The main streets of four South-West towns are to be converted to 40kmh under a McGowan Government trial to improve driver and pedestrian safety.
From the end of January, the speed limit on the South Western Highway will be lowered to 40kmh through Boyanup, Donnybrook, Balingup and Bridgetown.
The initiative follows meetings held last year by the Minister for Road Safety and local MP Mick Murray with local councils, to discuss the conflict between pedestrians and vehicles in these town centres.
The introduction of the lower speed zone along these sections of main street will help manage this risk.
The trial has been designed to help Main Roads develop an effective speed signing plan, using conventional speed signs, that will achieve the best driver compliance with a 40kmh speed limit in a town main street environment.
The trial will be overseen by a technical working group, chaired by Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray. The group will include representatives from local governments, Main Roads Western Australia and the Road Safety Commission.
The trial will commence by the end of January 2020 and be completed in May.
As stated by Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:
“These regional towns are accessed by an average of 6,000 vehicles per day. I’m pleased that pedestrian and road user safety will be improved with the introduction of this trial.
“We have allowed about three months to monitor road user reaction to the new speed limit and evaluate results of the trial.”
As stated by Road Safety Minister Michelle Roberts:
“This is an initiative the Member for Collie-Preston has championed and I’ve been very happy to support it.
“When Mick Murray and I visited these towns last year to discuss the proposal, the message was loud and clear.
“Nobody wants traffic travelling through these towns at speed.
“We want pedestrians, cyclists, children and the elderly to be safe in these beautiful towns.
“We know that dropping 10kmh off a speed limit makes a big difference to the stopping distance of a vehicle.
“This will not just add to road safety, but it will also improve community amenity.”
As stated by Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray:
“I’m very pleased to have reached the stage where we can announce this trial of lower speed limits through Boyanup, Donnybrook, Balingup and Bridgetown.
“Members of the community have contacted me countless times in recent years to raise concerns about the increased truck movements through their towns and to ask for the speed limit to be lowered.
“This is a great result which will make these South-West towns safer and has come about through different communities and councils presenting a unified front to reach a common goal.”