Highlands and Islands Green have learnt that the Highland Council’s review of speed limits on all ‘A’ and ‘B’ roads in the Highlands, begun in March 2010, has been delayed because of changes in Councillors’ priorities. The review is still far from complete.
“The Liberal Democrat-led Council’s decision to delay this review is scandalous” said Neil Hornsby, Campaigns Co-ordinator for the Highlands and Islands Green Party.
“In March 2010, The Highland Council discussed the Scottish Government’s call for all Local Authorities to review the speed limits on A and B Class roads in their areas by 2011. But here we are, over eighteen months later, with no sign of the review’s completion. We understand that this is down to changes in the Council’s priorities.
“Carolyn Caddick, the Lib-Dems’ newly-elected Councillor for Inverness South, laid great stress in her election leaflets on the need for greater attention to road safety. Such expressions were no doubt a major factor in her securing election. But the reality is that, by their own actions, the Lib-Dems have demoted the importance of road safety.
“The incidence and severity of road accidents is a major problem across the Highlands. This speed limit review should therefore be completed with the utmost urgency.
“Highlands and Islands Green Party policy is that all residential areas, existing and planned, should become Home Zones. Such designation would reduce traffic speeds on local roads, and strongly encourage many more journeys to be made on foot or by bike. Children would able to ‘play out’ safely.
(1) The Highland Council’s TEC Comittee agreed to undertake the speed review at its meeting on 18 March 2010. The Council Official’s report to that meeting records that: “The Scottish Government have requested that Local Authorities review the speed limits on A and B Class roads in their areas by 2011”.
See these minutes.
(2) The Scottish Governmentʼs 2009 road safety framework includes the following targets:
- 40% reduction in people killed by year end 2020
- 55% reduction in people seriously injured by year end 2020
- 50% reduction in children aged under 16 killed by year end 2020
- 65% reduction in children aged under 16 seriously injured by year end 2020