Revised speed limit bye-laws for Kerry have been agreed for the first time in more than a decade.
Several sections of the Ring of Kerry are to see speed limits fall from 100kms to 60kms per hour in places, and the maximum speed approaching all national schools on all routes, will be 50km, a meeting of Kerry County Council has decided.
Dozens of roads will be subject to changes in speed limits under the new bye-laws due to come into effect in four months.
Submissions on the need to revise sections of the Ring of Kerry centred on safety and included concern about the narrowness of the carriageway of the N70, N71 and N72 which has heavy bus, coach and car traffic for several months of the year.
Some sections of the Ring are just over six metres wide.
At least one section of the road between Glenbeigh and Cahersiveen will now be set at 60kph.
However, the steep Conor Pass, a regional road between Dingle and Tralee which is hugely popular with tourists will remain at 80kph, despite requests for a lower speed limit.
Glenflesk village on the N22 will have a speed limit of just 60kphs as agreed by the Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) after submissions by councillors and the public.
There are also limits of 50kms in the vicinity of Kate Kearney’s Cottage area of the Gap of Dunloe near Killarney, down from 80kph.
All 425 housing estates in Kerry, and in Tralee and Killarney town centres are to have a maximum limit of 30kph.
“The most significant change is to the speed limit at schools,” Charlie O’Sullivan, director of services said.
Currently, some 48 of the 135 national schools in Kerry are in rural areas where the default speed is 80kph. The new 50kph will apply now.
These are the first new limits since 2006 the meeting was told and include measures by both Kerry County Council, for local and regional roads, as well TII for the national network.
However, councillors were very critical of the refusal by the TII to reduce the speed limit on the N22 at Poulgorm Bridge, the turnoff from the Killarney/Cork road to Kilgarvan, Kenmare and west Cork, which was the scene of seven accident last year.
Several submissions took issue with the use of the English-only name of the west Kerry town of “Dingle” in referring to roads in the area in the draft plan. The final plan will include the double-barrel Dingle/Daingean Uí Chúis in all references.
Similarly, Bailinskelligs is being replaced with Baile an Sceilg to reflect its status as a town in the south Kerry Gaeltacht.
The new speed limits and the various schedules are available to view on online kerrycoco.ie.