News in brief

According to Ilta-Sanomat, the Finnish government intends to implement new road safety guidelines, which include extending 30 km/hr speed limits in densely populated urban areas across the country.  

The tabloid reports that the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency has been tasked with issuing a report examining whether speed limits in built-up areas and highways comply with current guidelines. 

The government also plans to update the principles that define how speed limits are set in the country, and will assess the effectiveness of the Swedish and Norwegian models, which maintain separate lanes for speed limits above 80 km/hr.  In practice, this would mean constructing structures such as dividers to prevent collisions. 

As per Ilta-Sanomat, the initial draft outlining the government’s new road safety strategy states that the primary motive behind increasing the number of built-up areas with a 30 km/hr speed limit is to reduce road accidents.

However, the new guidelines would also help the government achieve its objectives of increasing sustainability. The updated restrictions would compel cars to approach the speed of cycles and public transport, thereby encouraging commuters to adopt greener modes of transport.

Finland currently has one of the lowest traffic fatality rates in the world. Recent figures from the European commission indicate that it has the fifth lowest traffic-related death rate in Europe as of 2020.