Doctors Bid to Brake Speeding Motorists

by VR Sreeraman on Aug 29 2007 8:34 PM

All walk to school routes in Wales should be designated 20 mph zones, according to Welsh doctors' leaders.

In a bid to reduce the risk of injury and promote physical activity in school aged children and shift the balance between motorist and pedestrian, BMA Cymru Wales is now calling on the Welsh Assembly Government to put the brake on speeding motorists and designate all walk to work routes 20 mph zones.

BMA Welsh Secretary, Dr Richard Lewis said: “The Welsh Assembly Government and organisations like Sustrans have already done a great deal of work to help slow down speeding motorists near Welsh schools. The ‘Safe Routes to School’ initiative, which is supported by Sustrans is already providing children a safer route to school and saving countless lives.

“But, does this go far enough? The BMA thinks not – the Welsh Assembly Government and local authorities in Wales need to go much further to save even more children from needless injuries and death.”

The BMA is now calling on the Welsh Assembly Government, Sustrans and Local Authorities in Wales to work on a major joint strategy to identify all major walk to school routes and roll-out a programme of 20mph zones across all parts of Wales.

Dr Lewis added: “Extending 20 mphs zones to all walk to school routes will give parents greater assurance about their children’s safety, help make pupils more active but more importantly it will help save more Welsh lives.

“That is why the BMA is now calling on the Welsh Assembly Government to make all walk to school routes 20 mph zones.”

Lee Waters, director of Sustrans added: " We are in favour of 20 mph speed limits in urban areas, and particularly around schools, for a number of reasons, not least because traffic moving at slower speeds provides an environment that will encourage more people to walk and cycle. And we believe this is something the public wants - we know from our own research that 90% of people favour measures to improve conditions for walking, cycling and using public transport even when these disadvantage car users."

Source: BMA