Driver errors cause more accidents than speed, according to DfT figures
1 October 2009

Driver error and inattention is the most common contributory factor in UK road accidents, according to new statistics from the Department for Transport, while speed-related causes contribute to just 14 per cent of all prangs.

The DfT stats attribute 68 per cent of all road accidents to a failure to look, while in the majority (32 per cent) of fatal accidents loss of control is reported as the contributory factor.

Exceeding the speed limit is a contributory factor in five per cent of all accidents; driving too fast for conditions accounts for nine per cent. This makes exceeding the speed limit the sixth most common contributory factor.

Overall, the number of accidents in 2008 fell seven per cent from 2007, to 230,905. The number of people killed in accidents fell by 14 per cent, to 2538.

When asked if it was time to reduce the emphasis on speeding and concentrate on improving driver awareness, a DfT spokesperson said, “To help the police tackle bad driving we have proposed making careless driving a fixed-penalty offence and have also recently announced wide-ranging changes to driver testing and training, to better prepare learner drivers for the road.”

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16

1 October 2009

You mean governments and authorities paid from our taxes to lead us and look out for us lie? Next thing you'll be telling us there were no WMDs in Iraq, or that man made global warming was all a huge scam.

1 October 2009

Make dayglo paint colours compulsory on all cars (Focus ST drivers will be chuffed) and you could probably cut accidents by 40% overnight, far more than all the speed cameras put together.

If big brother Labour stayed in power they would probably want a camera in every car checking your retina does a 360 degree scan at every turn before emailing you 6 penalty points for non-compliance.

1 October 2009

[quote Autocar]Exceeding the speed limit is a contributory factor in five per cent of all accidents; driving too fast for conditions accounts for nine per cent. This makes exceeding the speed limit the sixth most common contributory factor.[/quote]

This is not what the September 2009 report says. It actually says:

"Exceeding speed limit was attributed to 3 per cent of cars involved in accidents, while travelling too fast for conditions was attributed to 5 per cent." (page 50, para 9)

Therefore the continued widespread use of unmanned devices which target speeding exclusively makes absolutely no sense when only a tiny, tiny minority of accidents are caused by speed.

The report also mentions the following accident statistics:

Traffic calming (eg. speed cushions, road humps, chicanes) 6 fatal accidents, 176 accidents (page 48, table 4a)

So according to the Department's own data, calming measures were responsible for almost as many deaths as those caused by defective brakes.

[quote Autocar]Overall, the number of accidents in 2008 fell seven per cent from 2007, to 230,905. The number of people killed in accidents fell by 14 per cent, to 2538.[/quote]

Depends if you're dumb enough to believe the numbers. A report by the UK Statistics Authority from July 2009 casts serious doubt over the integrity of them:

"The [Department] under-records the numbers of those injured in road accidents and the severity of injuries" (page 10, para 4)

Is there no end to this government's lies and lunacy? (Yes, on 11 May next year.)

1 October 2009

[quote Autocar]When asked if it was time to reduce the emphasis on speeding and concentrate on improving driver awareness, a DfT spokesperson said, “To help the police tackle bad driving we have proposed making careless driving a fixed-penalty offence [/quote]

Ah yes, Labour and Plod's beloved fixed penalties - like Blair's policy to have plod march offenders off to cash-points to pay for their law-breaking, presumably with the victim's cash-point card. It's all about revenue, taxation and databasing the population not educating drivers and preventing law-breaking. It's almost as if the country's being run by an evil cabal with a lunatic for a front man. Nah, couldn't be:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLYIQnpMQ_Y&feature=player_embedded

1 October 2009

Sadly I don't think this will change the governments view on speeding. Firstly, it's far easier to fine a speeding motorist, as a fancy yellow camera will do the trick, whereas real life police officers will be required to catch bad drivers, and the government simply won't stump up the cash to do so. Relating to the above, speeding fines make money as cameras don't cost much to operate, wheras police officers cost more than the fines they issue. Then there is the "global warming" issue, where reducing your speed reduces emissions blah blah blah!

I for one would much rather see more police officers on our road. I think there will be a lot less accidents, therefore less traffic jams, so my car will be running at optimum speed not sitting stationary burning fuel on the M1 (shove that up your global warming!), and hopefully an impact on other things such as less uninsured drivers (cameras don't catch them!), all of which will reduce our insurance premiums. But then again, thats less insurance premium and less fuel usage for the government to tax us on, doh!

1 October 2009

[quote ThwartedEfforts][quote Autocar]Overall, the number of accidents in 2008 fell seven per cent from 2007, to 230,905. The number of people killed in accidents fell by 14 per cent, to 2538.[/quote]

Depends if you're dumb enough to believe the numbers. A report by the UK Statistics Authority from July 2009 casts serious doubt over the integrity of them:

"The [Department] under-records the numbers of those injured in road accidents and the severity of injuries" (page 10, para 4)

[/quote]

Pertinent and well made points from ThwartedEfforts. I would also point out that economic activity and therefore journeys travelled would also have declined dramatically during that period (2007-2008). If you could adjust for this you would probably find that fatal accidents as a % of journeys probably remained pretty stable rather than declining 14%.

In London, we had the BBC website claiming that the congestion charge had been a success because fewer cars were coming into Central London, but were enjoying the same average speed as before. That would suggest that the traffic jams were even worse.On what planet is this a success?

1 October 2009

What is interesting is that the rate of decline in deaths is twice that of accidents ( 14% versus 7%). that would clearly imply that the increased safety of cars is contributing half of death ( and probably serious injury ) reduction.

The EU could claim some credit for that as it passed the legistlation but it is primarily down to the manufacturers who did the redesigning and the car owners who have had to pay a lot of extra money for all the airbags and impact bars etc.

I would not be one of the ones who argues that speed cameras save no lives but when the govt. paid for a very large study of about 4,000 cameras a few years ago the summary opinion of the statisticans hired by the government was that cameras saved about 100 lives per year. As the overall death rate then was around 3,200 cameras had no impact on 97% of deaths.

THis latest data on the relative importance of speeding seems to correlate well with the camera study and indicate again that the road safety "industry" ( government, police and councils) are spending 90% of their time, and our money, on tackling only 10% or less of the causes of road deaths.


CADDY06

1 October 2009

I think it's obvious to all drivers on UK roads regardless of political/moral persuasion that any device which spends its time staring at a ten yard stretch of tarmac is going to catch only the unaware. In addition it cannot prevent accidents, and can only slap the wrist of the perpetrator- assuming the car is registered, isn't stolen or wearing false plates - with an arbitrary penalty at some later date. We no longer have the safest roads in the world, having since been overtaken (no pun intended) by countries who don't have quite so many petty minded buffoons in charge. It's all been a criminal waste of taxpayers' money.

1 October 2009

This title did make me smile. It almost negates the involvement of law enforcement in the control of traffic, doesn't it? How can you legislate against 'human error' (or mechanical failure)? All that can be done is reduce the risk. This can be done in many ways. Cameras are merely one and not a very good one.

The symantics of this issue astounds me.

[quote ThwartedEfforts] In addition it cannot prevent accidents, and can only slap the wrist of the perpetrator[/quote]

This has been the central point of the arguement against speed cameras. Taking a picture of a car exceeding a posted speed limit, a limit that is not governed by any physical law and is purely the opinion of the authority enforcing the restriction, does not prevent any incident created by that car by travelling at that detected speed.

1 October 2009

People need to eat more healthy and get some more sleep. that will keep them more alert on the road and cause less accidents on our roads!!! the NHS and Government should help promote this through schemes and classes. Instead of wasting so much money on fancy police cars.

I am still shocked to see X5 Bmws as patrol cars in west yorkshire !!

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