Councillors in Medway, Kent consider 20mph speed limit trial

Medway Councillors are set to consider introducing a 20mph spped limit across all of its towns to help improve road safety.

Councillors have said a pilot scheme across the area needs to start and the idea will now be put to the authority’s cabinet to decide whether to accept the proposals.

Support was agreed after a cross-party scrutiny committee met to consider a proposal by Labour opposition members to establish a pilot zone.

Chatham Central ward member Cllr Harinder Mahil told Kent Online that 20mph zones are an important measure to help reduce the number of incidents and injuries on roads.

He said: “It is vital that we continue to assess the progress the council is making in terms of tools to reduce casualties on our road networks, as unfortunately injuries and fatalities are far too common.

“Only a few years ago I witnessed an incident outside Holcombe Grammar School where a child was seriously injured, and not too far from the same spot there was another accident last month.

“Tools like the 20mph pilot zone are at our disposal. It is important that as a council we are doing all we can to make our roads as safe as possible.”

A report will now be prepared for cabinet members to consider whether to proceed further by setting up a trial and approve the recommendations from January’s Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting.

The pilot zone should cover a neighbourhood with multiple schools in order to assess the impact and effectiveness of 20mph zones in Medway,” said the report.

The group says evidence has proven to show 20mph zones in place elsewhere show average speeds are reduced and leading to fewer deaths and serious injuries in those areas.

Cllr Andy Stamp, Labour spokesman for regeneration and communities, said: “The simple fact is that you are five times less likely to die if you’re hit at 20mph than if you’re hit at 30mph.

“I’m really pleased to see our proposal for a 20mph pilot zone in Medway receive cross party support. As a council, we must do the right thing and invest in evidence-based approaches to road safety, which will ultimately save lives.”


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