Penny Mordaunt criticises new speed restrictions in Wales
The Labour-run Welsh Government is facing fury over its new 20mph speed limit with more than 150,000 people signing a petition demanding it is scrapped.
The default speed limit for residential roads was dropped from 30mph to 20mph in a controversial move which came into force last Sunday.
But the Welsh Conservatives said the huge backing for the petition showed “people have already had enough”.
It is the highest number of signatories a petition on the Senedd website has ever received.
Welsh Tory leader Andrew RT Davies urged First Minister Mark Drakeford to U-turn on the policy.
READ MORE: Penny Mordaunt erupts at ‘absolutely insane’ new 20mph speed limit in Wales
Mr Davies said: “The new blanket 20mph speed limit has been in place for just 48 hours and people have already had enough of it.
“For more than 145,000 people to sign this petition shows how unpopular this blanket policy is in Wales.
“People are rightly frustrated with the lack of consultation and this petition highlights how Labour have dodged all public scrutiny in the build-up to the blanket 20mph rollout.
“Labour and Plaid Cymru have repeatedly ignored the Welsh public and are continuing to wage their anti-worker, anti-road and anti-motorist agenda.
“As signatures continue to rise, we can only hope that Labour finally listen to the Welsh people and U-turn on this disastrous rollout and scrap blanket 20mph speed limits here in Wales.”
The petition is set to be debated by the Welsh Parliament’s petitions committee.
The Welsh Government has said that cutting the speed limit would protect lives and save NHS resources.
It predicts the change would save up to 100 lives and 20,000 casualties in the first decade.
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But critics have pointed to the £33 cost to implement the scheme, while it is estimated to hit the Welsh economy by up to £9billion.
Lee Waters, deputy minister for climate change, said: “It’s simple – slower speeds save lives and helps create safer communities for those that live there.
“Evidence shows that a vehicle travelling at 30mph will still be travelling at 24mph in the time it would take a car travelling 20mph to stop.
“We know decisions like this can be unpopular and we know that change is never easy, but what’s one minute on your journey time if it saves a life and reduces a lifetime of human misery for families affected.”
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