Thank you for contacting me about speed limits and the coronavirus outbreak.
I believe that local traffic authorities, rather than central Government, are best placed to set local speed limits given their knowledge of local needs and priorities. Local authorities do already have the power to implement 20mph speed limits if they so choose.
Indeed, as the country gradually opens up again, local authorities may choose to implement 20mph speed limits in association with other measures to encourage more cycling and walking. Just introducing 20mph speed limits will not in itself be sufficient to meet the needs of active travel, but in tandem with other measures could provide a more attractive and safer environment for walking and cycling.
The Government currently has no plans to introduce a 20mph default speed limit on urban and restricted roads in England. While a recent and comprehensive study produced some encouraging findings about 20mph limits, there is still not sufficient evidence to conclude that there has been a significant change in collisions and casualties following the introduction of 20mph limits in residential areas.
However, as always, drivers should take care on the road and stay within the speed limit. Speeding is an offence, and those caught speeding can still receive a fixed penalty notice, penalty points on their driving licence or a notice of intended prosecution.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.