras (this is possibly only of geeky sad interest to physicists like myself!).

[Over the last week, the NW of England has been hit with gale force winds and some very heavy rain. I have been driving around S. Lakes in it and I have seen some people bombing past me on the motorway, seemingly heedless of the surface water and the fact that every car, truck and lorry was wobbling about in the wind. I am not one of life's plodders on the motorway but I know enough to slow right down in those kinds of conditions!]

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

Nevermind the accuracy of speed camera's its nearly 20 years now and theres still zero evidence to prove they do anything other than raise money. Theres alot of studies of correlation, dressed up by charities like Brake as proof. But im pretty sure all of you A Level and PhD folk were taught on your first day that correlation is not evidence of cause, am i right?

Theres plenty of statistics for certain areas which show accidents rose after the camera's were put in, but the camera-lovers tend to ignore these. As for the motorway limit, people who cannot use their own brain to judge what speed is right shouldnt be on the road, just because they got a licence in a McDonalds happy meal bag doesnt mean the rest of us should be nannied like morons. But as ive already said the motorway speed limit isnt an issue, what we need to do is address town/city congestion.

For years town planners have introduced 'transport initiatives' aimed at attacking the car, making it a slower form of transport on purpose to make the Bus look better and eventually force you onto it. Removing roadspace to put Bus Lanes in, speed bumps, constant crossings, traffic lights 10 feet after another set etc etc etc every new transport development is aimed at 'discouraging car use and promoting cycling!' instead of discouraging car use we should be looking to facilitate it better. To manage the flow smoothly.

We've tried the communist hammer approach 'we will tax you out of your car to force you to use our under equipped bus!!!' and it doesnt work. I would happily cave to the demands of 20mph in town limits (town centres, that sort of thing) if that was traded off with a total removal of Bus Lanes to improve traffic flow, towns which simply have too many traffic lights to be at least halved and speed bumps to only be used in roads with schools in them and nowhere else. Its not about speed, its about flow. I'd prefer smoother flow with the wheels constantly turning at 20mph, than the odd burst of 30mph then sat at traffic lights for 10 minutes. If they want 20mph limits, i want Bus Lanes removed. Deal?

Maybe i should apply for one of these jobs.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - mss1tw
I would happily cave to the demands of 20mph in town limits (town centres, that sort of thing) if that was traded off with a total removal of Bus Lanes to improve traffic flow, towns which simply have too many traffic lights to be at least halved

If traffic lights were properly syncronised I bet it would make no difference, Woking and Slough in particular must have been configured by a total moron.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

Well London has been fiddling traffic lights for years to cause congestion on purpose, i dont care what they say its pretty obvious that they have. Most towns probably do it now, to make car travel miserable to force you onto a bus.

I feel this way because solutions to ease congestion are incredibly simple and inexpensive but they never use them, they take the complicated, expensive route which always ends up in making the problem worse.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Bobbin Threadbare

Move to Skelmersdale in Lancashire (a 'new town', built to take the overspill from a crowded Liverpool in 1961). It has almost no traffic lights; the roads were planned for 80,000 cars to travel smoothly with no need, but only 40,000 people live there. ;-P

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

It must be an awful town though if people nearby wont even use it as a refuge from Liverpool.

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - Bobbin Threadbare

Says the LFC supporter....

Government To Announce 80mph Motorway Limit - jamie745

From Suffolk....

This is a good distance from which to support Kenny's boys.

 

Value my car