20 mph under threat

A petition has been raised asking Bristol City Council to scrap most of the 20mph rollout claiming it is “ridiculous” and “ludicrous”. Anyone who walks or cycles around the city knows this not to be the case. We need to counter such misinformed rubbish and urge you to sign the alternative petition here: Keep and extend 20mph limits

The petitioners’ argument that 20mph has made the roads more dangerous is particularly weak: “We the undersigned are of the opinion that roads will only be made more dangerous with frustrated drivers and people watching the speedo rather than where they’re going.” This statement is actually an insult to Bristol’s motorists. It seems to suggest the city’s drivers have no self control or judgement and it must be a pretty bad driver who never takes their eye off the speedo, whatever the speed limit happens to be. We worry the signers of this petition have not properly thought through what they’re signing up to.

Thankfully the council have published a robust response via the Bristol Post which accords with our vision of a liveable city. “There are tangible safety benefits of reducing speed to 20mph and research also shows that the real impact on journey times for drivers is remarkably small. The slower speed not only reduces the risk of injuries and fatalities, but it also encourages people to get out and walk or cycle.”

Please forward the petition to everyone you know in Bristol. (Even if they’ve signed the other petition, show them the light as they can always make amends by signing this one thereby cancelling out the other!) And please drop a line to your local councillors and MP asking them to continue their support of 20mph.

We’ve issued a press release (PRESS RELEASE FROM BRISTOL CYCLING CAMPAIGN on 20mph speed limits – August 2015 v2) which has been picked up local media here, here. The case is well set out in the excellent website “A little bit slower. A whole lot better.” Find out how you can do your bit to help through Community Speedwatch. For a caustic view on those backing each petition have a look at Bristol Traffic.