ROADPOL Joins 7 Organizations To call For
30 km/h Limit Where People And Cars Mix
21 MAY - ROADPOL joined seven other organizations in a call for strong EU action to tackle speeding in the forthcoming European Parliament Road Safety Own Initiative Report.
“We are writing to you to appeal for your strong support for EU action to tackle the main cause of road deaths on Europe’s roads: inappropriate speed”, states the joint letter of ROADPOL, European Transport Safety Council (ETSC), European Federation of Road Traffic Victims (FEVR), POLIS Network -Cities and Regions for Transport Innovation, Eurocities, International Federation of Pedestrians, European Cyclists Federation (ECF) and the European Transport Workers’ Federation.
The letter is scheduled to reach the MEPs who are soon to vote on the EP Own Initiative Report on Road Safety. It comes against the backdrop of the 6th UN Road Safety Week which, this year, has a special focus on speed and calls on policymakers to “act for low speed streets worldwide, limiting speeds to 30 km/h where people walk, live and play.”
“A total of 18,800 EU citizens died on Europe’s roads in 2020 and many more were seriously injured. Both deaths and serious injuries carry a huge cost to society. The annual cost of road crashes in the EU has been estimated at some EUR 280 billion, equivalent to about 2% of GDP”, claims the letter asserting that speed plays a key role in causing road crashes and increasing their severity.
The organizations urge the European Parliament to adopt a European Commission Recommendation on speed covering infrastructure, vehicle and enforcement as well as a European Commission Recommendation to apply safe speed limits in line with the Safe System approach for different road types such as a default 30 km/h limit on urban roads. Furthermore the letter appeals to MEPs to require a high level of performance of Intelligent speed adaptation (ISA) systems to be fitted in all new vehicles. Member States and the EU institutions should prioritize setting safe and credible speed limits supported by self-explaining and self-enforcing roads, vehicles that help drivers to comply with speed limits, stricter laws, effective traffic law enforcement activities and road user education, the organizations further urge.
The 8 organizations set lower speeds in urban areas as a priority. “The risk of an unprotected road user being killed or seriously injured in a collision with a motorised vehicle grows substantially when the speed of the vehicle increases. At speeds of below 30 km/h pedestrians and cyclists can mix with motor vehicles in relative safety. EU-wide, around 70% of road fatalities in urban areas involve vulnerable road users which includes pedestrians, motorcyclist and cyclists”, MEPs are being informed in the letter. It is also pointed out the 30 km/h zones have been steadily gaining popularity across Europe and that opinion polls in several countries repeatedly show a majority of the public support lower speed limits in urban areas. As an example MEPs attention is drawn to the fact that this month Spain introduced a 30 km/h speed limit as the default on urban roads.