Netherlands reduces speed limit to 100 km/h in daytime

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by radamfi, 13 Nov 2019.

  1. underbank

    underbank Established Member

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    Depends where they live. Out in the regions, there aren't that many employment opportunities compared with London/SE. There used to be decent employment opportunities in most small towns and even bigger villages, so people could find work close to home. Now with centralisation etc., regional branches of national firms have closed down - head offices are now nearly all in London, call centres are usually in areas of high unemployment due to incentives etc. That leaves people in towns and villages having to get themselves to their nearest city if they want any kind of decent job - that may be a 1-2 hour journey. Take Kendal, used to be the location of two major financial services firms (Provincial and Prudential) - now people living in or near Kendal have to travel to Manchester or Leeds for decent Financial Services jobs - that's quite a commute, especially with the state of public transport in the north west. We need to reverse the centralisation of it all away from London and the biggest cities and back to there being decent employment opportunities in the smaller cities and towns again, then you'll have the benefit of reduced commuting.
     
  2. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    A false sense of security in that this fails to resolve numerous other aspects of poor driving, for example poorly judged manoeuvres, poor concentration, distraction or poor hazard perception. My personal experience is that these factors represent more of a risk.
     
  3. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    I think there is more "buy-in" for average speed cameras than GATSOs, because if you accidentally drift over briefly you can slow down for a bit to sort out the average rather than a moment's distraction due to something happening on the road meaning you get a fine. Certainly I favour the former over the latter, and wish they'd upgrade Smart Motorways to average speed cameras to avoid the "accelerate-brake-accelerate" thing some people do.
     
  4. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Generally speaking, within limits (!), reducing speeds reduces the severity of collisions, whereas other factors reduce the likelihood of them (60 to 50 on single carriageways is an unusual one as it also significantly reduces likelihood, as a large number of single-carriageway accidents are caused by incorrectly-judged overtakes, and by making lorries do the same speed as cars the number of overtakes is reduced significantly). Particularly when you add environmental grounds (as per the thread), I think you are justified in looking at both at the same time, particularly as speed enforcement can pay for itself.
     
  5. HSTEd

    HSTEd Established Member

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    I'm not sure it is actually possible to reverse the centralisation.
    Until the late 19th Century, cities were only kept in check by the necessity of large agricultural workforces and the demographically negative nature of city living (due to poor sanitation).
    Once these were removed, cities started exploding up until the postwar availability of very cheap oil permitted massive suburban sprawl.
    London was weakened in that time by the Green Belt, but still survived.

    Cities are just such huge economic engines, and have huge aggregation benefits.
    And the decline of manufacturing means transport links for large goods is less important, so locating jobs in cities has few, if any, downsides.

    A better option would likely be to stop artificially trying to force people to live in outlying towns by restraining the growth of cities, and allow them to develop naturally.

    If there was an option living inside the M25 near a tube station, people would take that over an hour long commute, but they can't because the Green Belt prevents London from developing properly. It also forces inward-densification that drives people to move out to get any reasonable standard living.

    Again if planning restrictions were eased people could live better in London because apartment buildings would get way way taller. Parker Morris could be met easily and at reasonable cost despite the high population densities.
     
  6. underbank

    underbank Established Member

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    But can the cities cope with millions more residents? Who will buy the properties vacated by homeowners in the regions who want to move to the cities? What will happen with vast swathes of towns that became derelict?
     
  7. HSTEd

    HSTEd Established Member

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    Given that the estimate is that the UK is short four million homes, London or other cities could get a hell of a lot bigger before derelict housing became a significant issue. Apparently there are about 3.3 million households in London.
    The population is still growing after all.

    My own personal preference would be to construct a greenfield city, eventually the size of London, that would be the ultimate statement of what an early 21st Century city looks like.
    Kind of like Milton Keynes is an example of what a post-war city looks like.

    But siting such a thing would be a pain with the political wrangling that would go on
     
  8. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    Why not just toughen up the laws on overtaking?

    I’m unconvinced that lowering the speed limit would make that much difference. Many HGVs tend to run at about 55 mph in any case, and I’d place a wager that many of the misjudged overtakes involve passing cars which are doing well below 50 mph.

    With a lowered speed limit those that are desperate to overtake will still do so, and in fact may do so more as they are more likely to encounter slower vehicles. I find it amazing how many people will do an overtake when there’s features like side-roads and the like, seemingly oblivious to how risky this is.

    I don’t see why everyone should be prevented from driving at 60 mph when safe to do so because some people can’t be trusted not to overtake safely.
     
  9. radamfi

    radamfi Established Member

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    There is a lot of talk about how you have to live in London or a big city to get work, but the reality is that most people tend to stay where they grew up and find jobs, especially those who didn't go to university. In addition, cheap housing can be found in and around most major British cities. The house I grew up in was demolished in the 80s and that patch of ground is still derelict with a "land for sale" sign on it, despite being less than 10 miles from the most important commercial centre in the UK outside London. Terraced houses in that area can be found for £70,000 or less.
     
  10. FelixtheCat

    FelixtheCat Established Member

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    It's both, not just one or the other. Further, the vast number of people using private vehicles means that the overall effect of such a measure will be significant.

    Afraid not. 3 transatlantic flights is calculated as the equivalent of living entirely car-free (Wynes & Nicholas:2017:p5)
    Simplified Graph.

    Why? Climate Change is a significant threat, aviation is a significant contributor to that, therefore people should fly less.
     
  11. AM9

    AM9 Established Member

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    Not much of a defence when caught at 80+ mph though. Safety is one issue that speed plays a part in, emissions are without doubt, another.
     
  12. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    Yes, however it’s a judgement call as to whether the benefits outweigh the costs in terms of extra journey time. The only totally safe vehicle is one which never commences a journey, after all. Risk is an exercise in management not total removal.
     
  13. Lucan

    Lucan Member

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    I have never gone to America and I don't feel I've missed much. I work with guys who think it normal to fly to places like NY and Dubai just to do some shopping. We need to get out of that midset.
     
  14. AM9

    AM9 Established Member

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    This thread is about the reduction of maximum speeds of road traffic in order to reduce the level of emissions, - principally NOx, so arguments about the cost of extra journey time indicates a complete failure to understand the issue. Ultimately, in the face of an ever deteriorating climate and all that it would bring with it, costs of extra journey time, even those of somebody as important as you, are totally irrelevant. I am amazed at such a self-centred point of view, unless you just don't understand what the scientific community is telling everybody, - in which case I apologise for not recognising that.
     
    Last edited: 14 Nov 2019
  15. radamfi

    radamfi Established Member

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    Climate change is of course the most important challenge facing the world, however this emergency reduction in the speed limit is to improve air quality. It should reduce CO2 as well, but it is interesting to note that climate change by itself hasn't led to speed limit reductions.
     
  16. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

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    NOx from road vehicles will effectively cease to be a problem in around 5-8 years time. By then something like 70% of vehicles will be Euro 6 or equivalent, 20%+ EVs and most of the rest Euro 5. It’s pretty likely that in certain cities the largest emitter of NOx will be diesel trains.
     
  17. TRAX

    TRAX Established Member

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    I’m sorry but I’m 23 years old, so I don’t feel like I’m responsible for causing anything related to climate change, therefore I don’t feel like I should prevent myself from going on holiday by plane if it’s cheaper than rail, even if that’s just 150 km away. And it’s certainly not a manipulated 16 year old who’s seen no challenge in life yet, or 50 year old folks and their whole generation which can quite rightly be charged with causing all this mess, who’ll change my mindset. Sorry, count me out on this one.
    Also, let’s not be hypocrites. Isn’t this forum full of railfans who travel on steam and diesel trains just for the fun of it and haulage ? It’s all fun and games to be telling other people to stop using their cars to go to work and planes for business trips, but this forum will be the one crying when the Flying Scotsman stops running because of concerns about emissions from steam locomotives.
     
    Last edited: 15 Nov 2019
  18. Mag_seven

    Mag_seven Established Member

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    I'm 54 so it's all my fault is it. :(
     
  19. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Wow, just wow. This is incredibly ignorant.

    Do some reading about it - it's an ongoing and cumulative effect. And if you're 23, you're going to have to "enjoy" far more of the effects than I am at 40.
     
  20. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    we should increase speed limits so the fumes get blown away much quicker
     
  21. d9009alycidon

    d9009alycidon Member

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    Those of us old enough to remember the 1970s may recal that due to the 1973 oil crisis the government of the day
    introduced a temporary maximum national speed limit of 50 mph (80 km/h) for all roads, including motorways, on 8 December 1973. The 70 mph limit was restored on motorways in March 1974 and on all other roads on 8 May 1974 but later that year as an initiative to reduce energy consumption, the national speed limits for otherwise unrestricted single-carriageway and dual-carriageway roads were temporarily reduced to 50 mph and 60 mph respectively (motorway speed limits were left unchanged at 70 mph) from 14 December 1974. In April 1977, the government announced that the national speed limits for single-carriageway roads was to be increased to 60 mph and that the 70 mph speed limit was to be restored on dual-carriageways on 1 June 1977.
     
  22. AM9

    AM9 Established Member

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    I remember it well. Even in the '70s, most cars that ordinary people owned wouldn't easily go at speeds over 70 continuously so the 50 limit was broadly kept to (certainly most would go less than 60 on open roads. I didn't live near any motorways so can't comment on what happened on them. The big differences now are that almost any car or van can happily cruise at 70 for miles and there is a sub-culture of speeding by some self-entitled drivers, (often justified by some bad science about how their car/driving style is actually less polluting and they are much more alert and less likely to be involved in incidents at illegal speeds), so any attempt to reduce actual speeds would need to be backed-up with comprehensive enforcement measures.
    One good measure is that electric cars are not only zero emission at the poinnt of use, but also, when running at sustained high speeds, the reduced range will be more apparent, which might help teach those drivers to moderate their behaviour. If they think that they can avoid such limitations by sticking with polluting IC engined vehicles, the ever increasing cost penalties of such vehicles versus electric will at least give everybody else a return.
     
  23. FelixtheCat

    FelixtheCat Established Member

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    NEWSFLASH: Whatever age you are, flying is still just as damaging to the environment.

    Your position here is based on pathetic selfishness. The idea that you, as 1 person in a population of several billion humans and trillions of living things, can do whatever you want because you haven't directly caused the climate crisis is fundamentally flawed. There's nothing I can do to change that state of mind, but you are responsible for the climate crisis if the position outlined in the above comment is how you actually behave. At this point, doing nothing makes you complicit*.

    RE: Your comment about Greta Thunberg:
    You don't know what she has or hasn't gone through. Don't pretend you do. Don't make any judgements on her based on your ignorance.

    One of the things you should learn is not to assume what people think.

    There are 2 main issues with this part of your argument:
    1: Protecting the environment is not really supposed to be 'fun'. The point is that it is necessary to change one's lifestyle and behaviour in order to keep ecosystem functioning (an ecosystem which sustains all life, so it's quite important). If steam and diesel locomotives are withdrawn from traffic because of the climate crisis, I will be sad, but I will understand. That undermines your 'hyprocrite' argument.
    2: Secondly, your comment also assumes I am against electrification. I am firmly, firmly pro-electrification. When I travel on diesel trains, I do feel a slight twinge of guilt if the journey is not essential. Obviously, train travel is so much less bad than flying or private vehicle ownership. Given the choice between the 3 (and that is the choice sometimes), the diesel train is almost always the most environmentally friendly option.


    *Slight caveat - I understand that parts of changing one's lifestyle costs money, and that some people can't afford that. My comments are not targeted there.
     
  24. TRAX

    TRAX Established Member

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    Sorry if I have bigger issues than thinking about the air I breathe. ;)

    Who said the opposite ? :|

    And damaging the environment in the 19th and 20th century while knowing all about it wasn’t selfish ? It’s always the Others, is it ? :rolleyes:

    Who said that it was ?

    Oh dear but you do realise that the train would’ve ran without you in it, right ?

    My point is that going to work in a Euro 2 car is more acceptable, useful and logical than riding a diesel train just for railfanning.
     
  25. FelixtheCat

    FelixtheCat Established Member

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    You implied it. "I don’t feel like I should prevent myself from going on holiday by plane if it’s cheaper than rail, even if that’s just 150 km away"

    No. You do it too. This isn't an 'either/or' issue, everyone can be at fault. I fundamentally dislike previous generations for doing sod all about it, but that doesn't mean I get to sit back and do sod all either.

    You. "Isn’t this forum full of railfans who travel on steam and diesel trains just for the fun of it and haulage ?"
    My emphasis.

    It's still an amount of carbon emitted that contributes to my overall carbon footprint.

    You're comparing work and hobbies, which are not comparable in this instance. I have no idea how one can apply the same logic to both going to work and having a hobby. This point is undermined by your previous point (the train would have run anyway). Which is it? You're going to have to explain this one before I can form a relevant response.


    I'd rather you engaged with my wholistic argument instead of taking half sentences and making failed sarcastic comments on them.
     
  26. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Now now, back beneath your bridge :D
     
  27. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    That has a tone of "OK Boomer" about it[1], and it is not appropriate. It is more unacceptable to do it now, because we understand the issue much more. Two wrongs also do not make a right.

    [1] I'm not a Boomer, that's my parents' generation.
     
  28. scotrail158713

    scotrail158713 Member

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    We have the evidence that what we’re doing is damaging the planet though - did they have this 200 years ago?
     
  29. Geezertronic

    Geezertronic Established Member

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    So a genuine question here - if the speed limit was reduced from 60mph to 50mph on a single lane A road, the throughput of traffic per hour would go down I assume which might mean an increase in pollution if jams occur as a result? Would that be the case or is it a negligible impact?
     
  30. telstarbox

    telstarbox Established Member

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    Throughput isn't directly related to speed because vehicles need to leave more headway at higher speed (think of the 'two second rule').
     

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