Written Answers. - Speed Limits.

Mervyn Taylor

Ceist:

94 Mr. Taylor asked the Minister for the Environment when it is intended to implement the provisions of the EC Directive requiring the fitting of speed limiters to passenger-carrying vehicles and heavy goods vehicles; if he will outline what the maximum speeds will be when the directive has been implemented, and if he will make a statement on the matter.

EC Council Directive 92/6/EEC of 10 February 1992 requires the fitting of speed limiters to heavy goods vehicles over 12 metric tonnes laden, and to buses over 10 metric tonnes laden, which were first registered on or after 1 January 1988. Regulations to give effect to the directive must be made by 1 October 1993.

The Regulations will apply as follows: (a) from 1 January 1994, to relevant new vehicles; (b) from 1 January 1995, to vehicles registered between 1 January 1988 and 1 January 1994 and used for international journeys; and (c) from 1 January 1996, in the case of vehicles registered between 1 January 1988 and 1 January 1994 and engaged in national transport operations.

The mandatory speed limiters will effectively prevent relevant buses from travelling at more than 105 km/h (65.625 mph); and relevant heavy goods vehicles from travelling at more than 90 km/h (56.25 mph).

Directive 92/6/EEC does not fix speed limits for buses or heavy goods vehicles. The maximum speeds at which vehicles fitted with speed limiters can travel are higher than speed limits in some member states and lower for others.