A Driving Instructor's Blog

I mentioned not long ago how Nottingham City Council has been sending out leaflets supposedly “canvassing” opinion on its plans to introduce blanket 20mph speed limits on all but the largest of roads.When challenged, their only defence is to say that other councils are doing it, and to glibly – but very selectively – quote the RoSPA “guidelines” for 20mph limits.

As I said before, what the bloody hell it has to do with RoSPA is anyone’s guess. The local neighbourhood watch chapter has as much control over police staff recruitment as RoSPA has over speed limits. All either of them can do is go to great lengths to publicise themselves by making regular media statements about things that they feel strongly about. Beyond that they have no power whatsoever.

Except over the minds of the sorts of people who work for Nottingham City Council.

You see, the Council has already decided that it WILL introduce blanket 20mph limits. It was taken aback by the public opposition to this, which prompted it to do what it should have done BEFORE it made the decision – which was put in monitoring devices to assess traffic flow in the various locations it is going to drop the limit to 20mph in. Except that it deliberately placed the monitors in places where the RoSPA recommendation that the average speed should already be below 24mph would probably hold true, even though it would not be a true representation of speeds along the entire stretch.

It placed the monitors just after traffic lights and in bottlenecks created by tram works and the resulting gridlock we’ve had to endure over the last two years.

So I noticed this week that they’re up to the same tricks again. They’ve put a monitor on North Gate right outside the shops where traffic slows to pass parked vehicles and to allow opposing traffic through. North Gate is basically an extension of Haydn Road, which has already had a 20mph limit imposed at one end – in spite of being wide enough to land a passenger jet (and that goes totally against the RoSPA advice that the road must look like it should be 20mph). The Council is intending to impose 20mph along the entire stretch between Mansfield Road and Hyson Green.

They’ve done something similar with the monitor they’ve put on Gordon Road in West Bridgford. It is right in amongst the two rows of parked cars that cause people to slow down or stop for buses and other traffic.

It’s really hard to fathom the thought processes used by councils at the best of times. But Nottingham City Council has to take the all-time top award for sneaky behaviour.

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