Should Speed Limits on Jersey’s Green Lanes be Increased to 20mph?

15mph Speed LimitI was listening to the Lunchtime Phone-In, hosted by Chris Stone, on BBC Jersey earlier this afternoon. There was a strong emphasis on the speed limits applied on Jersey’s green lanes. If you’re not too sure what a green lane is, Wikipedia has the answer…

In Jersey, a Green Lane is a road designated as priority for pedestrians, cyclists and horse-riders to which a 15mph speed limit applies. The first Green Lanes were introduced in St Peter in 1994. All parishes, except St Saviour and Trinity have since joined the Green Lane network, but since St Saviour and Trinity adjoin across the Island the Green Lanes in the West and in the East do not link up.

Quoted from Wikipedia – Green lane

The local authorities on Jersey want to increase the speed limit to 20mph, due to the fact that many people ignored it, and it was hard to police a 15mph speed limit. However, it seems that many callers were not happy about this!

Mac Pollard, creater of the concept for Jersey’s green lanes called in, and said that it took him and his team 18 months to research the pros and cons properly, before adding that it could be dangerous for large groups of people walking in the area. Mac argued that, if the speed limits were hard to police because people drive faster than 15, an increase would mean “they’ll be doing more than 20”.

One listener, Julie, phoned in to say that she was very disappointed about the proposals to increase the speed limit. She said that whilst the majority of drivers respect the green lane zones, there are a few who see them as a shortcut, to get away from the main roads. The caller asked drivers to have common sense and “act accordingly” whilst driving on roads where you’re not always aware of what’s around the corner.

I just wish people would consider that it is the regular ones who speed. They know, or think they know, what’s comming round the corner; they think they know “I’ve been going down these green lanes for 10 years now – there’s not going to be anyone walking in the middle of the road with a dog – I can carry on going fast”, and I’ve seen it time and time again. The regular ones, most of them go respectfully at 15, maybe 20, miles an hour – probably the majority would go 20.

Listen to the Full Interview
(about 35 minutes in)

An important point was raised during Julie’s phone call, is that if people choose to drive on Jersey’s green lanes, they should at least know the speed limit and respect it.

I’m not from, and never have been to Jersey, so I’m not very familiar with their green lane system (which differs from that of England & Wales); however its a debate I found quite interesting. I think it highlights that people do need to stick to speed limits, as there are often very important reasons why they are in place. In the case of Jersey’s green lanes, its because a green lane is designated as priority for pedestrians, cyclists and horse-riders.

Want to find more info about Jersey’s green lanes? There’s an excellent page on the ‘That was Jersey’ website.

The image used was created by Flickr member, Richardmasoner, and has been used under a Creative Commons license.

In Jersey, a Green Lane is a road designated as priority for pedestrians, cyclists and horse-riders to which a 15mph speed limit applies. The first Green Lanes were introduced in St Peter in 1994. All parishes, except St Saviour and Trinity have since joined the Green Lane network, but since St Saviour and Trinity adjoin across the Island the Green Lanes in the West and in the East do not link up.

Fred Hart

Stock Controller and Radio Presenter/Producer

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