Road Safety News
 

Drivers can't help speeding

Tuesday 28th September 2010

A poll carried out by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) has found that the majority of drivers want to comply with the speed limit, but find it difficult to do so.

Nearly 90% of respondents in the online poll said they aim to stay within the speed limit, but 60% said they found it difficult.

Neil Greig, IAM director of policy and research, said: “It’s good to know most people want to stay within the law when it comes to speeding, but too many seem to find it challenging.

“The results suggest that people are aware of the limit and do not want to break it, but temptation and pressure from other traffic may push them to go faster.”

Disagreement with imposed limits was cited by 57% of respondents as the main reason for speeding. While 40% of speeders claimed police presence was the most effective deterrent, only 10% said cameras were the biggest deterrent.

Neil Gregg added: “There is a discrepancy between drivers’ perception of the correct speed and the posted limits imposed by authorities.

“Further training helps improve driver perception and teaches motorists about appropriate speeds, but the government should also ensure the current review of speed limits results in roads visually fitting their limit - if we can get the limits right it is clear that many more drivers will stick to them.

“The poll confirms the view of road safety professionals: it’s vital that imminent public spending cuts don’t compromise high profile road policing.”

For more information contact IAM on 020 8996 9777

Footnote: Brake, the road safety charity, published a similar survey last week. Click here to read the news report about that survey.

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Please tell me .... who is this "other traffic" that is pressurising us into exceeding the speed limit? According to the survey it must be mostly the other drivers who want to keep to the limit but "find it difficult". And they are being pressurised by ......? Is it all the fault of the 10% who acknowledge intentionally flouting the limits? Maybe, but there is an odd similarity between the proportion who "find it difficult" to keep to the speed limit and the proportion who "disagree with the limit". Is the difficulty then that they just don't want to comply? Keeping within the speed limit is not difficult or dangerous, no matter what anyone may tell you, it just needs a little knowledge, observation, and resolve. All the above mentioned ideas may help, but the real difference will be achieved when speeders are in a minority and peer pressure encourages them to slow down. Dealing with tailgaters can be a bit worrying but I tend to find once they realise I am not going to speed up, they stop being silly.
Tim Philpot, Wolverhampton

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Vince gained the advantage whilst I was at the TISPOL Conference in Manchester. I would be failing in my duty as a campaigner for roads policing if I did not respond to the following comment from this news item.

"While 40% of speeders claimed police presence was the most effective deterrent, only 10% said cameras were the biggest deterrent."

Straight from Manchester; here are the comments of erudite speakers.
"Increase the enforcement of road law." Jean-Paul Gailly, Director of the General Mobility and Road Safety, EU Belgian Presidenct Team.
"Enforcement must become an improved priority." Carla Hess, Road Safety Unit of DG MOVE of the European Commission.
"Road Safety is no good if no one is there to enforce it." Javier Sanchez-Ferragut Andreu, President of TISPOL, Major in the Spanish Civil Guard.
"Legislation changes little, it's enforcement that makes the difference." Kate Carpenter, Chair of the Road Safety Panel, Chartered Institute of Highways and Transportation.
"Enforcement will never go away." Prof. Dr. Claes Tingvall, Director of Traffic Safety, Swedish Road Administration.
"Roads policing is a major tool in all-round policing." Adam Briggs, Deputy Chief Constable, North Yorkshire Police.
"Education is limited unless supported by enforcement." David Healy, Road Safety Consultant and former General Manager, Road Safety Accident Commission, Victoria, Australia.

These are world-class professionals. They - plus me and Vince of course - can't all be wrong.
Roy Buchanan, Sutton

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Every car has a speed limiter fitted its called a driver. Drivers have to take responsibility for there actions and not rely on a technical gizmo to do the job for them
Andrew McGrorey, Bedford

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Why the desire for another 'gadget', what's the matter with the one inside the head? In a similar way, speed restricted by appliances, reduce the ability and desire to make the brain 'work'. A 'gadget' does not educate, it does not create an attitude of mind from which road safety stems. Limits of different speeds in different places, signs to be aware of, distractions all. Learn the basics, control yourselves before someone else takes it all away - they'd be only too happy to oblige.
Derek Reynolds, St Albans.

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While 40% of speeders claimed police presence was the most effective deterrent...

I thought I'd get in before Roy as I know he's at the Tispol conference. More proof, if it were needed, that we need more police traffic officers.
Vince Morley, Milton Keynes

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From my own experience I have found that if I am in a 40 mph area and the clock reads that speed I am constantly being tailgated. However if I increase speed to 10% above that speed at 44 mph [ as shown by my speedo] I find that in the main any following vehicles fall back.

Its one or the other.

I also believe that in certain areas a 20 mph speed limit needs to be enforced with reasons given ie school, hospital, park etc.
Bob Craven, Lancs

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My former car, an elderly Mercedes, has such a feature as standard. Speed could be limited in 5mph increments, and it was an extremly useful thing to have - should be fitted to all cars.
David, Suffolk

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Nearly 90% of respondents in the online poll said they aim to stay within the speed limit, but 60% said they found it difficult. The results suggest that people are aware of the limit and do not want to break it, but temptation and pressure from other traffic may push them to go faster.

EuroNCAP in 2009 introduced Safety Assist - max. 1 point out of 7 or 14% is given for cars which have a Speed Limitation Device fitted as standard. The motorist sets the speed manually at say 30mph and it is not possible to exceed this limit unless the accelerator is 'floored'. To change the SLD from 30mph to 40mph involves one click on the steering wheel SLD control. I've found it really helpful in keeping to the speed limit. But few cars have SLD fitted yet. tinyurl.com/38z665k
Chris Street, Dorset

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