What are the recommended highway speed limit in India, and how do you follow them?

“Speed Limit for Heaven?” by calamur is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

In every country, the motorways or highway networks have certain speed limits that are designated by the government of the country with the aim, to keep the traffic flowing smoothly and to prevent accidents on the road. In India, the job of fixing the national highway speed limit in India is upon the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. This ministry is responsible for fixing the speed limits of the national highways. The job of fixing speed limits for the state highways is done by the respective state governments. Right now, the recommended speed limits for various categories are 120kph for expressways, for national highways at 100 km/h, and for urban roads at 70 km/h for the M1 category of vehicle. For state highways, the limits vary from 70kph and 30 kph, like for congested metropolitan cities like Delhi. State highways have lower speed limits because they have to cross from various areas such as rural areas, and high speed can be dangerous.

As we know that traffic rules are lax here, and they are not enforced very strictly. It is hardly surprising that the speed limits are also not followed on the highways, leading to heavy casualties. In the year 2019 alone, almost 151000 people died in fatal road accidents due to high speeds. But with the right information and a bit of common sense, you can avoid being part of the above-given statistics. Following speed limits is very important, and you should not avoid them at all costs. They are designed to take care of road conditions and the flow of traffic. Whenever you enter a highway, you can notice that speed limits are mentioned at every entry point, and they are reminded by the signs after every few kilometers. In case the infrastructure is not good, then you can use online services like Google Maps to identify the road limits. Try to be within a 10% margin of the speed limits, as that will give you an ample opportunity to react in case of a surprise on the road. Also while driving at high speeds on a highway, never indulge in drink and driving. Alcohol can vastly reduce your cognitive abilities, and it can be fatal on the highways.

No doubt that our country has a bad reputation and a bad record when it comes to road accidents. But we cannot put all the blame on the government alone. Surely they can implement the rules more strictly, but why are we waiting for that to happen? We, as responsible citizens of this county, have some duties to follow and follow road rules and the speed limit is one of them. Driving on a highway is already a challenging environment, and you should not make it riskier by not following the national highway speed limit in India. Not only are you putting your life at risk, but you are also creating a risk for other road users, including innocent pedestrians. There are other important things too like driving cautiously on a single carriage highway, or while driving on mountain roads, etc. So be a safe driver and take the speed limits seriously on the road.