Speeds signs in Dorset towns and villages are working, figures show

SPEED warning signs installed in towns and villages across Dorset are working, according to new data.

That is the message of Dorset Council, 10 years after the signs – Speed Indicator Devices (SIDs) – were rolled out in the county.

SIDs flash up the speed of oncoming drivers, alerting them in red if they are above the limit, green if they are not.

And the council said analysis showed they have been effective in reducing the speed of vehicles in towns and villages, increasing road safety.

The signs were rolled out in 2013 by the Community SID Programme, now operated by Dorset Council, which was updated and relaunched by council officers Joe Allen and Rob Camp to encourage communities to get involved in road safety.

Since then, 77 communities have signed up to the initiative at 230 locations around the county.

Joe and Rob work with local towns and parishes to get them set up legally to operate a SID on the highway.

And a recent evaluation of one Dorset village with a 30mph speed limit, showed a reduction of measured speeds by more than 5mph – from 37.1mph to 31.7mph – and an increase in vehicles travelling under the speed limit, by 529, to 1,204 per day.

Cllr Ray Bryan, portfolio holder for highways, travel and environment, said: “I am delighted this scheme has been a success and grown hugely over the past 10 years.

“The figures show the impact the devices have on reducing traffic speeds, something many communities are concerned about, and they contribute towards changing driver behaviour through our towns and villages.

“My thanks to Joe and Rob who took the opportunity to start the scheme and all the communities who are helping to make a difference and make our roads safer.”

Wool Parish Council is one council that has seen the benefit of the devices.

A spokesperson said: “Every flash of a Speed Indicator Device is a silent reminder to slow down, drive safely, and protect lives.

“We installed two SIDs across four locations in 2019 and they have been enormously successful, prompting drivers to think about their speed.”

The Wool spokesperson added: “Residents complain when the signs are temporarily removed so they don’t receive a thank you for slowing down.

“The support the council has received from the SID Team has been fantastic and they are a testament to Dorset Council’s commitment to promoting responsible driving.”

Representatives of parish/town councils or community organisations who would like to know more about the SID programme should email to

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I am the editor in chief of Blackmore Vale media, which includes the New Blackmore Vale, New Stour & Avon, Salisbury & Avon Gazette and the Purbeck Gazette, having been a reporter for some 20 years. In my spare time, I am a festival lover, with a particular focus on Glastonbury. I live in Somerset with my wife and two children.