Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

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Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

JRobinson wrote:...
Can I assume it's the new car, or that you're a driving instructor - surely you must have a better knowledge of cars than me but I would have assumed (or at least I was taught this when I learnt to drive) - that at 20mph you should probably be in 2nd gear, not 3rd - in which case your revs would be higher than doing 20mph in 3rd gear. How you them manage to be in 5th gear by the time your doing 30 is beyond me - 5th gear is, imo, there for when travelling at the highest speeds, motorways and dual carriageways only. surely it's just as bad for the engine to be running at too high revs than too low revs. Maybe your new car is designed to run better in higher gears at lower speads I don't know.
I expected a lot of replies disagreeing with me but this one was totally unextpected!

Yes I do have a knowledge of how cars work, as should be expected with my profession, but I have to confess I'm not sure I totally understand what you are saying.
JRobinson wrote:...at 20mph you should probably be in 2nd gear, not 3rd - in which case your revs would be higher than doing 20mph in 3rd gear".
That is correct the engine revs would be higher in 2nd gear than in 3rd gear and so more fuel would be used in 2nd gear than in 3rd gear. So surely it is a good thing to be in the higher gear. A lower fuel consumption saves money and helps avoid pollution!

All cars are now made to be capable of doing lower speeds in the higher gears for this reason and it is now acceptable to block change up the gears as well as down on the driving test since they brought the 'eco' driving aspects into the test.

My car will actually pull up Westwood Hill with the speed limiter set at 30 from 26mph to 30mph in 5th gear.
In that situation I use 4th gear instead but on a flat road a higher gear is almost always more efficient because you need almost no load on the engine.

In older cars 30mph in 4th gear uses roughly a third less fuel than 30mph in 3rd gear on a flat road and with the new cars capable of being driven in higher gears at low speeds the fuel efficiency is even greater.

My car actually tells me when to change up! As I'm coming up Westwood Hill in 4th gear doing 30mph it is asking me to select 5th gear and it suggested 6th gear the other day to one of my pupils doing 40mph in 4th gear on a slightly uphill section of the A21. I instructed her to select 5th gear instead. I will be on to Mazda to find out how useful these suggestions are. I know that the computer must know the speed and the revs but I'm not convinced it realises how steep the incline of the road may be.

Very happy to say that far less fuel was needed for my recent holiday in Shropshire than would have been required in my other car, a 2003 Yaris T Sport, despite the new car being heavier and both having a 1500cc engine :)

As I mentioned the speed limiter, which virtually all new cars now come with, and which is something I teach my learner drivers to use, I would add that this is where further danger arises when doing 20mph on a road as wide as Sydenham Hill. As the driver needs no attention whatsoever to prevent the vehicle from going over 20mph it is very easy for the attention to wander! This may come to little consequence if the other drivers on the road are sticking to the speed limit and pedestrians stick to the pedestrian crossings in order to cross the road but neither is often the case.

On the other hand the display unit that links to my mobile as soon as I enter the car means that I never need to pull over to make or receive a call. Calls can be made or answered via buttons on the steering wheel with no risk of needing to have my attention anywhere other than on the road ahead and it even reads out any text messages I receive :D

I am VERY happy with 'Black Betty' :wink:

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

JRobinson wrote:...
will supermarkets really put up prices because a lorry delivery takes a few minutes longer to get somewhere?! I don't think so - most lorries don't get up to 30 anyway do they? driving through London?
you're saying that diesel car owners drive mostly in London?! fairly sure that's not true.
Well it isn't just a few minutes longer is it?
Reducing the speed limits from 30mph to 20mph is actually an extra minute for every mile that was able to be driven at 30mph. So if a delivery lorry is going from one site to another within London this will add up quite considerably!
And then there is the increase in fuel costs to run the lorries.

Will they put the prices up?
Probably. Although we most likely won't know that this is the reason unless there are widespread compaints about increasing prices. I rely less and less on supermarkets now and hope eventually to be in a position never to need to use them but this will be made far more difficult if I have to drive at 20mph to get right across London before getting to a farm shop I may want to use.

And whatever the case more fuel will be used by ALL vehicles on our roads if they are driving at 20mph rather than 30mph which will lead to yet a further increase in costs to drivers, who in a poll said they would lower their speeds at the top end if they thought it would mean savings! AND far more pollution over London as a whole :(

And JRobinson, you may be fairly sure that there are no diesel car owners who drive mainly in London and perhaps none of your friends fall into that category but quite a few of mine do. I'm not saying that I think their decision to get a diesel car was a sound one, I don't understand it at all but I have many friends who rarely leave London and own diesel cars.

On the instructor forums I use there are often posts about the issues of problems with their cars and the unbelievable costs of putting them right and yet there are still instructors, even those living in London, who swear by diesel and would never consider using a car running on petrol.

All I can say, is if you own a diesel car and very rarely travel outside London, now may be a time to reevaluate the situation!

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

Hi Tim,

I read the link you added with interest but surely the statistics they are discussing as far as fixed cameras go are for that immediate area where the fixed camera is installed.

How far each side of that fixed camera do those statistics still hold true? I am in no doubt whatsoever that these cameras placed at accident hotspots do reduce injuries and fatalities but I am sure that this is true just for that immediate area.

These cameras do help with the mindless morons out there with no regard to either their own or others safety but I would argue that for the responsible driver, without the aid of a speed limiter (which I love on my new car), they may actually make driving more dangerous!

Prior to having the speed limiter I had to keep looking down at my speedometer, and of course I would naturally be searching out for those damned yellow cameras. Both of these activities were limiting the time I spent reading the road ahead, which is what we should all be doing when driving, and if that means accidentally going slightly over the set speed limit because we are reacting to the conditions on the road, it surely is safer than when we are taking our full attention from the road in order to make sure we are not exceeding it.

And here, I would like to raise another thing that just doesn’t make any sense to me whatsoever. And that is the Speed Awareness courses that are offered to drivers in place of a fine and points on their licence.

Someone slightly over the speed limit, where the excess was an error due to the points I just made would be offered this option. But the maniac driver who deliberately drives at over 100mph on a motorway, for example, would not be offered that option.

I would ask who of these two drivers is in more need of a Speed Awareness course? Why can’t the latter driver be offered this option but also, as they were over the ‘threshold’ that is currently set for those who are offered the option, would be informed that the next time they were caught speeding they would get the points and fines for BOTH of those speeding offences. Seems fair to me. They attended the course and took nothing on board from it so they receive the penalties from the first offence as well as the second.

Everyone I know who has attended one of these courses saw it as a pain and something they had to do but returned from the course raving about it and saying they learned so much.

Do we not think the driver who obviously so far has no sense of responsibility on the roads would also benefit from such a course?

Anyway, apologies for the tangential diversion and back to topic, I am glad that you might have agreed with me about hidden mobile cameras but I am wondering whether you understood what I meant and am not sure at all about what the study mentioned by ROSPA was monitoring.

If the study was carried out in the UK I don’t think it could have involved what I am proposing as a solution.

I don’t mean Police officers with hand held cameras, I mean temporarily ‘fixed’ cameras that are as hidden as possible and NOT painted bright yellow.

If we had enough of these that moved around the streets of London and our local area and the penalties were increased, I can’t see how it couldn’t work.

Once a driver learned there was one at a certain point on Sydenham Hill it would only have the same effect as the current fixed cameras.

But if a few weeks later it was at a different location on Sydenham Hill or part way down Kirkdale, and then a couple of weeks on it was on Sydenham Road or Westwood Hill – then what would the study show?

We could still have the bright yellow cameras at known accident blackspots to draw further attention to those areas if deemed necessary but I think that once a speeding driver had been caught a couple of times and had friends who had suffered the same fate, their driving habits would have more chance of being altered.

I accept ROSPA’s findings on a 20mph speed limit being safer as far as injuries and fatalities are concerned but would argue this is because the majority of those who choose to speed are only doing 30mph now rather than 40mph or even 45mph.

If we had an effective means of enforcing the speed limits as I have just suggested then 30mph would be fine on Sydenham Hill and many other roads in the area as the road users would abide by it and the 20mph limits could be imposed upon the roads that require it such as South Croxted Road.

In conclusion I would still argue that 30mph is slow enough on roads like Sydenham Hill IF the drivers adhered to that limit.

JRobinson
Posts: 1102
Joined: 5 Jan 2010 12:40
Location: De Frene Rd

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by JRobinson »

ok - so I think it was badly worded, or I read it wrong, I thought you meant that all (or most) diesel drivers were driving in London, where in fact you meant that most of the diesel drivers you know.

I didn't know that modern cars now have speed limiters - I was going to post in here about how it's very difficult to only drive at 20mph (or slower) when in 3rd gear, but easier when in 2nd - especially going down hill, if you take your foot of the accelerator, the car will naturally find a speed, be that slower or faster than currently, and the higher the gear you are, the faster the 'idle' speed will be, so slower if you're only in 2nd gear.
Obviously, if your car is capable of limiting the speed, and it is more economical to travel at any speed in a higher gear, then why not use 3rd.
I know that police drivers are trained to drive in a gear lower than usual, as it's quicker to slow down by releasing the accelerator, and letting the engine slow the car, than to have to use the breaks - or rather if you're driving at high revs, and you need to slow down suddenly, you will slow down just by lifting the foot of the gas, and before it's hit the break.

most of driving should be second nature and almost automatic, so that you can use more of your brain/mental capacity to be aware of your surroundings - surely it's a good thing if you're not looking down at the dash checking your speed, or looking for the gear stick to check which gear you're in, etc.

yet again over the weekend I had someone overtake me on Perry Vale - I'd come round the south circular from Forest Hill, and at the right turn, just under the bridge, I'd let out someone from the right, turing right across me, and the person driving the grey van behind me had tooted me. Then he'd pulled right over to the left hand side as I drove up Waldram Place, before turning right onto Perry Vale, and I had to slow down for traffic coming the other way opposite the entrance to the station, and then slow down for oncoming traffic at the parked cars by the school, and then slow down for the speed hump/crossing by Dacres Road, and I don't accelerate quickly (as it's more economical not to), and I don't use the breaks heavily, I anticipate slowing down, by just reducing the gas, well in advance, so I certainly wasn't going at 30mph, but definitely was above 20mph, and then after then next junction, where there's room, he put his foot on the gas, and wizzed past me.

30mph (or any speed limit) isn't a target to aim for, or a minimum speed to drive, it's a (legally enforceable) suggested maximum safe driving speed - if the conditions justify it, it's a good idea to drive slower than that, and I frequently do - and it's more fuel efficient to drive less erratically, less braking, less harsh acceleration. Some people are just impatient though, and it's infuriating.

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

ok - so I think it was badly worded, or I read it wrong, I thought you meant that all (or most) diesel drivers were driving in London, where in fact you meant that most of the diesel drivers you know.

Yes upon reading my post back, I agree, it was a little ambiguous. Apologies.
I said:
"The extra repair costs that diesel car owners will experience who drive mainly in London and are forced to be driving their vehicles at 20mph all the time."

When I should have said:
"The extra repair costs that those diesel car owners who drive mainly in London will experience when forced to be driving their vehicles at 20mph all the time."
Most of the diesel drivers I know drive long distances but I also know many who do not.

"I didn't know that modern cars now have speed limiters - I was going to post in here about how it's very difficult to only drive at 20mph (or slower) when in 3rd gear, but easier when in 2nd - especially going down hill, if you take your foot of the accelerator, the car will naturally find a speed, be that slower or faster than currently, and the higher the gear you are, the faster the 'idle' speed will be, so slower if you're only in 2nd gear.
Obviously, if your car is capable of limiting the speed, and it is more economical to travel at any speed in a higher gear, then why not use 3rd."


Yes it is difficult to stick to 20mph but at least if you are concentrating on that your eyes are never far from the road ahead. The limiters don't work on steep hills such as the part of Sydenham Hill heading down towards the Horniman Museum but my car warns me with a constant beep if the speed exceeds that which I set on the limiter. I then need to use both a lower gear and the brake pedal on that road to keep it at 20mph.

"I know that police drivers are trained to drive in a gear lower than usual, as it's quicker to slow down by releasing the accelerator, and letting the engine slow the car, than to have to use the breaks - or rather if you're driving at high revs, and you need to slow down suddenly, you will slow down just by lifting the foot of the gas, and before it's hit the break."

Really not sure what you mean here. When I was in the police 10 years ago this wasn't the case at all. There would be times a lower gear is used for more control when manoeuvering at higher speeds than usual, but that would be the exception rather than the rule.

"most of driving should be second nature and almost automatic, so that you can use more of your brain/mental capacity to be aware of your surroundings - surely it's a good thing if you're not looking down at the dash checking your speed, or looking for the gear stick to check which gear you're in, etc."

I can see how you may imagine this to be a good thing but when forced to drive at 20 mph on a road as wide as Sydenham Hill, although I wouldn't attempt to do it without the limiter now, it actually tempts one to reduce their attention on the road ahead and the surroundings!

I very rarely have a car in front of me but instead a line of cars behind me. And driving at such a slow speed with a huge wide empty road ahead of me I have to struggle to resist the temptation to find something I will need later from the glove box or grapple around to find the tissue box in the back of the car! I feel VERY bored as it feels as if I am not involved in the driving of the vehicle at all!

And you should never be looking down at the gear lever. I am assuming you threw that in as an example of something that might take your attention from the road. I have never done that and have never allowed any of my pupils continue with doing that. Just a feel for it will tell you which gear you are in and that way you can keep your eyes on the road.

"yet again over the weekend I had someone overtake me on Perry Vale - I'd come round the south circular from Forest Hill, and at the right turn, just under the bridge, I'd let out someone from the right, turing right across me, and the person driving the grey van behind me had tooted me. Then he'd pulled right over to the left hand side as I drove up Waldram Place, before turning right onto Perry Vale, and I had to slow down for traffic coming the other way opposite the entrance to the station, and then slow down for oncoming traffic at the parked cars by the school, and then slow down for the speed hump/crossing by Dacres Road, and I don't accelerate quickly (as it's more economical not to), and I don't use the breaks heavily, I anticipate slowing down, by just reducing the gas, well in advance, so I certainly wasn't going at 30mph, but definitely was above 20mph, and then after then next junction, where there's room, he put his foot on the gas, and wizzed past me."

Not sure I fully understand the above but if you stopped on a main road to let someone out from a side road, especially one on the right, then I am not at all surprised that another driver tooted you. You would most certainly fail a driving test doing that. If you are on the main road and have priority you should never be giving way to vehicles emerging from side roads.

You should always leave space in a traffic jam for drivers from the main road to enter the side roads but shouldn't be giving way to those waiting to join the main road.

Oh and accelerating fast to the speed you intend to be driving at saves fuel. Gradually increasing your speed uses more. The best way for fuel efficiency is to accelerate as quickly and smoothly as possible to the desired speed and then once at that speed, to use highest gear possible.

I am overtaken by other drivers many times every day, and often very dangerously, even when I don't have my car marked as a tuition car. And I always drive to the speed limit when it's safe to do so. Most of them want to exceed the speed all the time around London, so if you drive at a slower speed this is bound to happen often.

"30mph (or any speed limit) isn't a target to aim for, or a minimum speed to drive, it's a (legally enforceable) suggested maximum safe driving speed - if the conditions justify it, it's a good idea to drive slower than that, and I frequently do - and it's more fuel efficient to drive less erratically, less braking, less harsh acceleration. Some people are just impatient though, and it's infuriating"

I am afraid in some ways it is a target! Of course, if the conditions justify it, it is not just a good idea but necessary to drive slower and a candidate would fail a driving test if they did 30mph where it wasn't safe to do so.

But it is also important to make progress. If it is safe to drive at 30mph and that is the speed limit and the candidate drove at 25mph they would fail their driving test as surely as if they were driving at 35mph.

And the reasoning for that is so that other drivers are not frustrated. This could lead to dangerous overtaking manoeuvres and possibly far worse and so is considered dangerous. The speed limit set for a road (apart from the narrow and sharply winding country roads that have no signs leaving the limit to be assumed to be 60mph) is safe for the road if the road is clear and the weather conditions and road surface are good. And under those circumstances you should indeed be driving at the set speed limit in order to be making good progress.

JRobinson
Posts: 1102
Joined: 5 Jan 2010 12:40
Location: De Frene Rd

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by JRobinson »

Thank you for your considered responce.
I'm not sure I agree with everything you've said, but there are points that I will take on board.

To avoid this becoming a two person thread, debating the minutiae of how car performance and efficiency differs at various speeds, gradients, and gear choice, I will cease responding.

Thanks anyway

JR

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

Feel free to contact me via email or phone if you do want to discuss anything further JR
If you Google my name and 'driving instructor' you should find my web site :)

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

Getting back on topic, yet again today I was the 'pain' on the roads adhering to the speed limits with a long row of cars behind me on several occasions and was overtaken 8 times whilst I myself was driving to and from my pupils!

I didn't notice the same effect happening on the opposite side of the road at any point.

So are those who commented earlier on this thread in favour of the 20mph limit finding the same?
Or am I just unlucky that when I'm on the roads, all the drivers around me want to drive faster?

Or perhaps I, a person who is against it and think it a ridiculous solution to the problem, am the ONLY person who actually abides by those speed limits!
It really does seem to be making the roads more dangerous than previously to me.

Rachael
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Joined: 23 Jan 2010 13:42
Location: Sydenham / Forest Hill Intersection

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Rachael »

You're not alone, Lois. I have been adhering to the new speed limit on that road since it was introduced. I am regularly tailgated, overtaken at dangerous points and have abuse shouted at me out of passing vehicles. My only consolation is that now the cameras are active, these people may get caught.

I agree that the 20 mph limit on that road causes more problems than it potentially solves.

leenewham
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Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by leenewham »

I agree, on many roads, 20mph is a good thing, but on some roads where 20mph has been introduced, it seems to make no sense.

Sydenham Hill feels like you are going to be overtaken by a snail at 20mph and I too have been overtaken while trying to adhere to the speed limit, which on that road means spending a lot of concentration and time looking at the speedometer as it easily creeps up, especially while a trail of cars tries to get into my boot.

I'm not sure common sense has been used regarding introducing the speed limit on certain roads and no consideration has been given to how people actually drive. Cars are far more powerful than they used to be, it takes far more concentration now to drive them slowly than it used to. 20mph seemed fast in my MGB that I had 20 years ago.

Sydenham
Posts: 272
Joined: 2 Sep 2007 09:08
Location: Wells Park

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Sydenham »

Interesting that there hasn't been such detailed discussion and comment in the past about roads where the speed limit was considered to be too high. I'm not quite sure why it's interesting (to me at least). However its good that the discussion on speed is occurring.

Widening the geographical scope of the discussion - are there any roads around Sydenham that will be 'unsafer' as a result of the general move to 20 mph? Can anyone think of any? Or is Sydenham Hill the one exception?

Tim Lund
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Location: Silverdale

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Tim Lund »

leenewham wrote:I'm not sure common sense has been used regarding introducing the speed limit on certain roads and no consideration has been given to how people actually drive. Cars are far more powerful than they used to be, it takes far more concentration now to drive them slowly than it used to. 20mph seemed fast in my MGB that I had 20 years ago.
Maybe it would be common sense not to allow larger cars in cities.

Girton Road car park width restriction

Eagle
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Location: F Hill

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Eagle »

Tim
I think we are in agreement.
Chelsea Tractors are common place in our area and they are totally unsuitable for the area. I would imagine they fit in few older garages for a start.

I am not sure why most locals need a car full stop . With so many delivery companies no need to collect shopping etc .

Also little Algernon and Marigold should be walking to school , or if over 2 miles busing .

lulu1
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Location: sydenham

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by lulu1 »

20mph speed limit is absolutely fine on most roads in London. However, on roads like Sydenham Hill and for example Denmark Hill it is a nightmare. I drive on Sydenham Hill daily and the amount of abuse I get by sticking to 20mph is terrible. It creates many more dangerous situations with drivers overtaking. It's an accident waiting to happen. Everybody knows where the speed camera is and will slam on the breaks for the necessary 30 meters or so. Sydenham Hill is a very long road and very few people stick with the 20mph limit. The road was much, much safer when it was 30mph.

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

Sydenham wrote:Widening the geographical scope of the discussion - are there any roads around Sydenham that will be 'unsafer' as a result of the general move to 20 mph? Can anyone think of any? Or is Sydenham Hill the one exception?
I think that there are many roads in Sydenham and the Lewisham borough as a whole that will become more dangerous under a 20mph speed limit and still maintain that 30mph is adequate on most roads if the drivers stick to that as the limit and drive sensibly, lowering their speed as and when necessary due to the various road conditions.

I for one am sick of having conditions and restrictions placed upon me and liberties taken away from me due to an irresponsible minority but in this road speed limit situation, I honestly believe that they have it completely wrong and the general public are being put more at risk!

I take it you do know South Croxted Road?
Well I agree that needs to be 20mph and as I said earlier in this thread, should have been at least 20 years ago.
I strongly believe this would have saved lives.
And it doesn’t feel wrong at all there to be driving at that speed. To me it seems a complete necessity and I was always being tooted by other drivers for doing such for years.
But then fortunately I wasn’t the hit and run driver who killed an elderly gentleman who stepped out from between the parked cars without noticing the speeding driver coming up the road.

On that road, the idiots rarely have the opportunity to make dangerous overtaking manoeuvres due to the narrowness of the road and the parked cars all along both sides of it. 20mph is not making it more dangerous but safer – IF something is done to enforce it that is.
Even there I am usually at the front of a long line of cars!

I am sure all would agree that the safe and sensible speed for Sydenham Hill would naturally be higher than that for SCR.
So if 20mph IS sensible for Sydenham Hill, what limit should be imposed upon South Croxted Road? 5mph?

The fact that only yesterday it was 30mph proves to me that Southwark Council are not in the least concerned about safety, hence the lives lost there over the past years.

To answer your question I would say that most main roads in Sydenham will be made more dangerous if a 20mph limit is imposed upon them.

Take Sydenham Road for example. It is often not possible to do more than 20mph or lower. But during the night and, more importantly, those times in the day when there is a stretch of open road, those frustrated drivers causing the problems on Sydenham Hill will overtake dangerously.

They will overtake at speeds higher than 30mph due to their frustration whilst the pedestrians will be nonchalantly sauntering out into the road even more than they do already!

I had just as many if not more problems today on Brenchley Gardens which, though narrower than Sydenham Hill, is still safer with a 30mph speed limit in my opinion.

I do agree that the flitting between 20mph and 30mph limits is ridiculous and very dangerous but I do not believe the answer to be a blanket 20mph across London.

The issue here is that we have a society with no enforcement of law and order and that is what needs to be addressed rather than making the responsible people suffer when the irresponsible will remain irresponsible and in this case, sadly, will be likely to cause even worse consequences.

When I was in the police there were many times I pointed out drivers who were most certainly dangerous and likely unlicensed but where the driver didn’t want to be wasting time on such things so the dangerous drivers were not stopped. Not enough officers and too many ‘more important’ things to deal with.

One of which inevitably was sometimes a fatal road accident!

Lois
Posts: 90
Joined: 29 Sep 2007 03:27
Location: Westwood Hill SE26 6PE

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Lois »

Eagle wrote:Tim
I think we are in agreement.
Chelsea Tractors are common place in our area and they are totally unsuitable for the area. I would imagine they fit in few older garages for a start.

I am not sure why most locals need a car full stop . With so many delivery companies no need to collect shopping etc .

Also little Algernon and Marigold should be walking to school , or if over 2 miles busing .
I really hope after that comment that you, yourself, do not drive a car!

I do agree on the Chelsea Tractor thing (although I can’t see how that was linked to any posts in this thread) and would only have such a vehicle if I was mainly driving out of London into the countryside.

I actually have never had a little Algernon and Marigold, however if I had (they would have been a little Jamie and Imogen by the way), seeing as I myself have multiple reasons to avoid buses as much as possible I would most certainly not put my children on one!

But that aside, and putting aside the fact that I obviously need a car in my line of work, I would point out that I am a “local” whose lifestyle would be considerably adversely affected without my personal transport.

I have tried all the supermarket delivery services and those of Abel and Cole and Riverford and whilst I sometimes use them, none are suitable enough for me to rely upon for all my food shopping needs.

Before my mother went into a home with dementia, I would have visited her far less often if I had to rely on public transport to get me from Sydenham to Chingford and now that she is in a home in Epping I would hardly ever see her.

I like to holiday here in the UK.
This means my holiday money is spent in the UK.
And that I am not part of the huge problem that air travel is today.
I have only ever flown out of the country twice.
Would be interested to know if you ever have and if so how often?
But my partner and I could not enjoy the type of holidays that we plan without our personal transport.

I have friends living all over the UK that I like to visit and without my car this would not be possible without relying on them to pick me up from a station in the area in THEIR car!
And then I couldn’t take tools, gifts and other items with me as well as my small case full of clothes.

I often have a lot of stuff to take somewhere that would be impossible to carry on public transport – Has this never happened in your life?

I am really trying not to be rude but I did find your comment very rude and offensive indeed.
Am I such a freak?
Or is it just possible that other “locals” also have lifestyles that are made much easier and far less stressful by owning a car?

I had wondered whether those so strongly supporting this 20mph across London thing were non drivers and you have partially confirmed that suspicion for me.
Unless after such a comment you are about to confess that you are one of those special “locals” who needs a car!

I have no idea who you are as you have hidden that information but despite you having earned my respect with your comment about drivers using mobiles and texting whilst driving, it has now been lost.

Sydenham
Posts: 272
Joined: 2 Sep 2007 09:08
Location: Wells Park

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by Sydenham »

So maybe the answer is variable speed limits to suit traffic conditions. And isn't that what we are all supposed to do anyway - adjust our speed accordingly; the speed limits were always meant to be maximums. Because of the many who don't adjust there speed accordingly i.e. when it is raining, or busy, or when children are about around schools, or time of day then limits have been imposed and will drop to the fastest considered safe at the worst time to suit the worst conditions.

The only way to change this is through education and it will take time. Driving instructors and the end to end driver education programme are part of the solution. Ram the message home to all those being taught - and continue the message after 'graduation'. Perhaps there should be driver pledges to take - and the Highway Code should be more forceful on this. Changes between braking distances in wet and dry were always in there - maybe some more examples of variable speeds and not treating speed limits as the normal.

But what other roads apart from Sydenham Hill - Sydenham Road at night has been mentioned (but I don't think during the normal day - 20 mph then is ok). I was thinking the continuation of Southend Lane after it crosses Bromley Road and rises up the hill skirting Downham - it's a dual carriageway and 30 mph feels really slow already.

If all we can come up with is Sydenham Hill then the 20mph might not be such a bad one after all.

_HB

Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by _HB »

Whilst the roads have never been safer for the occupants of motor vehicles, there is a worrying trend of increasing KSI rates for pedestrians and cyclists on London's roads. If you successfully reduce speeds, then you successfully reduce casualty rates. We have tried for decades to let human nature do the work, to try and change the culture through training and education. It doesn't work. We need to change the physical environment and properly enforced speed limits are key to that.

So I completely support the roll out of 20mph across London. No one who opposes these measures is ever able to come up with a sensible and constructive alternative. I agree that there are some roads where it seems very slow, but we can get used to that. And the anti-social driving that people are experiencing should be recorded, reported and enforcement action taken. Not sure our leaders have the guts to do that though.

stuart
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Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by stuart »

I think I should say the 20mph programme is not (as Lois suggests) aimed at bad drivers. By his own admission it is aimed at good drivers who are expected to drive 'to the limit'. I am astonished that driving at 25mph in a 30mph area is treated the same way as 35mph. That is just crazy and indicative of the ingrained attitudes in the driving industry.

The driving statistic (pun intended) for the 20s plenty campaign is the landmark study which showed a a 40% reduction in KSIs. No other practical road safety action can match this. Moreover the figure was even higher for the most vulnerable group (children). I think we can safely assume that this group is disproportionately 'at fault' for running out into the road without looking hidden behind parked cars. There is often nothing a good legal driver can do but hit the brakes. The outcome when the brakes are hit at 20mph as opposed to 30mph is however, very, very different.

So is that punishing good drivers or allowing them to drive at a speed which will save lives instead of being intimidated not only by bad drivers but by the driving profession into speeds that will kill rather than injure? I can't think of a defence other than a Darwinian view of which kids should survive to adulthood.

I also deplore the belief here in anecdote in place of statistics. People today will still not accept the lower speed limits on congested motoways are there to speed things up. Its counter-intuitive but it is fact. If its obvious you still have to prove it is! Anecdote is nothing without firm evidence. Stats and models are not always right but they probably are - and you attack them by producing a better model or stats to show the contrary. Otherwise you end up like Australia.

Do remember that when the next idiot overtakes when you are keeping to the speed limit. That's dangerous but people who flout the law will flout the law. We are not very good at getting them off the roads but that's another story. Overtaking a car doing 20 at 30 is less worse than 30/40. And driving at 20 good drivers are less likely to kill and, unlike the victim, having to live with it.

Stuart

mosy
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Re: Speed cameras on Sydenham Hill

Post by mosy »

Q: Does anybody know more about modern cars which "Dingggg!" when the driver exceeds the speed limit for a road? They're presumably GPS-based so would need to be kept up to date. I'm wondering if such can be bought as an after-market add on?

Such would only be of use for consciously careful drivers of course. My main thought is that speed can be deceptive, as I think someone has said, e.g. 30 can seem awfully slow on a wide road so one's speed can creep up unwittingly. An incentive could be that it might save getting fined accidentally if 20-everywhere is introduced so if it saved even one or two fines it'd have paid for itself.

FWIW, the most frequent speeding event that I notice is vehicles accelerating rapidly to try to beat the lights, which ironically is when pedestrians tend to start to cross.

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