Have a say on speed

PEOPLE are urged to have their say on whether they support the introduction of 20mph speed limits in residential areas.

Hartlepool Borough Council is carrying out the consultation after its Neighbourhood Services Scrutiny Forum backed the idea earlier this year.

The programme, known as 20’s Plenty, has been used in a number of towns and cities across the country to improve road safety, and is more focused on changing behaviour, rather than introducing physical traffic calming measures.

Main roads in the town would stay at their existing speed limits. But it is proposed that the majority of residential estates become 20mph zones.

Currently, there are only a limited number of roads in Hartlepool with a 20mph limit.

Councillor Stephen Thomas, chairman of the Neighbourhood Services Scrutiny Forum, said: “It is a well known fact that speed kills and endangers lives which is why the scrutiny councillors were keen to explore this initiative.

“We accept that not all roads will have a 20mph limit, but we feel that there is a case for the large majority of minor roads in Hartlepool to have a 20mph restriction.

“Since the consultation began a few weeks ago there has been a steady stream of comments but we want to hear as many views as possible before it closes on Friday.”

Coun Thomas added: “Reducing the number of accidents on our roads will also save our health services tens of thousands of pounds every year. Introducing a 20mph speed limit in built up areas will also reduce pollution and encourage more people to cycle.”

A map with the proposed 20mph areas can be viewed at www.hartlepool.gov.uk. Alternatively, visit the Civic Centre or 1 Church Street.

At the end of the consultation all of the responses will be analysed and a further report will go before councillors.

For more information, phone (01429) 523249 or email highways@hartlepool.gov.uk