Some might like to read this as well.
Road trauma Australia statistical report 2017
From the summary
48% of fatalities occur in or near major urban zones. That might be where many of us do most of our driving? Also where the road environment is constantly changing.
45% of fatalities occur in 100kph or higher speed zone. That would be on major highways and country roads? Also where every second a vehicle is 28m or more distant from when the driver last looked out the window.
The opinion piece from ‘Whichcar’ does make some good points about driver behaviour and the relationship to training.
It neglects ‘personal behaviours’ (personality) as a factor.
Typically the author engages with the perennial of all motoring journalists - that speed limits are too low, the law is inconsistent, and speed cameras are only for revenue raising. Naturally attentive drivers always know the speed limit and never get caught, so there should be no issue with that one either?
Based on statistics Australia has reduced the maximum speed limits in many places in order to reduce accidents, injuries and deaths on the roads.
We’ve done this in urban areas (50 kph unless signposted otherwise), near schools and other institutions (eg 40 kph at certain times), and in other areas (20 kph maximum speed).
We have learnt that 70-80-90 kph is too high a maximum where pedestrians are crossing the road (and either lowered the maximum limit or constructed pedestrian overpasses etc).
Yet we have failed to apply the same logic and study of cause & effect to other roads. Quite the opposite, the push is always on to increase the maximum speed limit - ignoring the fact that lowering maximum speeds reduces both the severity and incidence of accidents.
There will always be someone who says “If you lower the limit from 100 to 90, I will just drive ten kph over the signposted maximum” No use trying to “please” these folks as they will do 100 in a 90 zone, 110 in a 100 zone, 120 in a 110 zone, etc - as Mark_M says it is a personality behaviour.
While having no citations the comments reflect those in many places. If it was only about speed how could any of this be?
One also has to continue reading this few years old report after reaching what some ‘want to read’…
The German autobahns are built principally with safety and speed in mind. Australian and most other roads around the world are designed for capacity and flow. I am sure that if our roads were designed the same way autobahns are, as a whole, we could argue against the lowering of speed limits on roads or requesting upper speed limits be increased where appropriate.
In Qld at least, the authorities have found a cheaper alternative to fixing the roads by simply reducing the speed limits.
On the Bruce Goat Track, aka, the “Bruce Highway”, there are at least 3 sections which have been downgraded from 100 km/h to 90 km/h, and have remained at the lower speed limit for years.
One section is north of Gympie, one section is north of Gin Gin and one section is in the Cowley area in FNQ.
New speed limit signs are much cheaper than road repairs and it also creates opportunities for more speed traps.
You have ‘argued’ a problem that is beyond ‘just speed’
Not necessarily road repair. I am familiar with the Gympie section as used to drive along this from time to time for work. This section is a known head on crash hotspot and I understand that the speed limit was reduced as response to such. To prevent crashes in this section would possibly require duplication of highway (barrier separation between direction of flow) and also removing blind spots where inappropriate overtaking occurs.
I suppose at the end of the day Queensland Transport has to determine if the cost of the additional ~5 minutes of journey time over the whole section for all drivers is better than redirecting potentially $100s millions (if not billions) of road funding to upgrade the same section of road to the detriment of other state controlled roads.
The other solution could be to substantially increase taxes to pay for road we wish we had.
Really puts a new slant onto “riding shotgun”.