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Report of plans to increase speed limit is dismissed as 'speculation'

Reports that the speed limit will be raised to 80mph on motorways to shorten journeys and help boost the economy were described as “speculation” by the Department for Transport.

A review of road safety is expected to conclude that the increase from the current 70mph limit should be made official, according to a newspaper report.

The source said there was “broad agreement” within the coalition Government and civil servants over the issue, with the only question being the timing of the announcement.

A likely condition would be that an 80mph limit would be more strictly enforced, to prevent the usual speed rising to 90mph, the newspaper said. There would also be more 20mph zones in residential areas.

A Department for Transport spokesman described the reports as “speculation”.

He said: “Any proposal to change national speed limits would be subject to full public consultation.”

Julie Townsend, of road safety charity Brake, said: “It would be highly immoral to raise motorway speed limits when research indicates it would lead to more deaths and injuries.”

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