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Do 20mph Speed Limits Really Work?


The effectiveness of 20mph speed limits has come into question recently, as a report by independent transport data consultancy Agilysis reveals that roads in Wales have only seen a minimal reduction in speed since the implementation of these limits. This topic has sparked debate and even led to a petition calling for the cancellation of the scheme. In this article, we will delve into the findings of the Agilysis report and explore the implications of 20mph speed limits.

The Agilysis Report

According to the report, which analyzed 10,000 vehicle movements in a sample area, the average reduction in speed after a month of the 20mph speed limits being introduced in Wales was only 2.3mph. Initially, after a week, speeds dropped by 3.1mph. These statistics highlight the limited impact that these speed limits have had on driver behavior. While the majority of motorists are adhering to the limits, there remains a concern about a minority who have not adjusted their speed choices accordingly.

Enforcement Challenges

Richard Owen, CEO of Agilysis, emphasized the need for better compliance and targeted education and enforcement. He also pointed out that the current equipment used for enforcing these speed limits has not received official approval due to a backlog in the government system. This delay has hindered the enforcement process for almost a decade, leaving authorities unable to effectively enforce the 20mph limits. Owen attended a conference where the positive impact of these limits on casualty reduction and the burden on the healthcare system was discussed.

Public Opinion

The Agilysis report has sparked a debate about the future of 20mph speed limits in Wales and the rest of the UK. Some argue that these limits should be scrapped due to their limited effectiveness, while others highlight the potential benefits in terms of road safety and reducing the strain on healthcare services. The public’s opinion on this matter remains divided.


The question of whether 20mph speed limits work is still up for debate. The Agilysis report indicates that while there has been a slight reduction in speed, the overall impact on driver behavior has been minimal. The enforcement challenges faced by authorities further complicate the situation. As the discussion continues, it is essential to consider the opinions of the public, the potential benefits, and the need for targeted education and enforcement to achieve better compliance with these limits.

2 thoughts on “Do 20mph Speed Limits Work? A Closer Look”

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