Tayside and Central Scotland

50mph lorry speed limit on A9 single carriageway agreed

Lorry Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The increased speed limit is aimed at improving safety and reducing driver frustration

Legislation raising the speed limit for lorries on single carriageway stretches of the A9 between Perth and Inverness has been signed.

The new 50mph speed limit will come into force alongside average speed camera systems on 28 October.

The move is aimed at improving safety and reducing driver frustration on the trunk road.

The Scottish government has committed to converting the full length of the A9 to a dual carriageway.

Currently the speed limit for lorries on single carriageway stretches of the road is 40mph.

Transport minister Keith Brown said the pilot project would help "improve the operational performance of the A9 and enhance safety".

He said: "We want to see reliable and competitive journey times for all road users, including the freight haulage industry.

"Simply raising the speed limits for HGVs could have a detrimental effect, but the use of average speed cameras as part of the pilot helps support the wider changes we are making to promote an overall improvement in driving conditions."

'Sheer frustration'

Richard Burnett, chief executive of the Road Haulage Association, said many A9 accidents were caused by "no more than sheer motorist frustration when getting stuck behind a slow moving heavy goods vehicle".

He added: "It makes sense that a 10mph reduction in the speed differential between cars and HGVs will mean a corresponding reduction in frustration and accidents.

"In addition to improved efficiency, as most modern trucks do not get into top gear at 40mph, there are potential safety benefits. This really is a win-win situation for all users of one Scotland's major arterial routes."

From spring 2015, the maximum speed for HGVs on single-carriageway roads in England and Wales will be raised to 50mph.

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