School speed limits on the fast track

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Wetherby High School is among Leeds schools where lower speed limits will be established this year.

The City Council introduced 20mph schemes at six schools, including Boston Spa, last year following changes in government regulations which reduced the costs involved.

Coun Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member for economy and development said: “All the evidence shows that restricting car speeds to 20 mph is much safer.”

“Studies show that it also lowers pollution and it certainly makes life more pleasant for walkers, cyclists and children playing outside.”

A further 16 sites are expected to be completed this year in a bid to pave the way for their extension to other schools and residential areas.

Previously, government regulations meant that all 20mph zones had to include traffic calming measures, such as speed humps or road narrowing.

Changes mean these are not now mandatory and the council can install them only where they consider them necessary.

The number of signs required has also been reduced, reducing costs by around 60 per cent.

The schemes are being rolled out first in areas known to have the highest rate of child casualties.

After that resources will be prioritised according to criteria such as whether the school is on a main road, near shops, as well as road accidents.