Thursday, July 25, 2024

Driving law changes launching within weeks will see EU speed limiters installed in all new cars

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Major new vehicle technologies are set to be launched within weeks that could impact millions of drivers and see road safety boosted and the number of accidents cut significantly.

The European Union has mandated that motor vehicles of categories M and N (passenger and goods-carrying vehicles) be equipped with intelligent speed assistance (ISA) systems.


From July 6, 2022, the rules applied for new vehicle types, while all new vehicles will need ISA technology within a matter of weeks from July 7, 2024.

The new rules are being introduced to address road safety issues, with speeding being described as a “major threat to safety on the road”.

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The car will provide feedback to the driver if they exceed the speed limit

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The new technology will apply to new cars in the European Union and Northern Ireland, although that does not include England, Scotland and Wales.

Intelligent speed assistance (ISA) systems work by alerting drivers that they are going over the speed limit either via an audio prompt, haptic feedback or a visual signal on the dashboard.

A haptic feedback system will rely on the pedal restoring force meaning the driver’s foot will be gently pushed back when speeding, although this can be overridden by the driver.

The Department for Transport has commissioned research to look at the benefits and implications of intelligent speed assistance in Great Britain.

It is expected that a decision will be made in due course, with the research set to form the basis for any potential law changes.

Any decision to mandate some or all these new technologies will require consultation and legislation to amend the GB-type approval scheme.

The European Union estimates that the ISA technology will reduce accidents by 30 per cent and road deaths by 20 per cent.

As part of the Conservative Plan for Drivers, the party have focused on improving road safety, having invested around £100million to improve the top 50 most high-risk roads in England.

Across the 83 safety schemes currently in place, the investment could prevent around 2,210 fatal and serious injuries over the next 20 years.

While no political parties have committed to introducing the ISA systems, there could be an appetite for such measures to be rolled out once the General Election campaigns have concluded.

Despite leaving the European Union, the DfT remains a member of the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) which already incentivises many of the technologies called up in the General Safety Regulation.

Many EU laws dealing with vehicle technologies and other road safety measures have been adopted in the UK to ensure there is consistency across the continent for drivers.

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Audio and visual signals will alert drivers when they are exceeding the speed limit

PA

This is critical when importing and exporting vehicles between the UK and EU as it avoids any difficult issues with meeting different regulations.

Following an EU consultation, it was found that the ISA technology was “generally supported” by the EU member states and key stakeholders.

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