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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:29 
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This in the Daily Telegraph today.

Edited:
Quote:
Adam Szolomicki, 27, a Pole living in Stratford, east London, suggested that carbon emissions could be reduced by uprooting road humps.


Sounds more sensible to me :).

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Last edited by Dixie on Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:34, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:33 
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Safe Speed issued the following PR at 12:26 this afternoon:

PR281: Van man wrong target Mr Darling

news: for immediate release

DfT announces a welcome £1.3 million pound spend on driver education - but
directs it at the wrong target.

Our White Van Men have an enviable safety record and pose the lowest risk to
pedestrians according to the Department for Transport's (DfT's) own figures.

Paul Smith, founder of the Safe Speed road safety campaign
(www.safespeed.org.uk) said: "I fail to understand why road safety policy is
not properly driven by the evidence. White van man poses less risk to
pedestrians than even cyclists and is one of the very safest road user
groups."

"The risk to pedestrians posed by buses is ten times greater."

"White van man is amongst the worst for speeding but amongst the safest in
terms of crashes. That should really prove to the DfT that they are barking up
the wrong tree once again."

"Education initiatives are always welcome, but why oh why can't we land them
where they are most needed?"

<ends>

Notes for editors
=================

See:
http://www.safespeed.org.uk/pedrisk.html
with full references to official source data.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:37 
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Apart from safety - seem to remember somewher seeing that vans generate less pollution than buses -don't really need proof - just walk through any town and see the fog emanating from any /most buses.
Unfortunately the eco warriors have defective vision when it comes to buses -

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:44 
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And at a cost of 1.3m, and not to mention the cost to industry. If you take it at £50 per van that’s £9.5m. Is this just job creation again?

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 15:55 
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Dixie wrote:
And at a cost of 1.3m, and not to mention the cost to industry. If you take it at £50 per van that’s £9.5m. Is this just job creation again?


Let me guess - could there be a shortage of work for these Govt officials :lol:


Perhaps a course for sales reps next - teach them how not to panic brake , and how to allow for the vans to keep up a decent average speed by looking ahead and driving the road --e.g. -speeding up on downhill sections so that vans etc can speed up ,take advantage of the extra speed so as not to have to change down on the uphill, and waste fuel.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 16:40 
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The course seems to be aimed at improving fuel efficiency rather than safety. As long as it's based on real science and not PC notions of discouraging vehicle use (e.g. tell everyone to drive at 20mph), I think it's a reasonable idea and I would be interested in learning about it, even though I'm not a van driver.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 16:47 
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Zamzara wrote:
The course seems to be aimed at improving fuel efficiency rather than safety. [...]


Not the way the BBC tells it:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4646008.stm

And since I got a mention it's at:
http://www.safespeed.org.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5740

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 17:08 
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One thing that comes out of it --

He said it was worrying that people could take their driving test in a smaller vehicle but then buy a van which "is five, six times bigger than the car you've passed your test in, and you can just jump in and drive away, having no experience of driving a van at all

Perhaps a 3.5 t is 5/6 times bigger , but a transit ,LWB is about 18/19 ft long, including the rear step, a little bit wider than the average car ,but thats all .For contrast , dug out an old Haynes manual on the MK3 cavalier - length =4432mm = 14.6 ft .Admittedly have seen some inexperienced drivers cut corners in a Transit due to extra length, and most importantly of all relative position of front wheels, which are closer to the driver.

Perhaps the point they are missing in safety terms is the lack of visibility and the need to use mirrors more.
Although perhaps ther is a need for those just passed a test to be perhaps mentored in say transits - i know that at work this is something that is done.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:00 
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Mr Darling said: "I think I've been driven mad on a number of occasions."
Sounds like roadrage to me,
these white van men are professional drivers often making local deliveries in heavy town traffic, obviously they may have to move from parked at the kerb to a right turn lane by crossing 3 or more lanes when close to the junction, in my experience they DO indicate and often use hand signals (H'way Code not fingers) for extra indication.
Consideration for other roadusers obviously doesn't apply in a Government Limo.
fatboytim


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:10 
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Theres also what i call the "crystal ball" attitude with a lot of car drivers - "Ican see the van , so the driver MUST be able to see me"They forget that the driver is dependant on mirrors ,and the good sense of other drivers at times.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:17 
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From Hansard:

"16 Jan 2006 : Column 931W
Cycling
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many fatalities of pedestrians have been caused by cyclists (a) on the road, (b) on pavements and (c) off-road in each of the last five years. [41522]
Dr. Ladyman: The number of pedestrian fatalities in personal injury road accidents who were hit by cyclists on the road for the years 2000 to 2004 is shown in the table.
Fatalities
2000 3
2001 0
2002 4
2003 4
2004 1
There were no pedestrian fatalities hit by a cyclist on the pavement during these years.
We have no information on who was to blame for these accidents.
Information on pedestrian fatalities hit by cyclists off-road is not available. "

So I guess WVM has killed fewer than 4 people a year on the roads and none, or less than none on the pavement?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:24 
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I'm sorry but I disagree with this. In my experience WVM are amongst the most aggressive drivers on the road and particularly notorious for tailgating. This is a good idea which contains sensible information, a step in the right direction. :clap:


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:30 
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SafeSpeed wrote:
Not the way the BBC tells it:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4646008.stm


Woah, that is a bit of a bizarre rant, Mr Darling!

Still, at least the lessons are voluntary and free, so it can't be too bad.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:33 
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B cyclist wrote:
So I guess WVM has killed fewer than 4 people a year on the roads and none, or less than none on the pavement?

You would need the relative figures for miles travelled for such a comparison to be meaningful.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:45 
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You mean that you need the relative figures because the absolute ones don't look as good?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:50 
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B cyclist wrote:
You mean that you need the relative figures because the absolute ones don't look as good?

Well, I've not killed anyone on the roads so far in a 30-year driving career, so obviously I in a car am far safer than cyclists.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:53 
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Location: not too far in front, not too far behind.
Safespeed: We don't need no stinking cameras, we need better education so driver standards improve.

Govt: Here's some improved driver education for a large sector of the driving public.

Safespeed: yeah but no but yeah but no but I meant a different kind of education and anyway you can't say anything cos that Alistair Darling has got points on his license and he was a roadrager.

Of course I am paraphrasing here.

[still laughing]

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:57 
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handy wrote:
Safespeed: We don't need no stinking cameras, we need better education so driver standards improve.

Govt: Here's some improved driver education for a large sector of the driving public.

Safespeed: yeah but no but yeah but no but I meant a different kind of education and anyway you can't say anything cos that Alistair Darling has got points on his license and he was a roadrager.

Of course I am paraphrasing here.

[still laughing]


I'm pleased you are amused. :)

Safe Speed absolutely insists on evidence based policy and the fact is that WVM is statistically the safest road user group.

This tells me that DfT aren't looking at data - they are making their plans based on rumour and individual perception. And you're damn right I'm angry about that.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 18:57 
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SafeSpeed wrote:
Paul Smith, founder of the Safe Speed road safety campaign
(www.safespeed.org.uk) said: "I fail to understand why road safety policy is not properly driven by the evidence. White van man poses less risk to
pedestrians than even cyclists and is one of the very safest road user
groups."

"The risk to pedestrians posed by buses is ten times greater."

"White van man is amongst the worst for speeding but amongst the safest in terms of crashes.


Paul - what ARE the figures for WVM? Where can one find them?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 19:00 
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prof beard wrote:
SafeSpeed wrote:
Paul Smith, founder of the Safe Speed road safety campaign
(www.safespeed.org.uk) said: "I fail to understand why road safety policy is not properly driven by the evidence. White van man poses less risk to
pedestrians than even cyclists and is one of the very safest road user
groups."

"The risk to pedestrians posed by buses is ten times greater."

"White van man is amongst the worst for speeding but amongst the safest in terms of crashes.


Paul - what ARE the figures for WVM? Where can one find them?


Start here: http://www.safespeed.org.uk/pedrisk.html

I'm going to dig out the general risk figures this evening. They are not published to Safe Speed at present. But WVM has about half the average risk of a car driver.

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