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Is it time for all motor vehicles to be fitted with a black box?

Discussion in 'off topic' started by S-Man, Jul 20, 2021.

  1. Bob McC

    Bob McC Living the life of Riley

    I thought cyclists were a self regarding bunch of know all’s but the car drivers on here claiming they know better about speed limits because they are such good drivers take the biscuit.
  2. Tony Lockhart

    Tony Lockhart Avoiding Stress, at Every Opportunity

  3. Dowser

    Dowser Learning to bodge again..

    Haha - almost used that, but I never owned one…I had a 1.9 205…which was already too fast and a little dangerous in and of itself TBH…great fun though :)
    Tony Lockhart likes this.
  4. Sue Pertwee-Tyr

    Sue Pertwee-Tyr neither here nor there

    Know better than what/whom? Are you arguing that applying knowledge and understanding is bad, and blind obedience is better?
    Tony Lockhart likes this.
  5. wylton

    wylton Naim and Mana member

    It's the nature of the beast on a forum like this, that the longer a thread goes on, the sillier it gets tbh.
  6. CHE

    CHE pfm Member

    Why would you say that ? To clarify, yes, I'm in the UK.

  7. Sue Pertwee-Tyr

    Sue Pertwee-Tyr neither here nor there

    Ah, OK. I wasn’t aware of any town in the UK subject to a wide 20mph limit, but do know of towns and cities on the continent where 30kph is the limit in the more urban areas, and I made that assumption. I also thought I recalled posts from you indicating that you are not from the UK, but again just a vague idea at the back of my mind.
  8. Funk

    Funk pfm Member

    If that's aimed somewhat at my recent posts then just to be clear I'm not saying 'I know better about speed limits'. What I'm advocating is appropriate speed for the conditions, improvements in driver standards and challenging what appears to be - at best - suspect reasoning for the arbitrary reduction of speed limits under the false pretence of 'saving lives' when in fact it clearly seems to be driven by raising revenue.
    wylton and Sue Pertwee-Tyr like this.
  9. wylton

    wylton Naim and Mana member

    I agree with that; it's more or less what I have been saying in my posts especially wrt to wholesale use of 20mph limits.
  10. Woodface

    Woodface pfm Member

    Having speed limits & enforcement keeps fatalities down. If you removed all limits then the deaths would go up. If you reduce limits in problem areas they go down. Low traffic zones in London have reduced road accidents down by circa 50% according to the Guardian.

    Why did we introduce speed limits in the first place? Speed limits have been in place longer than Cameras. Surely the Police have better things to do than stopping people driving too fast? Comparisons with Covid are ridiculous.

    Smoking is banned in certain areas, perhaps he should do that with cars?
    S-Man likes this.
  11. CHE

    CHE pfm Member

    As someone who lives in an area, a county in fact that has 20mph speed limits, I can say without question that the 20mph limit has not been reflected with an increase in, for example, speed cameras which could be argued are a safety feature, er sorry revenue raiser. It would seem that there are plans for the lower limit will be spread further afield which I personally think is a good thing.

    'Appropriate speed for the conditions' would be fine if we could trust all drivers to be sensible, but we know they're not, so regulations are needed.

    I guess if you'd witnessed remains of a loved one being hosed off a road due to a RTA then you may think of safety in relation to speed somewhat differently.

  12. Seeker_UK

    Seeker_UK Feelin' nearly faded as my jeans

    They were originally introduced in the Locomotive Act of 1861 (Section 11 - to limit damage to roads. Road conditions had been deteriorating since the collapse of the turnpike system.
  13. Funk

    Funk pfm Member

    I'm not arguing against speed limits. I'm arguing against inappropriately-low speed limits introduced under the false pretence of 'saving lives' when in fact the risk to life on the roads is astonishingly low already. There's a strong argument for increasing speed limits on motorways (much of Europe is 80mph for example) which are by significant margin the safest roads.

    Using your approach, why not reduce speed limits in towns to 5mph? It'd solve everything apparently. We don't because it's patently ridiculous, not to mention that car speedometers aren't even accurate at low (or high) speeds. 20 sounds like a great idea in theory but in reality it creates problems of its own:

    1) Drivers spend more time looking at their speedo than they do for hazards. This is compounded by the almost exponential increase in road markings and signage 'noise' that all vie for a driver's attention particularly in urban scenarios.

    2) 20mph limits put cars into a conflict with cyclists; most cyclists travel around 10-15mph - in a 30 limit a car can safely pass quickly with a speed differential that means they spend less time passing. Reduce that speed differential to say 5mph and the time spent overtaking is longer - or unable to pass at all. So you end up with cars sat behind a cyclist at 15mph which (you might say that perhaps this is fine) only causes frustration in the real world. Do 20 in a 20 limit and you'll be very much in the minority, a rolling roadblock. In Richmond near my mum, if you do 20mph you'll actually be passed by cyclists doing MORE than the speed limit - how is this sensible?

    That's before we even think about the extra pollution from cars driving at low engine/road speeds that are less efficient.

    The comment about COVID was a dig at the fact that we seem to just accept the 'saving lives' mantra when in fact other areas of life with risk involved (that claim significantly more lives than speeding does) are roundly ignored. Smoking is the better one to use - 78,000 lives could be saved by banning smoking but the Government makes £10bn a year off smokers so they'll happily sacrifice tens of thousands if lives for that amount.

    It's not about saving lives, it's about money. Always has been, always will be.

    Look at VED - the Government makes around £6.5bn a year from it and it's ALL based on emissions. We'll all flip to electric cars (let's conveniently ignore the environmental chaos from making and disposing of batteries for a moment) so will the Government think, "Great, job done - we saved the planet...!" and charge no VED when it drops to zero? Of course not. They'll have to find a new reason to tax electric cars that isn't emissions-based (and they will).

    Side note - I think this is behind the drive for 'smart' meters which will allow them to detect the high power-draw of a car being charged at home and apply a higher tax rate to that charge (rather than the 5% normally on gas and electricity) to recoup the lost billions from fuel duty. They can't hike rates on ALL electricity which would be the only other option in this scenario.

    VED is stupid anyway - a fun weekend sports car used for 2k miles a year would currently taxed more than a typical 'daily driver' doing 15k miles a year. Which one's emitting more CO2..?
    Again, the old 'think of the children' argument. The Government's own figures show that 'excess speed' (not breaking the limit) AND speeding combined contribute to (not cause) 37% of fatalities on the road. There were <1600 deaths on the road last year so 'excess speed and breaking the limit' contributed to around 600 deaths annually. We lose that many people in just THREE DAYS from smoking - does the fact they weren't 'hosed off a road' make that death any less tragic? Sure, it doesn't have the same emotive dynamic but it's still appalling that the Government will happily take the cash from tobacco taxes and let the situation continue.

    Re. cameras/enforcement - it'll come eventually, either through ANPR cameras across the road network or black boxes tracking your every move. You only have to look at the rolling installation of things like average speed cameras on motorways etc. Now the technology is cheap, requires nothing more than an internet connection and is wholly automated cameras can be made to pay for themselves in no time. What'll be interesting is how they replace the hundreds of millions in revenue from speeding when we're all in self-driving cars that won't break the limit.
  14. KrisW

    KrisW pfm Member

    Funny that I know two former rallying champions and two others who competed at national level. All of them drive comfortably below the speed limit, carefully and cautiously. (On a closed course, however, it’s a different story..)

    If people who can not only take a corner at 100 mph, but do so and survive think it’s inappropriate to exceed the speed limit, I find it hard to believe that less-capable drivers are somehow okay to drive faster.

    And yes, you are less capable. Speeding, in general, is the mark of the below-average driver. It reduces reaction time, increases driver frustration, and turns trivial accidents into serious ones. All the “driving skill” in the world won’t save you if someone else crosses in front of you without warning, but having an extra half-second to hit the brakes will.

    ... and urban speeding in particular is the mark of the complete pillock. 30MPH zones are set where there are multiple entrances onto the road, or poor sight-lines, or a lot of pedestrian traffic or other vulnerable road users. It’s true that speeding probably won’t increase your chance of being in an accident by much, but extra speed dramatically decreases the chance of a pedestrian surviving it.

    If you’re only thinking of yourself, then yeah, it’s hard to understand why speed limits are so “ridiculously low”...
    k90tour and S-Man like this.
  15. Funk

    Funk pfm Member

    I agree; I don't condone speeding and I've said earlier that a limit is indeed a limit and not a target. I also have no doubt that your mates are highly talented behind the wheel. All that said, at what point would you (or they?) object to the goalposts being arbitrarily moved, with speed limits being reduced further and further? 15mph limit? 10? 30mph on what used to be 60mph roads? 35mph on a motorway?*

    *Southern M25 and others excepted where you'll be doing well to get to 35 half the time... :D
  16. Cesare

    Cesare pfm Member

    The problem with that argument is that the people killed (I see you are ignoring those who are injured, which of course is orders of magnitude higher than the deaths) are not necessarily the ones who are driving that way. For smoking the figures for indirect death caused by other people smoking is significantly less (sorry, i've not got the numbers to back this assertion), so at a basic level, the decision to smoke and cause your own demise is your call, but speeding affects other people more directly and that is what I think most people have an issue with.

    I think the current legal approach to tackle speeding based on how much over the limit you are travelling is somewhat counter productive. I've a feeling that people blasting down the M1 at 100mph+ are paying attention, and although it's not my cup of tea, I can see the appeal. The problem drivers to my mind are the ones at/above the limit in towns, not really paying attention, and being surprised by the kid walking out from behind the parked car and causing serious injuries, inevitably not to themselves.
    Woodface and Dowser like this.
  17. Dowser

    Dowser Learning to bodge again..

    quite - but reducing the limit in these areas will reduce the injuries and deaths, at the frustration of those paying attention. Perhaps we should remove all the safety features in cars, and replace airbags with a spear to kill the driver stupid enough to make a mistake and trigger it? ;)
  18. Woodface

    Woodface pfm Member

    I'm afraid this 'logic' is simply a cover for law breaking. Drive slower & you wont be hit by the fines; really very simple. If you hit someone above 30 mph their chance of survival is greatly reduced, this is why city centres & near schools have lower speed limits. I don't have a massive problem with motorway speed limits increasing but drivers will just adopt a +10mph rule as they do already. Reaction times are greatly effected by speed. 1600 deaths only tells half the story, what about life changing injuries?
    mega lord and tiggers like this.
  19. Tony Lockhart

    Tony Lockhart Avoiding Stress, at Every Opportunity

    I doubt motorway speed limits will ever be raised. The extra energy consumed by cars travelling at 80mph+ would make it too difficult to get through parliament.
  20. Funk

    Funk pfm Member

    A good point on injuries, however you're still missing my point; the limits keep getting lower and lower and lower - where does that stop?

    There's a school of thought that speed limits should be set to the 85th percentile of vehicle speed: as this has shown to be the optimal point for safe progress with the lowest rate of accidents.

    Surely once we're all in zero-emissions cars that argument is moot?

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