Improving Safety on Our City Streets

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Councilmember O’Brien and I announced the next step in achieving Vision Zero—zero fatalities and serious injuries on Seattle streets and sidewalks by 2030.

Speed kills. And that’s why we will introduce legislation that reduces default speed limit on unsigned city arterials from 30 MPH to 25 MPH and on non-arterial residential streets from 25 MPH to 20 MPH.

Speed kills. Each year there are approximately 10,000 collisions on our streets and sidewalks, resulting in an average of 150 serious injuries and 20 deaths. Speed is the key factor between no injury, minor injury, serious injury or death.

If our legislation is adopted by the Council, these speed limit changes will take effect immediately on Center City arterials and on all residential streets citywide.

These changes in our speed limits are consistent with Washington law and the recommendations of the Federal Highway Administration. It’s important also to note that with these changes Seattle will have speed limits consistent with every other city in King County. This uniformity is a good thing.

Lowering speed limits is one of the best ways to improve safety in our neighborhoods; it’s a smart step for our children, for our senior citizens, for everyone who uses our streets and sidewalks.

This legislation will be discussed in the Transportation committee on Tuesday, September 20th.