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Speed Limits

Comment 5th July 2010

Most numerical Speed Limits should be advisory in the sense that they should be understood as advising what may be a safe speed. 

Prosecution of those exceeding such limits would then relate to the danger to other members of the public (rather than to an arbitrary number), and in those cases where it could be shown (eg on appeal) that no such danger existed the defendant would not be found guilty of any offence.

Why does this matter?

The whole country is littered with examples of speed limits that have been created in response to conditions that apply at particular times (of the day and/or the week),  but which are enforced at other times when the conditions that gave rise to them quite clearly do not apply.  This creates a widespread sense that speed-limits are entirely arbitrary and pointless, and leads to a lessening of respect for the law in general.

Such a change might also provide a mechanism by which inappropriate limits could be identified and brought to the attention of the appropriate authorities, which would be in the same spirit as the exercise now being conducted by Mr Clegg and serve a similar purpose.

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