Given that road safety related topics are so appreciated by RiotAct readers, I submit the following.
But first up, my condolences to anyone related to the following.
A (rough) breakdown of fatalities on ACT roads for 2010 shows:
Pushbikes – 2. Both were 60+ year old males.
Motorcycles – 4. The official stats have 5, but I am unable to find the 5th. 1 on a rural road, 3 at intersections.
Male, single vehicle, into unforgiving roadside furniture – 3
Male, single vehicle, into other vehicles – 4. Three were into trucks.
The above two catagories would have to include the possibility of suicide.
Multiple fatality – 1. Step up Mully.
Collisions at intersections – 2. The youngest was 74 years old.
Makes justifying red light/speed/point to point cameras a challenge.
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“Makes justifying red light/speed/point to point cameras a challenge”
Your statement is not supported AT ALL by your statistics (Which have no structure).
I disagree with your closing assertion.
You have not listed contributing factors for any of these deaths. The motorcycle and single vehicle accidents may well have been speeding/redlights by the driver. The bicycle, motorcycle and intersection collisions may well have been speeding or redlights by an other party. In at least one of these motorcycle incidents it was a car vs bike collision at an intersection.
Where did you get your stats from?
I’d say there were 8 collisions at intersections.
Meaning there were 8 out of 15 crashes that occurred at intersections, resulting in 11 deaths.
True point to point speed camera’s seem hard to justify. However disagree on the red light / speed camera’s.
But people forget the key problem. I’ll let you in on a secret that apparently no one wants to hear. IT’s RESPONSIBILITY. If people obeyed the road rules and stuck to the speed limit, took care entering intersections and didn’t drink drive you could almost expect a fatality free state!
The whole ‘revenue raising’ arguement is just an excuse for poor driving skills. Don’t speed, don’t get caught, dont pay revenue!!! Simple really.
So using your theory of causation, something like mandatory seat belt laws are also difficult to justify?
The multiple fatality was at a controlled intersection, so of course it would have been prevented if a speed/redlight camera was installed at that location.
“The whole ‘revenue raising’ arguement is just an excuse for poor driving skills. Don’t speed, don’t get caught, dont pay revenue!!! Simple really.”
So your telling me that obscure signage, short area’s of lower speed limits and inconsistant speed limit placements have nothing to do with ‘revenue raising’?
I fully support the idea of catching people who are doing 200km/h in a 100 km/h zone… What I don’t support is this “victorian” idea of catching people doing 84km/h in an 80km/h zone which was 100km/h a couple of km down the road and will be 100km/h a couple of km up the road. There are many legitimate reasons why a persons speed may creep up slightly (eg keeping a close eye on a driver driving erratically)
If anything, your statistics seem to show that red light and speed cameras are doing an awesome job of keeping the road toll down. If we remove them there’ll be carnage!
That reminds me, it’s time to top up the tiger repellent…
The constant examination of the Road Toll and Road Toll reduction strategies never ceases to amaze me. Yes they are traumatic events that impact on the families of those who are killed and the broader community and I extended my sympathy to those effected. Collisions cost the taxpayer a lot of money and drain a lot of public resources from initial response crews, to medical treatment to post accident rehabilitation.
The biggest problem is apathy and the it won’t happen to me attitude. People ignore the campaigns and eventually because of constant bombardment of road reduction toll campaigns are no longer sensitive to the message.
Red light cameras do not stop people going through red lights it simply records it happening. Speed cameras do not stop people speeding it simply captures them doing it. Cameras in banks do not stop armed robberies.
There will never be a zero road toll unless you take everyone off the road or all motor vehicles are rated to withstand catastrophic impacts. No matter how safe you think you are or how good a driver you believe you are you cannot control the other driver.
Until such time as humans have nothing to do with driving vehicles there will always be road deaths.
You cannot regulate stupidity so there will always be someone running a red light, driving to fast, drinking and driving, texting, changing a CD, falling asleep at the wheel or suffering a lapse in concentration. Theses factors will ineviatably lead to a collision causing death or injury.
You can tell people not to do these things until you are blue in the face, you can fine those who get caught but you will never achieve a zero road toll while humans are in control of vehicles.
Cranky, your use of statistics could rival the best Pubes in town!
Speaking of useless statistics, the stat I’d be curious to see is how many of the fatalities on NSW roads were ACT residents prior to their demise.
So, only deaths count, accidents aren’t important at all?
If we have a low road toll for the year – More speed cameras as they are undoubtably working.
If we have a high road toll for the year – More speed cameras because people are still speeding.
firstly, It would be very rare in ACT to done for 84km/h in a 80km/h zone as you put it, unless you made an ass of yourself when your speaking to the copper.
secondly, if you think the sign was obscured and were picked up, you can proceed through the courts and dispute liability etc.
Thirdly, I’m really not sure there is any excuse for creeping over the speed limit. If a driver can’t stick to the speed limit or has problems staying under it, the question must be asked whether they should be driving. It’s the same as ‘just’ being over the alcohol limit.
Lastly, I’ve been driving for 15 years. My work involves driving 24/7. I have never been fined or pulled over for breaking road rules. If I can do it, why can’t everyone else?
Even if they do save lives. Ban them. I’m in a bit of a hurry…….
The Road toll is simply a witch hunt which affords politicans the opportunity to be perceived by their constituents as working hard to “save lives” by creating a “need” for more draconian laws to charge you money ,enhance surveillance of the roads and foster a sense of guilt . This false sense of guilt helps to prevent opposition to or even discussion about the “need” for stronger more coercive laws/penalties which they will choose to enact for their own selfish reasons.
This is about money. It is similar to the heavy fines imposed upon Australians who are stupid enough to actually buy things in Australia. On a positive note this could aid in reducing the number of clandestine plastic bag distribution networks operating within the ACT………if the $27,000 fine doesn’t.
What GOF said.
I wonder how many motor vehicle accidents are really accidents in the true sense of the word (eg you’re driving carefully around a corner, lose traction and crash due to hitting a big pothole or something similar), and how many are the equivalent of a pilot performing a “controlled flight into terrain”. This is probably a similar theme to what GOF discusses…distraction, tiredness, drunkenness, confusion, loss of situational awareness, poor judgement etc.
The one “accident” I’ve been involved in was caused by the person behind me becoming distracted by the remnants of a two vehicle crash at the side of the road, and driving into the back of my car in a quite controlled manner and at moderate speed as I was stopped at a set of traffic lights. Most other accidents that people have described to me have had similar causes.
Does anyone know of any sources of background information to car crashes similar to air crash investigations?
Cranky, could you please explain how a single vehicle accident occurs “into other vehicles”
Were they all parked?
There is no such thing as a motor vehicle accident they are collisions. Collisions involve a human factor leading to an impact. In Canberra that factor is normally slow reaction time compounded with the obligatory requirement to sit less than a metre from the vehicle in front.
The other one is coming down a merging ramp onto the Parkway doing 60km/h trying to merge into traffic doing 100km/h the driver then realizes they can’t merge and jams on the brakes and a collision occurs. This then causes the ‘rubberneckers’ on the other carriageway to slowdown and look causing another multi car pile up.
These are not accidents these are human factors at work causing a collision.
@screaming banshee: I think that cranky might have meant single occupant vehicle.
@Grumpy Old Fart: Why not just ‘crash’. Would a single vehicle rollover on a flat open road be called a ‘collision’? If so, what exactly has the vehicle collided with? I wouldn’t say it’s collided with the ground, because it was in contact with that already.
@GOF #17: “These are not accidents these are human factors at work causing a collision.”
They are also a very small example of circumstances to describe an accident or collision.
So when a kangaroo jumped in front of my car one night on the Coppins Crossing road, I suppose that was a collision and not an accident?
I was driving in my own lane at the speed limit. I saw the roo coming right at the last moment and slammed on my brakes doing my best to avoid contact, but there wasn’t really much else I could do.
I guess you’re right, the human factor involved was me being silly enough to drive my car. By jove, I think you’ve cracked it! Put on your tinfoil hats everyone and let’s ban humans.
@Holden Caulfield; it’s called not driving to conditions, you were driving where there are roos yet chose to drive at a speed where you could not avoid them, not an accident at all. This is how the police would charge you when the collision results in injuries to people.
Jim Jones said: “So, only deaths count, accidents aren’t important at all?”
+1 Exactly right. So collisions that result in serious injury, minor injuries or nil injury (but major/minor vehicle damage) is of no issue to the community? Lets see the stats for all collisions and then make a more informed comment…….
You are wrong.
I hit a dog that ran out of a blind driveway in a country town. I had no option of not hitting it, as there was a semi trailer coming at me in the opposite direction. Despite travelling at the posted 60kmh speed limit, the collision was unavoidable.
The dog ran away. I was up for $500 excess for the cracked front bumper, driving light and headlight mounts to be repaired under insurance.
I’ve also just missed a kangaroo that leapt out on a suburban street. What a kangaroo was doing in Stirling I’ll never know…
“Motorcycles – 4. The official stats have 5, but I am unable to find the 5th. 1 on a rural road, 3 at intersections.”
It took a couple of minutes on the AFP website to find the details of the 5 motorcyclist deaths:
11 Feb – Amaroo
2 Apr – Uriarra
18 Apr – Macgregor
21 Jun – Isaacs
17 Jul – Fyshwick
So you think it’s all about people who actually run red lights? WRONG! Cities across the map have been caught shortening yellow lights for profits. Cameras have been cited as having a large amount of errors, where the cameras will malfunction all on their own. Cameras have been in the news for catching people who have never driven the roads, dead, or while at work. Besides tell me how a camera that sends tickets 3 weeks later is going to have an effect on stopping an accident? It won’t. Besides, an officer can do a more through investigation during a traffic stop vs. the 1 or 2 citations a red light camera can get you for. I would rather have officers checking; insurance, driving records, warrants, ect. to ensure bad drivers get points and are removed from the road.
Year to year comparison of road death stats in a place as small as the ACT are totally useless. One year we may have a single accident with multiple deaths that ‘blow’ out the stats, the next year we don’t. Bottom line is rather than worrying about a death tally each accident should be considered on it’s own with strategies to counter coming out of that. But alas it is tallies that attract newspaper and TV news headlines which in turn attracts opposition political parties.
@Growling Ferret, oh okay, you mean wrong about the interpretation of an accident?
Right or wrong it’s just how you’re prosecuted. Happens to motorcyclists all the time as they’re more likely to sustain injuries in this sort of ‘accident’. Police will interview at the hospital bedside, take admission of guilt (I didn’t see it; it came out of nowhere, yes I was doing the full posted 80, yes I saw the roo sign, yes the sun had just gone down), okay Sir, thankyou for assisting the police, I hope your spine heals – the fine is in the mail.
As to your instance, from what you’ve wrote I think that you believe that because the ‘accident’ was unavoidable at the exact moment that you struck the dog (semi coming, blind driveway, maximum speed) that the entire event including all circumstances leading up to it was therefore also unavoidable, this is not true.
A dog off the chain is different to a kangaroo in the bush, the owner of the dog is liable, it’s either the negligence of the dogs owner that caused the collision or perhaps you were not paying full attention in a built up area where a reasonable person would expect to encounter these types of road hazards, either way, it was avoidable so an ‘accident’ is not possible. Even your insurance company agrees with this and applied liability to you by default.
If you had the details of the owner and the police had made a report that matched your story (or if the owner volunteered liability, ha ha) your insurance company would’ve pursued the owner for costs and you would’ve got your $500 back, eventually.
Not exceeding a speed limit means you can’t be booked for speeding, that’s about it, it’s not a defence that absolves you automatically from anything that a reasonable person would expect to encounter on a road in given conditions.
also keep in mind, there are lots of short 50 metre cul-de-sacs in canberra, they all have 50km speed limits, if you hit someone doing 50km on one would you say “It was unavoidable because I was doing the speed limit and had right of way”?, if you were the magistrate presiding do you think it reasonable that it be called an accident?.
My best kangaroo sighting was in Barton, during a work day, full size roo bouncing along past the old pm&c building on his way to the lake.
“So you think it’s all about people who actually run red lights? WRONG! Cities across the map have been caught shortening yellow lights for profits. Cameras have been cited as having a large amount of errors, where the cameras will malfunction all on their own. Cameras have been in the news for catching people who have never driven the roads, dead, or while at work. Besides tell me how a camera that sends tickets 3 weeks later is going to have an effect on stopping an accident? It won’t. Besides, an officer can do a more through investigation during a traffic stop vs. the 1 or 2 citations a red light camera can get you for. I would rather have officers checking; insurance, driving records, warrants, ect. to ensure bad drivers get points and are removed from the road.”
Nice cut and paste from an American website.
Citations? Officers checking insurance?
“Not exceeding a speed limit means you can’t be booked for speeding, that’s about it, it’s not a defence that absolves you automatically from anything that a reasonable person would expect to encounter on a road in given conditions.”
Accidents while driving…? How about a sneeze?
“Cities across the map have been caught shortening yellow lights for profits.”
Whats a yellow light for?
Is it time to retire the tally room?