The Department for Infrastructure and Transport (the Department) is seeking feedback on options for the default vehicle speed to apply to all South Australian beaches that allow vehicle access. The aim is to improve safety for all beach users.

Vehicle access to South Australian beaches is highly valued, but can raise safety concerns for some beach users. Driving on a beach is less predictable than driving on a road and accordingly can present different challenges. Beaches in South Australia are considered a road-related area under road traffic legislation, with vehicle crashes on beaches recorded as part of road safety statistics.

Over five years (2017-2021) there were 29 reported crashes on South Australian beaches resulting in the loss of one life, 15 serious injuries and 13 minor injuries. During this period, speed was reported as a contributing factor in approximately 50% of these crashes.

A lower default speed limit for South Australian beaches is being considered to improve safety for all beach users, particularly given the absence of any formal road infrastructure and the changing nature of driving conditions on a beach.

Default speed limits exist in the absence of signposted speed limits, and do not require signposting. There are two types of default speed limits in South Australia:

  • A default urban speed limit of 50 km/h which applies in built-up areas[1], and
  • A default rural speed limit of 100 km/h which applies elsewhere in non built-up areas.

The default speed limit on many beaches in South Australia is presently 100 km/h due to the definition of a non built-up area.

Some beaches in South Australia have signposted speed limits.

Find out more:

Have your say by:

  • completing the online survey and indicate your preference for the default speed limit on South Australian beaches from the following options:
    • a default beach speed limit of 40km/h
    • a default beach speed limit of 25km/h
    • a default beach speed limit of 40km/h and 25km/h when passing or within 100m of a pedestrian
    • no change to the default beach speed limits
  • email your comments to link)
  • written feedback or comments can be posted to:
    Speed Limits on Beaches, Road Safety Policy and Research, Department for Infrastructure and Transport, GPO Box 1533, Adelaide SA 5001

Your feedback on the four different options for speed limits on beaches in South Australia is appreciated.

It is envisioned that any new default speed limit will apply to all beaches accessible by vehicles across the state, unless otherwise signposted.

This feedback will be used to inform change to the default speed limit on beaches. Any change requires a variation to existing regulations, with the aim for this to occur in the second half of 2023.

[1] A built-up area, in relation to a length of road, is defined within the Australian Road Rules (ARR) as an area in which either of the following is present for a distance of at least 500 metres or, if the length of road is shorter than 500 metres, for the whole road:

  • Buildings, not over 100 metres apart, on land next to the road.
  • Streetlights not over 100 metres apart.