Ontario’s Transportation Minister has announced consultation on several options for changes to Ontario’s default speed for built-up areas, including a reduction of the default speed limit from 50km/h to 40km/h.
Local and international research continues to affirm that the safety of all road users is improved when vehicle speed is reduced below 50km/h. The World Health Organization summarizes the relationship between speed and road safety, emphasizing the relationship between the speed of an impact, and the fatality risk for a pedestrian struck by a car. More recently, the Chief Coroner for Ontario in itsPedestrian Death Review, recommended that speed limits be reduced to 30km/h in residential neighbourhoods, and to 40km/h on other streets. Toronto Public Health’sRoad to Health: Improving Walking and Cycling in Toronto acknowledges the success other cities have found in reducing vehicle speeds, as a way to make active transportation safer throughout Toronto.
The Province will consult with municipalities on the proposal this spring. To provide your input, complete the Ministry of Transportation’s online survey by February 27, 2015.