Waverley goes 40km/h to achieve ‘Vision Zero’

12 November 2019

Waverley goes 40km/h to achieve ‘Vision Zero’

Waverley Council has approved plans for Stage 1 of its project to reduce traffic speeds from 50km/h to 40km/h as it moves toward ‘Vision Zero’, with zero road fatalities and minimal serious injuries across the local government area.

All local roads within Waverley will eventually be 40km/h. The project has been broken up into stages. Stage 1 spans from Bondi Road and Syd Einfield Drive to the southern boundary of the Local Government Area (LGA).

Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Paula Masselos said community awareness campaigns would be conducted from November to January 2020, with the installation of traffic calming devices from March 2020 to January 2021. The enforcement of 40km/h speed zones will then commence on all roads except Carrington Road, Council Street and Bondi Road (State Roads) within the project area.

Safety is Council’s top priority,” Mayor Masselos said. “Calmer traffic will help create a safer community.”

“Children and senior populations are growing in Waverley. We need to provide safer roads for everyone around the local area.”

The introduction of a 50km/h default urban speed limit within Australia from 60km/h resulted in a 23 per cent reduction in casualty crashes, with public support for speed changes increasing significantly after the introduction of the lower speed limit.

The widespread introduction of 40km/h school zones resulted in a further 24 per cent reduction in pedestrian and bicycle crashes surrounding school areas.

Independent analysis shows Waverley’s high population density, along with the number of pedestrian activities around village centres and schools, will benefit from reducing speed zones and implementing traffic calming treatments such as road humps, pedestrian crossings, refuge islands and median strips.

Waverley has lots of high pedestrian activity areas and schools (eight secondary schools and eight primary schools totalling 16 schools) within just 9 square kilometres.

Registration of SUVs is growing by 7 per cent a year in Waverley LGA, posing a much larger fatality risk to pedestrians than smaller cars. SUVs and trucks currently make up 32 per cent of registered vehicles in Waverley LGA.

“Even good drivers make mistakes and many crashes involve two or more parties,” Mayor Masselos said.

“By slowing everyone down just a little, may mean you are able to avoid a driver who isn’t paying attention to the road or a child that hasn’t looked before running out onto the streets.”

There is no evidence of increased road rage incidents in areas designated by either 40 km/h or 50 km/h speed limits. Delays to drivers are generally caused at intersections, from congestion and from finding a car park.

“We always recommend to residents who are concerned with this to try the difference before the 40 km/h speed limit is brought in and see the change in driving time,” Mayor Masselos said.

“I want to make it clear to the community that this is a road safety measure.

“Council does not enforce speed limits, nor does it earn any revenue from any NSW Police enforcement of the road rules.”

For more, visit https://www.waverley.nsw.gov.au/changestospeedlimit

Media inquiries: media@waverley.nsw.gov.au or 0416 075 532.