Speeding and general dangerous driving in and around Brixton

Discussion in 'Brixton' started by teuchter, Aug 30, 2017.

  1. Metroman

    Metroman Active Member

    Yes, things has definatly become worse and bus drivers seem to be more aggressive now!
    On two occassions, while trying to stick to the 20 limit, they have come very close behind me and one even overtook me, swerved infront and slammed on his brakes :(
  2. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    There will never be routine or even significant enforcement of 20 limits, because of exactly what EG points out - the blanket approach breaches the relationship between authority and the 'reasonable' driver. If it were less of a blunt instrument and applied far more discriminately then there might have been a chance.
    HoratioCuthbert likes this.
  3. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    Screen Shot 2017-08-31 at 11.55.43.jpg Screen Shot 2017-08-31 at 11.57.05.jpg

    In the top image there's a bus stop on one side and access to houses on both sides.
    In the bottom image there's access to houses on the left and a junction beyond to the right (which gives access to houses).
    In both instances pedestrians will want to get from the things on one side of the road to the other. And it's on a curve, meaning sighting distances are reduced. The speed of vehicles therefore becomes particularly important. A 20mph limit makes this section of road safer than if it had a higher limit. The benefit to motorists of a higher limit would be very very marginal.
    maomao likes this.
  4. BigTom

    BigTom Well-Known Member

    Why do you say this? I don't understand why blanket rather than specific limits would change the attitude of the police?
    In Birmingham and Manchester the 20mph limits are on specific roads (or probably more accurate to say in Birmingham that all residential areas are having 20mph limits put on them, with specific roads being left at 30mph). In Brum the west mids police are out more or less every day doing speed checks (yesterday caught someone at 53mph on a 20mph limit near my house!) whilst in Manchester iirc the police have said the limits are pointless as no-one obeys them and they won't enforce.

    Surely down to the attitude of the MET police (or local branches) rather than whether the limits were applied blanket or specific?
  5. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    What does this actually mean?
    mojo pixy and Gramsci like this.
  6. Crispy

    Crispy The following psytrance is baŠĻČned: All

    I regularly see cars doing ridiculous speeds in the roads around my house (top of Brixton/Tulse Hill). While on my bike, I have been overtaken many times on the "wrong" side of the traffic islands on Upper Tulse Hill, one time coming *this* close to being a nasty head-on collision. It is almost all young men but not exclusively that gender and age. It is the single biggest fear I have for my kids.

    I cannot wait for autonomous cars to price private cars off the road. People (all people, myself included) are terrible drivers.
    snowy_again, lefteri and teuchter like this.
  7. Winot

    Winot I wholeheartedley agree with your viewpoint

    Why is it any different to the previous blanket approach of a 30mph limit? Or 70mph on motorways?
  8. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    I'm sure this in itself is obvious, but nonetheless - in any context, there's a speed at which you can drive that is obviously, to any reasonable person, unsafe - the risk of something going wrong (e.g. a pedestrian stepping out and you being unable to stop) is too high. Conversely there's a speed at which a normal person would judge it to be safe. It's then possible for the authority to enforce a speed some way below that, which feels unnecessarily restrictive, and damages the trust relationship that compliance is dependent on.
  9. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    There weren't generally that many 30s where 30 felt inappropriately slow, especially when limits were set based around average speed of existing traffic. Where there were, compliance was probably poor. As regards 70 limits, compliance with this is itself often limited where traffic density permits. Enforcement is also lax.
  10. Winot

    Winot I wholeheartedley agree with your viewpoint

    I'd rather we had a legal system which was evidence based rather than based on the 'feeling' of the 'reasonable driver'. And the overwhelming evidence is that (a) cars travelling at 20 kill and seriously injure far fewer people than when travelling at 30 and (b) journeys are not significantly slower (in London at least) when travelling at 20 rather than 30.

    So yes you are correct that there is and will be resistance (people like to speed as you have admitted) but this can and should be changed in the same way that attitudes to drink driving and wearing seatbelts have been changed.
    grosun and teuchter like this.
  11. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    I don't understand what this "trust relationship" is. Who is trusting who? I don't trust any driver (including myself) to make good decisions about safety, because all drivers are humans, and placing a human in a car gives them a distorted view of risk. Or do you mean drivers trusting the authorities not to do them for speeding in situations where they, as a fallible human, made an assessment that breaking the speed limit was "safe"?
    maomao likes this.
  12. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    That's great, but road safety relies on cooperation, acceptance and self-restraint by road users, not primarily enforcement, especially not in this era. For that to happen, the average person is going to have to buy in to whatever you have in mind, and that only happens if the risk/reward or inconvenience/risk balance is right. For example, seatbelts are a minor to negligible inconvenience in exchange for avoidance of very serious risk, and they are a personal initiative - noone gives you hassle for wearing one. Changing the average approach to speed requires (1) perception of a risk that in a blanket 20 approach often really isn't there and (2) overall adoption and cooperation, i.e. you as a compliant driver not being the outlier as the slowest person on the road holding everyone up and generating conflict. That's very difficult to achieve without enforcement.
    Winot likes this.
  13. Winot

    Winot I wholeheartedley agree with your viewpoint

    Yes I think you're right - it's not going to happen without enforcement.
  14. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    There are next to no traffic police. Outside of average speed limits, there are a negligible number of fixed or mobile cameras, usually applied poorly. Noone is going to catch you for speeding, so when the roads are sparse enough that other people's choices don't make the decision for you, it's entirely your choice whether to comply with the posted speed limit or not, and if not, to what degree you don't.

    Most reasonable people do comply to some degree, because they don't like breaking the law even if there's noone there to see it, because delegation to that number is easier than making constantly variable contextual decisions, and because they think they might get caught. But this relationship between the number on the sign and the people complying with it depends on those numbers being trusted as appropriate by drivers. This is why speed limits for a particular road used to be based on, IIRC, the 85th percentile of measured speeds, to avoid reducing them to a point at which they were ignored.
  15. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    Well, you're extremely unlikely to get any enforcement until the entire thing is completely disrupted - i.e. the world of purely autonomous vehicles. So until then, if you want to see behavioural changes amongst road users, you probably would be better off pursuing a more cooperative and contextual approach.
  16. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    This, a hundred times this. Different area, obv but same experince. We're on the one way by Peckham station, and people frequently drive (mostly motorbikes/scooters, but not always) down the wrong way, and as we're the exit route for the rat run people FLOOR it along to the station, hitting 50 or 60 at times. Needs speed bumps.
    HoratioCuthbert and teuchter like this.
  17. mauvais

    mauvais change has become unavoidable

    I suspect you are well aware of this, but this is a good example of a failure. Visibility is excellent. There's no parked vehicles hiding pedestrians. There's a wide buffer between someone or something entering the roadway from either side and entering the path of a car, and an even wider one between someone entering the scene (e.g. leaving a house) and the same. There's separation of opposing directions and no other hazards like junctions.

    20mph might make it safer (likely but not a given - factor in engagement & attentiveness), but banning all motorised traffic would make it safer too. Come to think of it, if safety is our game, compulsory purchase orders on the houses for subsequent demolition, elimination of the pavement and an end to public transport would be a good idea here. Probably not a vision that the ever-confusing 'reasonable person' would be into though.
    Slo-mo likes this.
  18. spanglechick

    spanglechick High Empress of Dressing Up

    As your little map shows,both of those pics are very close together, and one is right at the end of the bit I was talking about, while the other isn't in it at all. Where's your picture of the road further up towards CPP?
  19. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    I disagree with your assessment. There are two junctions, and there is a relatively sharp curve. And a bus stop, and people often cross roads near bus stops.

    But what would be the benefit of changing just this short stretch of road to a 30 or 40 limit, when the road each side of it has a 20 limit?

    I think your position is that there shouldn't be a blanket 20 limit at all - in which case questions about this particular location are academic.
  20. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    The two pictures are at each end of the bit I thought you were talking about, based on a best match with your description ("four carriageways wide"). If you'd like to clarify which section you meant, please go ahead.
  21. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    It is because on many if not most main roads a 20mph speed limit is excessively low, and by a significant degree. It is a complete overkill, and as such it all but guarantees most drivers are likely to disregard it altogether.

    One unsettling fact about the issue of road safety is that anyone who is not campaigning for a full ban on motor vehicles in urban areas is by default accepting a compromise between safety and practicality, and one that will cost lives. Lives which would have been saved by a complete ban on motor vehicles.

    The argument that reducing speed limits on all roads to 20 mph invariably makes them safer and therefore is the only logical option is not actually as straightforward as it might seem. Reducing speeds to 10 mph would make the streets far safer still and would probably cut off road accident deaths by more than 90%. Yet I suspect most people would be against imposing a 10 mph limit, because they recognise a compromise must exist between safety and practicality, even if it tragically costs more lives.

    So the argument should perhaps be 'which speed limit is the best compromise between safety and practicality', since many of us are likely to agree that there will have to be a compromise somewhere. How do we go about finding that out though? Hell, I don't know. I'm not sure anyone does, or if the perfect speed limit can be proven. That is where discussion about the merits of relative speeds come in.

    It is my opinion that on main roads 20 mph is absurdly slow and completely unfit for purpose. And yet I, and indeed a majority of other drivers IME, will voluntarily travel at speeds of 20 mph or even less on smaller residential roads, even when the limit actually allows for 30 mph. Most drivers are actually capable of driving at sensible speeds according to road conditions, though there are always a few dickheads about of course.

    It should also be considered that car engine set-ups are not exactly optimised for 20 mph. They are far more efficient and less polluting on 4th gear at 30 mph. Pollution is also a significant factor in premature deaths, and any increase on those might well cancel out the lives saved by blanket 20 mph limits.

    Regarding the 'amount-of-seconds-saved' argument mentioned several times upthread, it is far more complex than quoting a paltry 20-second saving for a small stretch of a particular street. Most vehicle journeys will involve several miles, not a few hundred yards. And as most routes in London involve travelling on main roads for much of the journey, those few seconds over a particular stretch of a particular road become many minutes over the entire journey if the main roads are all slapped a 20 mph limit. This will very likely translate as a significant % increase in total journey times across London once every road is 20 mph, which at this rate they will be before long, save a few TFL controlled ones.

    I am sure there are very good arguments to be made for 20 mph limits as well. But all I'm saying is that "safer must always been the best overall solution" is not necessarily true in every scenario.
    mauvais, RoyReed and Winot like this.
  22. sleaterkinney

    sleaterkinney Well-Known Member

    Isn't that 20mph limit ignored by 80% of drivers or something?.
  23. spanglechick

    spanglechick High Empress of Dressing Up

    I mentioned other things in the description too, and in my last post I clarified that. You've ignored them. You're being a dick as you have form for. *shrug* you'll have to play with yourself. Not enough hours in my life to get dragged into one of your masterbatory discursive wormholes.

    Nor is the specific example on my specific commute the be all and end all of the broader point. If people have reason to see part of a law as ridiculous, it may encourage them to disregard the whole thing.
    mauvais likes this.
  24. snowy_again

    snowy_again Slush

    The 20mph is based on the death rate / injury rate of a collision with a person isn't it: ""a fatality risk of 1.5% at 20 mph versus 8% at 30 mph"

    If getting somewhere about 3 minutes earlier is more important than the increased risk of killing someone, I'd suggest they're not the equipped to be driving a car.
    grosun, maomao, Gramsci and 1 other person like this.
  25. Winot

    Winot I wholeheartedley agree with your viewpoint

    Some thoughtful points, thanks.

    You are right that it is a trade-off. However the graph of speed against likelihood of injury/death goes up more sharply from 20 -> 30 than from 10 -> 20. The best guess seems to be a fatality risk of 1.5% at 20 mph versus 8% at 30 mph (source - ROSPA pdf).

    Also there seem to be stats to show that the average speed of traffic on the London roads is between 10-20mph (depending on time of day/region) so that is a good reason for choosing 20mph as a limit not 10mph.

    The pollution argument is a good one, although if that was pushed to it's limit we would increase speed limits to 56mph everywhere (or whatever the figure is). It does seem to be a bit more complex than "30 less pollutuing than 20" though (detail in Guardian here).
    T & P and teuchter like this.
  26. Winot

    Winot I wholeheartedley agree with your viewpoint

    Ah, Snowy beat me to it.
    snowy_again likes this.
  27. Saul Goodman

    Saul Goodman It's all good, man

    I realise this may seem like an outlandish suggestion, to some. But I'm going to throw it out there anyway.
    How about not walking out in front of moving vehicles, regardless of the speed they're travelling at?
    mauvais and UnderAnOpenSky like this.
  28. snowy_again

    snowy_again Slush

    Because we luckily don't have jaywalking laws in England, and people came before cars?

    Have you read the highway code?
    Gramsci and teuchter like this.
  29. Saul Goodman

    Saul Goodman It's all good, man

    Have you read the Green Cross Code? :D
  30. snowy_again

    snowy_again Slush

    Yes, but that was a public campaign and not part of the Road Traffic Act, unless Tufty snuck into it quietly...

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