Britons back 20mph speed limits for cyclists – ‘Should conform to same rules as drivers’

Jeremy Kyle says cyclists 'should be fined' for breaking codes

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As part of a series of new road laws for cyclists, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps proposes to close a loophole that allows bike riders to break speed limits and overtake cars in low-speed zones. Earlier this week, he said: “Somewhere where cyclists are actually not breaking the law is when they speed, and that cannot be right, so I absolutely propose extending speed limit restrictions to cyclists.

“I don’t want to stop people from getting on their bike, it’s a fantastic way to travel, and we’ve seen a big explosion of cycling during Covid and since.”

Speaking to the Daily Mail, he added: “But I see no reason why cyclists should break the road laws and be able to get away with it.”

At present speed limits on UK roads only apply to motor vehicles and their drivers.

Local authorities can enforce cycle speed limits, but this has rarely been done.

In a poll that ran from 1om on Friday, August 19, to 11am on Sunday, August 21, asked readers: “Should cyclists face 20mph speed limits?”

In total, 2,401 readers responded with the vast majority, 88 percent (2,123 people), answering “yes”, cyclists should face 20mph speed limits.

Meanwhile, 12 percent (271 people) said “no” they should not, and a further seven people said they did not know.

In the hundreds of comments left below the accompanying article it was clear readers felt strongly about cyclists facing speed restrictions.

Username Cornflower said: “A speed limit is a speed limit, regardless of vehicle.”

 Username noelw1969 said: “Speed limits are set for the road, not for the type of vehicle used.

“Cyclists should be punished exactly the same as motorists for speeding.”

Another, with the username Bandersnatch wrote: “Cyclists and their bicycles should conform to the same rules, regulations and taxes that other road users have to conform to.”

And username IanW said: “Personally I think they should abide by the 20mph rule but at the same time if they can’t keep up the same pace as traffic on other roads they shouldn’t be allowed to use them.”

Some readers argued that the speed limit should be reduced further.

Username Stuartonline commented: “10 mph is fast enough.”

While username daveyonthebeach said: “5mph would be better.”

The estimated average speed on a bike is between 10 and 14 mph.


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Other readers questioned the practicality of limiting cycling speeds.

Username Isambard said: “20mph speed limit? Get real, how on earth would that be enforced?”

And username Slarti B said: “Cyclists are not obliged to have speedometers. How will they know how fast they are going?”

In addition to speed limits, Mr Shapps is looking to introduce mandatory third-party insurance for riders and a registration system.

This comes after he pledged to create a “death by dangerous cycling” law to ensure cyclists who kill pedestrians are treated the same as motorists.

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