EU: Speed limiters to be implemented from 2022
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On July 6, it became compulsory for speed limiters to be fitted to all new vehicles manufactured in the European Union. The systems use Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) technology to warn drivers to slow down if they go over speed limits, using GPS data and traffic cameras.
If motorists fail to reduce their speed, the system can reduce engine power to slow the vehicle down.
The EU hopes the ISA system will cut motoring deaths across Europe by up to 30 percent, with the hope of having zero road casualties by 2050.
Further law changes will be introduced in July 2024, where all new cars that have already launched are required to have ISA technology built-in.
In a statement to Express.co.uk, a Department for Transport spokesperson said the package of European measures known as the General Safety Regulation will not come into effect from July in Great Britain.
It added that no decision had yet been taken on which elements on the package will be implemented in Great Britain.
It is expected that the law will eventually be introduced in the UK, as most motoring rules have been adopted despite Brexit.
Graham Conway, managing director of Select Car Leasing, suspects it will take years for ISA systems to be fitted to every vehicle on the road.
He said: “Currently, there are around 2,000 deaths from car accidents per year in the UK, and this new law will hopefully see a significant decline in those figures.
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“The changes could help save more than 25,000 lives and avoid at least 140,000 serious injuries by 2038. We welcome anything that improves the safety of road users.
“However, speed limiter technology shouldn’t be the only thing road users rely on to maintain a safe speed.
“It’s vital to still pay attention to their surroundings and drive according to the conditions, and don’t simply rely on a speed limiter to keep yourself, and other road users, safe.”
There have been some criticisms of the speed limiting technology, including fears that drivers would not be able to override the technology in the event of an emergency.
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In its current form, drivers can turn the ISA technology off, although it will be activated as standard every time the car turns on.
Jonathan White, Legal and Compliance Director at National Accident Helpline, said: “The technology is designed to warn drivers when they are approaching the speed limit.
“If the driver doesn’t slow down, the speed limiter reduces the engine’s power and the vehicle’s speed.
“According to Brake, excess speed is a contributory factor in one in three fatal road crashes, so the introduction of speed limiters should not only improve road safety, but also lead to less fatalities on the roads.
“With this in mind, we hope the introduction of speed limiters will help to reduce road accident casualty figures in the years ahead.
“It’s important to note that if drivers of cars fitted with speed limiters are involved in a road accident that wasn’t their fault, and there is evidence that they have exceeded the speed limit, they may not be successful in making a claim or could see their compensation reduced.
“We encourage all drivers to pay attention to the roads, stick to the speed limit, and drive safely.”
The National Accident Helpline helped more than 1,000 pedestrians and 877 cyclists make a claim last year after being hurt in a road traffic accident.
In many of these cases, excessive vehicle speed was a key factor.
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