Town centres in Fife to get 20 mph speed limit

The zones are being rolled out in some Fife towns and villages. Pic: Phil Wilkinson
The zones are being rolled out in some Fife towns and villages. Pic: Phil Wilkinson

Towns across Fife will have speed limits dropped to 20 mph as part of a safety campaign.

As part of a roll-out since 2003, smaller towns and villages across the region will see speed limits around the centre of each town  reduced.

Consultation will continue with other communities to see if they are suitable to be included.

Over 95 per cent of residential and school areas in Fife have been reduced to 20 mph since the programme started, at a cost of nearly £9m.

This comes after East Lothian announced it would not be reducing any more speed limits on its roads until a decision from the Scottish Government was made on reducing the national speed limit.

Traffic surveys showed that since the introduction, 83 per cent of drivers drove at less than 25 mph on residential roads, compared with just 50 per cent before.

This has also resulted in an almost 30 per cent reduction in child casualties and 20 per cent reduction overall.

By introducing these zones around schools, more parents also felt better about walking their children to school. There was also a 20 per cent increase in children cycling to schools.

Steve Sellars, Lead Consultant for Road Safety and Travel Planning, said: “Fife Council has been introducing 20 mph zones within all residential streets, including around all schools.

“This programme commenced in 2003 and has introduced over 400 discrete zones which has cost approximately £9m, part of which was grant funded by the former Scottish Executive and the Scottish Government.

“Current work is mainly focussed on adjusting and enhancing these zones where required and on introducing 20 mph zones in some town centre locations.”

The zones are set to be introduced in towns and villages such as Kelty, Torryburn and Newmills.

Steve added: “This is probably the most comprehensive regional network of mandatory 20 mph speed limits in Scotland.”

He added that larger towns, such as Glenrothes or Kirkcaldy, were not currently being considered but “will be looked at dynamically” as communities and town centre areas change.