There are no accidents.
MVA's are a direct result of someone doing something they shouldn't have.If we all drove to the letter of the law there would be no crashes.
Sounds simple enough but we are talking about humans and human error. I think sometimes the term human error is an excuse for the bad choice someone makes that results in dire consequences. So if it is a conscious decision to not bother looking or not bother signalling or changing the radio that results in a crash how can that be waived off as human error? isn't an error unknowingly making the wrong choice?
As humans we have a great capacity for doing things with great precision, our fine motor skills, judgement and perception are what have us separated from the rest of the animal world.
Some people have the skills to fly a jet or drive a formula 1 car with incredible precision and consistency, so why is the car crash inevitable? I don't think a day goes by without a crash reported in the LM on news and lately way to many motorcycles involved.
Well I think that the modern car especially has become sophisticated to the point where it is making people too comfortable and complacent. Because cars are so smooth, quiet and easy to drive fast you simply don't get the sense of speed and certainly don't get an idea what a sudden stop from 120kph could do.
Cars have become nothing more than appliances to most, like the toaster or the coffee maker. People don't take driving seriously and treat it as more of chore, they come to a corner maybe signal maybe not, give a lazy look don't see a car and go, without any real thought of the consequences, I don't buy into the excuse that bikes are hard to see, I have never had an issue in 35 years of driving and I firmly believe it is simply a matter of people not taking due care and attention.
Like a lot of you on here I have been a car or bike enthusiast every since I can remember, from track days to advanced driving courses I love driving/riding and I also take the skill and responsibility of being in control of a vehicle that is cable of such damage very seriously. I learned a lot of things in performance driving school that have helped me be a better driver. How can the general population be made to take their driving more seriously for the safety of all of us?
To me it's partly the training, it is woefully inadequate but maybe more of an issue to me is enforcement. The focus of enforcement of traffic infractions seems to be primarily on speed control and HOV lane misuse lol. Neither of which is the main cause of crashes. Giving John Q road star a ticket for trundling down the 99 at 120 on a sunny sunday afternoon does not seem to be the answer to me, yet this is what they do on a regular basis and then off they go thinking they have saved many lives and prevented the inevitable carnage that was about to unfold.
Excessive speed in built up areas with intersections, traffic lights and peds is a whole other matter.
In these areas the road system is not designed for this, no one is expecting these closing speeds and ripping through a school zone would be just plain stupid and deserves a severe penalty.
I just don't think the approach they have been taking since the advent of the motorcar is working and it needs to change.
More emphasis on the infractions that are the root cause is required and the penalties need to be severe enough to get peoples attention back on their driving.
Looking at traffic accidents in the US http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811552.pdf
A steady albeit modest decline in the last 10-12 years but these figures don't take into account improved vehicle safety or other relevant factors , crumple zones and air bags are probably a huge factor.
The numbers however are staggering and some interesting ones to compare for example, almost the same number of motorcyclists killed as peds and I know they weren't speeding, they were most likely killed by inattentive or careless drivers.
Another intriguing stat is If you add the total peds and cyclists injured it is more than motorcyclist injuries.
I had a discussion the other day with an elderly gentleman that thought motorcycles were a "menace" and I was silly for riding one because it's dangerous.
I replied that it was not the bike that was the danger but the careless drivers that fail to see us and run us down and the few that were a menace give the rest a bad name and the same could be said for elderly drivers that no longer have the senses and skill to safely drive, silence can be deafening.
We are all entitled to ride or drive whatever we want that's what freedom is all about, we also have the right to be protected by the law and currently that is clearly not the case.