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Average Speed Cameras to Save the World?


Article by: robert
Date: 31 Jan 2010

pocketgpsworld.comThe Sustainable Development Commission has called on the UK government to cut carbon emission by means of average speed cameras on the country's motorways.

The environmental advisers claim that if all 70 mph limits were subject to average speed camera enforcement this would achieve a reduction of 1.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

The Commission points to a Department for Transport report that the 70mph speed limit is being broken by 52 per cent of motorists (is that all?!).

They believe that if all drivers stuck to the 70 mph limit, Britain would be a greener place, we'd all save money on petrol and spend less time at the petrol pump. Might not cheaper journeys lead to more motoring though? Many drivers are restricted to low mileage by financial considerations. It could be argued that a sizable proportion of the population would actually increase their carbon footprint by increasing their leisure journeys if such journeys cost less. The oft-talked about pay-per-mile tax could see that problem off though.

The Commission also wants all cars to be fitted with speed limiters. Maybe they're using the scatter-gun approach of hoping one or other of their ideas stick, I can't imagine for a second both ideas being adopted. The cameras would obviously be an expensive waste of time if all cars were neutered in this way. I also can't imagine the British public being very happy about not being able to use their car's full capacity where it is legal to do so... some other countries and on race tracks for instance. If you could easily switch it on and off yourself, I'd predict wide non-compliance.

The alternative would be enforcement using GPS monitored "Intelligent Speed Adaptation". Utilising automated braking systems linked into the vehicle's cruise control, this would allow the speed of a vehicle to be automatically limited according to the speed limit of the road on which it is driven. There is also talk of smoothing out motorway traffic flow with this technology during congestion and bad weather.

Although I can't imagine what I believe would be such an unpopular proposal becoming mandatory, I do believe that a significant percentage of motorists would adopt the technology voluntarily - especially those with penalty points already stamped on their licence.

I can also see the argument for more "efficient" driving. I strongly believe that GPS tracking that monitors speed, heavy braking and acceleration will be part of every SatNav in the future. When folks see for themselves how much extra they're spending as a result of their poor driving habits, they'll self-regulate. Then, hopefully, the heavy hand of government won't be necessary.
Comments
Posted by mikealder on Sun Jan 31, 2010 1:01 pm Reply with quote

If they want to bring in full time cameras across the whole motorway network why not be honest about it and state its for raising revenue for the countries ecconomy instead of lying.

I also feel the speed limit in this country is too low for modern cars with far better brakes and handling than when the current 70 MPH limit was imposed, perhaps it would be more acceptable to the British motorist if they up the speed limit to 85MPH and enforce that with a zero margin for error - Mike


 
Posted by The_Apprentice on Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:31 pm Reply with quote

That would just drive people off the motorways and on to the A roads where they can accelerate/decelerate to their hearts content, and create a larger carbon footprint.

I will stick with my motorbikes and A roads Smile


 
Posted by mrfrank on Sun Jan 31, 2010 3:10 pm Reply with quote

ah, the pay-per-mile tax. I read somewhere they would charge up to 1.50 per mile at peak hours.
Basically that means I would need to pay 150 per day to go to work (I do 100 miles return journey).
I do spend 50 minutes to go to work, as I leave near the motorway and my work place is just outside the motorway too.
If I had to take train/public transportations I calculated I would need 2 hours door to door (not incuding delays of train, tube, etc..) at least. Now, why should I be forced to increase my commuting time from 100 minutes to 240 minutes, have less sleep, change my habit, to avoid the unnecesary pay per mile tax?
I really think that instead of increasing their revenues by charging motorists per mile or adding a network of spec cameras or whatever with the excuse of reducing the carbon footprint, they should invest the money needed for these technologies to instead promote electric/hybrid cars more effectively in the UK.
That definitely would reduce the prices of such cars (so we can afford them more) and reduce the carbon footprint much more than by driving petrol cars.
Think about it...no more petrol cars (or much less)...just electric ones instead.
That would be great!!

Cheers!!


 
Posted by Gl3n on Sun Jan 31, 2010 4:46 pm Reply with quote

From personal experience driving through Germany (to Munich) at over 70mph for quite a bit that distance I have got about 500 miles out of a tank of fuel. With similar traffic conditions and keeping to the speed limit within the UK I can get about 400 miles. I know that isn't particularly scientific but I'm confident that in my Mondeo that 70 mph is not the most efficient.

A small engined car doing 70 on a motorway is probably not going to be particualrly efficient either so why not have an optimal speed for each model of car? If you have a 1.2litre maybe you should be limited to 63.5mph if that is the most efficient speed.

The trouble with limiting speeds could have safety implications, if you are limited to 70 when overtaking a car doing 69.5... I certainly wouldn't be comfortable with that.

The M6 toll always seems to be empty when I have used it. Yet there still seems to be mobile cameras on the bridges despite only a handful of cars using it. Make the speed limit on the toll road higher and cash in on the extra traffic that would use it rather than trying to catch an odd car (not using the camera database) that is over the limit.

So many times I find a queue caused by a large, heavy and slow crane causing a considerable tailback plus a lot of cars not operating at the most efficient speed. Is rush hour the best time for this to be on the road? Is that going to be dealt with? I doubt it.

Getting back to fuel, filling up at a BP garage will usually result in about 370 miles of commuting (mixture of peak time urban and motorway driving) yet filling up at Sainsbury or Tesco can be 30 or 40 miles less from a tank of fuel. I may save money filling up but that is out weighed by the extra miles I get per litre which is greener too!

Speed seems to be an easy target for these "advisers" but they should also look at road design too. Edinburgh is a great example of bus lane madness and poorly designed traffic flow at junctions. They must be designed by someone who has never seen the traffic in the area and also knows very little about driver behaviour.

Rant over!


 
Posted by The_Apprentice on Sun Jan 31, 2010 4:54 pm Reply with quote

mrfrank Wrote:
.....they should invest the money needed for these technologies to instead promote electric/hybrid cars more effectively in the UK.......


A cunning plan, but by doing that you greatly reduce tax revenue from petrol.
This will need to be recouped from else where.

If they were to increase the number of speed cameras, or use pay/mile, that should cover the losses.

Oh, hang on........


 
Posted by mikeprytherch on Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:22 pm Reply with quote

How you guys drive through 50mph roadworks on motorways with specs cameras ?

I for one find it distracting, I am constantly checking my speed to make sure I don't over step the mark, imagine having to do this for 200+ miles ? I am positive this would cause more accidents as people will be too worried about speeding and paying too much attension to the speedo.


 
Posted by Wazza_G on Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:36 pm Reply with quote

Buy a car with cruise control.

Set it at the correct speed & let it do the work. Very Happy


Be alert.. This country needs more lerts.

 
Posted by Border_Collie on Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:38 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
How you guys drive through 50mph roadworks on motorways with specs cameras ?

Quite often at between about 0 and 25mph, look at the 50 sign and think 'I wish'.


Formerly known as Lost_Property
And NO that's NOT me in the Avatar.

 
Posted by Graculus on Mon Feb 01, 2010 8:15 am Reply with quote

Oh look. Another complete waste of space QUANGO sucking up our taxes and justifying their own existence with the normal load of unachievable tripe. A candidate for that bonfire?


 
Posted by DennisN on Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:36 am Reply with quote

mikeprytherch Wrote:
How you guys drive through 50mph roadworks on motorways with specs cameras ?

I for one find it distracting, I am constantly checking my speed to make sure I don't over step the mark.

Well, you could try not pushing your right foot and accelerator pedal to the floor like I do. My vehicle experience may be limited, but I can't think of any car which actually runs away with you and does over 50 without the accelerator pedal being involved. My van idles at less than 1,000 rpm and at 1,000 rpm claims (over-optimistically) to do 25mph in top gear. If your car does 50mph at idle, simply rest your right foot on the floor, not the pedal.

Having said which, it's an absolute pain keeping my foot away over those miles of 50mph speed limit with average speed cameras on the M4 in south Wales.


Dennis

Where there's a will .... there's a wake.

 
Posted by AliOnHols on Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:18 am Reply with quote

mikealder Wrote:
.....I also feel the speed limit in this country is too low for modern cars with far better brakes and handling than when the current 70 MPH limit was imposed, perhaps it would be more acceptable to the British motorist if they up the speed limit to 85MPH and enforce that with a zero margin for error - Mike

I for one would be happy with that. Up the speed limit with zero tolerance, place SPECS cameras at regular intervals and abandon Gatsos & mobile cameras which introduce the dangerous practice of panic braking, then everybody would know what is allowed and what is not. That must be safer and greener.


Garmin Nuvi 2599
Android with CamerAlert, OsmAnd+, Waze & TT Europe.
TomTom GO 730, GO 930, GO 940 & Rider2.
SatMap Active 10.

 
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