CONFUSION and frustration reigns over the 20mph speed limit as it’s revealed that in fact, January 8, official enforcement of the new law begins.

It comes as MS Lee Waters originally said the grace period for enforcement would end in December.

However, GoSafe, the lead enforcement agency for 20mph, have hit back at claims December was in fact the month enforcement of 20mphs began.  

On top of that, in a press conference, also held on January 8, Mark Drakeford suggested drivers will not be fined for breaching the new default 20mph speed limit in Wales if they were “genuinely confused”.

GoSafe say they are aware there was press and social media speculation over the weekend about widespread 20mph enforcement beginning December 17, 2023, however they urged the public to use official sources only for information.

So, will you get fined if you go over 20mph from now?

Well… Outgoing First Minister Drakeford said those who “deliberately” break the law will face consequences, but police will not jump straight to enforcement if people have simply “misunderstood”.

GoSafe have summarised their “current position” on enforcement of 20mph, saying: “In 30mph areas that changed to 20mph on September 17, 2023, GoSafe have the continued support of ‘chief officers’ to allow the public time to get used to the change in limits.

“GoSafe and Welsh police will continue to use an engagement focused approach to 20mph.

“These sessions will continue throughout 2024 and, from January 8, dedicated teams will be working under GoSafe to deliver them under the name ‘Operation Ugain.”

  • Watch the video of Mark Drakeford's press conference, below

The process at which 20mph enforcement has been delivered has caused derision both in public and political circles.

One member of the public commented on Facebook: “It’s a joke at 11pm on a quiet night to be trodding along at 20 when we could drive perfectly safe at 30 or 40.”

Another commented, “Speed cameras will be making money off already over-taxed hard-working people.”

Wales Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies said: “Labour and Plaid's blanket 20mph speed limits will criminalise drivers and use up vital police sources. This extreme policy must be scrapped".

Conservative MP for the Vale of Glamorgan Alun Cairns said: “The introduction of a blanket 20mph policy has been disastrous. The latest move has created even more confusion.”

Lee Water, the MS behind the introduction of the 20mph speed limit, tried to clear up confusion by posting on X, formally Twitter: “The next phase of the 20mph limit introduction is beginning.

“It will be an 'education led' approach - there’s no incentive for us to fine because the money won’t stay in Wales.”

Barry And District News: Around a third of Wales roads are now 20mphAround a third of Wales roads are now 20mph (Image: LDRS)

A Welsh Government spokesperson summed it all up by saying: “There was an initial bedding-in period to give people time to adapt to the change.

“At the start of November, GoSafe restarted enforcing the speed limit in areas where 20mph had been in place before September.

“From January 2024, Go Safe will begin enforcing the new default 20mph speed limit as it rolls out Operation Ugain across Wales.”