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Speed limit is just ridiculous
9:10am Wednesday 15th September 2010 in Letters to the Editor
So Bournemouth BC has unilaterally decided to extend the ‘temporary speed limit’ of 40mph on large sections of the A338 Wessex Way. No big surprise at this decision which many sceptics have anticipated, as the ‘trial period’ is certainly a sham.
While a low speed limit of 40 or even 30mph on the single carriageway between the County Gates (Frizzell) intersection and Cambridge Road is arguably justified, the proposition to classify the dual carriageway from Cambridge Road to beyond the St Paul’s roundabout as 40mph is plainly ridiculous.
The whole of this stretch through to Blackwater and beyond was built to motorway standards and thus quite capable of a 60 or 70mph limit.
There are two favourite arguments to reduce the speed over this length of road: Firstly, to permit access from slip roads such as that at Richmond Hill, where a reduction from the previous 50mph to 40mph will make no practical difference whatsoever for drivers joining the main road. (Arguably from Cambridge Road to past the Richmond Hill slip could be 50mph, but east of here should certainly be returned to a higher speed.) Secondly, it is allegedly for the safety of cyclists on the A338 - I have used this route almost daily for some 18 years and I recall having seen just one cyclist, some good few years ago. How many cycle journeys are made on this road? I suspect virtually none.
It is said that these low speed limits are of minimal inconvenience to motorists and help prevent accidents. In reality they simply add many hours extra motoring to regular users over a period of months or years.
It would be much more honest and sensible to recognise the need for more realistic speed limits on this main route and police these accordingly.
G Smith, address supplied,Poole