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Thread: Car Safety Discussion...

  1. #1
    Regular Member Penfold101's Avatar
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    Default Car Safety Discussion...

    To save a bit of thread creep on another thread, I thought I'd start a discussion regarding car safety to gather people's thoughts on the matter. Now, I don't want this to turn into a bar-room brawl (or a bar-room tidy for Red Dwarf fans...) I'd just like to have a grown up discussion as regards whether cars are becoming TOO safe these days...

    Obviously it started when one member commented that he'd not connected his airbag after fitting a different steering wheel, which led onto a few comments from people for and against doing it. The arguments are valid - cars didn't have them for years, and are still allowed on the roads (as said) but where do you stop? Modern vehicles have passenger airbags, side curtain airbags, in fact if you do have a crash you'd be sorted if you landed in the water as you'd probably float for half an hour...

    Having experienced a head-on drive into a brick wall when I lost control in the snow, the only injury I gained was from the airbag going off and scraping my arm - I definitely bashed my face off it though, and how bad I would've hurt myself if I'd been in a car without one is something I'd rather not know. My nose might not have even reached it for all I know...

    A lot of cars have switched to turn off the passenger one if you have a baby seat fitted, so in theory you could do that with an adult sat there. Does that mean it's safe for you to do it with the driver's one? Should that be optional too? It maybe does all come down to personal choice, but the initial outcry (from myself included) when it was mentioned clearly split the camp into 2 halves, being for and against.

    The broader aspect of it all would be that car's could become TOO safe, taking the emphasis off the driver to keep control of the vehicle and keep it in a safe condition. Classic example of this is the 'anti-stall' technology fitted (I think) to the new Fiesta. It's designed to help prevent a stall on manual cars and in a way would be safer as you're less likely to pull out at a junction, stall, and end up sitting in the middle of the road. The downside is for new drivers who have to olearn how NOT to stall. If a Driving Instructor chooses to use one of these as his instructional car, the student becomes unable to learn how to recover from a stall or recognise the signs as the car takes care of itself...

    You could similarly argue the case for ABS, Traction Control (which you can turn off...) and all the safety features present on modern cars. Are we going too far with it all?

    In a nice, happy, warm and way, your thoughts please ladies and gentlemen...


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    Ex Vec-C Admin Deztroyer's Avatar
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    completely agree with all the driver aids today - not forgetting items like auto lights , wipers and cruise control and speed limiters electric windows and power steering etc - drivers are becoming lazy and a little too relaxed in their driving style - i wonder how many of us would pass the modern driving test if we resat one???

    regarding the airbag issue - if its fitted it should be working - the only time i've driven a car with a deactivated drivers airbag was whilst on an armed response convoy - the last thing you want is to be rammed and your airbag to go off and not see what the hell is going on - and have a disabled steering wheel rendering the vehicle undrivable.


    and another one for you to contemplate.. with all the additional drivers aids comes the additional warning devices - oil pressure/abs/airbag/traction control/tyre pressure monitors, bulb out etc - go back 20 years ago you would still be driving the car around with a defective component because you wouldnt know any different(unless it was a maestro, then it would have probably locked you in and told you the oil was low!!)... now people panic because they dont know what to do and again the car takes control of your power -limp home mode engaged!!

    another idea for the pot

    0-Large smile ......every time it's driven

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    Regular Member carl bear's Avatar
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    the airbag case for me is that if the car has them when i buy it, ill keep them there. But when buyin a car my decision wont be swayed on whether it has airbags or not.

    there are systems in the makin (maybe even in new cars) that applies the brakes if something comes up fast on the front mounted radar things.

    things like this i could see makin a driver slightly lazy maybe or not learn from experiences. I have learnt fromexperiences of drivin, near acciedents etc. Its made me more aware etc. i can spot potential acciedent spots etc.

    drivers could become more reliant (or overly reliant) on the new safety systems. causin possible accidents when they fail.

    i think a car can never be too safe, but its when the driver becomes reliant/lazy to these safety features that it could accidents. I hope im makin sense here, lol.
    An example.
    A car with airbags. a driver may start to think that cus hes got airbags they could drive a little bit faster because if they have a crash they are more likely to walk away from it. So they take a few more risks with their drivin.

    just my thoughts.

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    Regular Member Ste's Avatar
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    Driving standard will and have slipped due to driver aids and safety equipment.

    I was having this exact discussion the other week with a guy from the VCA (Vehicle Certification Authority). The driver becomes complacent due to the myriad of saety features and gets lazy, doesn't appreciate, and has lower awareness.

    These things conspire to cause accidents, OK the driver or passengers may have more of a chance of surviving the accident, but is that really the point? Surely prevention is better than cure.

    As i heard a cop the other week say on the telly, 'remove the air bag and replace it with a spike, and then see how people drive'.

    The element of risk also makes it interesting, does it not?

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    Regular Member Tadpole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ste View Post
    Driving standard will and have slipped due to driver aids and safety equipment.

    I was having this exact discussion the other week with a guy from the VCA (Vehicle Certification Authority). The driver becomes complacent due to the myriad of saety features and gets lazy, doesn't appreciate, and has lower awareness.

    These things conspire to cause accidents, OK the driver or passengers may have more of a chance of surviving the accident, but is that really the point? Surely prevention is better than cure.

    As i heard a cop the other week say on the telly, 'remove the air bag and replace it with a spike, and then see how people drive'.

    The element of risk also makes it interesting, does it not?
    As an ex biker I reflect on the feel of the road when it come to this type of discussion, comfy chair, music on nice & warm 70 mph oh dear what’s that, did we hit something?....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ste View Post
    Driving standard will and have slipped due to driver aids and safety equipment.

    I was having this exact discussion the other week with a guy from the VCA (Vehicle Certification Authority). The driver becomes complacent due to the myriad of saety features and gets lazy, doesn't appreciate, and has lower awareness.

    These things conspire to cause accidents, OK the driver or passengers may have more of a chance of surviving the accident, but is that really the point? Surely prevention is better than cure.

    As i heard a cop the other week say on the telly, 'remove the air bag and replace it with a spike, and then see how people drive'.

    The element of risk also makes it interesting, does it not?
    maybe if the roads were made of rubber and our tyres made of concrete we would be a little safer in our driving standards as well

    0-Large smile ......every time it's driven

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    Regular Member keith1983's Avatar
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    I think the advertising of these safety devices makes people complacent. Alot of safety features are advertised in such a way that they make people feel invincible. As a biker I'd like to think that I have a heightened sense of my own mortality and drive accordingly. But then as a biker I enjoy the thrill of riding "enthusiastically". I am also a Health and Safety professional, so I am very aware that safety features can help but do not eliminate injuries, and deaths. I think education is where there is a shortfall.

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    Regular Member Tadpole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by keith1983 View Post
    I think the advertising of these safety devices makes people complacent. Alot of safety features are advertised in such a way that they make people feel invincible. As a biker I'd like to think that I have a heightened sense of my own mortality and drive accordingly. But then as a biker I enjoy the thrill of riding "enthusiastically". I am also a Health and Safety professional, so I am very aware that safety features can help but do not eliminate injuries, and deaths. I think education is where there is a shortfall.
    only he said more .....

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    Regular Member Big Knox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tadpole View Post
    As an ex biker I reflect on the feel of the road when it come to this type of discussion, comfy chair, music on nice & warm 70 mph oh dear what’s that, did we hit something?....
    speed bump

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    Regular Member Robbie69's Avatar
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    Cars didn't have these bits for years but if they are there I'd have them and hopefully not make use of them! It's up to the individual though I would say. We're all adults and capable of making decisions. My decision is to have airbags fitted as in my opinion it's safer.

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