To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how he intends to implement the provisions of the recently agreed EC directive requiring the fitment of speed limiters to heavy goods vehicles and passenger-carrying vehicles.
The United Kingdom has been ahead of the EC in recognising the road safety and environmental benefits associated with speed limiters. It has been a requirement to fit speed limiters on new coaches since April 1989; and new goods vehicles over 7·5 tonnes maximum weight will have to have limiters fitted from 1 August 1992. In addition, domestic regulations already require existing coaches registered since April 1974 to have speed limiters fitted.We consulted last year on a proposal to require speed limiters to be fitted to certain types of existing heavy goods vehicles over 16 tonnes, and regulations to implement that initiative will be made shortly. We shall also be introducing regulations requiring that limiters must be secured against tampering only by officially approved centres.Domestic regulations will need to be amended in due course to accommodate the additional requirements in the EC directive which will effectively limit the maximum speed of the coaches concerned to 65 mph, and the maximum speed of the heavy goods vehicles concerned to 56 mph. The regulations on existing heavy vehicles and coaches will also have to be extended to accommodate the slightly wider requirements of the EC directive. These amendments, which will ensure that domestic legislation satisfies all the EC requirements, will not need to be implemented until 1994 at the earliest.