201611.22
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20mph Zones Introduced in the NorthWest

Almost 16 months ago Southport councillors voted through plans to install several 20mph zones. Southport traffic has increased since 2012. Yet public data recently revealed that road traffic accidents have decreased during 2016. 

The areas that had new Southport traffic control zones introduced include Ainsdale Village, Fleetwood Road area, Avondale Road, and Heathfield Road.

The original campaign introduced more than 2 years ago to bring about changes in the traffic speed was a controversial one. The debates discussed included disagreement over the cost of the installations. Conservative councillors were against the plans, calling them a ‘waste’ while many others argued that the proposal was about saving lives, not saving money.

The public data released came from Merseyside Police and North West Ambulance Service. The number of incidents attended by paramedics decreased by 10%. There was also a corresponding decrease in the number of road traffic accidents.* Surely that is a good thing for Southport traffic?

These kinds of local authority debates are typical up and down the entire country. The debate throws up all kids of disagreements about where to spend public money. In the case of Southport many disagreed about the 20mph zones and the corresponding costs to motorists. It is still argued that the money should have been spent on NHS services, schools, and housing for the poor. Preston and Blackburn councils and further south in Birmingham and London, face the same dilemma. Yet it remains that motorists will seemingly foot the bill. Perhaps they will continue to do so, as long as the Southport traffic zones exist.

It seems that morality must always win the argument, that saving one life is worth the extra costs. Local authorities need to be prudent and careful where they spend public finances.

Especially now that winter and frosts and potential snows approach, a life saved will be worth it.

*southportvisitor.co.uk