Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Bristol mayor who fronted 20mph scheme is caught speeding

George Ferguson, the mayor of Bristol who spearheaded a £2.3m project to implement 20mph zones across his city has been caught speeding doing 35mph in a 30mph zone

Ferguson, who usually drives an electric-powered car or rides a bicycle, was behind the wheel of a Bristol city council fleet car at the time. He was clocked speeding on the A4 Portway road by Avon and Somerset police.

In a statement issued through the council, Ferguson described the offence as an inexcusable mistake and said he would be paying the £100 penalty charge.

“I am shocked to have just discovered I exceeded the speed limit on the Portway last month ... on one of the rare occasions when I have had to use a council fleet car.

“It serves as a sharp warning to me and goes to show that I am no exception to the rule. I am only too aware of the dangers of exceeding speed limits and commend the Avon and Somerset police for their vigilance.

“I have blemished an otherwise clean licence and shall be paying the penalty charge willingly from my own pocket.”

Ferguson became Bristol’s first directly elected major in 2012 and is an advocate of a 20mph pilot scheme run by the council.

The council voted in July 2012 to bring in the 20mph speed limit throughout Bristol in a six-phase scheme costing £2.3m. All roads except dual carriageways, 40mph and 50mph roads are considered for the 20mph speed limit, which applies to all motorised vehicles on the road.

Speaking at the time of the rollout, Ferguson said: “The new speed limit is part of a number of measures that we are introducing that will help to promote road safety, improve traffic flow, support sustainable transport and active travel and help to make Bristol a more positive place to live and work.

“We realise that the change in speed limit will take a little getting used to but I know from my own experience how little impact the reduction in speed will have on journey times.”

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