Road safety and breakdown specialists GEM Motoring Assist is warning drivers against speeding during the lockdown, despite the roads being empty. The plea comes after news broke of speeding driver was running away from coronavirus.

GEM is reminding motorists that despite the hugely reduced traffic on UK roads, speed limits continue to apply, and that breaking them continues to carry increased unnecessary risk. For example, in London alone eight people have died and many others have been seriously injured in road collisions, with speeding being the most frequently-cited factor.

"Restrictions on movement in the past three weeks have led to sharp drops in vehicle use," said GEM road safety officer Neil Worth. "But police chiefs across the country have been sharing examples of shocking behaviour by drivers who appear to be using the quieter roads as an opportunity to flout the speed limits.

"Speeding increases the risk of a collision which could lead to a serious injury or even a fatality. In today’s climate that puts unnecessary pressure on the NHS and could potentially deprive a desperate COVID-19 patient of vital medical care.

Speed camera sign on busy city road

"We can help reduce this pressure if we are on essential journeys in the coming days and weeks - by respecting all speed limits, by challenging others who don’t see speeding as a problem and by treating all speeding as socially unacceptable."

GEM’s top tips for slowing down

  • Don’t rush on a journey. Leave earlier and ensure you have plenty of time, with no reason to speed.
  • Keep a close eye out for speed limit signs, and watch for clues that the speed limit may soon be about to change.
  • Scan the speedometer frequently so you always know your own speed.
  • Always ask yourself: is my speed both legal and safe? After all, the speed limit is just that – a limit, not a target, and there will be circumstances when you will feel much safer driving below the limit.