Leader comment: Don’t measure Edinburgh’s 20mph limit by number of fines

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The controversial issue of Edinburgh’s 20mph zones is back in the headlines today.

Concern has been expressed that with just two fines a week handed out, the enforcing - or not as the case may be - of the lower speed is rather pointless.

We would disagree.

While we remain unconvinced by the blanket 20mph across the city, the success or otherwise is not measured by the number of motorists fined.

If you are a driver in Edinburgh then you will know anecdotally that few people stick to 20mph anywhere. However, it does appear to be the case - anecdotally again - that fewer people than before are driving over 30mph.

Perhaps this was actually the intention all along.

We would support police in the sensible policing of the 20mph zone, tackling the reckless and dangerous drivers rather than those who accidentally creep above the limit.

Whether the 20mph zone has been worthwhile remains to be seen and we await a full appraisal from the City Chambers measuring its impact on overall speeds, accidents, and congestion. But let’s not use the number of speeding tickets as any kind of yard stick to either praise or beat the council.