10 most misunderstood road rules

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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby find_bruce » Wed Feb 06, 2013 6:14 pm

jules21 wrote:they've missed the most common one - road users thinking they have "right of way" when approaching a roundabout from the right of another vehicle. the rule is actually who enters the roundabout first.

+1 to that - there are 3 roundabouts near me that are on a T intersection. A scarily significant number of drivers think they have the right to enter the roundabout at the speed limit when driving along the T and it doesn't even occur to them to slow down, let alone give way. I am constantly amazed that there are not more accidents & coose my route to avoid them when possible.
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by BNA » Wed Feb 06, 2013 6:31 pm

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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Sydguy » Wed Feb 06, 2013 6:31 pm

The first rule should be "Slow is smooth and smooth is fast" - judging by some of the comments on the SMH online story most people were incensed by failure to keep left.

Which is another way of saying get out of my way. If people are so frustrated and emotional about a slower motor vehicle in front of them what hope is there for a cyclist? given they speed up until the next light, or catch the traffic and then the slow vehicle is all of a sudden right behind them... you use petrol and lose hair for nothing.

We need more than an awareness week and a brochure, but it is a start!

Interesting that this makes me think of the Strict Liability laws - they seem one sided, loaded towards the rider/ped road user but they sure make things simple! Strict liability is very easy for people to understand.

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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby il padrone » Wed Feb 06, 2013 6:57 pm

find_bruce wrote: A scarily significant number of drivers think they have the right to enter the roundabout at the speed limit when driving along the T and it doesn't even occur to them to slow down, let alone give way.

We get that on some roads near my home. No surprises with that. Australian road authorities have designed roundabouts to facilitate greater motor vehicle flow, thus they have ignored safety issues for other road users*. It is often entirely within the design spec to be able to drive through on the speed limit.



* "There are other road users apart from motor vehicles??"
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby wellington_street » Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:05 pm

Sydguy wrote:The first rule should be "Slow is smooth and smooth is fast" - judging by some of the comments on the SMH online story most people were incensed by failure to keep left. Which is another way of saying get out of my way.


It always amazes me the vitriol directed to people who are doing the speed limit but not keeping left. It's some strange brain malfunction where breaking one road rule (speeding) is seen as more worthy than breaking another (keep left). It's really much the same thing. I don't get worked up over either, I just find the behaviour by ranters rather fascinating.

il padrone wrote:
find_bruce wrote: A scarily significant number of drivers think they have the right to enter the roundabout at the speed limit when driving along the T and it doesn't even occur to them to slow down, let alone give way.

We get that on some roads near my home. No surprises with that. Australian road authorities have designed roundabouts to facilitate greater motor vehicle flow, thus they have ignored safety issues for other road users*. It is often entirely within the design spec to be able to drive through on the speed limit.


Can you sight those design specs? Any roundabout that is designed with that intention is not compliant with Australian Standards, nor Austroads' Guide to Road Design.

Roundabouts need to be designed for service vehicles and buses and these vehicles have larger swept paths - often this will result in small vehicles driven by aggressive drivers being able to travel through the roundabout at or near the speed limit. Not a lot you can do about that as engineering cannot remove the <insert expletive> factor.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby find_bruce » Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:49 pm

wellington_street wrote:
il padrone wrote:
find_bruce wrote: A scarily significant number of drivers think they have the right to enter the roundabout at the speed limit when driving along the T and it doesn't even occur to them to slow down, let alone give way.

We get that on some roads near my home. No surprises with that. Australian road authorities have designed roundabouts to facilitate greater motor vehicle flow, thus they have ignored safety issues for other road users*. It is often entirely within the design spec to be able to drive through on the speed limit.


Can you sight those design specs? Any roundabout that is designed with that intention is not compliant with Australian Standards, nor Austroads' Guide to Road Design.

Roundabouts need to be designed for service vehicles and buses and these vehicles have larger swept paths - often this will result in small vehicles driven by aggressive drivers being able to travel through the roundabout at or near the speed limit. Not a lot you can do about that as engineering cannot remove the <insert expletive> factor.

Two of the roundabouts I am talking about

Cnr Great North Rd & Hampden Rd Abbotsford As you say buses use both roads & need a greater turning area. They tried to deal with this by making it so the buses can driver over the centre if necessary. The issue is trying to fit a roundabout into a road that wasn't designed for it and wasn't intended. The issue with this road is cars coming from the north (direction of the street view link) who will enter the roundabout at speed, regardless of the limited visibility, especially when a bus is at the stop.

Another is Bibby Street at the corner of Sibbick St Abbotsford no buses on this road, and a smaller roundabout, but cars will enter at or above the speed limit, with only a gentle curve to contend with, even if you have entered the roundabout.

It is a dangerous design IMO, regardless of whether it is within spec or not.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Mulger bill » Thu Feb 07, 2013 2:26 pm

Ah yes, the tiny island roundabout :roll:
Up here they make 'em a good size supposedly but in many cases in lesser streets it's a tiny island surrounded by a wide reef of concrete raised no more than 15mm above the blacktop with an easy smooth transition.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby wellington_street » Thu Feb 07, 2013 2:51 pm

find_bruce wrote:Two of the roundabouts I am talking about

Cnr Great North Rd & Hampden Rd Abbotsford As you say buses use both roads & need a greater turning area. They tried to deal with this by making it so the buses can driver over the centre if necessary. The issue is trying to fit a roundabout into a road that wasn't designed for it and wasn't intended. The issue with this road is cars coming from the north (direction of the street view link) who will enter the roundabout at speed, regardless of the limited visibility, especially when a bus is at the stop.

Another is Bibby Street at the corner of Sibbick St Abbotsford no buses on this road, and a smaller roundabout, but cars will enter at or above the speed limit, with only a gentle curve to contend with, even if you have entered the roundabout.

It is a dangerous design IMO, regardless of whether it is within spec or not.


I'm familiar with both of those junctions actually. Nice part of the world to live and to cycle through. The first one looks like they have tried to continue a door zone cycle lane through the circulating roadway :roll:

Even without regular bus routes on those roads, they need to cater for service vehicles (e.g. rubbish collection) so on bad angles like the second one, they will result in larger circulating area than ideal. Without creating a roundabout about 4 times the size, that can't really be avoided on the second one.

It still comes down to behaviour from drivers and since police don't do any actual policing of the road rules other than speeding, there's no incentive for people to drive properly.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby im_no_pro » Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:21 pm

wellington_street wrote:It always amazes me the vitriol directed to people who are doing the speed limit but not keeping left. It's some strange brain malfunction where breaking one road rule (speeding) is seen as more worthy than breaking another (keep left). It's really much the same thing. I don't get worked up over either, I just find the behaviour by ranters rather fascinating.


Speaking purely from my own perspective, the ones that annoy me are travelling slower than the lesser of either a) the speed limit or b) a safe speed for the current conditions (which im well aware is subjective). I'm far from interested in speeding, I drive a company leased vehicle which means a) they know if I get a fine before I do (unless I get pulled over) and b) if I do my license, I do my job. Not to mention the fact having to pay speeding fines impacts on the bike parts budget :lol:

However, im also well aware of the fact that some of the people I encounter in this situation are potentially of the opinion they are doing the speed limit. As I think I have already mentioned in this thread or somewhere else on BNA, there is a tolerance level under ADR's for speedo accuracy which IIRC is in the vicinity of 10%. Then take into account other factors such as tyre condition and inflation can also affect speedo accuracy as well as vehicles that have wheels/tyres fitted with a different rolling diameter to original equipment that have not had the speedo recalibrated. Other speed reading systems (GPS units, overhead speed indicators on freeways etc) also have varying levels of accuracy due to influencing fators.

I know (factually) that the speedo's in my last 2 cars (both of which I had full use of from brand new, and were different makes & models) overstated my speed by approx 6-8km/h at 100km/h, as did other vehicles of the same make/model within our fleet. Whether this is by manufacturer design or not I don't know.

Taking all this into account means that just because your speedo says you are doing 100km/h, it doesnt necessarily mean that you are. For that exact reason if someone comes up behind me on the highway I make sure im observing the keep left rule because at the end of the day I have to apply the same thing to myself as I do others on the road, i.e. I don't see speeding as more/less acceptable than failing to keep left from a legal sense (from a risk management perspective however I do see it differently), and I know that just because I think im doing 100km/h, it doesnt necessarily mean I am, even though I have taken more precautions that the average motorist to ensure the accuracy of my speed.

I actually agree with your statement entirely, 1 offense is not more important/worthy than the other, but it works both ways. And as for those who actually move right into the path of cars travelling at a greater speed than them with some form of moral conviction that they are stopping people from speeding, I just laugh and shake my head at them given that their actions actually increase the likelihood of an adverse outcome rather than reduce it as they seem to perceive.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby wellington_street » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:47 pm

im_no_pro wrote:
wellington_street wrote:It always amazes me the vitriol directed to people who are doing the speed limit but not keeping left. It's some strange brain malfunction where breaking one road rule (speeding) is seen as more worthy than breaking another (keep left). It's really much the same thing. I don't get worked up over either, I just find the behaviour by ranters rather fascinating.


Speaking purely from my own perspective, the ones that annoy me are travelling slower than the lesser of either a) the speed limit or b) a safe speed for the current conditions (which im well aware is subjective). I'm far from interested in speeding, I drive a company leased vehicle which means a) they know if I get a fine before I do (unless I get pulled over) and b) if I do my license, I do my job. Not to mention the fact having to pay speeding fines impacts on the bike parts budget :lol:

However, im also well aware of the fact that some of the people I encounter in this situation are potentially of the opinion they are doing the speed limit. As I think I have already mentioned in this thread or somewhere else on BNA, there is a tolerance level under ADR's for speedo accuracy which IIRC is in the vicinity of 10%. Then take into account other factors such as tyre condition and inflation can also affect speedo accuracy as well as vehicles that have wheels/tyres fitted with a different rolling diameter to original equipment that have not had the speedo recalibrated. Other speed reading systems (GPS units, overhead speed indicators on freeways etc) also have varying levels of accuracy due to influencing fators.

I know (factually) that the speedo's in my last 2 cars (both of which I had full use of from brand new, and were different makes & models) overstated my speed by approx 6-8km/h at 100km/h, as did other vehicles of the same make/model within our fleet. Whether this is by manufacturer design or not I don't know.

Taking all this into account means that just because your speedo says you are doing 100km/h, it doesnt necessarily mean that you are.


That's quite often used as an argument by these people as well however it doesn't wash with me. If I'm doing 92km/h by super-accurate-measuring-device-TM but my speedo says 100km/h, what difference does it make? 10km/h below the limit is perfectly acceptable. And seeing as the speedo is the device for measuring speed in your car, I'm not sure it's reasonable to expect people to do over 100km/h on their speedo under some assumption it reads low. In the end, it's their licence and pocket that's affected.

(note I'm not having a go at you at all, just following on from you wrote)

im_no_pro wrote:For that exact reason if someone comes up behind me on the highway I make sure im observing the keep left rule


So do I. I'm pretty active on moving left as well, unless I'm being tailgated in which case I'm in no hurry to be courteous. There's never any excuse for tailgating and it's a very dangerous practice. I inadvertently omitted that from my previous post - there seems plenty of people who think it's OK to tailgate if someone isn't moving left.

im_no_pro wrote:I actually agree with your statement entirely, 1 offense is not more important/worthy than the other, but it works both ways. And as for those who actually move right into the path of cars travelling at a greater speed than them with some form of moral conviction that they are stopping people from speeding, I just laugh and shake my head at them given that their actions actually increase the likelihood of an adverse outcome rather than reduce it as they seem to perceive.


I can't say I've ever encountered that on the road. I'm tempted to think it's something invented by those with the "keep left" grudge - usually reading into something that's not there. I have certainly encountered times where some <language> pulls out in front of you into your breaking zone but that's usually incompetence/rude behaviour rather than some attempt to stop you from passing them.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby im_no_pro » Fri Feb 08, 2013 3:11 pm

wellington_street wrote:That's quite often used as an argument by these people as well however it doesn't wash with me. If I'm doing 92km/h by super-accurate-measuring-device-TM but my speedo says 100km/h, what difference does it make? 10km/h below the limit is perfectly acceptable. And seeing as the speedo is the device for measuring speed in your car, I'm not sure it's reasonable to expect people to do over 100km/h on their speedo under some assumption it reads low. In the end, it's their licence and pocket that's affected.

(note I'm not having a go at you at all, just following on from you wrote)


Of course 92 km/h in a 100 zone is perfectly acceptable. Whats not acceptable (both legally and IMO) is if you are doing so whilst failing to observe said rule to keep left. If you are doing 92 km/h in the RH lane and overtaking people, or there is congested traffic, then I dont have an issue with it at all. I have not doubt people will use the same argument is used by others as an excuse. Far from suggesting these people you refer to don't exist, I agree entirely that they do and most of them need to get over their superiority complex. Hell, i'm adult enough to admit that in my younger years I may well have leaned that way myself, but I just wish people knew and understood some of these lesser known road rules better. I have my opinions on whether exceeding the speed limit is as dangerous (as a blanket statement) as the education campaigns the authorities run will have you believe, but thats taking this thread way OT.

e/ on rereading that it sounds personal. I assure you it's not :)

wellington_street wrote:
im_no_pro wrote:For that exact reason if someone comes up behind me on the highway I make sure im observing the keep left rule


So do I. I'm pretty active on moving left as well, unless I'm being tailgated in which case I'm in no hurry to be courteous. There's never any excuse for tailgating and it's a very dangerous practice. I inadvertently omitted that from my previous post - there seems plenty of people who think it's OK to tailgate if someone isn't moving left.


Tailgating annoys me as well, but I move regardless (assuming I can safely do so), even if on occasion I have every right to be in the lane i'm in. That way they can go and tailgate someone else and put them at risk. Whether moving over is a courtesy or a legal obligation depends on the scenario I suppose.

wellington_street wrote:
im_no_pro wrote:I actually agree with your statement entirely, 1 offense is not more important/worthy than the other, but it works both ways. And as for those who actually move right into the path of cars travelling at a greater speed than them with some form of moral conviction that they are stopping people from speeding, I just laugh and shake my head at them given that their actions actually increase the likelihood of an adverse outcome rather than reduce it as they seem to perceive.


I can't say I've ever encountered that on the road. I'm tempted to think it's something invented by those with the "keep left" grudge - usually reading into something that's not there. I have certainly encountered times where some <language> pulls out in front of you into your breaking zone but that's usually incompetence/rude behaviour rather than some attempt to stop you from passing them.


I know people who admit to doing it regularly, which is the only reason I know it occurs. I have seen people change lanes in front of me and others for no apparent reason before, but at the end of the day I don't know if they are intentionally trying to get in the way or just want to move into the centre/RH lane for no apparent reason and failed to check for traffic.

I have to say, i'm thoroughly enjoying this. Conversations like this with the GLW usually end up with her rolling her eyes at me and telling me to leave work (risk management) at work and to stop being so analytical. Which I suppose she is right, I consider it all from a risk management perspective, which must like 'travelling at a speed safe to conditions' is subjective. Even if you understand the principle, peoples risk appetite at the end of the day will still vary. Hence why even though it annoys me, i've learned there is no point responding. I just suck it up and drive on. Which is kind of hard to believe considering the lengths I go to discussing it on the interwebs, but like I said above, I actually enjoy it. Maybe i'm starting to see why GLW thinks i'm strange sometimes.... :lol:
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby gorilla monsoon » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:03 pm

Nobody seems prepared to state the obvious: that Australian drivers are badly trained and ill-disciplined. All that most drivers seem to have done is learn the bad habits of the person who trained them.
Coupled with a shockingly bad attitude to most things the majority of us simply should not be allowed to drive.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Sydguy » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:45 pm

Making a drivers licence harder to obtain would see government lose office.

In my humble ill informed opinion if we slow down and chill out a bit we will kill and main less people.

Q. How can we improve road safety?

Some thoughts:

1. Phase in a maximum age for motor vehicles to get old cars off the roads.
2. Reduce speed limits on local roads.
3. Strict liability for vulnerable road users, include motor bikes, scooters, peds and bicycles etc...
4. Limit vehicle ownership to those with private vehicle parking in urban areas.
5. Get more streets car free, like the proposal for George Street Sydney were cars are 10km/h local traffic and deliveries only and give way to everyone else.
6. Target the 'hoon' cars if the exhaust is after market keep the car, sell it and use the funds for victims of vehicle accidents.
7. Limit all cars in Australia to 110km/h, I know it is easy to circumvent but it would help in cases where generally law abiding people have a moment of madness.


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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby im_no_pro » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:47 pm

gorilla monsoon wrote:Nobody seems prepared to state the obvious: that Australian drivers are badly trained and ill-disciplined. All that most drivers seem to have done is learn the bad habits of the person who trained them.
Coupled with a shockingly bad attitude to most things the majority of us simply should not be allowed to drive.


Agree entirely.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby g-boaf » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:17 am

Sydguy wrote:Making a drivers licence harder to obtain would see government lose office.

In my humble ill informed opinion if we slow down and chill out a bit we will kill and main less people.

Q. How can we improve road safety?

Some thoughts:

1. Phase in a maximum age for motor vehicles to get old cars off the roads.
2. Reduce speed limits on local roads.
3. Strict liability for vulnerable road users, include motor bikes, scooters, peds and bicycles etc...
4. Limit vehicle ownership to those with private vehicle parking in urban areas.
5. Get more streets car free, like the proposal for George Street Sydney were cars are 10km/h local traffic and deliveries only and give way to everyone else.
6. Target the 'hoon' cars if the exhaust is after market keep the car, sell it and use the funds for victims of vehicle accidents.
7. Limit all cars in Australia to 110km/h, I know it is easy to circumvent but it would help in cases where generally law abiding people have a moment of madness.


JM


YES! But some factory cars (ie, Lamborghini LP670/4, Ferrari F355, Merc C63 AMG) are louder than hoon cars - so how do you intend to cover point 7 adequately.

Absolutely like point 2 and 3, point 4 and point 5.

Point 7 is never going to work - it's just unfair. And are the foreign manufacturers going to speed limit their cars for Australia? No, not likely. And what of classic cars, or did you propose to have them eliminated? They have as much right to be on the road as you do have a right to ride a classic bicycle on the road.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby il padrone » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:32 am

Point 1 won't work too well either. What age? 3 years? 5 years? What happens when your car reaches said age? Do you just trash it......? Get a government pay-out.....? Forced to sell at fire-sale rates to a scrap metal dealer.....? Dump it in the back yard with the rest of the collection.....?

This would simply be a huge impost on the lower income earner, and completely destroy the concept of vintage and classic cars as collectibles.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby gorilla monsoon » Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:24 am

Sydguy wrote:Making a drivers licence harder to obtain would see government lose office.

In my humble ill informed opinion if we slow down and chill out a bit we will kill and main less people.

Q. How can we improve road safety?

Some thoughts:

1. Phase in a maximum age for motor vehicles to get old cars off the roads.
2. Reduce speed limits on local roads.
3. Strict liability for vulnerable road users, include motor bikes, scooters, peds and bicycles etc...
4. Limit vehicle ownership to those with private vehicle parking in urban areas.
5. Get more streets car free, like the proposal for George Street Sydney were cars are 10km/h local traffic and deliveries only and give way to everyone else.
6. Target the 'hoon' cars if the exhaust is after market keep the car, sell it and use the funds for victims of vehicle accidents.
7. Limit all cars in Australia to 110km/h, I know it is easy to circumvent but it would help in cases where generally law abiding people have a moment of madness.


JM


That's not a cure, that's a bandaid and goes nowhere near addressing better driving habits and altering attitudes. All you are doing is offering punishment in point form.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Mulger bill » Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:27 pm

Nothing wrong with the idea of strict liability Gorilla, tho' thinking about it, you just know that the RACV et al will mobilise their memberships to a letter writing campaign to MPs and that will be the end of that.

I'd like to see a graduated scheme whereby at age 17 an applicant needs proof of 100hrs on road bicycle use before they can graduate to a moto learners permit and from there, a mimimum of 200 hrs riding before they can apply for an auto learners permit AND THEN they go onto some proper schooling and instruction in a closed area before they are allowed onto the road under supervision.

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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby il padrone » Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:38 pm

Mulger bill wrote:Nothing wrong with the idea of strict liability Gorilla, tho' thinking about it, you just know that the RACV et al will mobilise their memberships to a letter writing campaign to MPs and that will be the end of that.

high tea tells us that we already have strict liability for many traffic infringements ie. speeding, red lights etc... all the TINs are strict liability. "You've been observed committing the offence and please pay the fine". Always an option to contest in court but the penalty if found guilty is much higher.

Mulger bill wrote:I'd like to see a graduated scheme whereby at age 17 an applicant needs proof of 100hrs on road bicycle use before they can graduate to a moto learners permit and from there, a mimimum of 200 hrs riding before they can apply for an auto learners permit AND THEN they go onto some proper schooling and instruction in a closed area before they are allowed onto the road under supervision.

I'd be happy to skip the moto-requirement. I've seen too many friends suffer badly on them and do not believe we should force this on people.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby gorilla monsoon » Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:43 pm

No MB, there is nothing wrong at all with strict liability but by the same token there is nothing at all wrong with actually teaching people to operate motor vehicles properly and the first thing that should be done is take the teaching process away from family members and friends and pass it on to a REGULATED driver training industry.

200 hours on a bicycle? No argument. 100 hours on a scooter or similar? No argument but at the same time new applicants coming through would have to complete an equal number of theory hours and closed course training.

Costly? No argument and junior would probably have no change left from $7k or $8k by the time he or she had a full licence but it would be worth it. And if they can't afford it, take the train or the bus.

Here's another one to think about: mandatory testing of ALL license holders every two or three years.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Xplora » Thu Feb 14, 2013 6:17 pm

il padrone wrote:I'd be happy to skip the moto-requirement. I've seen too many friends suffer badly on them and do not believe we should force this on people.

Actually this is PRECISELY why it is required... to ensure people appreciate the seriousness of commuting on a road.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby high_tea » Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:10 pm

il padrone wrote:
Mulger bill wrote:Nothing wrong with the idea of strict liability Gorilla, tho' thinking about it, you just know that the RACV et al will mobilise their memberships to a letter writing campaign to MPs and that will be the end of that.

high tea tells us that we already have strict liability for many traffic infringements ie. speeding, red lights etc... all the TINs are strict liability. "You've been observed committing the offence and please pay the fine". Always an option to contest in court but the penalty if found guilty is much higher.


Hi! :D :D :D

Indeed those sorts of offences are. But TINs are wierd in that the Crown doesn't get put to proof or anything. You can pay the fine, or you can fight the offence in court. The distinction between "paying a fine" and "paying a bribe" is an interesting one. I do not think they're the same thing, but I think some of the similarities are striking. I can't help but wonder whether this has had an impact on the credibility of the traffic laws.

Most if not all, of the offences in the Road Rules are strict liability offences in that they have no fault element. Funny you should mention penalties. I have started wondering whether the thing to do would be to make causing injury a circumstance of aggravation. So, a harmless breach of the Road Rules results in a fine and a breach resulting in injury could potentially result in some time in gaol. The only additional element would be causing injury (for some value of injury). This is nothing new - consider ABH offences and things like that.

None of this is a substitute for decent driver training, as has already been mentioned. Getting rid of the license-for-life nonsense that we have at present would be a good start, but can you imagine the outcry?
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Xplora » Fri Feb 15, 2013 8:03 am

^^ HT, there are a number of situations where it is REALLY easy to get away with an assault while being questioned by police - on the road and in the workplace. Unless there is a witness, you can reasonably expect to cop a much lighter penalty for driving into someone and putting them in hospital than if you'd pushed them into the traffic from the footpath (despite the results being identical). It seems if the Crown can't prosecute beyond TINs successfully, then there isn't much point having rules to protect anyone. Ultimately, it really does seem that it is the Law of the Jungle out there, with only the good grace of God to protect you.

I think it would be very interesting to see how differently we'd treat investigations of traffic accidents that deemed any injury requiring medical attention (beyond a clipstack) to be worthy of 6 months in prison. Or how differently people who drive. A couple simple tweaks to the traffic rules - such as liability for traffic accidents resting on the shoulders of the registered owner without another person to blame, and no ability for vehicles to be assigned to companies and assumption that the heavier/more powerful vehicle is responsible for liability - would quickly transform drivers. If you aren't confident and competant behind the wheel, you will be jailed eventually.

Humans are naturally aggressive and thoughtless on occasion. Having rules in place to ensure that people don't do unthinkable things helps a lot to temper that aggression. That Hull 4WD bloke is going to find out real fast what police action does. I think we'd all benefit from a few less silly people like that on the road.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby high_tea » Fri Feb 15, 2013 11:19 am

What I am suggesting is pretty simple: break a road rule, injure someone, land in hot water. It avoids the complications inherent in your "simple tweaks". On the downside, it's an actual change to an actual law rather than a vague slogan or a nebulous "tweak". Where's the fun in that?
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby find_bruce » Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:18 pm

high_tea the more I think about your idea, the more I like it.

* Police, Prosecutors and Judges are all familiar with the concepts, which avoids the difficulties in introducing anything new or novel

* it already works reasonably well in NSW eg negligent, furious or reckless driving - s 42 Road Transport (Safety and Traffic Management) Act 1999 & dangerous driving s 52A Crimes Act 1900

* on it's face it is neutral - it isn't a special law for cyclists or pedestrians, but it does work for benefit of those road users who are more vulnerable to serious injury

The only downside is that, like all such laws, it only works after the person has already been injured or killed.
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Re: 10 most misunderstood road rules

Postby Xplora » Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:37 pm

find_bruce wrote:The only downside is that, like all such laws, it only works after the person has already been injured or killed.

Well, it does create a serious deterrant. REALLY serious deterrant; because the value in police and legal pursuit goes up immensely when the penalty warrants it. Our mate Hull wouldn't have risked his family's livelihood by going to prison over his incident. Only a complete fool does things that could result in jail time.
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