Hobart’s city centre “will be a safer place from Monday” according the Hobart City Council when a 40km/h vehicle speed limit comes into effect.
Lord Mayor Anna Reynolds said the change coincided with students returning to school, providing an extra incentive to slow down in the city.
“This small speed reduction of just 10km/h can make a big difference to the safety of pedestrians and cyclists – including school students moving around our city,” Cr Reynolds said. “It will also likely reduce the number of crashes that cause traffic snarls and millions of dollars’ worth of damage every year.”
The Mayor believes that a safer speed limit is good for everyone.
“It makes outdoor dining or browsing shops more enjoyable and encourages people to use modes of active travel – which in turn takes cars off the road and reduces congestion.”
“A 40km/h speed limit been working in other cities across Australia for many years and it’s time that Hobart caught up with the trend.”
As well as being consistent with other major Australian cities and towns, the introduction of a 40km/h CBD speed limit aligns with the Tasmanian Road Safety Strategy as a means to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on the state’s roads.
Data from the Curtin-Monash Accident Research Centre shows that the chance of a fatal injury decreases from 85 per cent at 50km/h to less than 30 per cent at 40km/h.
City Infrastructure Committee Chair Bill Harvey said there had been 833 reported on-road crashes in Hobart’s CBD in the past five years – equating to nearly one every two days. Of those, about 130 crashes resulted in injuries and three in deaths.
“Lowering the speed limit by just 10km/h won’t make any difference to traffic flow but can make a big difference when it comes to reducing injuries from crashes or avoiding them in the first place,” Cr Harvey said.
“The extra travel time over one kilometre will be just 18 seconds. But with those extra seconds comes a shorter stopping distance and more time to react behind the wheel to something unexpected. And the chance of having a fatal collision with a pedestrian or cyclist is dramatically slashed.”
A reduced speed limit is supported by the Road Safety Advisory Council, Tasmania Police, Tasmanian Transport Association, RACT, Tasmanian Transport Association, Bicycle Network Tasmania, the Australian Medical Association Tasmania, the National Heart Foundation and Metro Tasmania.
A 40km/h speed limit will apply in the area bounded by Harrington, Melville, Campbell and Davey streets with the following exceptions: Davey St and Macquarie St will remain unchanged at 50km/h, as will Harrington St between Davey and Macquarie streets.
Existing 30km/h zones in parts of Elizabeth and Liverpool streets will also remain unchanged. In Elizabeth St, the new speed limit will be extended north to Brisbane St.
For more information and to view the submission to the Tasmanian Transport Commission, visit.
Source: Tasmanian Times https://www.tasmaniantimes.com/2021/01/lower-hobart-speed-limits-start-next-week/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=lower-hobart-speed-limits-start-next-week