Dash cam near miss highlights importance of 20mph school limits

This article was published on: 10/18/16

A dash cam video showing a very chilling near miss has highlighted the importance of obeying speed limits in pedestrian heavy areas, particularly surrounding schools.

Hazard perception

With cars able to severely damage and kill children, it is essential car owners stay alert near schools and check their speed.

The close call (video below) outside a school in Wales recently demonstrates how a driver obeying speed limits and continually monitoring hazards has the ability to save lives and prevent damage to children.

In the video we see a child streak across the road without paying attention to traffic, after which the driver is able to see the child, hit the brakes for an emergency stop and ensure nobody is hurt. The child’s mother while initially horrified seems very relieved and thankful of the diligence from the driver.

A driver less concerned with hazard perception, could have run the risk of breaking too late or not at all, which could drastically change the outcome. Thankfully for the young boy and his mother, however, the video can only serve as a reminder that hazard perception really does make a difference.

School speed limits

Around most schools there are usually plenty of deterrents to remind drivers to take care from having “SLOW” and “SCHOOL” painted onto the floor to having red lines, speed cameras and dynamic speed limit signs running during school hours. These deterrents are in the interest of safety for all and usually ensure the driver has plenty of warning that children may be a hazard to look out for.

Around most schools, you will also often see a limit of 20mph. This speed limit ensures that a driver has a larger field of vision and more time to react if a pedestrian was to enter the road unexpectedly. At 30mph the ability to process the edges of the road becomes harder, with hazards not so easy to spot.

Statistics indicate that speed has a huge effect on the chances of causing a death when hitting a pedestrian in a car, stating:

If someone is hit by a car at 40 mph they are 90% likely to be killed.

If someone is hit by a car at 30 mph they are 50% likely to be killed.

If someone is hit by a car at 20 mph they are 10% likely to be killed.

Speed limits are set to give drivers the time required to react to unexpected changes during the journey. On a duel carriageway in a non residential area, speed limits can be 40/50 or 60mph due to less chance of external obstacles appearing. Adversely, around schools there are usually many parents and small children, sometimes heading onto the road unpredictably.

What happens after a collision?

What happens following a collision often depends on the circumstances. As a driver, you must ensure you pay attention and take all necessary precautions. If you are driving near a school or around a built up area with parked cars, it is worth slowing to a few miles per hour under the speed limit to make sure you have the best possible chance of avoiding hitting anybody.

As a pedestrian, it is important to only cross a road where it is clear and also do so only when it is safe. A good rule of thumb is to only cross when you have enough time to walk the entire way across without altering walking speed. Simply being struck by a car does not give the driver liability. Stepping or running out into a road without warning when there is not enough room for a driver to react is likely to see the driver absolved from blame.

However, if you are injured as a pedestrian, by an erratic driver, whether the motorist is speeding or has even mounted the pavement, then you could be entitled to seek compensation for your injuries. Likewise as a driver, any other motorists who drive recklessly around you, for example hitting the rear of your car by travelling too close and not paying attention, you are also able to claim.

We have been helping motorists and pedestrians involved in accidents claim compensation for their injuries for over 26 years. We specialise in personal injury cases and offer the very best advice in planning aftercare following an injury.

We offer a ‘no win no fee’ service ensuring you won’t pay a penny if you claim is unsuccessful. If you’d like to talk to one of our experts you can get free, impartial, conscientious advice by calling 01695 722 222 (lines are open weekdays from 9am to 7pm).

Alternatively you can begin a claim straight away online using our make a claim form. One of our team can assess your circumstances and give you a call at your convenience to get you started after filling it in. With no risk in starting a claim, get in touch today to see if we can help you.

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