20 mph Speed Limits in Southend
Southend 20MPH Zones Update….. As promised this is the email I have recently sent to several Southend Borough Councillors explaining why the 20mph zones around Southend are a bad idea & why SADDIA are opposed to them.
Good Morning Councillors, Re: 20 MPH zones in Southend I write with reference to the proposed changes in speed limits around various parts of Southend on Sea.It would probably be prudent to advise you that I not only write to you as a resident of Southend but also as the owner of A Pass 4 U which is by far the biggest driving school in the area and the Chairperson of Southend And District Driving Instructors Association (SADDIA). I write representing approximately 100 driving instructors.As driving instructors, we spend our working lives promoting road safety and teaching pupils not only the safest manner to drive in but the most Eco friendly so these changes fall into our field in every way. There are many factors to consider over and above the environmental impact of vehicles in Southend some of which you may not be aware of,A) Driver Testing and Southend Test Centre – The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) have in the past closed Southend Test Centre causing residents of Southend to go for their driving test in Basildon which will have impacted on the environment due to having to spend more time travelling to Basildon which was our nearest test centre. Basildon test centre is 12 miles away which not only added to the environmental but also added significant cost due to travelling time etc. The reason this could be a problem is that the DVSA have to use many types of roads in a driving test by law which include using roads in a residential area and by reducing the speed limit it may mean that they cannot use those areas. If a whole town is impacted by the reduced speed limits it could mean that we yet again lose our driving test centre and add to the environmental and economic issues already impacting the residents of Southend. I would like to point out that some of the routes used for driver testing do go through Leigh and Thorpebay which could mean that the test routes will need to be rewritten by the DVSA at the tax payer’s expense. Speeding & Road Safety – If a driver is inclined to exceed the speed limit, lowering the limit will not stop the drivers speeding and Mr Woodley (as quoted by the Evening Echo March 8 2021) is incorrect if he believes the minority of drivers that cause these issues will reduce their speed in fact it could actually mean more people could be exceeding the speed limit. Funding a road safety/speed awareness/environmental impact campaign would be a better use of funds. Educating people of the impact of their actions e.g. how their driving impacts on KSI’s, their insurance as well as how it impacts on the environment which of course includes air pollution but also wear & tear on roads in my opinion would be a better use of funds. By showing people that “Eco” driving not only means “Environmental” but “Economical” and by educating people to drive in a Eco manner will save them money the campaign will have more impact. I am also aware that Road Safety team at Southend Council has been in effective due to underfunding for many years therefore by changing the use of the funds you will be impacting many factors, a win win scenario.C) Environmental Issues – Whist I agree that keeping our environment is our responsibility I believe that reducing the speed limits will not have any tangible impact. I would suggest that promoting the use of electric cars around the Southend area would be a better use of the funds as it would not only have a bigger impact (zero emissions on electric cars) but would also have financial benefits to the local economy if electric power points, free parking etc were close to shopping areas.The driving instructors of Southend strongly oppose the intended reduction of speed limits around the many areas of Southend and would ask that the funds be used in a manner that will meet the environmental targets and make headway to meeting other problems Southend is presently impacted by.If I can be of any use in this matter please do not hesitate to contact me on 01702 308763 or via my email firstname.lastname@example.org.Yours sincerelyTony Mihill DVSA Adi & Fleet AdiDirectorA Pass 4 U Nationwide Ltd&ChairpersonSouthend And District Driving Instructors Association