London sees 33 casualties per day in 20mph roads despite Sadiq Khan pledge to make capital safer

20mph speed limit sign

1,976 casualties occurred in first months of the year

Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 10/07/2024

- 15:22

Updated: 11/07/2024

- 09:10

Pedestrians made up the majority of casualties on the slower 20mph roads

More than 30 casualties a day were recorded since the expansion of 20mph zones this year as the lower speed limit fails to stop injuries.

According to Transport for London data, 33 casualties were recorded every day throughout the first two months of this year.

During this time, Sadiq Khan extended the number of 20mph speed limit zones through its phase two rollout across the capital.

But despite the lower speed limit, 1,976 casualties occurred with 319 being labelled “serious” and eight being fatal.

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20mph speed limit sign

86 miles of road were changed to 20mph in January


Speed limits across London were lowered at the start of the year by 10mph on 86 miles of roadsin the capital to help promote safer streets for all road users.

The data found that 73 per cent of the casualties were from pedestrians with 121 cases seen as serious.

TfL detailed: “We're introducing safer speed limits because if you hit someone at 30mph they're five times more likely to die than if you hit them at 20mph.

“The work is part of the Mayor's Vision Zero policy which aims to see no one killed or seriously injured on our roads by 2041.”

The areas in London which became 20mph included the boroughs of Greenwich, Newham, Wandsworth, Richmond, Sutton and Merton and on the A312 Harlington Road in Hounslow.

TfL added that safer speeds make London safer for people to “live, work and commute” by encouraging more Londoners out of their cars to walk, cycle and use public transport.

Looking at the casualties by demographic, 1,293 occurred in adults aged between 25 and 59 years old.

A further 310 casualties were recorded between people aged between 16 and 24 while 97 took place in those aged younger than 15 years old.

By gender split, 1,245 incidents involved men while 622 involved women during the two-month period.

The Metropolitan Police enforce speed limits across most of London's roads on behalf of TfL.

The police were issued a target by Khan to give out one million speeding offences by 2024, having enforced 686,865 speeding offences the previous year.

The transport authority did note that there is not a "one size fits all” approach to reducing the speed of vehicles in the capital.


20mph speed limits

Speed limits were lowered between January and March this year


Earlier this year, reports found that one in every four cars registered in London received a speeding fine for breaking the 20mph limits across the capital in the past six years.

According to a Freedom of Information request, fines for drivers breaching the 20mph speed limits were up 700 per cent since 2018.

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