Half of drivers believe that speed limits should be reduced from 60mph on rural roads, according to new research.

Road safety charity Brake asked 1,107 drivers various questions about speed as part of their annual survey into road safety.

A total of 49% agree or strongly agree that they feel unsafe driving at 60mph on single carriageway rural roads, while 19% disagree or strongly disagree; and 32% neither agree nor disagree.

"Speed remains a critical factor in all road crashes.Driving is unpredictable and if something unexpected happens on the road ahead – such as a child stepping out from between parked cars – it is a vehicle’s speed that will determine whether they can stop in time and, if they can’t stop, how hard they will hit," said Mary Williams OBE, chief executive of Brake.

"Yet, as this report has found, many drivers frequently drive at speeds which are not safe for the conditions or road environment. 7

"It is critical,therefore,that we understand the nature of drivers’ relationship with speed to inform the prevention of crashes caused by this most common of unsafe driver behaviours."

Over half of those surveyed admitted breaking the speed limit in a 20mph zone, with the figure rising to 56% in a 30mph zone.

A total of 81% of drivers said they broke the speed limits, with just under 9% admitting they broke speed limits on every journey.

For Scotland and Wales, the power to set national speed limits is devolved to the respective governments. The Scottish Government has had the power to set national speed limits since 2016, through the Scotland Act, and the Welsh Assembly received the power to do so in 2018. Neither government has made any changes yet.