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[UK] The evidence mounts

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by pro-pilot, Sep 28, 2007.

  1. http://snipurl.com/1rca6
    Nearly half of car drivers in crashes with bikes failed to look

    By Steve Farrell
    Politics & the law
    27 September 2007 12:42

    Nearly half of all car drivers in two-vehicle crashes with a motorcycle contributed to the accident by failing to look properly, according to a Government report published today.

    In two-vehicle accidents involving a car and a bike, 47% of drivers contributed to the crash by failing to look while only 16% of riders made the same mistake.

    In two-vehicle accidents involving a motorcycle and van, 50% of the van drivers contributed by failing to look while the figure for riders was again 16%.

    The report cites ‘failed to look properly’ as the biggest cause of crashes, contributing to 35% of all road accidents. Exceeding the speed limit contributed to just 5% of all accidents. It was attributed to 3% of all vehicles involved in accidents and 4% of motorcycles.

    Travelling too fast for conditions contributed to 11% of all accidents. It was attributed to 6% of all vehicles in accidents and 8% of motorcycles.

    The report is a blow to recent claims from road safety lobbyists that ‘downsizing’ motorcycles by limiting power and speed would save ‘hundreds of deaths and thousands of serious casualties’ in ‘in quite a short time’.

    The figures also seem in stark to contrast to previous claims, used to justify speed cameras, that speed is the biggest cause of crashes and contributes to around one-third of road accidents.

    A ‘Think’ campaign document currently on the Department for Transport’s (DfT's) website claims: ‘All reliable research into accident causation shows that the factors determining both excessive and inappropriate speed amount to about 30% of contributory factors in road accidents.’

    It defines inappropriate speed as ‘too fast for the road and traffic conditions’.

    A DfT spokeswoman said the document was first published in 2004 and that Think campaign material would be updated to "include and use" the new data.

    She said that when fatal and serious accidents were looked at separately, today's report, Road Casualties Great Britain 2006, showed speed as a much bigger contributory factor. Exceeding the speed limit contributed to 14% of fatal accidents and 7% of serious ones, according to the report. Travelling too fast for conditions contributed to 18% of fatal accidents and 13% of serious ones. The spokeswoman said that both factors added together were a contributory factor in 29% of deaths and 20% of serious injuries. She said: "We're looking at educating against the serious injuries or the accidents that tragically kill someone."

    A summary in the report groups accidents caused by speed with accidents caused by other factors in order to claim: “Injudicious action (including going too fast for conditions, following too close and exceeding speed limit) was the second most frequently reported category, involved in 27 per cent of all accidents. However this increases to 34 per cent of fatal accidents.â€

    Road Casualties Great Britain 2006 reports that the rate of fatal and serious injury accidents for motorcyclists is almost the same as the average for 1994-1998, while motorcycle traffic has risen by 33% in the same period.

    For all road users, deaths fell by just 1% from 2005 to 2006, while for motorcyclists they rose by 5%. Click here for the full report.

    See the ‘Think’ document containing apparently contrasting claims here:
  2. Speeding is a very difficult issue.

    For example, most residential areas are not 50K. But is that speed appropriate? Probably not at all times.

    Last Sunday I rode through Konwak. For those that know it ( I travel through it regularly) it is 60K and you could do more easily as I hardly ever see anyone or even cars there. However, on SUnday there was a market there. Was 60K appropriate? Definitely not.

    So in the report the parts that gives figures for speeding accidents is not quite right. What was the appropriate speed in the area at the time of the accident? Who knows. That is the problem. Until that can be worked out there will be constant arguing of speed enforcement.

    Where the report talks of 'not looking', well the faster one goes the less one sees. So can it be argued that when a driver did not look properly, was it because the driver was going too fast for the conditions? Perhaps not always, but quite often the answer would be yes.

    So, is speed to blame for accidents all the time? No. Some people would get involved no matter what because they are just stupid. In other cases, carelessness, and of course inappropriate speed.

    I think a lot of accidents (we should be saying collisions) occur through lack of respect and courtesy for other users. I see it every day. Cutting people off, tailgaiting, running red lights, stopping opposite double lines and the list goes on.

    If people had more courtesy and respect we would be better off.
  3. We're fcuked then aren't we? :cry:
  4. Yep :roll: