County’s 20mph plan criticised by campaigners

Master the matrix for 20mph limits
Master the matrix for 20mph limits

A proposed policy to back 20mph limits in Suffolk has been criticised by green and 20mph campaigners.

Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet decides next Tuesday whether to approve a policy drawn up after months of study by a special panel.

It will see the county back 20mph limits and zones in principle and sets criteria.

It says that, except in exceptional cases, 20mph will not be considered on A or B roads, where average speeds are above 30mph and where there is no local support.

They will only then be considered if two out of three criteria are met, which are: 85 per cent of vehicle speeds are below 26mph, it is residential with pedestrian and cyclist movements and there is a police record of injury accidents in the past five years.

It also sets out a marking ‘matrix’ to rate how a site complies with criteria.

But Cllr Mark Ereira-Guyer, leader of the council’s Green group said: “The panel has come up with an unnecessarily complicated, convoluted set of criteria involving a ‘matrix’ which no one will be able to understand. This is a wasted opportunity to improve the quality of life of thousands of people.”

Rod King, founder of 20’s Plenty For Us, has written to the council saying: “Since 2006, Department for Transport have said that 85 percentile speeds should not be used to set speed limits. This was re-confirmed in the 2013 guidance.”