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Member since May 2011 · 2485 posts · Location: Brisbane
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Subject: Speeding in Australia
Thought you guys might enjoy some posts I recently made on a car forum about speeding.


I've been doing some quick research:

Backing up my idea that gov't propaganda helps shape the public's perception of speed limits and their importance:
Simply lowering the speed limit is unlikely to result in any significant change unless it is
backed up with suitable levels of enforcement and publicity.  Preceding this in the Australian
context was the need for community support...
http://www.easts.info/on-line/journal_06/3562.pdf

This report (3 PDFs) goes on to say that the public's perception of a 'safe speed' can vary depending on the type of road and its surroundings.  This would certainly make a difference to the witnesses in the case of the linked-to thread, who might assume that a road's safe speed is a lot lower than the driver of the Honda, who knew the road very well.

Meanwhile, this quote tends to work against the speeder, and says something particularly profound:

While serious crashes are quite common when considering the entire motoring population, for an individual driver, they are very rare. "It is still quite possible for an individual driver to engage in regular 'moderate' speeding for a long time without disastrous consequences….Therefore, what a great many drivers erroneously learn from personal experience is that 'moderately' fast driving is 'safe.'"

Alas I was unable to find the report I mentioned earlier about perception changes as a result of propaganda.

No its not. It what I would expect and hope would happen. doing 100 km/h in an 80 zone to over take someone doing 75 km/h is no different in doing 100km/h in an 80 zone. It is speeding. It is reckless. It is selfish
This is stupid.  If someone's doing sixty in an eighty zone and you've got a clear but short passing lane, you're far safer to pass him at a high speed than a low one.  Think about it - some passing lanes are only a few hundred metres long, who but an idiot thinks that's long enough to pass anything but a stationary vehicle?

The fact is if you're following someone who's doing 5 under the limit you MUST speed to pass them.  At a speed difference of 5km/h you're looking at more than 20 seconds to pass a truck (actually a lot more allowing for space on each end), hanging out in oncoming traffic, during which time you've covered 450 highway metres for the truck's length alone.

I really don't think you've thought this through: You're saying that it's better to either spend 30+ seconds and a large portion of a kilometre in the wrong lane, or spend the afternoon behind someone waiting for a longer passing lane? 

Sorry, I think it's better to wind it up and get the job done inside of 200 metres and 15 seconds.


As an aside...

The roads are zoned based on road quality, road width, population and no doubt a few other factors.
Yeah, like the lowest common denominator.  Have you seen the official government stats for 60->zero braking time and reaction time?  It's preposterous to think that government stats - and I apologize for not having them to hand to prove it - suggest that it takes ONE POINT THREE SECONDS to react to a threat on the road.  1.3 seconds?  Were they napping at the time?  And the stopping distance seems to be a stat taken from a 20-year-old Holden.  The rules are not designed with us in mind, they're designed for your grandfather.

Oh, here's one, from the NSW government:
[Image: http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/roadsafety/images/stopping_distances_various_speeds.gif]
Reasonably sure I could cut that stopping distance in half.  Now, where's my measuring tape?

Aha!  According to this page the 100->0 stopping time for a Megane 225 is less than 36 metres.


Studies show that driving BELOW the average speed is more dangerous than driving ABOVE It.  You're basically increasing the risk of accidents by advocating a no-passing policy.  Drivers doing 10km/h over the average are statistically least likely to be involved in an accident.

Sorry man, the numbers say your idea is more dangerous, not less:

http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/trs/roadsafety/sub06…

[Image: http://www.sense.bc.ca/img/isku_85th_1.gif]

Also from the PDF:

The standard of road safety management in Australia is more than ten years out of kilter with internationally accepted practice. [...] Tragically for road safety, instead of revising speed limits to this standard, state governments use it to determine which sites are the most lucrative locations for speed cameras.  
BLEARGH
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The problem isn't speed, as you've proven, it's dithery fuckwits who aren't confident when driving. The car is a very complex machine. There are numerous driver-facing controls. You have people driving it who can't even program the video, set the microwave or do basic PC troubleshooting, but are allowed to drive a machine that can potentially endanger lives in the wrong hands. This is scary shit. Driving tests need to be harder to pass and should consist of more rigorous testing than a few lessons and half an hour driving up and down for a while. Only in recent times did Mundaring get a set of traffic lights, which you now have to stop at. Up until that time, because Perth was deemed too far to travel to take a driving test, to pass you just had to start the car, drive up the road, turn around and come back again and park satisfactorily. I also think people need to be retested every 2 or 3 years, this would weed out those with bad habits and the mentally elderly who are getting a bit too past it to handle traffic. You should also have to take a test if you're an immigrant to any country before you can drive there. Don't even get me started on the amount of time it takes a pensioner to turn right onto a major road without the aid of a filter light.

I find it amusing though that in Perth they actually tell you on the news where the speed cameras are going to be tomorrow. Wtf? Invest in some infrastructure, stupid desert town. Don't put cameras everywhere like in London, but at least put permanent ones at major crash spots ffs instead of employing dude with a ray gun which is meant to be a surprise but then tell everywhere where he'll be.
"...either stop and think or fuck right off" (TheOutrider)
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Member since May 2011 · 2485 posts · Location: Brisbane
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I got another fucking speeding ticket.  This one's at night, and the picture's so poor I cannot even see where I was.  It's a big black square with white points of light, and apparently, my license plate.  I know roughly where it was, but if I'm right then I was very close to an 80 zone when they clocked me doing 74 in a 60. 

Fighting tickets in Australia is a crock of shit, the deck is so heavily stacked against you.  The police are apparently so worried about allowing speeders to get off the hook that they bring to court sessions three or four people, all of whom must be paid for their time by the claimant (ie: me) if they lose, in addition to paying for all court costs.

You can't appeal a photo ticket like you would a ticket from a real cop, and there's no mechanism for clarification: Your ONLY options are to pay the ticket and take the points, or go to court and fight it.  Want to know more about the alleged offense, such as exactly where it was?  Too bad.  Want to see a clearer picture?  Too bad.  Want to argue that you were not, in fact, speeding?  Too fucking bad son, you goes to courts and you takes your chances.
BLEARGH
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Quote by NFG on 2008-03-07, 16:48:
You can't appeal a photo ticket like you would a ticket from a real cop, and there's no mechanism for clarification: Your ONLY options are to pay the ticket and take the points, or go to court and fight it.  Want to know more about the alleged offense, such as exactly where it was?  Too bad.  Want to see a clearer picture?  Too bad.  Want to argue that you were not, in fact, speeding?  Too fucking bad son, you goes to courts and you takes your chances.
This is a class action waiting to happen. The traffic cameras in the UK are real ninja stuff. They have cameras here that read one number plate a second and check it against the central computer to see if you're licenced and/or insured. Or so their propaganda goes, anyway. It's entirely possible although given how disorganised the UK is, it's entirely plausible that the accuracy of this claim is similar to the TV licencing saying that they can tell what channel you're watching from 50 yards away in their van.
Main problem with Australia is that Aussies are either too chilled out or too scared of aligning themselves with the whinging Poms, so no one ever complains about anything, so things like traffic camera infrastructure lag 20 years behind developed countries. Don't even get me started on Sunday trading rules, the raft of sweet sod all to watch on TV when it's not ratings season and consumer affairs programmes that either blatantly pander to their sponsors or are so far off message that you might as well get all your lifestyle information from a tabloid newspaper.
Australia's a great place to live, but some things about it really grind my ben-was.
"...either stop and think or fuck right off" (TheOutrider)
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Member since May 2011 · 2485 posts · Location: Brisbane
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Man, you know Australia so well.  It's like you've spent a long time here or something.
BLEARGH
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Quote by NFG:
Man, you know Australia so well.  It's like you've spent a long time here or something.
Oh come on now, that's just crazy talk. You should have realised by now that all my arguments are either based on my own idealistic view of how the world should be or are completely fabricated.
Still, Australia does have certain advantages over London ;)
"...either stop and think or fuck right off" (TheOutrider)
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