The government has confirmed it has no plans to reduce the national speed limit to 50mph.
It had been claimed that the government was planning a blanket reduction of the national speed limit on single track roads from 60mph to 50mph, but it has denied that this will be the case.
Instead it plans to look at the speed limit on individual roads on a case by case basis.
More than 45,000 signatures have been obtained on a petition called ‘No NSL reduction’ set up on the Number 10 website.
It said: “Following the announcement that the government is planning to reduce the national speed limit to 50 miles per hour, we the undersigned oppose this, since it will make no difference to road deaths and the cut in carbon emissions is so insignificantly small it’s laughable.”
In a statement responding to the petition, the government said “it is not proposing to reduce the national speed limit”.
It continued: “On 21 April the government published a consultation on the new road safety strategy: A Safer Way: Consultation on Making Britain’s roads the Safest in the World, which closed on 14 July. It sought views on the vision, targets and measures for improving road safety in Great Britain in the period from 2010.
“Regarding single carriageway roads where the national speed limit applies, the government propose to revise our existing guidance to highway authorities, recommending that lower limits are adopted where risks are relatively high and there is evidence that a lower limit would reduce casualties.
“The government believes that this targeted approach is the best way to ensure that speed limits are set at the appropriate level for each road.