Speeding remains a ‘significant problem’

13.31 | 18 February 2019 | | 14 comments

A new report has highlighted in-vehicle technologies – most notably Intelligent Speed Assistance – as vital to reducing the ‘significant’ problem of speeding.

The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) report looks at the number of vehicles found to be driving above the speed limit on different road types across Europe.

On urban roads, where 37% of all EU road deaths occur, between 35% and 75% of ‘vehicle speed observations’ were higher than the legal speed.

On rural non-motorway roads, the figure stands between 9% and 63%, while on motorways, where 8% of all road deaths in the EU occur, it is between 23% and 59%.

The report says that reducing speeding will require a combination of measures – including higher levels of enforcement, improved infrastructure and credible speed limits.

However, it singles out Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) as the ‘key in-vehicle safety measure’.

Graziella Jost, projects director at the ETSC, said: “500 people die every week on EU roads, a figure that has refused to budge for several years. And driving too fast is still the number one killer.

“It’s very simple: if we want to bring down the number of road deaths, we have to tackle speed effectively. Right now, the EU has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make a massive difference.

“Including overridable ISA on every new vehicle as standard could eventually prevent a fifth of road deaths. We urge MEPs to back this essential life-saving measure.”

The ETSC report has been published today (18 Feb) ahead of an important European Parliament vote on future mandatory in-vehicle safety technologies later this week (21 Feb).

Described as a ‘once-in-a-generation opportunity’, the proposals would require every new vehicle to satisfy 11 safety rulings, mandating technologies including ISA.

Last week, stakeholders – including the ETSC – wrote a letter urging the European Parliament’s internal market committee to vote in favour of the proposals.


 

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    credible:
    Dictionary result for credible

    adjective
    able to be believed; convincing.
    synonyms: acceptable, trustworthy, reliable, dependable, sure, good, valid

    Would not a high level of speeding i.e. non-compliant vehicle speeds mean that a limit set too low is not credible?


    Pat, Wales
    Agree (9) | Disagree (1)
    +8

    I note the “safe and credible” speed limits shown on the ETSC graphic.

    Urban/village 30km/h or 18.5mph
    Rural 60km/h or 37.5 mph


    Rod King, Warrington
    Agree (1) | Disagree (9)
    --8

    Nigel, sadly I am not, although despite it something I’d love to do (my fantasy cop job would be as a firearms and/or traffic officer) it would ultimately be an action against my conscience.


    David Weston, Corby
    Agree (0) | Disagree (1)
    --1

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion be they right or wrong. This is the great thing about living in a democracy. Their history or qualifications should not be in doubt or questioned. We can’t all hold the same qualifications. That and life’s experiences has helped us all to form an opinion and that’s good enough for me. Sometimes it’s good to question what has historically become agreed or accepted in the past. I remember someone at the head of the RSGB saying something like that a year or two ago. I also appear to do it a lot. Without those that raise questions then changes will never be made.

    I have watched a lot of police chases on the TV and on video and quite honestly I begin to agree with David. On police chases in particular in built up urban areas and doing 60 mph or more it’s obvious that sometimes the following police driver is not in any way shape or form giving anything like safe following on distance


    R.Craven
    Agree (5) | Disagree (0)
    +5

    I see where David is coming from, but I would have thought the advantage of ‘blues and twos’ in urban areas anyway, is being able to progress through junctions and pass slow/stationary traffic quicker, rather than out and out speed from A to B, which is when the risk of a collision is higher. Any attempt by Joe Public when behind the wheel to speed through a town or city (and to some extent out in the countryside), in the mistaken belief that it saves time, is thwarted by junctions and the unavoidable need to slow/stop caused by er..other road users. I think there’s a difference between the regular and persistent speeder who does so for the thrill of it and those who do so to make progress in a genuine emergency and are aware of their responsibilities, which your everyday speeder doesn’t. Whoever speeds however, the laws of physics still apply.


    Hugh Jones
    Agree (3) | Disagree (1)
    +2

    Thank you, David. First question to ask is are you a police officer (if so presumably trained in blues and twos) or an emergency services driver?


    Nigel ALBRIGHT
    Agree (1) | Disagree (2)
    --1

    > Are you actually saying that those trained to do blue’s and two’s, for example, should not be able to exceed a speed limit?

    Yes.

    1) People are stupid, when seeing a police car and/or any other vehicle moving quickly, there lies a risk in which people haphazardly get out of the way – which I have experienced.

    2) Emergency service workers sometimes forget that red lights are effectively turned into give way signs, which leads to some interesting conflicts with other vehicles

    3) Police officers especially have an interesting relationship with speed: 159mph in a 70mph limit, 108mph in a 40mph limit, 84mph in a 30 limit, all speeds recorded by the same police officer (I’ll let the RSGB community ponder about which speed was during a pursuit), all faced judicial action and ultimately was found to not have a case to answer. If I did that, I’d have no licence due to excess speed and/or a potentially ultra vires prosecution for dangerous driving

    4) Incidents happen during pursuits, sometimes fatal, sometimes to members of the public or the criminals themselves, perpetrated by either the pursued or by the police officers themselves. I hope I don’t have to bring up recent events.

    Of course people wouldn’t necessarily like the idea of restricting emergency service workers and/or members of the public acting under necessity but it’s still a massive risk.


    David Weston, Corby
    Agree (6) | Disagree (3)
    +3

    Thanks NIgel but I don’t think that that issue negates or diminishes the issue of speeding and tailgating that I have put forward. That and the DVSA situation that I identified recently are just two of the trilogy of 3 errors as I call them. I have not spoken about the third error. Yet.

    I must admit to making an error myself. I mentioned speeds of up to 77 mph being allowed on 70 mph roads and that should read speeds of 79 mph and so the differential between speeds on the same road could be an astonishing 16 mph and not the 14 mph as I stated. Thats a lot of differential between vehicle speeds occupying the same road. That can lead to all sorts of problems like tailgating and not at least including road rage etc.

    With regards to the stats above I wonder just how many of those % ages were recorded speeds above the speed limit but with the 10% + 2 mph allowances that the police put on top of the actual speed limit for that road. It could be rather a lot I would think.


    R.Craven
    Agree (2) | Disagree (0)
    +2

    Well, then there is the other point, Bob. Don’t know whether it is still used today but I did hear at RSU’s were getting speed limits set at 10mph below what they wanted to achieve on the basis that it was expected that most would drive around 10mph over the limit.


    Nigel ALBRIGHT
    Agree (1) | Disagree (7)
    --6

    According to many driver there is a higher limit, one to which many drivers do actually drive to and that is the speed limit plus 10% plus 2 mph. I know that I have said that this limit was never allowed by the police (ACPO guidelines 2011) but I take it back .. Back in 2000 on a paper called ‘Speed enforcement guidelines dated the 11th July 2000 there was also a table with guidelines. Apparently making that allowance.

    It therefore seems that since then it has become general knowledge by some drivers that one could get away with increased speeds by that measured amount. Basically some drivers would accept their speedometer reading as 30 mph and perhaps be actually doing only 27/28 mph. Other drivers would assume the higher limit of 35 mph and drive at 35 mph knowing that there was such an allowance before police action would be taken. However their speedometer might be correct and they may actually be doing that higher speed. The same applies all the way up to 70 mph being possibly some vehicles are only doing 63 mph and another vehicle could be doing 77 mph on the same road, taking into account the police allowance. So on the same 70 mph road one vehicle is doing only 63 mph and then other is doing 77 mph?

    A differential of some 14 mph in total. It’s no wonder we have tailgating to such a degree if that is the case.


    R.Craven
    Agree (7) | Disagree (0)
    +7

    Quoting your comment David,’.As I keep saying, remove the ability for the emergency services (and members of the public under the defence of necessity) to lawfully exceed the speed limit. Road deaths will reduce as a result!’
    Are you actually saying that those trained to do blue’s and two’s, for example, should not be able to exceed a speed limit?


    Nigel ALBRIGHT
    Agree (6) | Disagree (4)
    +2

    Re-speeds in excess of the limit on different roads: “.. between 35% and 75%..” “..between 9% and 63%..” and “between 23% and 59%..”?? For a moment there, I was afraid we were going to be presented with some imprecise and inconclusive statistics. The ETSC must have been up all night coming up with those helpful percentages.

    On a less frivolous note, ‘driving too fast’ IS a killer because it implies being unable to stop avoid an accident, as opposed to simply ‘driving fast’ which is okay, provided it doesn’t harm or annoy people, unless it’s over the limit, in which case it probably does annoy a lot of people. The problem is the persistent regular speeder is not necessarily in control, so arguably it is always ‘too’ fast.


    Hugh Jones
    Agree (6) | Disagree (2)
    +4

    Quote: ‘Graziella Jost, projects director at the ETSC, said: “500 people die every week on EU roads, a figure that has refused to budge for several years. And driving too fast is still the number one killer.’
    As a bland statement, no, it isn’t the No 1 killer. Typical case of someone postulating from behind a desk, it seems to me. Speed at the wrong time and in the wrong place is the killer. Not the same thing at all. 30mph in a 30 zone can be dangerous in the wrong circumstances as much as 70mph on a motorway can be in some circumstances. Speed itself is neutral. Sorry, but in the first place he needs to understand what he is talking about.


    Nigel ALBRIGHT
    Agree (13) | Disagree (4)
    +9

    > “It’s very simple: if we want to bring down the number of road deaths, we have to tackle speed effectively.”

    As I keep saying, remove the ability for the emergency services (and members of the public under the defence of necessity) to lawfully exceed the speed limit. Road deaths will reduce as a result!


    David Weston, Corby
    Agree (4) | Disagree (6)
    --2