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Only 1% of drivers prosecuted for exceeding 20mph limit last month

11 Apr 2024 3 minute read
Enforcement of the new limit began in January.

Emily Price

Only 1% of drivers found exceeding the new 20mph default speed limit were prosecuted in Wales last month, according to new figures.

Offence data published by GoSafe this week revealed that in March 24,714 vehicles were monitored across Wales.

655 were identified as travelling above the current enforcement threshold.

649 of them received an engagement session whilst 6 were prosecuted.

During this period the lowest average offence speed recorded in mid and south Wales was 28.5mph.

The highest offence speed in the same area was 45mph.

In north Wales,  the lowest average offence speed recorded was 28.8mph – the highest was 33mph.

Only 8 drivers were found to be exceeding the 20mph default speed limit in north Wales last month.

Prior to this, from September through to February, no vehicles in north Wales were recorded exceeding the 20mph default.

Across Wales in February 14874 vehicles were monitored.

460 drivers were caught travelling over the limit and 2% were prosecuted.

Prosecution

Drivers travelling over the default speed limit are identified using speed monitoring equipment.

Police officers give the driver a choice between roadside engagement or points and a fine.

While drivers are offered free engagement as an alternative, they can refuse, which will then result in prosecution.

GoSafe is a partnership between the four police forces, the 22 local authorities and the Welsh Government with the aim of making Welsh roads safer.

The enforcement phase of Wales’ new 20mph default speed limit, known as ‘Operation Ugain,’ began in January following a three-month grace period.

Since then, 97% of vehicles monitored were found to be complying with the new 20mph default speed limit.

In March, enforcement of the controversial speed limit was ramped up.

Engagement was still prioritised above prosecution but enforcement was considered in areas where communities had raised concerns or where collisions had occurred.

Any requests for enforcement are assessed using GoSafe’s enforcement criteria and where appropriate, enforcement sites are established.

A GoSafe spokesperson said: “The combination of engagement and enforcement has always been used by the partnership. Engagement is continually prioritised to support behaviour change to make our roads safer for everyone. Enforcement is used when it is justified and where engagement is not appropriate.

“Enforcement is always done in the right place, at the right time, for the right reason, to make our roads safer.”

The controversial default speed limit has been met with opposition in Wales by some.

A petition calling for it to be reversed reached almost half and million signatures – the most in Senedd history.

The Welsh Government has said that cutting the limit to 20mph will protect lives and save the NHS in Wales £92m a year.


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Erisian
Erisian
1 month ago

Time we had some enforcement teams visit my area – I’m sick of being overtaken when driving at 20

Richard 1
Richard 1
1 month ago

It is time for some exemplary penalties to stop people thinking the limit is optional. It’s also time to start calling out the tories for legitimising non-compliance. A looming election makes this a very good time.

Welshy welsh
Welshy welsh
1 month ago
Reply to  Richard 1

Disagree, time we allow Westminster to take control of the roads. Much better system and we will actually get places quicker.

Richard 1
Richard 1
1 month ago
Reply to  Welshy welsh

Is there any evidence that the 20 limit will significantly increase journey times? (of course that requires drivers to start complying)

Why vote
Why vote
1 month ago

When drivers are forced to comply when faced with financial penalties there will obviously be people who comply through fear, the 1% figure seems extremely low as though manipulated in some way? As there seems to be very little compliance where i live. Maybe the next senedd elections will highlight how drivers realy feel about this law and maybe a change of party in power will sort this out once and for all without having to manipulate statistics, as 1020 people surveyed dose not represent a true cross-section of the population. There has been no financial report on the savings… Read more »

Richard 1
Richard 1
1 month ago

“97% of vehicles monitored were complying”? Pull the other one. Decimal point missing, judging by what I see in Llandrindod.

Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago

It needs to be reinforced a bit harsher. The constant belittling of the law by the Conservative Party and others is giving people the idea that it doesn’t apply to them because Tory said so, and it is starting to get silly.

Problem as always with camera vans is people know where they are. Word gets around, time for a few sneaky camera’s.

Welshy welsh
Welshy welsh
1 month ago
Reply to  Jeff

Get a life mate, people have places to be

Les Cargot
Les Cargot
1 month ago

Not good enough.

karl
karl
1 month ago

Could make a fortune on my road alone. Or even get people banned, as up too 70 mph on a 20 mph road is never good

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