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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 12:52 
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How about upgrading the streetlighting outside schools? My local area may be suburban, but the lighting is more 'rural village' if you get what I mean.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:05 
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nanki_poo wrote:
You actually think that because drivers cannot control their cars, children should be prevented from cycling.

You actually think that even though, for whatever reason, drivers do not drive safely, children should be encouraged to cycle when there is a signficant chance they will become KSI statistics. Perhaps you're so wrapped up in your principles that you'll end up one day at the pearly gates demanding St Peter send the other driver to H*ll because it was your right of way!

I think that children should not be put into unnecessary danger. We need a road system conducive to safe use by all - and in that I include cyclists and pedestrians. Unfortunately, that's not what we have right now and no amount of persecution of joe motorist will put that right because the behaviour of joe motorist is a symptom, not the cause, of that ill.

nanki_poo wrote:
Bad driving has nothing to do with any 'ethos' except for the arrogance of people who think that everyone should drive cars to protect themselves, and if they don't they essentially deserve it if they die. :?

Bad driving has everything to do with ethos - particularly the ethos propagated by the appalling "road safety" policies that have arisen in this country. That ethos has it's roots in the mistaken belief that your primary responsibility to road safety is not to drive safely but to obey the speed limit and that if you obey the speed limit you will be a safe and good driver. This ethos exists because of the obsessive fixation on speed by current policy; fixation on speed to the exclusion of primary road safety factors. This government-induced ethos is responsible for motorists driving far too quickly but within the speed limit where there is a reasonable likelihood of a pedestrian wandering out in front of them. The same ethos has them overtaking cyclists where there is insufficient room for the manoeuvre (which is why the primary riding position is a lifesaver - even if it p*sses motorists off on occasion). Until government policy changes, the roads will continue to be more dangerous than they should. While each incident might or might not theoretically be the fault of the motorist - it is someone's child we're talking about here and no parent would want to sacrifice their offspring just to prove a principle.

nanki_poo wrote:
I have no children, but recall walking and cycling to school throughout my childhood, between one and six miles!!!

Six miles? Oh gosh! :lol: :lol:

FWIW, I'm not surprised that you have no children because I suspect you'd take a much more pragmatic view if you did!

nanki_poo wrote:
I think some on here might need to take deep breaths after hearing those heady distances...

You might need to take a few deep breaths yourself when you discover the cycling experience of some forum members.

FWIW, when I was at school, I used to cycle about four miles each way. I didn't get a car until well into my twenties, so I used to cycle everywhere and probably averaged about twenty miles a day. During the holidays, I used to go cycle touring and would often travel over seventy miles a day. Even after I had a car, I still rode the seven or so miles to and from work. In those days, it was enjoyable and, on my route into and from work, the traffic was no heavier than it is today.

Now, with well over half a century on this planet, I still cycle - but things have changed. That road I used to cycle to and from work is now littered with gatsos and talivans lurk in the intervening spaces. Motorists using that road now concentrate more on their speed than on the road. Even though the traffic is no heavier now than then, it is more dangerous and I wouldn't ride that road today let alone ask a child to do it.

IMO many of todays roads are too dangerous for inexperienced cyclists. Until the danger - whatever the cause - is resolved, on those roads I don't think it's appropriate to require cyclists to share the same tarmac as motorised traffic.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:17 
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nanki_poo wrote:
You actually think that because drivers cannot control their cars, children should be prevented from cycling.

We all cycled to school in the 1970's in our suburban village, but cycle use in the nearby city was very low.

As traffic volumes and the number of parked cars has gone up cycling in the suberbs is now on a par with the citys.

It is not neccessarily the fact that people can't drive. It is that the traffic volume is too high for a novice/junior cyclist.

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Speed limit sign radio interview. TV Snap Unhappy
“It has never been the rule in this country – I hope it never will be - that suspected criminal offences must automatically be the subject of prosecution” He added that there should be a prosecution: “wherever it appears that the offence or the circumstances of its commission is or are of such a character that a prosecution in respect thereof is required in the public interest”
This approach has been endorsed by Attorney General ever since 1951. CPS Code


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:28 
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For all those words, you still have only two arguments:

a) it's not the driver's fault it's the governments. The government doesn't tell me not to run my unpleasant neighbour through with a garden fork, but I ain't going to do it. Anyone who needs to be told such things should not be in charge of either a garden fork or a motor vehicle!!!!

b) get everyone that's not a car off the road because cars make it unsafe. Simple... instant, automatic one-three month ban for:

Parking on School zig-zags.
Exceeding urban speed limits by more than 30%
Driving in compulsory cycle lanes
Driving without DC&A

I think we'd see an improvement PDQ then. Especially if we lock their car up in the interim. Then a compulsory test to get back on the road.

As more children are killed while on foot than on cycles, should we also stop them from walking anywhere?

So, your child is definitely safe in your big car (which should make quick work of any child inconsiderate enough to walk/cycle when you f*ck up), but when the myocardial infarcation hits in his/her thirties that's tuff.

And the old "well, if you had children..." doesn't work I'm afraid. If I had a child I may make a personal decision not to let them on main roads, but I would not be arguing we should discourage all kids so that I can carry on speeding around for some sort of (probably sexual) deep-seated gratification, I would be campaigning for safer roads and the measures I detail above.

Remember, driving is a privelege, not a right.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:44 
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nanki_poo wrote:
carry on speeding around for some sort of (probably sexual) deep-seated gratification

oh dear. Hopefully you'll remove that chip from your shoulder long enough to realise that speeding is not the problem. In my time spent riding (over 20 years now) I've been knocked off a few times and had untold near misses but not one of those incidents was with your "speeding lunatic". The main problems seem to be motorists who don't look past their bonnets, don't use mirrors and generally think they own the road.
It's also been a general observation that the people who drive past me the fastest also leave me by far the most space.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:53 
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anton wrote:
It is not neccessarily the fact that people can't drive. It is that the traffic volume is too high for a novice/junior cyclist.


Actually, in the urban environment I find that it is safer if the traffic is backed up. No-one can go fast enough to kill me.

The quieter roads are the danger, when vehicles want to get up to their "optimum safe speed" and I am 'in their way', or they want to race you to the next left turn (yep, one write-off that way - silly moo "didn't see" me, even though she'd overtaken me one second before. Still, nice puncture in the bodywork of her nice sparkley 4x4 where my brake lever embedded itself)


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:56 
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nanki_poo wrote:
anton wrote:
It is not neccessarily the fact that people can't drive. It is that the traffic volume is too high for a novice/junior cyclist.


Actually, in the urban environment I find that it is safer if the traffic is backed up. No-one can go fast enough to kill me.

The quieter roads are the danger, when vehicles want to get up to their "optimum safe speed" and I am 'in their way', or they want to race you to the next left turn (yep, one write-off that way - silly moo "didn't see" me, even though she'd overtaken me one second before. Still, nice puncture in the bodywork of her nice sparkley 4x4 where my brake lever embedded itself)


Do you actually drive?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 13:58 
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johnsher wrote:
The main problems seem to be motorists who don't look past their bonnets, don't use mirrors and generally think they own the road.


That's a good description of most people I see speeding in London. No doubt there are good few people out there that can drive at higher speeds safely, and have the cars capable of being safe at high speeds. But what about the f**kwits who are speeding around with the glazed look over their eyes, probably unaware that they are even speeding, or the 'kids' driving about trying to impress their friends.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:02 
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johnsher wrote:
nanki_poo wrote:
carry on speeding around for some sort of (probably sexual) deep-seated gratification

oh dear. Hopefully you'll remove that chip from your shoulder long enough to realise that speeding is not the problem. In my time spent riding (over 20 years now) I've been knocked off a few times and had untold near misses but not one of those incidents was with your "speeding lunatic". The main problems seem to be motorists who don't look past their bonnets, don't use mirrors and generally think they own the road.
It's also been a general observation that the people who drive past me the fastest also leave me by far the most space.


That is more aimed at protecting child pedestrians really, I do apologise, but in the urban situations I cycle in it is a 50-50 split. Usually approaching 'pinch points' near corners. The driver has already reached his 'safe speed', and therefore presumes it's my job to slow down when he sweeps in from my right to get through the gap. After all, he's going at a 'safe speed' so he must be in the right.

Incidentally if the pinch-point isn't near a corner, they tend to just drive down the wrong side of the road... shortly before they see the approaching junction.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:05 
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Bewildered wrote:
johnsher wrote:
The main problems seem to be motorists who don't look past their bonnets, don't use mirrors and generally think they own the road.


That's a good description of most people I see speeding in London. No doubt there are good few people out there that can drive at higher speeds safely, and have the cars capable of being safe at high speeds. But what about the f**kwits who are speeding around with the glazed look over their eyes, probably unaware that they are even speeding, or the 'kids' driving about trying to impress their friends.


So you would be happy to be run over by a f*ckwit doing 30mph?

I think fewer f*ckwits is a much more useful road safety objective than fewer speeders.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:10 
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nanki_poo wrote:
The driver has already reached his 'safe speed', and therefore presumes it's my job to slow down when he sweeps in from my right to get through the gap.

yes, but in most cases s/he's not actually exceeding the speed limit is s/he? So the problem is not actually with the "speeding maniac" but a lack of consideration.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:17 
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SafeSpeed wrote:
nanki_poo wrote:
anton wrote:
It is not neccessarily the fact that people can't drive. It is that the traffic volume is too high for a novice/junior cyclist.


Actually, in the urban environment I find that it is safer if the traffic is backed up. No-one can go fast enough to kill me.

The quieter roads are the danger, when vehicles want to get up to their "optimum safe speed" and I am 'in their way', or they want to race you to the next left turn (yep, one write-off that way - silly moo "didn't see" me, even though she'd overtaken me one second before. Still, nice puncture in the bodywork of her nice sparkley 4x4 where my brake lever embedded itself)


Do you actually drive?


Yep. 18 years. No points. One on-road accident that I contributed to (17 years ago). Many scrapes involving car park walls in my first two years (I was 'encouraged' to buy my own car by my parents).

Having got over my teenage speedophile tendencies, I now drive my partner's 1.8 Audi A4 Auto. Nice. comfortable. Fast where needed (i.e. trunk roads and motorways) and the Auto is far more suitable for an urban environment where I don't have to be constantly changing gear.

I am an expedient but safe driver. I don't hang around on take-off, but don't feel I have to reach Mach II to be a real man.

Learnt in an Opel Manta, so respect was taught to me at an early age.

I am a country boy, and even to this day there's nothing quite like the open road, but driving for me now is more functional, I rarely go out of town and the car mostly goes to and from B&Q and Asda.

My pet hates are irregular speed limits on trunk roads (A12 through East London... argh!), road planners (never met any type of road/path user who likes them), and the growing tendency to think that it is a god-given right to drive, and drive how you want.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:23 
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johnsher wrote:
nanki_poo wrote:
The driver has already reached his 'safe speed', and therefore presumes it's my job to slow down when he sweeps in from my right to get through the gap.

yes, but in most cases s/he's not actually exceeding the speed limit is s/he? So the problem is not actually with the "speeding maniac" but a lack of consideration.


Not at all. Again, of those going faster, about half are going over the speed limit. That's why I didn't say "reached the 'speed limit'".

There are very few roads around me where it is safe to exceed the speed limit. East London is a minefield of hidden junctions, and second to flattening the place and starting again that isn't ever going to change. Though far too often the council pander to car drivers and give them multi-lane junctions that really are not appropriate.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:26 
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nanki_poo wrote:
SafeSpeed wrote:
nanki_poo wrote:
anton wrote:
It is not neccessarily the fact that people can't drive. It is that the traffic volume is too high for a novice/junior cyclist.


Actually, in the urban environment I find that it is safer if the traffic is backed up. No-one can go fast enough to kill me.

The quieter roads are the danger, when vehicles want to get up to their "optimum safe speed" and I am 'in their way', or they want to race you to the next left turn (yep, one write-off that way - silly moo "didn't see" me, even though she'd overtaken me one second before. Still, nice puncture in the bodywork of her nice sparkley 4x4 where my brake lever embedded itself)


Do you actually drive?


Yep. 18 years. No points. One on-road accident that I contributed to (17 years ago). Many scrapes involving car park walls in my first two years (I was 'encouraged' to buy my own car by my parents).


OK. So think about what you actually do yourself to manage risk while you're driving. It isn't especially easy because risk management is largely a subconscious process. At the end of the day 'rules compliance' doesn't have much to do with it. It's more about skills and attitudes.

One of the main observations hereabouts is that powerful messages about rules compliance are contributing to worse attitudes, worse risk management and marginal de-skilling. In this way modern policy is actually striking at the core of genuine road safety values.

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Our scrap speed cameras petition got over 28,000 sigs
The Safe Speed campaign demands a return to intelligent road safety


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:29 
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SafeSpeed wrote:

So you would be happy to be run over by a f*ckwit doing 30mph?

I think fewer f*ckwits is a much more useful road safety objective than fewer speeders.


I wouldn't be happy, but happier than if he had been doing 60mph. Do you think that 30mph is too slow for urban streets, keeping in mind the average speed fo a car journey in London is something like 10mph?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:43 
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nanki_poo wrote:
Not at all. Again, of those going faster, about half are going over the speed limit. That's why I didn't say "reached the 'speed limit'".

well let me ask a different question. You've already said you were wiped out by someone who turned left in front of you. She obviously wasn't speeding (as in exceeding the speed limit) at the time so what would you like to blame your accident on?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 14:44 
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Bewildered wrote:
SafeSpeed wrote:

So you would be happy to be run over by a f*ckwit doing 30mph?

I think fewer f*ckwits is a much more useful road safety objective than fewer speeders.


I wouldn't be happy, but happier than if he had been doing 60mph. Do you think that 30mph is too slow for urban streets, keeping in mind the average speed fo a car journey in London is something like 10mph?


I believe that it's actually a very mistaken argument to compare (say) a f*ckwit at 30mph with a f*ckwit at 60mph and conclude that the 30mph f*ckwit must be safer. For a start the potential risk from the 30mph f*ckwit is miles above the average risk even in crashes.

Nothing wrong with a 30mph urban speed limit - unless we place more importance in the speed limit than other more important safety factors. Think about the consequences of that...

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 15:11 
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nanki_poo wrote:
For all those words, you still have only two arguments:

Actually, I only have one: the roads are too dangerous for inexperienced cyclists, so don't put your kids unnecessarily at risk!

nanki_poo wrote:
Simple... instant, automatic one-three month ban for: {list of offences}

Rather than become further embroiled in a totalitarian police state, woud it not be better to educate those involved so that they can go about their business amicably?

nanki_poo wrote:
I think we'd see an improvement PDQ then.
I think that we'd see massive civil unrest and some very nasty incidents. At the very least, it would set off neighbour against neighbour - is this really what you want?

nanki_poo wrote:
So, your child is definitely safe in your big car (which should make quick work of any child inconsiderate enough to walk/cycle when you f*ck up), but when the myocardial infarcation hits in his/her thirties that's tuff.

Actually, my children went to a school close enough to walk, and that walk was not on one of the dangerous routes. Thankfully, they're now old enough to look after themselves.

nanki_poo wrote:
And the old "well, if you had children..." doesn't work I'm afraid. If I had a child I may make a personal decision not to let them on main roads, ...

Then, at least implicitly, you agree that the roads are too dangerous - otherwise why would you consider not letting your child walk/cycle on main roads?

nanki_poo wrote:
...but I would not be arguing we should discourage all kids so that I can carry on speeding around for some sort of (probably sexual) deep-seated gratification, I would be campaigning for safer roads and the measures I detail above.

Oh dear <sigh> speeding has nothing to do with it; and for that matter neither has sexual gratification :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:

The reason why the roads are so dangerous is because people are frequently driving inappropriately for the conditions. The reason why their doing that is because they've been "taught" that all they need to worry about is obeying the speed limit. Even your post concentrates on speed (which is a secondary safety factor) rather than space and time (which are primary ones). This fixation with speed and speed limits has drivers treating speed limits as targets rather than maxima. There is real pressure (peer pressure and self pressure) to travel at exactly the speed limit. You will even fail your driving test if you don't drive close to the speed limit. That with the "speed kills", "it's 30 for a reason", etc. tripe has sent very powerful messages to motorists that rule compliance is all.

You, with your draconian anti-motorist proposals, would reinforce that further. You might believe that you'd make the roads safer - but you would not. Think of one side effect for the "instant ban for stopping on zig-zags" proposal. The competition for "legal stopping places" would be so fierce that mums would compromise safety more than they already do to avoid having to go around the block yet again. Your proposals reek of knee-jerk reaction and I suspect that you really haven't thought things through.

The alternative is to better educate drivers. Get rid of the fixation on speed and limits and train people to drive safely. If you drive with COAST (look it up if you don't know what that means) you will automatically drive at a speed that is safe for the conditions. You need to know neither your speed nor the speed limit. Drive with COAST and you will always have sufficient space and time to avoid catastrophe. This is a point entirely missed by the policy of dumbing down road safety to whether or not you are travelling faster than some arbitrarily set datum - a policy from which we must break free if we are to have roads safe for all.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 15:25 
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SafeSpeed wrote:
OK. So think about what you actually do yourself to manage risk while you're driving. It isn't especially easy because risk management is largely a subconscious process. At the end of the day 'rules compliance' doesn't have much to do with it. It's more about skills and attitudes.

One of the main observations hereabouts is that powerful messages about rules compliance are contributing to worse attitudes, worse risk management and marginal de-skilling. In this way modern policy is actually striking at the core of genuine road safety values.


I drive at a safe speed, and these days always within the speed limits. I pay attention, and note traffic positions in my head. If I am forced to change lane I generally know where other vehicles are.

I am considerate, and realise that if I am in a 30 limit, people will expect me to be doing that as a maximum. I am courteous (outwardly :) )

And always be ready for the unexpected. It will only happen a few times a year, but I'll be prepared. Like when you make an emergency manouevre and you know where all the vehicles around you are. Just as you carry out your emergency vicinity check... yep, there's someone doing 60 in a 40 because the lane ahead of them is 'clear'.

Skills and Attitudes is nail-on-the-head stuff. You've allowed for me doing something stupid, but have you allowed for the guy in front of me doing something stupid...? It's what I call consideration and reasonable expectations.

As I say, I am by no means a half-hearted driver. But I am humbled. I have a two-ton piece of metal with a potential kinetic energy I can't be bothered calculating. That goes whether it's our old 998cc, the 1398cc or the present 1798cc.

My scout leader taught me not to run with axes. My driving instructor taught me not to speed. I have no reason to doubt either.

Now, then, the second paragraph... what can I say? The law's not changed to my knowledge. I passed my test during the lovely hand-held days, no luminous yellow boxes then! To my knowledge, there is still the same emphasis on all of the rules of the road now as there was then.

=========================================

A mood breaker...

Got stopped by one of those hand-helds once.
"Occupation?" the officer asked
"cnut stretcher" I replied
"How do you do that?" he enquired
"well, first I put in my fingers, stretch a bit and open it out"
"And then..?"
"well, you get both hands in and stretch a bit more til your arms are apart"
"carry on..."
"Well, then you put your feet on the bottom and hands on the top, and stretch them way up here..."
"and what do you do then?"
"Give them a radar and put them on speed-trap duty"


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 15:33 
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nanki_poo wrote:
My driving instructor taught me not to speed.

but what he should have taught you is to drive at a safe speed for the conditions.


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