Plans to cut UK speed limits

Government proposals could see speed limits on many rural roads in England cut from 60mph to 40mph. Councils could also be given greater freedom to introduce 20mph schemes.

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Keith Vaz: Questions need to be asked about G4S staff

The chairman of the Home Affairs Committee, Keith Vaz, has said the problems that had arisen raise questions as to whether the staff G4S had managed to recruit were up to the job.

He told BBC News:

We do need to examine what is the workforce that is in place at the moment. Have they been properly trained?

Are they going to be able to communicate with those that arrive at the Games and are they qualified to do what they are supposed to do?

I hope this is an opportunity for Mr Buckles on Tuesday to come out with the facts, to be very clear, to be very open, to be very transparent with Parliament so that we can get to the bottom of what has happened."

– Chairman of the Home Affairs Committee, Keith Vaz

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Councils 'best placed' to determine speed limits

Road Safety Minister Mike Penning said: "It is vital that speed limits are suitable for local conditions and councils are best placed to determine what these limits are, based on local knowledge and the views of the community. To help, we are publishing updated guidance for consultation.

This includes a number of initiatives we have introduced to improve road safety, including making it easier for local authorities and communities to put in place 20 mph schemes, or use common-sense measures such as variable speed limits outside schools."

The final guidance is expected to be published by the end of the year Credit: Press Association

New 20mph zones aiming to cut collisions

Under the guidance councils will be encouraged to expand 20mph zones and limits in urban and residential areas where it can be shown they benefit safety and quality of life. There are around 2,000 schemes in England with research suggesting that introducing a 20mph zone can cut collisions by 60%.

Based on this positive effect on road safety traffic authorities can, over time, introduce 20 mph zones or limits into major streets where business on foot is more important then slowing down road and lesser residential roads in cities, towns and villages, particularly where this would be reasonable for the road environment, there is community support and streets are being used by pedestrians and cyclists.

– Department for transport

Councils to get greater speed limit powers

Councils will be given greater freedom to introduce 20mph schemes under new government proposals to improve road safety.

Local officials will also have more scope to cut speeds on rural roads with a history of accidents and introduce variable speed limits outside schools as part of the updated Department for Transport guidance.

The new guidance was put out for consultation yesterday Credit: Press Association

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