110km/h speed limit reinstated on Newell Highway

NSW Government reinstates 110km/h speed limit on the Newell Highway, which was lowered in 2009 to address safety concerns

July 20, 2011

Motorists travelling on the Newell Highway will be free to drive up to 110km/h from July 31 after the NSW Government revoked the 100km/h speed limit.

Roads Minister Duncan Gay has overturned a decision by the previous government in 2009 to reduce the speed limit on the basis of road safety.

NRMA Director Graham Blight says the decision is good news for motorists using the route, which stretches more than 1,000km from the Victorian border to the Queensland border.

"By reinstating the 110km/h speed limit along most of the highway we believe it will help ease traffic flow and eliminate dangerous driving practices on the Newell," he says.

"Passenger vehicles will now be able to overtake heavy vehicles safely and legally again as they will now be able to do an extra 10km/h where the new speed limit applies."

The Roads and Traffic Authority has issued a notice reminding travellers the 110km/h speed limit applies to light vehicles only.

"Speed limits for heavy vehicles, buses and coaches, and other special purpose vehicles on the Newell Highway remain unchanged," it says.

The RTA says the length of road from Tooraweenah to north of Coonabarabran will remain at 100km/h.

"In addition several shorter lengths have been identified to remain 100 km/h. These will be clearly signposted. The current speed limits in townships also remain unchanged," it says.

In 2009, the Director of the NSW Centre for Road Safety, Soames Job, said the risk of a fatal crash was about 50 percent higher on roads with 110km/h speed limits compared to roads limited to 100km/h. He says research shows reducing speed limits cuts the number of crashes.

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