Drivers think they drive slower around children but really don't

An article in Injury Prevention highlights a problem with driver speed around pedestrians and particularly children.

Driver's speed was measured and then, soon afterwards, drivers were asked to estimate their own speeds.

In circumstances with no pedestrians around, measured speed was 35 MPH and drivers' own estimate of the speed was 35 MPH

When children were near the roadway waiting to cross, measured speed was 33 MPH and the drivers' speed estimate 21 MPH.

In short, drivers thought they were slowing down dramatically for the children, when in fact they were barely slowing at all.

The authors come to this conclusion:
[D]rivers make inadequate speed adjustments in the presence of children, despite probably believing they do so. Establishing specific rules about appropriate speeds around children and highlighting to drivers the discrepancy between their attitudes and behaviour are two intervention strategies suggested.
The Missouri Bicycle Federation has been among the groups lobbying for "specific rules about appropriate speed around children", pedestrians, and bicyclists in Missouri. In particular, the legislation supported before the Missouri General Assembly for the past two years by MoBikeFed in cooperation with the Missouri state PTA and the motorcycle advocacy groups Friends of Road Riders and the American Motorcyclist Association, provides for a statewide uniform school zone speed limit of 20 MPH.

MoBikeFed's legislation passed the Missouri Senate this year and reach the House calendar during the last week of the session, but did not come to a vote in the House.