Re: New Electrical Regulations

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Then they have problems with airbags killing people, since in order to be effective an American airbag needs to be powerful enough to restrain an unbelted adult. Whereas in parts of the world where seatbelts are compulsary, they only need to be capable of preventing someone who is already restrained from hitting anything hard.
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It's not the speed camera which caused this accident, it is the idiots who were ignoring the speed limit and so desperate to avoid a fine that they hadn't taken account of other road users.
I'm doing a lot of motorway driving at the moment - M1, A42, M42, M5, M50... you can guess the rest - and this is one of the things which causes a *lot* of problems IME. There I am, quite happily tootling along at as near 70mph as my speedo and prevailing conditions will allow, occasionally moving to the middle or third lane to overtake something slower, and all the while people are rushing past at 80 or 90mph, often impatiently sitting so close to my boot that I can't see their headlights, when all of a sudden the whole motorway grinds to a halt.
What is it? An accident? A closed lane? A speed restriction?
No; there's a jam sandwich or a battenburg cake sitting in the left lane doing 60 or 65mph and no-one dares pass it. The resulting "slinky effect" can cause stop-start traffic for miles.
When they introduced timed speed restrictions on parts of the M25 it wasn't because of safety concerns, it was simply that it proved possible to increase traffic flow by forcing everyone to travel at a slower, but *steady* speed.
Oh crumbs, *very* OT. Sorry, but people who complain about speed cameras are one of my pet hates at the moment. I'll try to restrain myself in future :-)
Hwyl!
M.
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Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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wrote:

where
one
They have them in sneaky places where there are no accident backspots. Then the public do not cooperate with them on other crime matters. A top traffic consultant in Northamptonshire dismissed speed as the major cause of accidents. I think it was poor junction design, poor signs (the UKs are appalling with ting little signs with lots of little writing), and general poor driving which he put above speeding. The government ignored him to make money on cameras.
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Speed may not be a major cause of accidents, but it sure as heck makes what might be a close shave or a minor bump into something much much worse. Poor junctions, poor signage, poor lighting and so on all contribute, but breaking the speed limit is a pretty reliable sign of a selfish attitude to sharing the road which can cause a lot of problems. "Speeding is a victimless crime so why are the police hounding people for it?" Grow up.
An example. There is a road near here which is absolutely straight for nearly a mile. On a good day you can see from one end to the other. People who don't know the road like to race down it.
People who do know the road know that not only is there a hidden dip, quite big enough to conceal a small car, but that there is a golf course on both sides of the road and three or four places where golfers regularly cross, there are also houses. To be honest, even 60mph can be dangerous on this road. As it happens, there is no camera on the road, though there are signs.
As this road nears our house the speed limit reduces to 40mph. Very few people take note of this limit and most of the time they will not have any problems - but you try crossing it with a toddler or a pram as we have to (no underpass, no bridge, no crossing, and the lights just up the road are designed to maximise traffic flow and make crossing the road at the lights *more* dangerous than crossing nearer our house) and you will see what I mean by speeding being selfish.
Given the fact that most speeders blithely ignore the limit, if the possibility of cameras makes them think, then they can only be a good thing. As I said before, it is emphatically *not* the cameras which cause the accidents, it is those stupid drivers who see them and, suddenly realising that they could get another three points on the licence, slam out the anchors without thinking.
If, however, you remember the speed limits and stick to them then speed cameras can safely be completely ignored in the same way that if you don't try to take a kilo of pot with you through customs you can safely ignore the officers scanning your baggage.
The problem with preaching (as I seem to be doing) is that no-one is perfect and so I hereby confess that there have been occasions in my 16-year driving career when I have broken the speed limit. Mostly completely inadvertantly and immediately corrected, twice or three times completely deliberately - but the deliberate cases were all on empty stretches of motorway and I wouldn't have complained, though I would have felt very stupid, if I'd been clocked.
I have never tried to take anything so much as a grain of tobacco through customs :-)
Hwyl!
M.
--
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Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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writes

I have to agree there

Yes
Sanctimonious ****

And you were doing so well there

You prefer pure weed then ?
Someone get me a thermometer - I must be ill
--
geoff

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And there are just downright crap drivers, whatever their speed. However, after driving quite a lot in Belgium and the Netherlands I will never moan about the overall standards of driving on UK roads again! Those guys will be gold medal contenders if tailgating ever becomes an Olympic sport...

in
times
if
at
looking
Must have been all that dodgy Belgian beer!
how was the break?
cheers Richard -- Richard Sampson
email me at richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
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I do. I think humanity should and I certainly do have a fundamental objection to policing by robot - which is what this amounts to.
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Gardner wrote:

As was pointed out in a newspaper last week, if you are caught shoplifting and have no record then you'll almost certainly be let off with a caution. Why no similar allowance for motorists - because making money is the aim IMO
IMO there would be a lot less resentment of speed cameras if (a) technology was employed to adjust the tolerance depending on weather, time and traffic flow - remember that the speed limit will be up to 9mph less than what is judged to be safe by traffic engineers; (b) the penalty was 1, 2 or 3 points depending on the amount by which you exceeded the limit; and (c) your record was taken into account: e.g. first offence [within x years]: no fine, one point.
Beyond this we ultimately need to have variable speed limits that are set according to what is safe at any particular time. The more we go for fixed penalties that take no account of conditions, the more we remove from drivers any conception that they should adjust their speed to what is appropriate. We used to get this when I was a BCO: "how little can I do to comply" was more often asked than "what would be the right thing to do here"
--
Tony Bryer SDA UK 'Software to build on' http://www.sda.co.uk
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Tony Bryer wrote:

I also quite like the idea proposed by the institute of advanced drivers:
If you must have cameras at all, then they should be sited at an accident black spot (and not on a totally different road within some arbitrary radius!).
There should be a "camera ahead" sign a few hundred yards before it that shows the speed limit, and importantly, includes the reason the camera is there. So for example you get things like "30, Concealed Junction", or "20, School Crossing".
It that way there is less argument that you are targeting safety and not implementing another stealth tax. Also you would be carrying out a subconscious process of education - alerting drivers to the sorts of situations and road conditions that should require close attention to speed.
--
Cheers,

John.

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An audible receiver should be in the car warning of the "blackspot", which has a camera to enforce the limit, ahead.
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[snip]
The bad bit is that those signs are there all the time. There are quite a few camera signs on the a59 between the A1 and the York Outer Ring, but there are no fixed cameras, no road markings anywhere on that stretch, and I've never seen a mobile camera either.
Thought the use of signs without cameras had been outlawed?
--
Woody

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No they don't
--
geoff

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Edward W. Thompson wrote in message ...

with
motoring
Indeed, one could even imagine oneself on the Atlanta ring road or I10 in Houston!! Regards Capitol
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Changing junctions or road markings is expensive, especially working out how to change things in a specific instance. Unlike cameras such changes don't act as a source of revenue...
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Was he always that way or is this the result his being a multiple burglary victim?
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I have no objection to being caught by robots (who are at least likely to be impartial). I also have no objection to ID cards, CCTV or any other sort of infringement of my personal liberty (i.e. my right to do as I wish and take a calculated risk of getting caught). It seems to me to be a fairer system altogether. And, yes, I did get caught at 1am doing 50 in a 30. Well pissed off I was too. I doubt whether speed cameras make money after the first week or so when all the locals get caught.
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Policed by robots.
And I think mankind is sleepwalking into a nightmare.
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Simon

Then we should get rid of traffic light then. before they came along a copper stood in the middle of the junction.
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Some independent statistic might help with perspective. The UK unequivicolly has one of the lowest rates of road traffic fatalities in the world.
This German website uses the OECD stats and breaks it down by road type, age and passenger miles. http://www.bast.de/htdocs/fachthemen/irtad/english/we2.html
British roads are by far the safest.
For example, motorways - UK has 2.1 fatalities per billion km - next lowest is Seden at 2.5 and no-one else is near. Incidentally, I never want to travel on a Turkish motorway (50).
Across all roads, the UK is 7.5, Sweden and Norway next with 8.3. Again, I'd give Turkey a miss (73).
This is from the late 90s but a quick trawl of the Internet shows that the rate is similar today.
http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_transstats/documents/downloadable/dft_transstats_022248.pdf shows fatalities up to 2001. Pretty static for the four years to 91 at circa 3400 despite significant falls before then. Injuries dropping slowly (less steeply than in earlier years). Government figures show a rise in Q1 2003 for UK fatalities. Indeed the latest UK government figures show the fatality rate is stubbornly at this level.
Indeed, the overall casualty rate is pretty static also. Average is c 320k casualties in 1992 it was 310k, 306k in `93 in 2002 it was 302k in 2001 it was 313k.
Over the last 10 years the number of cameras has increased exponentially. "Cameras cut crashes". Hmmm, really. Perhaps in specific cases but at a national level?
IMHO, there is pretty much no case for putting cameras on motorways or extra-urban roads - the accident rates there are very, very low.
Looking at the outrageously high rates for London per 100k km (17+ - more than 2 times the national average, 3 times the welsh rate) I'd say stick all the cameras there and leave the rest of us alone! ;o)
A.
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So, driving around with your headlights on does not save lives then.
I wish some one would tell those Volvo drivers that. Their headlights are a distraction now that they are not just a bright unfocussed light.
Dave
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