According to latest figures, the number of motorists breaking the speeding limit within 30mph zones has decreased by a third since 1998. In 1998, it was found that a proportion of 69% of drivers had exceeded the limit in a 30mph, this figure has plummeted to just 46% by 2010. In addition, those found exceeding the limit over 35mph has reduced just as dramatically from 32% of overall offenders in 2001 to 16% in 2010. A reduction in speeding drivers could in turn help tackle the number of fatalities caused by those avoidable road collisions.
There are a variety of reasons why motorists may have taken a more responsible stance on keeping to the limits. Dramatic fuel inflation has caused people to be more inclined to save fuel by driving more sensibly. Harsh economic times means that repairs, car insurance and other motoring costs also enhance the need to make cut backs and avoid costly road collisions.
The nation’s motorways have also followed suit, with 57% of motorists breaking the 70mph limits back in 2003, which dropped to 49% by 2010. The data collected by the RAC Foundation and the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety revealed that offences have been on the gradual decrease over the last few years after a rapid increase seen in the 90’s.
Professor Stephen Glaister, RAC’s foundation director, commented saying: “Even as ministers discuss raising the motorway speed limit to 80mph, drivers are actually cutting their speeds on this part of the road network.
“While this report only includes data up to 2010, recently released figures for 2011 underline the findings.”
The findings greatly contrast with the increasing road deaths seen on roads over previous years. Deaths in 20mph zones for example have increased by a staggering 24% according to the Department of Transport. This suggests that speed isn’t the underlying issue and perhaps better driving education maybe the solution in reducing road collisions and ultimately those inflating insurance premiums.