Central Government revises Speed Limits on Expressways

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The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has recently revised the speed limits for different classes of vehicles. The new speed limits for different classes of vehicles are categorized based on the type of road. The maximum speed limit for a 4-wheeler (car) would be 120 kmph on expressways.

The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has recently revised the speed limits for different classes of vehicles. The new speed limits for different classes of vehicles are categorized based on the type of road. The maximum speed allowed for a 4-wheeler would be 120 kmph on expressways.

Authority to prescribe the Maximum Speed
Section 112 of the Motor Vehicles Act 1988 (MV act) authorizes the Central Government to prescribe maximum speed at which each class or type of motor vehicle can be driven. It also empowers the State Governments to restrict the speed of any class of motor vehicle in certain circumstances. It has to be noted that the states can restrict the speed much below the prescribed maximum by the centre, but they cannot be over the maximum limit. These limits are modified regularly based on the condition of the roads, type of road infrastructure in the country etc. The current changes have been made keeping in mind the multiple expressways that have been built in various parts of the country.
120 kmph – The latest limit on Expressways for a Car
The government issued a notification in April 2018 to increase the speed limit of various classes of vehicles. On expressways, the maximum speed limit for a car or for a vehicle that carries less than 9 passengers is 120 kmph where as it is 100 kmph for vehicles that carry nine or more passengers. The limits for 4-lane roads with a divider is fixed at a maximum of 100 kmph for vehicles that carry less than nine passengers and 90 kmph for vehicles that carry nine or more passengers. The rules also specify that no penalty can be imposed or  violation is to be recorded if the detected speed is within 5% of the maximum speed limit.

These limits were last revised in the year 2014 when the maximum speed allowed for vehicles like cars was 100 kmph. The limits fixed in August 2014 did not prescribe limits based on the type of road. They only fixed a maximum speed for different classes of vehicles.
The Limit fixed by states could be lower than the limit fixed by the Centre
Sub-section 2 of section 112 of the MV act also empowers the state government to restrict limits to below the limits prescribed by the central government. Most often, the states prescribe speeds lower than the maximum limit. For instance, Kerala prescribed a maximum speed limit of 90 kmph on four lane roads, in 2014.
Similarly, Delhi also prescribed different set of speed limits.

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