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MEPs demand blanket 20mph urban limits

Date: 29 June 2011   |   Author: Tristan Young

In a bid to halve road deaths and serious injuries in the EU by 2020, the European Parliament Transport Committee has called for much wider use of 30km/h (20mph) speed limits in urban areas.

The call comes in a new report by MEP Dieter-Lebrecht Koch, vice chairman of the Transport Committee. Koch claims current road safety plans are "too vague, too timid - inadequate" if the targets are to be reached.

In the UK, around 200 workers per week are killed or seriously injured in road accidents, a figure that doesn't include commuting mileage, while a third of all road accidents involve an at-work driver, shows Department for Transport figures from 2010.

MEPs also favoured harmonising highway codes and road signs EU-wide, and called for a European road safety coordinator to be appointed within the Commission by 2014.

At this stage the report is a "wish list" rather than legislation, however the aim of the committee is to start the legislative process for the recommendations later this year.

The report also proposes there should be a set of standard technical safety checks of vehicles involved in a serious accident. These checks could include inspections of tyres, brakes and other safety-critical areas of the car.

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