Will add extracts from
Towards Zero Together – South Australia's Road Safety Strategy 2020
all interesting stuff you must be keen to read it.
With all the mentions of speed and risk do you think it seems sensible that if you are cycling on the road it you should to keep the speed below 30 Km/Hr if there is cars about?
It seems if you hit something (or fall off) at over 30 Km/Hr the chance of being seriously injured increase significantly.
I would welcome 30km/h speed limit in residential streets, and 50km/h on urban arterial roads. 'Safety in Numbers: A cycling strategy for SA 2006-2011' indicates that 2/3 of serious cyclist injuries occur on (urban) arterial roads. Australians are reluctant to reduce speed limits, so it would be difficult to get reduction to 50km/h, let alone 30km/h on urban arterial roads.
I see two ways to get better acceptance of lower speed limits. One -- Explain how lowering speed limits has decreased the number of casualties (have references to support this). That lowering speed limits further will decrease casualties further, decrease costs to MAC (Motor Accident Commission), and therefore should keep down CTP (Compulsory Third Party) premiums. Two -- All new vehicles to be fitted with intelligent speed adaptation systems that use GPS to determine speed zone and limit vehicle speed. Three designs. I prefer the design that initially keeps speed within the zone limit, but driver has choice of overriding (but hope it would make sounds to remind the driver). So drivers would need to make an active choice to exceed the speed limit and risk a speeding fine.
Injuries depend on velocity and mass, so cyclists tend to be more seriously injured if colliding with a vehicle than the bitumen (i.e. own body weight). Yes, a vehicle travelling over 30km/h when hitting a pedestrian, markedly increases the risk of serious injury or death. Studies refer to pedestrians but can extrapolate to cyclists.
Worth having a squiz at Copenhagenize today http://www.copenhagenize.com/2012/05/new-yorks-new-marketing-fail.html in regards to talking speed limits in cities. Also interesting to see that Department of Transport in NY is as hopeless at marketing as MAC in this country.
Btw why is it called Motor Accident Commission? Shouldn't it be called Traffic Accident Commision to make sure campaigns were not biased? Just saying. In Denmark it is called 'Commission for better traffic safety'...
Kenneth, quite right about Motor or Traffic.
Some government documents, and especially the media, refer to 'accidents' as though the collision could not be prevented. In my Dec-2011 submission to the NTC (National Transport Commission) I asked (probably in vain) to stop using the word 'accident'. Time that some road users accepted responsibility for their driving and collisions / crashes.
Remember having a talk from a Police Officer at school many (many) years ago saying there was no such thing as an "accident", it's always someone's fault and ultimately avoidable
Plus I thought there were no accidents, just crashes……
Hmm maybe it's time to invest in a horse and cart, or maybe we need someone with a flag walking in front of each car. It's all well and good saying that reducing speed is going to save lives but the reality is that this is a far too simplistic view.
With people being forced to live further and further from their place of work, reducing speed limits is, in my opinion, only going to increase frustration, travel times and reduce concentration on the driving task (less time at home means more will be done in the car).
If governments are serious about reducing road tolls then a more holistic approach needs to be considered taking into account many different aspects including town planning (e.g placing industry closer to the workforce and building more suitable infrastructure), vehicle design, speed, vehicle operator education (yes, including cyclists), etc.
Brendan, I agree that need to look at speed AND other issues, especially vehicle design, driver education and Strict Liability Legislation for hip pocket education.
Maybe not time to invest in red flags, etc. But putting big warning signs on cars "Warning: Driving can be hazardous to your health and the health of others", "Warning: Driving Kills", etc. and painting all cars bright orange would maybe break this love affair we have with cars as objects of desire rather than as of utility. The conventional wisdom is that driving around at 60 km/hr is an inalienable right and the road toll is just a fact of life. I can't imagine any other commercial product that caused so much damage could be sold without appropriate warnings. The car culture certainly has us in its thrall.
Tim, I agree that the public put vehicles before the safety of people and other important things.
From page 7 of Towards Zero Together – South Australia's Road Safety Strategy 2020
"Economic cost of (collisions and casualties) about $1 billion each year for the South Australian community."
This increase insurance premiums and taxes.
Also petrol is unhealthy and a carcinogen. Would be unable to introduce petrol now as a new product.
Cars can be, and are, objects of desire. So too motorbikes, pushbikes, works of art. maybe we should all drive Trabants, live in monoform concrete blocks and toe the party line like E Germany in the 70s. Thank God I can still dream of owning a Porsche and Baum and actually enjoy life.
It has been said a number of times by various legal experts, that if road accidents and injury was reduced to zero, it would indicate that we would be grossly over governed.