News from Brake
Thursday 12 March 2020
The Transport Secretary has today set out his Department’s plan for improving the safety of smart motorways following a stocktake of the evidence around their safety.
A package of 18 measures to address areas of concern that were identified during the stocktake has been announced including:
- abolishing the “dynamic hard shoulder” smart motorways, where the hard shoulder operates only part-time and is a live running lane the rest of the time,
- speeding up the deployment of “stopped vehicle detection” technology across the entire “all lane running” smart motorway network,
- And, reducing the distance between places to stop in an emergency to three quarters of a mile where feasible.
Commenting, Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for road safety charity Brake, said: “Safety must always be the priority when it comes to our roads and so we cautiously welcome today’s announcement on smart motorways. The new measures will go some way to addressing the safety concerns of those using smart motorways and should be implemented as a matter of urgency. We will continue to press the Government to ensure that the safety of smart motorways remains under constant review and that all steps are taken to reduce risk and provide confidence and assurance to the public.”
Notes to editors:
Full announcement by the Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP, Secretary of State for Transport: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/strategic-roads-update-smart-motorways-evidence-stocktake