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Old 02-03-2004, 21:53   #1 (permalink)
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Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

this hurts to say, but i think the limits we have in this country are probably high enough. there is no doubt that we have some great roads that could hold cars doing 150 or more. there is no doubt that most new cars can safely sit on 150 plus without breaking a sweat. the problem is not with the cars or the roads. the problem lies with drivers attitudes, which ultimately comes from driver training and education.

in australia, we are told, over and over again, that speed kills. there is absolutely no respect for speed or other road users. instead, some sort of fear or worship. people are either terrified of driving or see each drive as a challenge to double the posted limit.

after driving 1000 km on italian autostradas (without seeing one speed camera), the difference is easy to see. people respect speed, people respect the overtaking lane and people will get the hell out of the way when something faster comes up behind. there is also a similar attitude in england, although there are loads of speed cameras in the uk. in fact, the limit on autostradas is being increased from 130 to 150 because the italians understand that new cars are much better than their predecessors and are much more capable. however, it is the respect that the italians have that ultimately allows this increase to be introduced.

sadly, in perth, there is a claytons 'keep left' rule. put simply, it isnt enforced because there is no money to be made from it. why would you put police on the road trying to enforce a rule that would make sense when a camera at the side of the road earns money and keeps the speed kills lobby happy? there is no 'keep left' camera that can earn the government money so it isnt enforced. even today i was fortunate enough to be reminded of the curse of the 'white delivery van in the right lane'. having driven in other states here, the attitude is the same. we are a nation of crap drivers.

until australians attitudes to speed and other road users changes, then, sadly, we are stuck with the limits we deserve.
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Old 02-03-2004, 21:59   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

Don't the other countries have rules about car age, the average for australian cars is something like 20 years, compared to many other countries of 5 years, so until we get old cars off the road (we love em so NO WAY), the safety is the low speed limit.

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Old 02-03-2004, 22:07   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

untill people take responsibility for their own actions the speed limits will just keep getting reduced. just the same as the new 40km/h speed limits around schools, which is put inplace partly because people fly through these areas but also partly because kids just think its ok to walk out on the road with the attitude that the car will stop for them. i agree with these new limits but disagree with the times of 2.30pm-4pm. between 2.30pm and 3.30pm no child at school should be any other place but in the class room, if kids are wondering around outside and on the road then the teachers need a kick in the arse and so do the parents if they are not there to accompany their child to where ever it is that they are taking them. teenagers should know better than to just walk out on the road as well.....if they dont they will soon learn.
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Old 02-03-2004, 22:20   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

Sounds about right.
U see some really stupid stuff on the roads here at the current limit. Can ony image what would happen if they upped it.

When drivng down south, it becomes apparent that people cant handle the current limit. They cut u off at 110kph, hog the right lane, and often sit a 80 in a 110 zone, and dont particuly pay attention to whats happening around them.

The age and quality/condition of cars is also a big issue, especially seeing as the only time u need to get a road worthy in WA is when u get a yellow sticker. Unlike other states and countries

Alot needs to change b4 the govt even considers upping the limit :(
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Old 02-03-2004, 22:25   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

Quote:
Originally Posted by davway
untill people take responsibility for their own actions the speed limits will just keep getting reduced. just the same as the new 40km/h speed limits around schools, which is put inplace partly because people fly through these areas but also partly because kids just think its ok to walk out on the road with the attitude that the car will stop for them. i agree with these new limits but disagree with the times of 2.30pm-4pm. between 2.30pm and 3.30pm no child at school should be any other place but in the class room, if kids are wondering around outside and on the road then the teachers need a kick in the arse and so do the parents if they are not there to accompany their child to where ever it is that they are taking them. teenagers should know better than to just walk out on the road as well.....if they dont they will soon learn.
I agree there mate. I got the same problem here. At the local public school, we have kids just wandering along the road doing what they want. I almost had to bring my car to a complete stop this arvo because of two 6 year old boys playing in a puddle in the middle of the road. They dont understand how badly they can get hurt if a car hits them. And if you do happen to hit them, who's fault is it? thats right, the drivers fault! It even happens outside of school, I nearly ran over a kid who was standing in the middle of the road looking the other way, and whats worse is that he was still in a nappy!!! Some parents need a good kick in the arse.
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Old 02-03-2004, 23:31   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

I agree with u guys totally, but i think the reason that the Australian drivers are like we are, is because we are too competitive. I know too many people who say things like "Its my road, get off it" or "get the f$#@ out of the way", and its these attitudes that stuff up everything for everyone else. I would be kidding myself if i said that i hadn't done anything wrong myself, because i know i have, as is the same for most of u i assume. But you are right, until the attitude changes, Australia can not afford to up the limit. I wish it wasn't true, but unfortunatly, it is.
I wonder though, if the limit was uped, if maybe, the driving standards would improve?
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Old 02-04-2004, 00:35   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

It's not kids either. The street that leads into mine the other day, guy checking the air pressure in his tyres in the street, He was on the driver's side, the thing was parked a goot foot and a half away from the kerb (I spose so he could changed wheels or what not), he's kneeling by the tyre. He must of taken up half the road, and there was a car parked on the opposite side about 5 metres behind him.

Isn't it illegal to do any sort of work on your car in the street?
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Old 02-04-2004, 03:03   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

I cant believe what I'm reading, almost anybody who drives is going over our posted limits posted every day. And driving within some of our limits is downright dangerous.

I hear a few mutters of taking responsibility, and drivers and legislators not doing so is the heart of the problem, and the reason for some of the apalling driving we see every day. But copping this bull about ever lower limits which is simply revenue getting masked as road safety makes me wanna puke.

The lack of enforcement of almost every rule but speeding (and using a cell phone), the inconsistant and illogical speed limits, and the "speed now pay later" camera regeime of our current state governments is the reason for much of the crazy incompetant and undisciplined driving we see everyday. How can you take charge of your actions when every decision is taken from you the driver, Add to this the latest gem that if your 5ks under a posted you must be absolutely safe. (Whoever dreamed up that one was smoking something stronger than filter tips.)

Dont get me wrong here I am not proposing 300Kph limits with 160Kph in the burbs, but a little common sense is required and we dont see much of that from other drivers, and we see sodd all from RTA or the governments they are part of.

With an oval at my doorstep i routinely get the hooning as each lot finishes training, 80+ kays and fish tailing tyre smoke in the heart of suburbia.
They did 80+ when the limit was 60, they do 80+ with the limit at 50, and with the proposed 40 they will still be doing 80, through all the joggers, the kids playing, and people taking a walk. Mind you once these guys hit the main road its 60 because its a known radar spot. If the posted speed was 10 it wouldn't change a damn thing, but we get no enforcement of anything but an open road speed limit.

Every day I get to queue/battle on one of Sydneys "Revenue-Ways" some of the stunts you see there I couldn't perform with a roll cage a ramp and a helmet with stars on it.
On the M$ you can cut in, cut someone off, tailgate to your hearts content, drive 20Ks under the odd in the fast lane. As long as you dont go 10% over in a single car situation. At peak hour you can do all of the above at 15 to 20 over the odds because your protected from the cameras in a pack. And you can do the same 15 to 20Ks over in rain, hail, sleet, fog, plagues of locusts (rare in Sydney of late), you can do it at dawn or at dust with the sun in your eyes.
But never must you do that most dangerous thing and exceed the limit at quiet times when you have ample road and vision. Cos you'll get radar-ed
You've got B-Doubles hogging the fast lane all through the tunnel so they can chicane the traffic at the 1st hint of an incline. And you've got all the desperados with a death wish cutting in and playing chichen with these 30+ tons of truck.

Has anyone driven from Sydney to Newcastle of late, 40K roadwork speed limits smack bang in the middle of the freeway with the actual roadwork nowhere near the tarmac. This signage applies the immediate safety feature of dividing the road users into 3 catagories!
(1) the I'll the limit and I'm safe brigade do 40 or less,
(2) is the pack that says this is crap, and there will be bugger all radars at roadworks do 110 to 130,
(3) the rest of us are left trying to make sense of it all an usually settle for a reduced speed somewhere between 1 and 2.
The speed differential introduced by this nosense is appalling up to 100Kph. Sure the RTA goofs will sit back and demand we all tow the the line but they know its so far from reality its laughable.

We have motoring organisations and an RTA that openly dismiss driver training, and are sure that a license and a quick read of "the open road" and your the worlds best steerer.

Look a little closer before you do too many comparisons between Europe and Australia, we have plenty of european taugh drivers here performing equally as badly as the rest of us. And I dont see records of Aussies overseas being the road menace you guys are painting us as. People will act according to the situation they are exposed to.

You see we have a "govt know best" system that actively discourages thought and responsibility from the individual driver. The highway speed limits posted in NSW bear no relationship to the quality of the road or the likelyhood of risk.
And frankly the 110Kph on extended sections is dangerously low in most modern cars, boredom and the subsequent loss of concentration are responsible for more than a fair proportion of incidents on these better stretches of road.

If drivers were encouraged to improve their craft, drive within the limits of the road, their vehicle and the weather, we would have much safer roads, and they'd be a lot more enjoyable to drive on. Relaxing selected highway limits and reviewing each section of road and setting limits accordingly would go some way to encouraging better driving. Call me crazy saying this but people may even lose the notion that you must drive at the posted limit at all times in all conditions.

I drive, I love performance, I pay a huge amout of tax as a road user and I'm pissed at the way I'm treated, and I dont think I'm alonewith that.

A pox on the carr and bracks and whoevers road revenue regeime.

Sensible and reasoned speed limits, and proper enforcement, not revenue grabbing is what I want. I just wont hold my breath till it happens.

The first government to realise that there is votes in this and more importantly saved lives will do very well.
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Old 02-04-2004, 06:20   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

I am from Adelaide and I have not yet experienced interstate driving from a first hand perspective so I cannot comment on what goes on outside of SA. However after driving up the freeway into the hills towards Murray Bridge about 3 times in the past 2 weeks I have to say some of the things I have seen are both scary and infuriating.

The incompetance of some drivers is the most dangerous and annoying part. I had a lady with 2 kids in her car (VN Commodore) absolutely carve me up whilst doing a lane change at 110km/h. She would have indicated after she started to turn left to change lane no more than a metre infront of the nose of my Fairmont. I think people forget that they are travelling faster than 60km/h and there is far less margain for error at almost double the speed they are used to travelling.

Another example that stands out is a elderly lady trying to over take a big grain truck in her Peugeot 206 on the way back to Adelaide from Yorke Pennisula. She managed to overtake the truck after about 10 minutes and then sat in front of it, not leaving enough room for me to slot in behind her when I had a chance to overtake. I had to wait for a dead straight clear road, drop back and wind the old Fairmont to 140km/h and go past the truck and old lady.

Arrogance and ignorance of the rules by most road users will keep the limit as is or will cause them to drop even more. If the Goverment was for real about "speed kills" wouldn't there be no more 110km/h zones? Maybe 90km/h zones only?

Last edited by BA GT-HO; 02-04-2004 at 06:22.
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Old 02-04-2004, 06:33   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Why Australia's speed limits should NOT be increased

Don't agree. I have a V8 Ford and it handles and brakes fantastically.!!!
Posted bends of 80km/hr it goes around them @ 100km/hr, like its on rails.
Nulabor is only 110km/hr, should be like the NT, unrestricted. There is a section of 140km of dead straight road, yet 110kms is the max !!! What the ?
You won't get old cars off the road, because new cars are too expensive.
If you can buy a Falcon equivalent in the States for $18k, why not here. ?
Forget the exchange rate con.
Japan has a law that you must buy a new car every 5 years. If that law was here, car makers would be out of business, because no one would be able to buy a car.!
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