Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20m/h

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lulu1
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Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20m/h

Post by lulu1 » 1 Dec 2014 23:15

Since today the speed restriction along Sydenham Hill is 20 miles per hour, down from 30. There are some signs along Sydenham Hill, but they're quite small and easily missed. Also the number 20 is painted onto the road, but in the dark again easily missed. Just thought I'd make people aware as there are speed cameras on this section of road. I'm sure it's done for all the right reasons, but 20 miles per hour does feel very slow on a road like Sydenham Hill. I don't really mind but already had to cope with angry road users beeping and overtaking today as they thought I was driving too slow. So although I'm sure it's safer, Sydenham Hill is a very long road and there will be many very impatient drivers trying to overtake the drivers sticking to the speed limit, which in turn will create dangerous situations. Anyway, just wanted to make the you all aware of this so you'll avoid getting a fine & points on your licence.

lulu1
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by lulu1 » 2 Dec 2014 19:56

Just a quick update... The whole of Southwark, with the exception of just a few roads, are/will be 20 miles/hour. Indeed, there are many new 20 signs going up all over the place. The police actually objected to roads which have a mean speed of 24 miles/hour to become 20m/h roads.

robbieduncan
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by robbieduncan » 3 Dec 2014 09:34

Wow, will be a challenge to stay below that on a bike!

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 3 Dec 2014 13:55

Quick Google search pulls up the following info:

Red Routes most likely not included as they are controlled by TfL.

No new speed cameras being installed.

Enforcement is down the police, who already object, and who (I assume) aren't getting extra resources for this.

So it doesn't look like there will be much enforcement, other than where there are already cameras (thanks for the warning about Sydenham Hill. I'm usually doing just under 30 when I hit that speed camera).

The new policy can therefore only encourage people to slow down, not force them to. That's mostly a good thing. But on roads where higher speeds seem appropriate, it will certainly cause aggro. My driving instructor (many moons ago) taught me to drive close to the speed limit on any given road, as best practice, not faster (obvs) but not significantly slower either, if the road and conditions were right.

stuart
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by stuart » 3 Dec 2014 14:12

Rachael wrote:I'm usually doing just under 30 when I hit that speed camera.
Image

Stuart

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 3 Dec 2014 15:00

stuart wrote:
Rachael wrote:I'm usually doing just under 30 when I hit that speed camera.
Image

Stuart
I thought that was you hiding behind that tree. Doing a side line as a paparazzo?

mosy
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by mosy » 3 Dec 2014 15:24

:lol:

Rachael, are you sure the police enforce it as Lewisham is decriminalised, such that the council issues fines rather than police putting speeding points on licence. If I'm right, then drivers also need to watch out even if no speed cams as a discreetly placed speed gun car can be a good little earner. In theory these cars are supposed to be indicated although there have been appeals in some boroughs where signs and cars seem to have been deliberately discreetly placed behind trees, branches etc.

Sydenham Hill isn't a road I'd have expected to go to 20mph. Is it a blackspot for some reason?

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 3 Dec 2014 15:45

mosy wrote:
Sydenham Hill isn't a road I'd have expected to go to 20mph. Is it a blackspot for some reason?
Well, that's the point. EVERY road in Southwark now has a 20mph speed limit, bar some exceptions. So roads like Sydenham Hill become 20 mph even though it is a wide road that rarely experiences particularly heavy traffic, for no other reason than it is a borough-wide policy.

I don't know what happens in Lewisham, but Southwark clearly state that enforcement is up to the police. http://www.southwark.gov.uk/downloads/d ... _limit_faq

stuart
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by stuart » 3 Dec 2014 16:06

Rachael wrote:I thought that was you hiding behind that tree. Doing a side line as a paparazzo?
It did begin with a p. Sorry to be so distracting :oops:
Rachael wrote:So roads like Sydenham Hill become 20 mph even though it is a wide road that rarely experiences particularly heavy traffic, for no other reason than it is a borough-wide policy.
I guess their reason is that it reduces KSIs by around 40%, more for vulnerable road users - if enforced!
The figures were derived from passive measures (aka sleeping policemen). That's expensive on a borough wide basis. So it depends on whether our non-sleeping policemen will enforce it. They say they won't.

I guess the question is to whether it should be left to the police to decide which areas of the law they should enforce. Who is sovereign here? We are talking lives - probably the single most effective way of reducing the present carnage on our roads. What do you think?

<opens packet of peanuts>

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 3 Dec 2014 16:22

I have no objection to a reduction in principle, and I think we'll probably get used to it quite quickly. There doesn't seem to be any way to enforce it, beyond existing cameras. But then again, that's true for the current speed limits too. So is this the famous 'nudge' theory in action? If we all drive a bit above the speed limit where we can, we'll drive more slowly in an area with a lower speed limit. In theory. I see from Southwark's own research they expect speeds to come down by an average of 1-2 mph. Doesn't seem a lot, but I assume that every degree of diminishment in speed increases survival rates for pedestrians and cyclists.

It will take me a while to adjust because I was taught to drive just below the speed limit on clear roads, and that was universally 30 mph in built-up areas when I learned to drive. 20 mph on an open road will 'feel' wrong initially. And I'll have to remember to put my foot back on the accelerator when I cross back into Lewisham. :wink:

stuart
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by stuart » 3 Dec 2014 16:40

A problem, which I share with you, is that 20mph seems dreadfully slow especially on an open road like Sydenham Hill. However, that's just the road where speed related incidents would be more serious.

Put it the other way round. Most journeys around here are less than 5 miles. So 'flat out' that would be a maximum time penalty of 5 minutes (15 minutes plays 10 minutes). In reality because of interruptions etc it would be very much less than that. Maybe a minute or two. That's the math, that's not how we perceive the result of lower speed limits.

Another problem is many cars just don't drive nicely at 20mph. The manufacturers have optimised the gearing for other speeds. Maybe electric (no-geared) cars will be easier to handle in 20mph environments. Right now its a mess. Responsible road safety people feel they should do something but lack support from those that would have to enforce it and, let's be honest, a significant number of motorists who just don't want to accept the numbers.

So Southwark bite the bullet. Lewisham remain in denial.

Stuart

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 3 Dec 2014 17:02

stuart wrote:
Another problem is many cars just don't drive nicely at 20mph. The manufacturers have optimised the gearing for other speeds.
I hadn't thought of that. I drive an automatic. Casting my mind back to the days when I drove 'stick', I seem to remember that 20mph is that horrible in-between speed where second gear is too low but third seems too high.

lulu1
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by lulu1 » 3 Dec 2014 22:28

I think that reducing the speed to 20 m/h on roads like Sydenham Hill actually makes this road a lot more dangerous. I use this road several times per day and have done so for many years. When the speed limit was 30 m/h I never had any cars overtaking me. Everyone seemed quite happy with that speed. Over the last few days I've driven 20 m/h (which feels like standing still to be honest) and lots of drivers have overtaken me, which really is quite dangerous. Specially as, in the morning and afternoon, there are many schoolchildren crossing this road.

bensonby
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by bensonby » 4 Dec 2014 06:25

mosy wrote::lol:

Rachael, are you sure the police enforce it as Lewisham is decriminalised, such that the council issues fines rather than police putting speeding points on licence.
No, that's incorrect. Some, though not all, non-endorsable (I.e. You don't get points on your license) traffic offences have been decriminalised in Lewisham and are enforced by the council. All endorsable offences are still police enforced, that includes speeding.

That said, speeding is very rarely enforced by local borough officers anyway. A decent speed-enforcement and speed management policy relies heavily on ergonomic changes and fixed speed cameras. Officers with speed guns (suitably calibrated) are quite an inefficient use of resources, frankly.

mosy
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by mosy » 4 Dec 2014 17:36

Many thanks bensonby for clarifying as I was struggling to figure out the delineation between decriminalised civil offences and (police) enforceable ones, so most helpful :)

On some roads, motorways?, they paint horizontal lines across at intervals to give the impression of speed, and to gauge tailgating, braking distance etc. Perhaps they might be an idea on wide roads that "don't feel like 20".

From another angle, dusk is said to the worst time for "seeing things" which now falls around school chucking out time :( Also, am I alone in thinking that the new low energy street lights are very dim especially if trying to spot people dressed head to toe in black? Perhaps speed reduction is no bad thing even on wide roads.

lulu1
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by lulu1 » 4 Dec 2014 19:07

Speed reduction is indeed not a bad thing. I absolutely support it and it makes sense on lots of roads. On wide road however it is not very sensible, as there are too many very impatient drivers. Bad enough during daylight hours, but when it's dark it becomes very dangerous. Especially with the new streetlights, which make it almost impossible to see anyone in dark clothing. Overtaking in the dark is just outright dangerous, however early this morning and just now coming back home cars overtook me as has happened every day this week (and some of the drivers were quite rude, flashing their lights etc..). It is an accident waiting to happen. We can all agree that in an ideal world everyone would stick to the speed limits, but in reality that's just not true. So, on paper it looks like a good idea, but people will be put at risk. When the speed limit was 30 m/h I was never overtaken on this road. This road is safer with 30 m/h than 20 m/h.

Kirkdalian
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Kirkdalian » 4 Dec 2014 21:35

drove over there tonight... there was a cyclist going faster than me! :lol:

Rachael
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by Rachael » 5 Dec 2014 07:14

Presumably, though, the people still doing 30 mph are getting caught by the speed cameras. Once the penalty notices start to flood in, they'll realise the limit has changed.

14BradfordRoad
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by 14BradfordRoad » 5 Dec 2014 13:19

Rachael wrote:Once the penalty notices start to flood in, they'll realise the limit has changed.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sb_4_C2U7e8


Ker-ching - £££££'s

GemStone
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Re: Change in speed restriction on Sydenham HIll 30m/h to 20

Post by GemStone » 5 Jan 2015 23:26

I think 20 is too slow!
I drive a focus, nothing fancy, a 1.6. Am I expected to drive in third gear without using the accelerator? Constantly braking?
Surely, the roads could be made wider in many places, but it is always the pavement or massive verge which is improved.
I digress.
Modern cars are designed for an economical gear ratio to engine speed. The road is designed without the car in mind.
Maybe we should just go back to cobblestones and wooden wheels. We can all drive at 20 and still road deaths would not decrease, more and more vehicles on over crowded roads every day adds to the problem

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