Where a speed limit sign applies, the maximum speed a driver can travel at is the number of kilometres per hour indicated by the number on the sign. Some drivers may be subject to lower speed limits, including some heavy vehicles which are restricted to 100km/h and some learner drivers from outside Victoria.
A speed limit sign on a road applies to the length of road beginning at the sign, and ending at the nearest of the following: a sign with a different speed limit, an “End speed limit” sign, or the end of the road if the road ends at a T-intersection or dead end.
Speed limit signs may also have the word ‘area’ on them, meaning the speed limit shown applies to the network of roads in the area with an area speed limit sign on each road into the area and an end area speed limit sign on each road out of the area. But another speed limit sign in this area showing a different limit, such as at a school zone, must also be obeyed.
Speed limit signs may also be associated with special zones, such as temporary road works, school zones or shared zones, and apply in a similar manner.
In Victoria, outside these areas and where a speed limit sign doesn’t apply, the speed limit is the default speed limit. In a built up area the default speed limit is 50km/h. The default speed limit for any other length of road is 100km/h. Speed limits apply in a 'road related area' which includes car parks and any area that is open to the public for driving, riding or parking, or is designated for use by cyclists or animals.
Remember that speed limits are the maximum allowed speed, not the speed you should necessarily expect to travel at. Drivers should always drive for the conditions, which will mean slowing down when visibility is reduced, or at other times when it is not safe to drive at the speed limit.
For more information see the Victorian Road Safety Road Rules rules 20, 21, 22, 24 and 25.