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Safety Strategies from Europe - Vision Zero

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by forester_neil, May 9, 2008.

  1. From the Federation of European Motorcyclists' Association:

    An example of motorcyclists having a say on road design! Let's hope it sets a good example and is adopted by roads authorities here!



  2. That is fantastic Neil, good find.
    Why is it that it's always these northern countries that show foresight and understanding?
  3. Cheesus...someone actually listened to motorcyclists!
    Unfortunately...the minute someone crashes, the nitwits will shit-can it as a big waste of money. "see!...it did'nt work!"...

    Be nice if it caught on here though. :grin:
  4. Before you start singing like a Valkyrie in praise of them, remember that Norway has a blanket 80kmh (or less) limit, viciously enforced, and that WRB's were developed in Sweden. And Volvos.
    But yes, this story is good news, and they have done other good things...
  5. It's because they are inside for about 3 months of the year! This was my mum's reasoning behind the innovations that occour [she's Finnish].

    Also please note that 630,000euros for a few kms of road is great if your country is tiny, but um we are pretty big! So what I would liek to see is this kind of intitiave being applied to specific roads such as spur, putty rd etc etc
  6. I myself am not quite sure how to take this....I see 2 possible outcomes from such a idea.

    First one is that as soon as someone crashes there (and lets be real here), people make mistakes and crashes will always happen, and once that happens will people say well, look we built this road to your specs...people are still crashing it's dangerous lets just ban it motorcycles as a unacceptable risk.

    The second is do you want roads like race tracks? No matter what there will always be speed limits, there has to be, to many different people/vehicles etc on the road (agree some could be raised though) and lastly for me, some of the best roads are those that don't quite offer the best conditions, clear vision through turns, off camber corners, closing radius turns...all the things that i am sure would be fixed in this type of upgrade.

    Am i thinking too far outside the box?
  7. I think I see your argument Stewy - make the corners better and riders will just take them faster (is that it?).
    Fair comment, but look at the things they actually did on this road in Norway, and it seems to be more about what happens after you've left the road. Like moving signs to a safer place, safer barriers, run-off etc.

    Better sight-lines, IMHO, just protects all of us (cars included) from idiots that overtake on blind corners.

    I can't see a case against that kind of improvement, but I agree there is a political risk in crediting it to the demands of motorcyclists.
  8. yep basically in a nuts yes
  9. Oh yes, they're not perfect althought I wasn't aware of the 80 K limit.

    It's just a general comment, the people that I have met from places like Sweden, Norway and even Denmark seem to be so much more open-minded. I recall little being told little things like:
    - Very low religion participation
    - Unisex change rooms
    - Low crime, and focus on rehabilitation over jailing (which usually makes the person worse)
    - Low level of poverty, universal health care for all (it comes with high tax rates, but I could live with that)

    I am sure there's bad stuff there too, it's just the general picture I get from these places.

    I remember one documentary I saw, it was based on the reaction to a child killer. The circumstances were similar to the recent one in the UK, where a couple of 10 year olds (or so) murdered a fellow child. Horrible and sad story. What was interesting what the difference in the community's reaction, and the consequences.

    In the UK you had crowds outside the court, calling for the kids' hanging, yelling abuse and banging on the prison van. The kids were sent to a juvenile prison.
    In Norway (I think) the reaction was one of sadness and disbelief, no violence, no calling for hangings etc. The kids were removed from society and placed with psychiatrists in country workshop (more house than prison, but still secure), who work closely with them. The focus is on rehabilitation. It's hard for me to describe this accurately, but the difference in attitude between the two countries was amazing.
  10. There's certainly a possibility that riders will ride faster, feeling 'safer' on these roads. I am certainly frightened by the trees, steel fences, rocks and gulleys on our roads and it does slow me down. I find it incredible that it doesn't slow everyone down, but that's a different topic.

    Still, regardless of the reasons for riders coming off we must do all we can to ensure they're not killed when it does happen. I think stopping them from behaving like they're on a race track is a matter for education and maybe even some enforcement (if it's done in a sensible way, not just to raise revenue where it's more convenient).
  11. Whether the road will be sucvcessful at maintaining a zero toll of deaths and/or serious injuries is interesting, but...

    I think having the motorcycling communities' voices heard and acted upon (as opposed to listened to and ignored)was the spectacular issue behind this story. Many motorcycling organisations in Victoria/Australia are trying to be heard, its the reception that seems to be lacking.

    On an aside...I beat JDK to the punch! :p This story is now posted on teh front page under news!

    Yay me! I'm going to have an extra few beers at the Three Ravens brewery this arvo/evening just to celbrate! :cool:

    Cheerio then

  12. such a little price to pay for such a huge improvement.
    Hope they do /something/ here...
  13. Having roads designed for safety is a worthwhile goal and I for one would be voting for that. Some places would need a lot of ingenuity to make safe - ie mountain roads like the Black Spur and beach roads like the Great Ocean Road.

    Reducing signs and things close to the road is definately a good first step that is well worth considering. It would be interesting to ride that road in Norway (except that the 80km/hr limit would be frustrating).

    There is a huge push toward safety which is specifically targetted at motorcyclists but one thing that is not mentioned much is the attitude or skill of car and truck drivers with respect to motorcycles. I've had a lot of people tailgate me (even when riding in the left lane) when I sit on the speed limit and for safety sake I have to take action.

    I have heard stories of accidents where the rider is doing everything right, sticking to the limit etc but the other drivers on the road maim or kill them by quickly changing lanes without indicating or cutting them off in other ways.

    The focus of the current motorcycle safety campaigns could be even more dangerous for motorcyclists because other road users will take less care with motorcycles because they will be conditioned to accept that motorcycles are dangerous but it has nothing to do with other road users. Other drivers should be reminded to have respect for all other road users.

    First the focus was on hoons which probably account for .01% of accidents on the road, now it's on motorcycle only accidents which probably account for another .01% (these figures are not factual and quite probably a slight exageration). It's like saving money on stationary funding by reducing the paperclip budget while hundreds of reams of paper are used for printing things that are used once then thrown away.

    Of course safety is a worthwhile goal, I'm all for it. Anything that helps is worth acting on. A focus on tolerance and respect for all road users is something I'd like to see. Maybe key points from advanced driver courses could be advertised to help improve road user skills - even free basic driving skills courses wouldn't hurt (money on prevention may prevent having to spend so much on rehabilitation).
  14. The main reason Europe is so much friendlier towards bikes is because there is less of that 'us vs. them' distinction over there - drivers and riders are one and the same and they are all just road users. Actually the same thing is true in Australia of course, if only we weren't too blind or too stupid to see it!

    Training and education are all good but I believe the only way attitudes in this country will change is when more drivers also become riders themselves. Fortunately that is actually happening because more and more people take up riding thanks to the growing cost of living, congestion and other such factors.

    As for that road, well... a million bucks for 15kms of road is not cheap. How much would it cost to modify even one road - say, Pacific Hwy?
  15. Good point about people who take up riding having a better attitude toward bikes. Not much you can do about psychopaths on the road though.

    Surely some of the "cheaper" options to improve roads could be implemented ... or as they upgrade roads they could include some safety improvements.
  16. Yes there is. Mandatory jail for death by motorvehicle.
    Simple. You kill deliberately or by what the yanks call callous indifference, you lose your licence (for ever) and get jailed.
  17. Sounds like a good way to go!