Speed Zones

Speed plays a part in every crash. It’s not always the cause, but it will always determine the outcome. That’s why we take speed and speed zoning seriously. 

By making sure the speed limit is right for the road, we can help prevent crashes from happening, and we can reduce their severity when they’re unavoidable. Having appropriate speed limits in place helps reduce the risk for you and your family.

Speed zones and speed limits are set by teams of specialists who review the roads and how they are used. Individual or small networks of roads are reviewed on a case by case basis in response to community feedback or changes to the road environment. They consider road safety, mobility, and driver and road user expectations. Details about how we determine speed limits and zones is available in the Speed Zoning Policy [PDF 272 Kb].   

All proposals for speed limit changes are reviewed by the Department of Transport to ensure consistent application across the state.

Speed Zoning Guidelines 

Speed limits are considered on a case-by-case basis with detailed guidance on the application of limits provided by the Speed Zoning Technical Guidelines (the Guidelines)[PDF 8 Mb].

The Guidelines outline implementation requirements, which include

  • site investigations
  • crash history
  • road use
  • pedestrian activity 
  • primary function of the road
  • community sentiment 

Additional tools are provided to assist with assessments for remote school crossings [XLSX 2 Mb] and on high speed rural roads [XLSX 47 Kb].

The Guidelines are updated regularly (around every two years) to reflect recent developments, research and feedback from stakeholders, industry and local government. 

2021 Guidelines Update 

The Department of Transport updated the Guidelines in December 2021. Key changes implemented in this update include 

  • Separation of the Victorian speed zoning guidance into two documents (Speed Zoning Policy and Speed Zoning Technical Guidelines) to make the existing policy positions clearer and enable easier navigation of the guidelines for implementation 
  • Easier to follow structure
  • Expanded guidance on determining speed limits on higher speed roads with high crash risks
  • Expanded guidance for signing specific speed zone scenarios
  • Improve guidance on school speed zones
  • Additional guidance on speed limits on unsealed roads
  • New guidance on monitoring, data capturing and evaluating speed zone changes
  • Inclusion of detailed sign schedules
  • Inclusion of additional diagrams, tables, and figures to support implementation.

There are no updates to the Speed Zoning Policy beyond its separation from the Technical Guidelines document. 

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