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20mph limit will increase health benefits, says National Heart Forum report
Councillors heard that the NHS may offer funding to towns wanting to implement a 20mph speed limit due to resulting health benefits at a meeting this week.
On Wednesday and Thursday members of Hertfordshire County Council’s Overview and Scrutiny committee re-examined the case for making Watford a 20mph town following a shift in government policy.
Andrew Preston, from the Cambridge 20mph project, presented his findings to the committee and said a way of lowering costs would be to approach the NHS as they have previously part-funded a similar scheme in Liverpool.
In a report written by the National Heart Forum, the organisation stated that they are in support of a reduction in 20mph in built up areas because it would promote walking and cycling and would reduce fatal and serious injuries caused by road accidents.
Research published in the British Medical Journal on the effect of slower traffic speed zones in London, has found that the introduction of the scheme has had an impact on the number and severity of road injuries. Injuries are mainly fatal if a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle travelling between 30mph and 40mph, while at a traffic speed of 20mph the pedestrian survival rate is increased to 97 per cent.
Mr Preston said that although the NHS did not award their scheme with the funds, the health service is on their board and is supportive of the scheme.
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