Search results for: seat belt

Dec
16
2006

Britain’s seat belt law should be repealed

The BBC’s Today Programme is running a competition called Christmas Repeal in which listeners are invited to nominate an existing law that should be repealed. I nominate Britain’s seat belt law. [Update 23 December. Despite my high hopes and much encouragement, my Immodest Proposal did not succeed. It did not pass through the Today Programme’s …

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Jul
02
2014

A bargain

From time to time I check on Amazon to see if anyone is buying my 1985 thriller Risk and Freedom – not many. But views about its value vary widely. The act of reading it, and transforming it into a “used” book, apparently increases its value enormously – I would like to think so..   1 Comment Risk …

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Nov
03
2013

Been there. Got the T-shirt.

Yesterday was Risk Day in Birmingham’s Town Hall with numerous events and speakers focused on the theme. My contribution was rewarded with a conference T-shirt.   I suggested that since The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has its headquarters in Birmingham they might like to come over to take part in a discussion …

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Jun
11
2013

Pater knows best?

Risk compensation – the proposition that a person’s perception of risk influences their risk-taking behaviour – has now become conventional wisdom.  No one now disputes that rock climbers with ropes will attempt manoeuvres that they would not attempt without them, or that trapeze artists will attempt manoeuvres with nets that they would not attempt without. …

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May
09
2013

Change has to take root in people’s minds

The main headline in today’s Daily Mail reads: £90 fine if you’re texting at the wheel: Minister warns of safety crackdown US experience suggests that the crackdown is unlikely to achieve its desired effect. There the success of attempts to deal with the texting-while-driving problem by means of legislation has been the subject of a …

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Mar
24
2013

The BIGGEST LIE?

Last Thursday (21 March 2013) I attended a conference entitled “Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics? Understanding casualty trends and the causes”. It was sponsored by the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS). At the conference PACTS, the Department for Transport, and seven other organizations interested in promoting road safety launched a website called www.roadsafetyobservatory.com. …

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Feb
11
2013

Open letter to Tom Mullarkey, CEO of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.

Dear Tom Following our meeting at a dinner at the RSA over six years ago I sent you an email (22 February 2007).You replied the same day saying “When I have a moment, I would like to look into this in more detail and so I will follow up on the links you have kindly …

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Feb
08
2013

30 years in the jungle with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents

 31 January marked the 30th anniversary of the implementation of Britain’s seat belt law. A television interviewer sent to quiz me about my opposition to the law said I reminded him of Hiroo Onoda, the Japanese soldier who spent 30 years in the jungle, fighting on, unaware that the war had been lost. The interview …

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Jun
27
2011

Road Safety: Myth Perpetuation

On 30 June and 1 July Oxford Brookes University is holding a History of Road Safety Symposium (http://ah.brookes.ac.uk/conference/history_of_road_safety_symposium). History, as they say, is written by the victors. The concluding speaker is Rob Gifford, Executive Director of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety. The title of his presentation is “How parliament came to love seat …

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Feb
08
2011

Two methods of transport-safety myth building

1. Simple assertion. An example can be found in the current issue of The Economist by the journal’s Science and Technology correspondent writing under the name of Babbage (http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2011/02/road_safety).  Babbage notes that the US fatality rate has been “inching down over the past half century” and then proceeds to explain why: it is the result …

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