Watch the recording: Toolkit for Safe Speed Limit Setting - New Flexibility Under California State Law

February 21, 2024

Want to implement lower speed limits in your community? Watch the conversation with SafeTREC, Caltrans, and Rock Miller, PE to learn how to get started!

Two construction workers install a 25 MPH speed limit sign on the sign of the road.

Two recently passed state laws (AB 43 and AB 1938) allow local jurisdictions to lower speed limits on locally-controlled streets to better account for safety concerns and surrounding land uses. This includes setting speed limits at 20 mph in business activity districts and allowing speed limits to be reduced below the 85th percentile speed to account for high levels of injury collisions or high volumes of pedestrians and/or bicyclists.

Is your city interested in implementing lower speed limits on specific corridors that meet these criteria but isn’t sure where to start?

In collaboration with Caltrans, UC Berkeley’s SafeTREC and Rock Miller, PE hosted a training webinar "Toolkit for Safe Speed Limit Setting: New Flexibility Under California State Law" on January 18, 2024 to help get you started. Topics covered included the relationship between speed and safety, current allowances for speed limit reductions under California state law, and tips to help your jurisdiction move forward with setting safer speed limits. Watch the recording for the webinar now!

The Role of Speeding in Traffic Safety

In 2021, 35 percent (or 1509) of all motor vehicle fatalities in California were speeding-related. Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to steer safely around curves or objects, reduces the amount of time a driver has to react to a dangerous situation, and extends safe stopping distances. Additionally, the higher the impact speed of a crash, the greater the risk of serious injury or death to those involved. Lower vehicle speeds are especially important for protecting vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians and bicyclists.

Setting safe speed limits, designing streets to limit the impact of speeding-related crashes, and protecting people even when they make unsafe decisions is part of the Safe Speeds, Safe Roads, and Safe Road Users elements of the Safe System Approach. To learn more about speed-related crash trends, visit SafeTREC’s 2023 SafeTREC Traffic Safety Facts page