20mph limits now in force
Published on: 31 Mar 2015
Parents and children at the Fishponds Play Cafe take part in activities to raise awareness of the new speed limits
MOST roads in east Bristol now have a speed limit of 20 miles an hour.
The area is the latest to bring in the speed restrictions, which will eventually cover the whole of Bristol.
Main roads such as Fishponds Road and Frenchay Park Road still have a 30mph limit, except near schools and main shopping areas.
The city council and the police are working together to encourage people to observe the lower speeds. Fixed signs have sprung up already and vehicle activated flashing signs will also be used to remind drivers to slow down.
Community speed watch schemes will be used to ensure people are complying with the restrictions, and the police will also enforce the limits. The Avon & Somerset force is planning to pilot a 20mph speed awareness course.
Fishponds mum Sue Jones is a strong supporter of the speed curbs because of her personal experience.
She said: “When my son was 12 years old he was walking home from school, playing with friends, and was accidently pushed off the pavement on the road. Another mother, picking up her child from the primary school nearby, had no chance to stop and she hit him.
“She had been very aware of the school children walking along the road and fortunately was only driving 20mph. My son suffered a broken leg and head injuries but had the driver been going any faster his injuries would have been much worse, in fact he may not be with us today.
“It only takes a moment for an accident to happen but the affects can last forever, for all those involved in an accident, including the driver. Driving at 20mph is only a small change to ask people to make but it's one that could be life changing. My son and I are delighted that 20mph is being introduced across Bristol and we both urge everyone to give their full support.”
A similar message was given to parents and children at the Fishponds Play Cafe, who took part in an event on March 26 to launch the local rollout of the 20mph limits.
Helen Wigginton, from the city council's sustainable transport team, gave out information about the limits and aimed to dispel myths. She said some people were concerned about longer journey times, but tests showed that every urban mile travelled in a 20mph rather than a 30mph area took just ten seconds longer.
She also demonstrated the difference in stopping times, which mean that fewer lives will be lost if people drive more slowly in built-up areas.
The limits are part of a ten-year plan to reduce the number of collisions and casualties on Bristol’s roads and improve health and wellbeing.
Gill Calloway, director at Fishponds Play Café, said: "We are pleased to be supporting the launch of the new 20mph limit in Fishponds, both as a road safety measure, but also in making the local streets feel calmer and easier to cross especially with the growing number of young families walking, scooting and cycling around the area. Luckily it only takes a small number of drivers to reduce their speed to help set a new 'pace' and really make a difference to the local space.”
Assistant Mayor Councillor Mark Bradshaw said: “It is good that more communities in Bristol will now benefit from 20mph speed limits as the latest phase launches in Eastville, Frome Vale, Hillfields, St George East and Fishponds.
“Reducing speeds on our roads delivers tangible safety benefits with fewer collisions, deaths and injuries, together with quieter, more pleasant places to live, walk and cycle. Boosting community speedwatch and working with the police on wider enforcement is also part of our agenda.”
Mayor George Ferguson said: “Almost all road deaths and injuries are preventable and it is our joint responsibility to do everything we can to minimise these and reduce their frequency and severity. Every citizen - no matter of what age, has the right to move around Bristol safely and without undue risk of being injured by traffic.”