Q594: What is the national speed limit?
The national speed limit varies depending on the type of road you are on and the category of vehicle you are driving. The national speed limit is depicted by a white circular sign with a black stripe diagonally across it from right to left.
- If you are on a dual carriageway and driving a car or motorcycle the national limit is 70 mph.
- If you are on a single carriageway and driving a car or motorcycle the national speed limit is 60mph.
The national speed limits for goods vehicles, such as non car based vans, and also for vehicles with more than 8 passenger seats are 10mph less than the limits mentioned above.
The speed limit is the absolute maximum and does not mean it is safe to drive at that speed irrespective of conditions. Driving at speeds too fast for the road and traffic conditions is dangerous. You should always reduce your speed when:
- the road layout or condition presents hazards, such as bends
- sharing the road with pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders, particularly children, and motorcyclists
- weather conditions make it safer to do so
- driving at night as it is more difficult to see other road users.