Road Safety issues

Submitted: Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 19:58
ThreadID: 100487 Views:3692 Replies:13 FollowUps:32
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I posted the following comment on "Olsens Driver training and assessment blog.
Would be interested to hear other peoples views on the subject as I feel these items need to be addressed

Member - Richard L (WA) commented:
There are 2 major items that have been incorporated into modern vehicles thatin my opinion should be banned
1. VDU's (visual display units ) which are visable to the driver wilst the vehicle is in motion. This of course would apply to pretty much all Sat-Nav systems. How much "Divided Attention" is contributed to by these devices. By all means have them in a vehicle BUT UNABLE TO BE SEEN OR USED BY DRIVER WHILE VEHICLE IN MOTION.

2. Cruise Control....Probaly one of the most dangerous things ever to be incorporated in a motor vehicle. I would say a high proportion of single vehicle accidents on country roads would be attributed to Cruise Control.
Cruise Control takes away the last element a driver has of having something to think about, such that, that micro sleep now turns into leaving the road at set speed (which in most cases will be in excess of 110Km/h )
In contrast if operating the accellerator manually as you get tired you actually SLOW DOWN as the pressure on the accellerator becomes less. The driver now has that vital early warning that he needs to take a break.
Sure there a plenty of other indicators of tiredness but the average person will fight through these to some extent The slowing down effect is a major wake up call
In case you are wondering about my credentials I have been driving for over 50 years on every type of road you can imagine and I also hold an MC truck license having hauled Triple Road Trains from Perth to the N.W.

"Driving is a risk we would all like to minimise" I couldn't agree more and addressing the issues raised above may help


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Reply By: Member - J&R - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:05

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:05
Richard L,
AnswerID: 504481

Reply By: SDG - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:35

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:35
I recently read an article from one of the owner driver magazines. The article was about the spate of recent accidents between Melbourne and Sydney. One thing that was mentioned is that many trucks are now auto, with cruise control. Drivers are just getting bored, then getting tired. Apparently companies are starting to find it getting harder to find someone who know how to drive a manual.

I had an auto recently overnight for a test drive. I took it for a good run on the road, and for the first time, tried cruise control. Within half an hour, on a country road, I was bored, and starting to yawn. On the same stretch of road, I was forever going up and down gears, braking, ecelerating, etc and generally being alert.
AnswerID: 504485

Follow Up By: Rockape - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:55

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:55
most companies went for autos because of clutch and box damage from those that can't handle a manual box.

Have seen some incredible things at the lights with fully loaded trucks and manual trans, drivers trying to turn them into wheel standing dragsters. If it was my prime mover, I would remove that person from the drivers seat very quickly.

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Follow Up By: SDG - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:20

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:20
That might be one of the reasons they started to go to Autos. Now many of the older drivers who could drive manuals, are retiring, and many of the new generation of drivers can't drive manuals.
Or so i'm told by company owners.
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 13:58

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 13:58
"On the same stretch of road, I was forever going up and down gears, braking, ecelerating (sic), etc and generally being alert."


A cruise control doesn't take away the need to brake, change gears or accelerate as needed..or were you just doing it randomly for fun?

I recon they're are great and not dangerous at all. If you are "fatigued", cruise control or no cruise control you should stop and have a break, it's pretty simple.

I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:41

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:41
A lot of the reasons for auto's I was told (and I'm no expert in this) is around fuel efficiency. Far easier to keep optimal revs going on a fully auto box than the old crash boxes.

Then what would I know....
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Follow Up By: SDG - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 18:31

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 18:31
What I meant Explorer, is in a manual I was changing the gears because of the hills etc, and obviously not in cruise as it would have disconnected itself, but in an Auto the car did the work for me, cruise was still on, and I was getting bored, which can result in fatigue.
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 19:14

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 19:14
No worries - suppose there must be an argument to ban autos and cruise control then as some drivers appear to need continuous stimulation to stay focused on task at hand. Bit of Cold Chisel at full noise works for me :)

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Reply By: exmouth1 - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:37

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:37
Not sure where you are coming from, I disagree with your comments. Most of the younger gen like myself, I am 59 years young can multi task and find that these aids do make life and driving little easier. I use a sat nav for my work on daily basis I.e. mapping burn and fire boundaries, updating mapping data and the like. Cruise control is a very good aid to keep you within the posted speed limit and very beneficial on a long trip which I often do. Horses for courses I say!
Exmouth 1
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Follow Up By: G Marks - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:07

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:07
Yep Exmouth 1 I reckon that cruise control has save me heaps in speeding fines. I regularly drive from Vic to Western Qld and the cruise control is just brilliant. The wife drives an Audi with the new VDU's (visual display units ) which are visible to the driver whilst the vehicle is in motion. Its great and in my opinion is no more of a distraction than looking down at the instrument panel.....By the way I am 70 and the misses 68......
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Follow Up By: mikehzz - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 06:43

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 06:43
Cruise control makes me noticeably less tired on a long trip. I only use it on appropriate roads ie roads where you can sit on the speed without danger of hitting a curve that will flip you over. The Hume is a good example. It's great because I don't have to constantly check if the speed is correct or if there is a copper sitting in the bushes. If you can't use it because you get bored then turn it off. Some people can maintain concentration without their right foot involved. Cruise control certainly does highlight how erratic MOST people are at maintaining a constant speed. Its how the coppers make a living sitting at the bottom of long imperceptable downhill grades.
You would have to be an idiot to use it on a road you were unfamiliar with or that wasn't suitable. It's a great tool when used correctly.
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Reply By: Rockape - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:46

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 20:46
Valid points you raise. I can't comment on the cruise as i never use it. The GPS I use on the highway as a speedo which is less distracting than actually looking at the dash speedo, but that is just me.

My slant.1. Mobile phones, scary.
2. To many buttons to play with on the center consul.
3. The advertising campaign that says. Get out and walk around ever 2 hours
to stop fatigue. Great if you are driving refreshed, a disaster if you are
buggered. Couple of K down the track and bye, bye, sleepy, sleepy. Upside
down transport or tree destroyer. Have driven the odd K in trucks running
on empty.
4. Impatience. I can be guilty of that.

Good side.1. Air-cons. Slows fatigue.
2. Comfortable cabs and ride. Slows fatigue.

Good post Richard,
Keep it safe,

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Follow Up By: Olsen's 4WD Tours and Training - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:16

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:16
Richard and RA and others

Great comments all.

You can see my response to Richard L on my blog.

And as far as fatigue goes, there really is only one cure- sleep, but interestingly the evidence shows that 10 minutes is ideal, if you want to drive again. More than 15 minutes and you had best sleep for 4 hours before you drive, and this matches my own experiences over 35 years.

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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:53

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:53
Talking about fatigue..... if you wake up 2-3 hours earlier then normal and starter an activity of concentration or have a significant change in pattern, after 4 hours your fatigue levels are same as having no sleep for 24hrs.

Hence why so many accidents happen when people are travelling in country areas 4 hours from home early morning.

Body clocks are an amazing thing.
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Follow Up By: Rockape - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:20

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:20
On body clocks. The people I worked for used a study done in South Australia on fatigue and because of our long shifts they implemented some of the findings.
Best start time for a shift was 7 to 7.30 am or pm.
They would fly us in early for nightshift so you could try and get some sleep. If you travelled more than 50K on road on the way home you had to stay overnight and fly out the next morning. Unless you had someone pick you up.

This cost the company quite a bit as they also flew dayshift in an out in middle of the day, so they weren't travelling through the night. Big thumbs up to them.

Another thing on the body clock is what I call the witching hours. Mine are between 2 and 4 in the morning and afternoon where my reaction times and concentration are not the best. Most people have these whether they recognise them or not.

The more tired you are the slower your reaction time. Remember doing a big run from Sydney to Greenvale with a special. South of Rocky there was a railway crossing many years ago with stop signs. I saw the stop sign and pulled up. Me things where is the rail crossing, looks in the mirrors and it is about 200m behind me. Talk about running on empty.

I wish more would realise the effects of fatigue.

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Follow Up By: Olsen's 4WD Tours and Training - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:20

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:20
As you say Circadian rhythms are an important consideration. There is an old wise saying that if heeded can minimise risk,

"Never drive, when you would normally be sleeping."
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:45

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:45

Big flashing roadside signs warning drivers to focus on the road and not get distracted......

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Follow Up By: Rockape - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 16:03

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 16:03
what was that, I was adjusting my radio and talking one the phone while checking out a for sale add in the paper. Did I miss something.

Sad but true.

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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 16:47

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 16:47

LOL. Try driving a 40 series with a 2H engine, no air-con, and armstrong power steering. I'd challenge anyone to get bored... too busy.
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Follow Up By: fisherPete - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 21:32

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 21:32
Scott, from what I remembeer of my shorty 40, I was to busy keeping it on the road to ever get bored.
Cheers Pete
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 22:43

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 22:43
Pete, there's that, and the fact they rattle like a Tinkers cart...
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Follow Up By: fisherPete - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 07:19

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 07:19
LOL, yeah I had forgotten the rivetted construction, although it was mainly the back door in the shortly that rattled. Awsome off road though, although it was a buggar in the mud, once it got into a rut it was reluctant to climb back out. Mine was a 76 2f.
Cheers Pete
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Reply By: Motherhen - Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:41

Sunday, Feb 10, 2013 at 22:41
I will take an opposing view here Richard, as the variations are too great to lump DVUs and CCs into the "should be banned" basket. It gets down to driver responsibility and safe use of these facilities. An unsafe driver will be unsafe with or without these.

1. Aren't modern "navigators" sound based? I do not have this type of GPS. Surely if alone, being directed verbally through an unfamiliar city would be safer than struggling to watch traffic, lane changes as well as for the right streets.

2. Personally i do not like using cruise control, but for someone with certain injuries or medical conditions, resting the foot or leg whilst using cruise control can make for safer driving over the journey. These are not conditions that would make the person an unsafe driver, so i will not accept "then he shouldn't be driving".



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Follow Up By: Member - Arsenal Phill - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:30

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:30
Right behind you on this one MH.
I don't think SatNav is a safety issue. At the end of the day it would be an issue if you were trying to programme it whilst on the move, but if they are all the same as my 200, then that can't be done. As you say, audible directions can only help. I think they are fantastic gadgets. The only thing I will say about them is that placement and screen size, could be issues. If they are not correctly positioned in relation to the drivers position, then it could have a negative impact. Also if the screen is too small for the individual driver (dependant on their eye sight condition) and they are struggling to focus or read the screen, then that could contribute and be classified as a dangerous distraction.
As for the cruise control I think it has pro's and cons. I never use it as it uses more fuel in my 200. Also, for me personally it doesn't feel natural not to have my foot on the accelerator pedal. The only thing I will say that I reckon in an emergency, it will take fractionally longer to get your foot from the floor, onto the brake, rather than going straight from accelerator to brake. Time wise it could be fractions of a second, but on the road that all adds up to metres. You have to ask yourself in each potential accident, are those metres going to make a diiference? 9 times out of 10 I'd have to say `yes'.
At the end of the day, we have to be constantly monitoring ourselves, and the way we drive.
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Follow Up By: Bazooka - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 22:53

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 22:53
Portable satnavs can be programmed on the move and in that regard they're in the same boat as phone texting as far as potential danger is concerned. Depending on where you have them mounted they can be a distraction, especially in an unfamiliar city, but probably less of a distraction than looking for street signs etc, and definitely less than a lone driver trying to navigate with a street atlas for example. Unless of course you're still using Apple maps in which case you've probably already driven off the end of a pier somewhere and won't be reading this anyway.
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Reply By: Mick O - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:31

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:31
Cruise I believe is an asset. It reduces fatigue, provides consistent regulation of speed and that should improve safety, particularly on country roads. It allows you to pay MORE attention to what else is going on around you and the road simply by removing the constant need to concentrate and monitor your speed. I have found this particularly pertinent in my case and cruise control is always the first after market accessory I fit should it not be standard in my new vehicle.

Divided attention is a very great risk and therefore you would have to say that any visual display that diverts your attention from the road is a bad thing…..however;

Most of these after market navigators are voice controlled. They are also designed to be placed in direct, straight line view of the driver, ie in the drivers field of view on the windscreen (directly in front). They are therefore still within a drivers view of the road directly ahead and would therefore be less of a distraction than a centre console unit. Those mounted or integrated into a stereo unit in the centre console are a definite distraction as any visual referencing requires you to look away from the road ahead. In that example, your stereo is also a distraction as are your heater controls, ashtray and anything else that diverts your attention from the road.

Also included in that should be Eating, Drinking & MOBILE BLOODY PHONES.

It’s interesting to note that texting and chatting on mobiles whilst driving is endemic across all age groups. It’s not just the young. I’ve seen many an older driver cruising down the freeway at 100 kph happily chatting away on his/her phone while towing a 22 foot van behind the 100 series.

Don’t worry, I reckon it won’t be long before all these things are incorporated into a Heads Up Display on your windscreen.

As an aside, study of Road toll statistics, particularly around single vehicle fatalities (metro and country) would not support your CC theory. Inattention and speed as causes yes but not CC as a contributing factor.

Cheers Mick
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Reply By: olcoolone - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:39

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 08:39
I think one should not gauge others abilities by the lack of there own ability........

Have you every use the item your referring to.

Over the year I have seen a BIG reduction in driver abilities to a point where it has become dangerous to other road users, the government push speeding (drop 5 campaign) as a way of avoiding accidents and you here on the radio things like "it's raining so be careful on the roads".......are they for real....... has any of it helped with the road toll.... NO.

Why do they keep spending tax payers money on some thing they know doesn't work.

The Government single handily has lowered the confidence and skills of generally good and safe drivers to a point of where they have lost there ability to drive safely and sensibly......

Speed and red light cameras have introduced a whole new way of driving styles...... people speed and slow down before the camera only to speed up again after they have passed through....... safe driving!...... again NO.

As for people falling asleep when on cruise.... are you for real...... why not blame the real cause... the nut behind the wheel..... as soon as I feel tired I stop.

Cruise control actually reduces road toll by having people maintain there speed and lower drive fatigue.

I have followed many where their speed has fluctuated by as much as 30Kph over or under the posed limit.

AnswerID: 504509

Follow Up By: Bazooka - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 23:08

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 23:08
The Government single handily has lowered the confidence and skills of generally good and safe drivers to a point of where they have lost there ability to drive safely and sensibly......

Lol Olcoolone. I've heard governments being blamed for a lot of things (often out of ignorance, but that's another story) but pointing the finger at them for driver ability and behaviour? "Why not blame the real cause... the nut behind the wheel." Indeed.
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Follow Up By: mikehzz - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 23:37

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 23:37
Olcoolone, I agree with you except for the redlight camera. We have one in a black spot near my house and it isn't a black spot anymore. We regularly had bad accidents there because the idiots hit the bend too fast. There is a camera now that slows them at least for that section and bingo, no accidents since. I'm all for cameras in that situation. Putting them in the middle of long straight sections is a bit of a waste of time though.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 13:19

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 13:19
Mikehzz... Redlight cameras are activated when you run a redlight..... speed cameras are activated when you exceed a give speed.

I'm all for them as long as they are put in areas where they will make a difference to accidents and injuries but far to often especially over here in SA they are more a revenue raiser...... I go through one particular camera on a straight bit of road that I have traveled on for the last 15 years and have never seen an accident at that spot...... on the other side of the road that the speed camera doesn't operate on and 200m further down there is a intersection where I see on average 3 accidents a week..... no speed cameras on that bit of road.
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Follow Up By: mikehzz - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 15:45

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 15:45
Of course you are correct...I'm a dummy :-) Cheers.
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Reply By: Member - Matt M - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:35

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 09:35
Thanks for starting the conversation Richard and interesting to see the different opinions. I think that cruise control (used in appropriate circumstances) is a huge bonus. Not just for points on the licence, but I believe it helps to reduce fatigue enormously. As Mick O points out, constant monitoring of the speedo actually distracts quite significantly from looking around you. Even the lumbering 4WDs that most of us drive are very capable of sneaking 5 Km/h over the speed limit quite quickly. Not sure I agree that CC creates boredom, and hence sleep. I would suggest that the opposite is the case; the constant effort required to closely monitor speed more likely leads to additional fatigue over time. Certainly the aviation industry has long recognised this problem as part of cockpit design.

As for in-dash displays, agree that they can be a distraction but, as always, it comes down to how they are used. It would be hard to argue that turn-by-turn voice directions are in any way more distracting than a paper map balanced on the lap.

Olcoolone raises an interesting point with regards to roadside distractions. The amount of inane and pointless signage which 'litters' the roadside is unbelievable. Particularly at night in helping to destroy night vision with the reflection from a sign asking me if I am yawning. Thanks a lot. I wasn't yawning until you mentioned it.


AnswerID: 504513

Follow Up By: Member - Boo Boo (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 10:04

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 10:04
G'day all

I believe, like others on this site, that CC actually reduces fatigue and also stops the need to take your eyes off the road and check your speed.

As for a GPS I would not be without one.

We are in Melbourne at the moment and travelling to an address we had never been to last night was a piece of cake with the GPS.

No arguements over where we are and what road to take while looking at a paper map. The arguments would be a bigger distraction than the map and GPS combined. LOL

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Reply By: Member - Richard L (WA) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 12:01

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 12:01
Well guys or gals as the case may be, some very interesting observations. A couple of comments
Exmouth uses vdu for mapping... great but he wouldn't use it while in motion and cc stops him getting speeding tickets!!! this also appears to be the attraction of others as well
Micko is also of the opinion that cc REDUCES fatigue
Olcoolone comments on driver ability...surely cc is another example of REDUCING driver ability

However I think allot of you have missed my point on cc. I was not arguing that cc was a factor in fatigue but quite the reverse really ie the effect of cc once fatigue has kicked in and the subsequent outcome compared to the same situation under manual control.
I agree voice activated vdu's probably vey helpfull (drives me insane) but there is still a moving map display tempting people to play with and look at that is the part i feel shold not be visible to the driver
And as a final shot...using cc just to avoid speeding fines????

Cheers everyone
AnswerID: 504517

Reply By: Member - Sn00py2 (NSW) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 13:42

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 13:42
Richard, It is obvious that you do not like these "New" driver aids. Perhaps you are still in the horse and buggy age and have not learnt to move on and utilise these aids which not only make driving easier but also much safer.

Sat Navs, yes these do have screens but every one that I have used and seen give voice guidance. In a strange city or even out in the bush, they help you to get into the correct lane well before you need to be there thus removing the need for lane changes at the last moment.

Cruise Control is a great tool to maintain a constant speed and not "go over" the limit by accident, particularly on long downhill runs. I'm not sure that you are correct that when you get tired, you unconsciously ease off the accelerator. I think you are just as likely to speed up as slow down. Do you have any actual proof that drivers slow down when they loose concentration???

Automatic Transmissions, Are you for or against them? They certainly reduce the work needed by the driver, especially in heavy traffic or in hilly country. I have had manual transmission cars for many years and now have an auto 4WD. The difference in reduced fatigue is noticeable.

What about reversing cameras, parking distance devices, and how do you feel about cars that can park themselves? Mercedes, Volvo, Audi, BMW's and even some Toyota's have radar cruise control which stop you from getting too close to the vehicle in front. Surely this is a great safety device and one that should be more widely available.

I'm personally in favour of all the new driver assist technology that is becoming available and we would be stupid to stick our heads in the sand and say "ban them all". If anyone cannot understand how to use them and is not prepared to try them, then by all means don't use them but suggesting that just because you cannot understand or use them or do not like using them, then don't get on your high horse and lobby to ban them for everyone.

There, I feel better now :)

AnswerID: 504525

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:04

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:04
Hope your feeling better Snoppy - One of the most insidious things is actually the automatic transmission.

When one looks into it their are many many accidents now in which foot gets put onto or slips onto accelerator rather than brake , this happens more as people get older etc.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:26

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:26
Hullo Robin

You say that when "one looks into it" Am I to assume you have done this?

If so, is the number of accidents involving the foot slipping or being put on to the accelerator rather than the brake pedal growing at a faster rate than the number of older drivers on the road?

Secondly, what data points to there being a causal, rather than a co-relational link to the increased use of auto transmissions?

If anything, I would have thought that the use of auto transmissions would reduce the number and severity of such accidents, as pressing the accelerator with the same force as is applied to the brake pedal in a manual usually results in a massive jerk that can momentarily cause the driver to lose control, whereas the relatively smooth acceleration of an auto is less likely to lead to this outcome.

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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:51

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:51
Hi Andrew

Yes I have after it happened to someone we knew , however our statistics appear inadequate to get at the real cause.

The common elements being older drivers going into brick walls up on footpaths etc when intending to reverse and in Drive .

I would like to know more , but from what I gather the normal driving pattern in a manual requires clutch operation first so one foot has to be in the right place as a gear is changed as part of a coordinated action whereas in the auto the placing of car in forward or reverse can happen independantly of wether the brake/accel is pressed.

It may well be a subtle reason like the driver forgets the last action momentarily and takes off in wrong gear then stomps foot occasionaly hitting wrong pedal.

Apparently the same reasons apply to making older drivers slower (essentially lack of confidence in their last road check 1 second ago).

Note My reasons should not be used to say that older drivers are less safe because that isn't the case and is a more complex argument.

Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: Member - Richard L (WA) - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:55

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 14:55
Snoopy Snoopy....If you have another read of my last post you see
1. I agree Sat Nav's with voice activation are quite helpful....being able to look at and operate the screen while driving is dangerous
2. As I have mentioned I have been on the road for over 50 years and from personal experience you do slow down as you become tired...think about it, you have to actually apply pressure to the pedal to accelerate as you tire you unconsciously apply less pressure
3. I have nothing against auto transmission... my reference to manual was in relation to not using CC
4. Some of the new innovations are very good and do contribute to safety...CC and VDU's do not

And no I have past the horse and buggy era....Hey I'm using a computer

Now I feel better
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Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:34

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 15:34
Hullo Robin

What you say about being able to select forward or reverse without pressing the brake pedal first makes sense (so long as it is not from Park where most - all? - cars need the brake pedal pressed first)

Fortunately the instances you quote are all slow speed incidents involving mounting the kerb or going into brick walls. Slow speed, as I presume the engine was idling when they moved the selector.

One that I recall that was more serious was where the car (a manual) was already moving and the driver put her foot on the accelerator with some force as she had meant to brake. The result was a dead pedestrian.

One of the big advantages of an auto for older people is that the process of moving off is now far easier, particulalry on hills.

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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 19:03

Monday, Feb 11, 2013 at 19:03
Some good points Andrew - P.S. don't let Jen read this because if you search on wrong pedal accidents you will find there is both a gender and age bias.

I put in a U.S. link below which are more general interest and worth reading but they do not directly answer my auto contentions.

1 such accident killed 9 people are new laws are now in force in the U.S.

I once put a commodore directly from D to Reverse at 60kmh - (thanks goodness it was a company car) so I have a little experience with these weaknesses.

The links links to a u.S. saftey report and I cut out the following paragraph

As a result of their investigation of the Falls Township, Newtown, and Asbury Park crashes, all of
which began from a parked position, the NTSB recommended that NHTSA require the installation of
brake transmission shift interlock (BTSI) systems or equivalent technology in newly manufactured
heavy vehicles with automatic transmissions and other transmissions susceptible to unintended
acceleration associated with pedal misapplication when starting from a parked position (NTSB, 2009).
A BTSI is a technology that forces drivers to have their foot on the brake when
shifting out of park, in any key position. A BTSI would not have prevented the Liberty,
Nanuet, and Santa Monica crashes, because the vehicles were in motion when the pedal
misapplications occurred. Congress required all light vehicles to be equipped with BTSI by
September 1, 2010 (Section 2(d) of Public Law 110-189; see FMVSS 114, Final Rule, March 2010);
however, there

Robin Miller

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FollowupID: 781380

Reply By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 19:35

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 19:35
I can not agree that either sat nav or cruse controll are bad things.

The problem lies with the fact that there is no specific or required training for either, and there is no public safety information circulated or published about them.

I learned about GPS in a marine environment where it is well known a publicised that you must know where you are going and what you should be independednt of the GPS.....

I do use an incar GPS, but I almost always look in a paper directory first......

If correctly operated, once the destination is selected there should be little need to touch the GPS in a unfamiliar areas the line guidance can be very helpfull and reduce confusion and indecision.
In a heavy vehicle, you can not depend on the GPS taking you the best way......but if it saves you from missing a single turn in a can realy make your day and save you a hell of a lot of frustration and fatigue.

BUT the issue is dependence........if you know what you should be doing and more or less where you are going......they can be a very profitable AID.

The issue is very similar with cruse controll........thay can allow a fatigued driver to contiune longer than they should......but the managing of fatigue is a seperate issue.

If used wisely and where appropriate, they can reduce fatigue considerably....the driver can then concentrate on doing propper observations.

Those observations will then prompt the driver to switch in and out of cruse controll and make fine adjustments to regulate following distances and the like.

Again if used wisely cruse controll is a great thing....but all too often people use it as a lazy choice......and very often stay in cruse controll when they should have kicked out.

Very few people have any idea of driving stratigicly.....for example managing following distance any more than for colision idea of managing following distance to account for variations of the driver in front...very little idea of making room for a calm run up for a passing manover..and knowing where the next likely safe oportunity is.

Same with auto transmissions...I am not keen on autos...but when I drive one I drive it.....a great many people buy autos because they realy don't want to drive at all.

If you are practicing the craft of driving, making all the frequent observations that are realy required, looking a head and constantly working your stratergy, these device should not creat a problem any more than the radio.

the difference is being lazy and dependent rather tha using the technology activly as an aid.

AnswerID: 504615

Follow Up By: Member - Richard L (WA) - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 19:53

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 19:53
Your last 2 comments hit the nail on the head
So how many drivers actually do this?
Given the need to follow the above I say my original statement stands

FollowupID: 781460

Reply By: old mate - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 23:15

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 23:15
Ineresting credentials from this guy.

he thinks he's an expert.

he thinks he is the onlyone who has driven a truck on outback roads

just because he cant handle cruise should be banned?

cant handle a satnav??

sounds like he should be banned and should hand his licenec in.............
AnswerID: 504639

Reply By: old mate - Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 23:22

Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013 at 23:22
The OP is a dumb bleep . I wish I will not receive any correspondence fromm this website ever again, I'm sick of whingiing old bleep s crapping on about desert daisys and shitting in the desert
AnswerID: 504641

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