Slowdown will save lives
THE next time you head to the city centre you may think the whole world is travelling a little slower, and you could well be right.
Starting Thursday, the CBD will take on a more relaxed feel as 40km/h speed zones come into force.
Coffs Harbour City Council voted last May to improve safety for pedestrians, motorists and cyclists by dropping the road speed limits.
Cr Bill Palmer said the changes are the final stage of the City Centre Strategic Plan which began with the opening of Harbour Drive to traffic.
"Part of that Strategic Plan was to provide traffic calming measures for all local streets within the city centre," Cr Palmer said.
The council road and safety officer, Anne Shearer, said vehicle speed was still a major factor in pedestrian injuries and fatalities.
"Lower speed limits will result in fewer serious injuries to pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users," Ms Shearer said.
"Research carried out by the Roads and Traffic Authority shows that a pedestrian was twice as likely to be killed by a car travelling at 50km/h than a car travelling at 40km/h."
As with any change in speed limits, the police will allow seven days grace for drivers to become accustomed to the new speed zones.
Council has also resolved to change the 60km/h speed zones on Orlando Street and Harbour Drive to 50km/h. These changes will be implemented in the coming weeks.