Dual carriageways to have 80mph limit?

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Earlier this year it was revealed that the Government was planning on upping the motorway speed limit to 80mph. Partly to put us in line with the rest of Europe and partly, a cynic may suggest, so the Conservatives could win the motorists' votes (they'd win more by lowering fuel duty, mind).

A full consultation into whether the rise is feasible will appear in the new year, but it's been revealed that it may precede a consultation into raising the limit on dual carriageways, too.


The Department for Transport, in a recent document on cutting red tape for road users, announced (quite subtly) that it would look into raising the limit on certain dual carriageways.

The Red Tape Challenge document (available here if you need something to put you to sleep) says: "We have announced our intention to consult about changing the national speed limit on motorways from 70 mph to 80 mph. We are also examining whether 80mph should be extended on a case by case basis to some other dual carriageways."

When the news of a proposed motorway speed limit rise broke, every anti-speed/anti-car organisation in the UK wanted to make very sure that we knew they were unhappy with the limit rise.

Family favourite, Brake, told the BBC that a higher limit would directly result in death: "We would be strongly opposed to any policy that would increase deaths on the roads... To have such a policy would be unethical. Each death on the road affects not only the victim but their family too."

Thus far reaction to the proposed dual carriageway limit hike has been thin on the ground, though we did find some reaction from MP Gary Streeter on thisisplymouth.co.uk. He doesn't like the idea of letting drivers go faster on his native A38: "The A38 is a very fast and dangerous road, with twisty sections, hills and numerous junctions; it's not like a flat motorway with a junction every 20 miles."

That's right, folks, Mr Streeter doesn't think you can hack bends at 80mph.

It makes sense to see dual carriageway limits rise as well at the motorway, though speed cameras would make a mint if the limits remained 70mph on A Roads...