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Latrobe backs introduction of 50km/h speed limit on residential streets

Cr Tony Hanning reinforced Council’s commitment to safer local streets.

By Latrobe City Council - 9th January 2001 - Back to News

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Embargoed until Monday 8 January 2001

Latrobe City Mayor, Cr Tony Hanning, has reinforced Council’s commitment to safer local streets, welcoming the State Government’s plans to introduce a 50 km/h speed limit on residential streets later this month.

Cr Hanning said the new speed limit being introduced by the State Government which takes effect on 22 January, and has the backing of Victoria’s peak municipal bodies, is expected to result in at least 200 fewer road users being injured or killed in Victoria each year.

Latrobe City believes the new 50km/h speed limit together with community support, will dramatically boost community safety,” Cr Hanning said.

“It is estimated that 2,000 crashes involving death or injury occur on residential streets across Victoria each year. These are local neighbourhood streets where you and I live, and where our children play.

“Effectively, the 50km/h speed limit will apply to all residential streets in built up areas, however, roads which serve as significant traffic routes will be signed to remain at their current speed limits. Additional signage is being put into place to clearly advise where these exceptions to the 50km/h limit apply. The simple rule to be followed is - if there is no sign the speed limit is 50km/h,” Cr Hanning explained.

“If in doubt which speed limit applies, motorists are urged to ‘Think safe – Think 50’.

“Compliance with the 50km/h speed limit by drivers is going to make these local streets safer for pedestrians, cyclists and other road users,” Cr Hanning added.

“Councils throughout Victoria have been advocating a lower speed limit in residential streets for some time and I am delighted to see it become a reality,” Cr Hanning concluded.

Chairperson of RoadWise Gippsland, Henk Harberts, said research clearly showed that even small reductions in vehicle speeds could greatly improve the safety of all road users - especially pedestrians.

“Many crashes involving pedestrians and cyclists occur on residential streets. Research shows that speed is a key factor in avoiding crashes and reducing crash severity,” Mr Harberts said.

“In the last five years ninety-four pedestrians and one-hundred cyclists were injured or killed on roads in our municipality alone.

“If hit by a vehicle at 50km/h, a pedestrian has less than a 40 per cent chance of being killed. At 60km/h a pedestrian has a 70 per cent chance of being killed.

“Put simply, the introduction of the State Government’s 50km/h speed limit to residential streets will significantly reduce casualty crashes; yet lowering the residential speed limit is expected to have minimal impact on vehicle travel times, as most trips involve very little travel on residential streets,” Mr Harberts said.

A statewide advertising campaign to raise community awareness was launched yesterday (Sunday 07 January 2001), by the Minister for Transport, Mr Peter Batchelor, and will run for the next six weeks.

Media Enquiries:

Cr. Tony Hanning, Mayor, Latrobe City
tel. 0417 373 577

Cr. Brendan Jenkins, Deputy Mayor, Latrobe City
tel. 0417 374 590

Ms. Penny Holloway, Chief Executive Officer,
tel. 5173 1401 or 0417 557 103

Jeremy Bein, Public Relations and Communications Officer,
tel. 5173 1468


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