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M6 accident 21-10-08

Discussion in 'Rants & Raves' started by JohnboyC, Oct 21, 2008.

  1. JohnboyC
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    JohnboyC Member

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    Not sure if this is a rant and rave.....but how many more deaths on the roads do we in the UK have to put up with, when the accident has some "involvement" with foreign lorry drivers.....

    My condolances go out to the family of five killed when their car just burst into flames......

    I was broadsided by an Austrian 40 tonne truck last year...so I feel I have some experience...luckily we survived with an entire side of my car trashed.....we were just badly shaken up

    Is it not high time foreign lorry drivers were banned (ok bit radical that) or at the very least ALL lorrys in excess of 30 tonnes forced to stay in the inside lane of motorways......I for one have had enough of these juggernaughts overtaking each other when one lorry can do 2mph more than the one in front......causing all sorts of traffic snarl ups....

    Whats everyone else think ?
    #1
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  3. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    I agree totally
    #2
  4. Macduff
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    Macduff Member

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    It's now 6 dead :crying: Sounds like an entire family wiped out.

    No idea of the circumstances but it does appear that foreign truckers are "immune" from some aspects of the law that apply to UK drivers.
    #3
  5. quattrojames
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    quattrojames Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    The foreign driver problem is largely down to a blind spot along the right hand side of the lorry caused by the left hand drive tractor unit. I think UK lorries in Europe are legally required to have a blindspot mirror fitted on the cab to minimise if not eliminate the 'black hole' on the right hand side of the cab. Foreign drivers aren't currently legally required to fit this mirror when driving in the UK, which is very dangerous, and surely lives could be saved by a simple change in the law.
    #4
  6. Les 51
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    Les 51 A pint of Diesel please!

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    Isn't it about time we fitted lorries with some sort of electronic warning that bleeps if they get to close to something beside them?
    #5
  7. richs2891
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    richs2891 I cant spell !

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    My condolances to the family and those involved,
    I can only hope that some good comes out is it considering we are all supposed to be within the European Community that a simple blind spot reducer / eliminator could not be made law regardless of the side of the road drive on.
    Saying that how many people dont look when joining a motorway ?

    Richard
    #6
  8. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    As per Germany, should be inside lane only for HGV's during peak times (7-9am, 4-7pm), They'd soon change their murdering ways.
    To say I'm fed up with this is the understatement of the year. And it's not just foreign drivers, a lot of British drivers drive LHD tractors as they work so much on the continent.
    Anyone see that unbelieivable twat on traffic cops last week. Just ploughed straight in to stationary traffic on M5 or M6 and couldn't remember what happened. 3 dead at the time, could have been a lot worse. He wasn't foreign either. It's pretty much every week now and something radical needs to be done.
    #7
  9. unkle
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    unkle Beer God

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    [Oct 21, 2008]
    I think its a terrible what happened but its early days yet to start laying the blame until the full facts come out.

    Theres a lot of stupid drivers on the motorways these days, both driving Lorries and Cars, having driven RHD on the continent I cant imagine how tricky it can be driving something big like a LHD truck on our roads (people hogging the middle lane, undertaking, driving in dusk without lights), I always keep an eye out if im in the middle lane on wagons but I would consider myself an experienced driver so who knows, an eyewitness said on the BBC website said the car actually went under the truck and burst into flames so something must of gone wrong bigtime for this to happen.

    Rest in Peace.
    #8
  10. HAWKEYE
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    HAWKEYE IT CANT RAIN ALL THE TIME

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    A big problem is what you get charged for when this happens, you kill someone in a car you get less than someone for fraud!! If he did cause the accident, then he should be given a really strong sentence, but the likelyhood is we wont even here what he gets. Probably shipped back to his own country with a ban from UK. How many times have you driven on a motorway and a Lorry has pulled into middle lane infront of you 1. without indication, 2. without seeing if you can move over to let him in without ploughing into the cars in the fast lane, even when you are level with him. I was on a duel carriageway the other day, doing 65. saw lorry infront, indicated to overtake when he decided he wanted my lane to turn into some business park causing me to have to slow fairly quick. He must have seen me coming as was RHD. Also driving along m6 with my 1yr old in back of car, had a twat in a fiesta ST up my arse for 7 miles, no point as all the traffic infront was going nowhere quickly. Then we hit a dead stop, he so nearly rammed me. If it had not been on a motorway I'd got out and smacked his face through his windscreen. Dare I say a few more patrol cars could end the **** driving??! As for the family who have lost their lives, my deepest sympathy to their relatives.
    #9
  11. HAWKEYE
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    HAWKEYE IT CANT RAIN ALL THE TIME

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Just to add, I work for TNT and you will see our lorries on the roads all the time. If you see a lorry driver for us or anyone else do something stupid REPORT THEM!! take the reg and trailer number, it does help.
    #10
  12. benw123
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    benw123 Moderator

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Agree with the posts above - it was a sickening story to read with the loss of a whole family, particularly when children are involved.

    About three years ago, when the car I was in pulled up quickly into a queue for some roadworks on the M20 at night, a HGV tore past us along the hard shoulder, wheels locked up, horn blaring. He'd not seen us but thankfully took avoiding action at the last minute. Needless to say, I could have been a statistic that night. A friend of mine was also hit by a foreign HGV driver last year on the M11 too.

    The problem is that this kind of accident (i.e. involving a HGV) is all too common these days, and that's not even before you consider the other HGV incidents where no-one was hurt but the surrounding area becomes totally gridlocked. In some cases HGV drivers aren't to blame - I think some of them are forced to work extremely long hours without breaks - but their safety is a real issue at the moment.
    #11
  13. abdus
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    abdus Top Gear VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Really terrible for what happened and condolences to the family and anyone aggrieved by this accident.

    Also agree with most of the above.

    One thing I've noticed on motorways when there is congestion or roadworks esp and is almost a standstill, the trucks/lorries will take 2 lanes each.Thus for a 3/lane stretch, 2 lorries will be in the middle blocking the way.

    If the traffic in front of them starts moving, they just don't move and force drivers behind them to try and pass them on the outside or inside and as soon as the cars/smaller vehicles are on their side, they try and block them. What's the need to do this:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #12
  14. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Im on the truckers side here, they are blocking the lanes to calm the traffic and stop wide boys from trying slide p the fast lane and overtake all the standing traffic. The hold up isnt the truckers fault they are just 'traffic calming'.

    All this talk of restricting the hours that trucks can use lanes on motorways is nonsense, they all are doing important jobs delivering stuff that keeps most of us in jobs! In most cases the truckers journey is much more important than the cars on the same motorway. Most truckers are considerate drivers,although there are always bad apples that do the extended overtaking manoeuvres just to piss car drivers off etc.
    #13
  15. abdus
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    abdus Top Gear VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    what the truckers' job then? calm traffic or deliver goods? :p

    trying to calm traffic, then forcing drivers (I haven't tried it yet) pass on their sides and then block them? not the best of calming imo...
    #14
  16. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Why is it nonsense? it works really well on the continent, or do they have more hours in the day than us?
    All very well slagging off ideas but I don't see much in the way of solutions from your post. What would you do instead as something needs to be done?
    Last year HGV's caused twice as many deaths as cars per mile travelled (unsurprisingly), very few of them suffering anything more than shock as a result.
    I agree most truckers are excellent drivers, but thats their job so they bloody well should be!!!!
    It's a bit like saying a 747 pilot is better at flying a plane than you or me, durrrrrr!
    As for their journeys being more important, what a load of shyte. They move stuff around, they're not transporting donor organs or blood bank supplies. They could do it in the middle of the night or they can do it at rush hour it really is that simple.
    #15
  17. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    I said considerate drivers! Ok so the trucks all have to drive at night, what about the guys who load/unload the trucks? will the factories close during the day and wait for night so the deliveries can arrive?
    The answer is more roads plain and simple then we wouldn't all be so congested on the roads we have.
    The only vehicles more important than the trucks on the roads tend to have blue flashing lights on the top. Much of the congestion is caused by cars with just one person in , surely a truck with 30 tonnes of goods on is more important.
    #16
  18. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    More roads, simple, I'll get on it right away!
    Yes that's a really intelligent solution in one of the most over populated countries in the world! Maybe a network of tunnels would be better or even double decker roads!
    "Ok so the trucks all have to drive at night, what about the guys who load/unload the trucks?"
    Is this really such a hard concept to get your head around?
    They can drive all day and all night just only in the inside lane at peak times. Simple, easily implemented, and would cost nothing, apart from a few extra minutes added to their journey times.
    "Much of the congestion is caused by cars with just one person in , surely a truck with 30 tonnes of goods on is more important."
    Yes people on their way to work, so they can afford to buy the goods delivered by the lorries, if in fact they ever get delivered and aren't strewn across all 3 lanes of the M6 obviously.
    #17
  19. quattrojames
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    quattrojames Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Since when has that been their responsibility?

    Who decided that one long queue is better than two shorter ones? We British are so intent on queueing it's ridiculous. Far better would be if as drivers we lost our arrogance and learnt to filter at the end of the queue, thus eliminating arrogant drivers either becoming 'traffic calmers' or 'queue jumpers'.

    Trucks do have an essential role on our roads, although there is possibly scope to ban them from major routes on Sundays as they do on the continent, however I have no idea of the practicalities of this. One thing that is clear to me is that generally 'most' drivers have no concept of the size and manouvreability of an artic, time and time again you see cars cutting up the inside of them on roundabouts, pulling in front of them approaching the end of a queue thus suddenly reducing their breaking distances etc.

    As has been mentioned before, increased driver training, tougher traffic policing and more respect is required on our roads.
    #18
  20. Shy19s
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    Shy19s Oil running through my veins.

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    Condolences to the families all over the uk who have lost anyone on the roads.

    Seriously think something needs to be done to tackle the stereo type of bad lorry drivers, it is well known all over the UK, my aunt does alot of motorway miles through business and she is scared stiff of the big dumb asses.

    Indicate and move without even thinking what is going on is one of my pet hates when im near one..

    Maybe this latest incident will wake the highway agency up abit and set down some rules about what they can and cannot do.. maybe some that have been suggested in this forum.
    #19
  21. yellowgti
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    yellowgti Whats going to break next??... VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    was a terrible tradegy and our hearts go out to the familys relatives,

    its been al over itv news last couple of days!
    #20
  22. Steve_N
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    Steve_N Derv Power

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    One thing that is clear to me is that generally 'most' drivers have no concept of the size and manouvreability of an artic, time and time again you see cars cutting up the inside of them on roundabouts, pulling in front of them approaching the end of a queue thus suddenly reducing their breaking distances etc.

    As has been mentioned before, increased driver training, tougher traffic policing and more respect is required on our roads.[/quote]

    I drive a truck, and totally agree with this if i had a pound for every car that has cut in front of me or tried to come around the inside on roundabouts i wouldnt have to work ever again.
    As i trunk between littlehampton and chichester twice a day i am usually fully loaded, and i always leave a safe braking distance between me and the vehicle in front, this is not me leaving room for someone to pull into when trying to save a few seconds and jump the que at traffic lights.
    Going back to the original post, it sounds as though the car was hit from behind by the forign truck, and sandwiched which caused it to set on fire. Most forign drivers dont obey the laws about driving hours and rest periods so he may of been asleep.
    I feel sorry for the familys but we are not all bullys on the road.
    #21
  23. smee
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    smee Member

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    How about we start a new topic to discuss HGV drivers? Whilst this thread was started as a rant we must be aware that a family died and my opinion is that the loss of life is more important than a lot of ranting about drivers skills.
    I was tempted to join the conversation but lets be aware that 7 peoples lives ended that night. So condolences to their families and friends and lets have a moan elsewhere. To associate all drivers with that incident just seems wrong.
    #22
  24. TFSI
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    TFSI Born to Fish

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    [Oct 22, 2008]
    That accident was awful on the M6 but any type of vehicle has good drivers and bad drivers amongst its ranks. The unfortunate fact is a 44 ton truck tends to do an awful lot more damage than a 1 ton car when driven badly and involved in a collision.
    Proximity sensors on blind spots are available now on heavy trucks but nobody will make them legal fitment yet so they remain a costly option and with your average 44 ton tractor unit costing £70-80,000 not many take them as an option.

    With the traffic and the standard of some driving our motorways they are becoming a very dangerous place.

    Many years ago i was doing breakdown callout on our roads with heavy trucks and 25 years ago it was scary working on that hard shoulder, i would not even consider it present day.
    #23
  25. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 23, 2008]
    "my opinion is that the loss of life is more important than a lot of ranting about drivers skills."
    Absolutely, but this thread will be pretty pointless if all we do is continually repeat our condolences to a family that will not be surfing Audi forums at this tragic time. It's in the rant section, it's 99% certain that it was caused by the HGV so lets continue the rant!
    #24
  26. unkle
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    unkle Beer God

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    I'd say for every bad trucker out there, theres a hundred bad car drivers.

    9 times out of 10 a trucker will let you off a slip road or pull over giving you room to get on the motorway, they are pretty much the only ones to acknowledge a bit politeness or curtesy.

    Give them plenty of space and bare in mind their brakes have to stop a hell of a lot more than yours...

    Just my 2p's worth.
    #25
  27. TFSI
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    TFSI Born to Fish

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Well said i totally agree :yes::yes::yes:

    Some people are so keen to knock the BIG BAD TRUCKS that deliver everthing they use and buy. like i said before theres good and bad drivers in all vehicles and bad cars will deffo outnumber bad trucks they just aint as heavy.
    #26
  28. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Its about time people praised trucks a bit more. yes they get in the way on the roads sometimes and some of the worst accidents involve trucks, but we would be lost without them.
    Restrict their hours and car drivers would be the first to moan when the garages ran out of fuel on the weekends etc, or should every garage install bigger underground tanks at great expense, ultimately paid for by the motorist?
    #27
  29. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Restrict their hours and maybe save a families life? Ummm tricky one that. And TBH I don't remember too many petrol tankers wiping out a whole family, they seem to know what they're doing, maybe the 9000 gallons of highly flammable goods behind them focuses the mind and stops them dozing off.
    The Germans seem to manage getting all their deliveries on time, so don't see how scaremongering about petrol shortages is really a valid argument.
    #28
  30. abdus
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    abdus Top Gear VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    As important as the truck drivers work might be, they are not independant. They also depend on all the other people working to get the whole country running. It's not only about truck drivers.
    #29
  31. TFSI
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    TFSI Born to Fish

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    I will tell you a true story :yes: One highly skilled petrol tanker driver comes on shift and drives a hundred miles to his first drop :yes: Guess what an empty tank behind him:yes: When questioned about his glaring mistake he said ( I thougt it was pulling rather well) Proffesional hey ho.
    #30
  32. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Didn't kill anyone though did he?
    #31
  33. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    It was not a scare story about petrol shortages, The same could be said about bread on supermarket shelves etc etc. And yes the economy is not all about trucks, but restricting trucking hours would cause serious problems for many businesses. Road safety is very important but restricting truckers travelling isn't a proper answer. Sadly accidents will always happen.
    It does seem a lot of the accidents involve foreign trucks I would like to see this investigated properly and some serious action taken to change this. The main thing seems to be blind spots on left hand drive trucks and the seeming inability to monitor foreign trucker driving hours.. Also they drive on our roads for free while British trucks on the continent end up paying all sorts of tolls etc
    #32
  34. Neilybabs
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    Neilybabs New Member

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Off topic a bit;

    Europe - not the world!
    #33
  35. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    yes but our roads are a damn site better than south americas
    #34
  36. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Top 30 in the world, and that's for the UK. If you take out Scotland, Wales & Ireland we'd be much higher.
    #35
  37. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    Doesn't matter how congested we are there is still room for a few more by-passes and/or junction improvements to keep the traffic flowing and improve road safety
    #36
  38. Caesium
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    Caesium My BM is fixed!

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    [Oct 24, 2008]
    You clearly don't drive much then, 9 times out of 10 they will continue in their path along the inside lane and not slow to let you off the slip road, and they wont move over either because there is normally another trucker on their offside trying to overtake at 2 more mph than the truck in the inside.
    And 9 times out of 10 when travelling down a 2 lane dual carriageway like, for example the A14 towards london, they will bang on their indicator and just move over regardless of any traffic in the outside lane.

    If their brakes have so much to stop then why do they sit right up my ******* arse on the motorway when I have a car 20 yards in front of me.

    I'll tell you why, its because it takes so long for truck to reach their top speed, they view anyone slowing them slightly from that speed with disdain and cut up or tailgate accordingly, they bully other road users with their size, and as such should receive greater penalties.
    #37
  39. FactionOne
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    FactionOne Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    [Oct 25, 2008]
    Having read the first post a while ago, I thought I'd not read on too far, because the most important point was made right up there at #1.
    That said however, this has been a most interesting read - and certainly a mixed-bag.

    So...

    1) I wholeheartedly agree that the incident on the M6 was a tragic waste of life, and I feel deep sympathy for the family which has lost so much.

    2) I also agree that there is a considerable problem (the figures speak for themselves) with the safety of HGVs in traffic.

    i) There was one crucial part in (2) above - 'in traffic' - I would agree that there are still dangerous HGV (drivers) around even in places where there is nobody else, but I think (as mentioned above) there is a problem with general attitudes on the roads. If we wiped everyone's 'reputation' slate clean and started again - every road user should consider every other, for convenience and safety, and the simple fact is that a considerably larger vehicle should probably warrant that bit more. They aren't as manouverable, they aren't as easy to stop, and they aren't as easy to see around.

    ii) I don't think it's fair to tar all HGV drivers with the same brush (I'm not putting the flame-suit on because I'm not saying that's what anyone in particular is suggesting) - again there is a lot of truth in what's been said about the fact there are a percentage of HGV drivers who aren't fit to be behind the wheel, and equally there is a percentage (probably higher) of car drivers who let the rest down. Just the same as there are some good car drivers though, there are plenty of good HGV drivers.

    ..Andy, I'm not arguing - merely making a point - I see where you're coming from, but if you are tempted to reiterate your comparison with pilots I'll refer you to the stories (one recent) about pilots intoxicated at the yoke. At the end of the day we all hope people are good at what they're paid to do - but in any job you'll find a number who aren't so hot - it's not fair to tear-down the rest of a kind because of a comparatively small number.

    3) I agree that there is a pretty undeniable problem with foreign vehicles and drivers on our roads - I would argue that this probably accounts for a big chunk of HGV incidents which have incompetence or irresponsibility at their root.

    i) I'll make another note though... I'm not going to make a sweeping generalisation about Miklos the <insert eastern european country here> truck driver, and how he's consumed so much hooch in his cab he's asleep at the helm of a 20 year old rig, laden with three times its SWL and a quarer of its rated tyre tread and pressure; on which every component (save for those which used to keep the mirror (singular) attached) is held to the one adjacent by iron-oxide alone. See (2ii) above - there are good and bad everywhere.

    ii) I DO think, that changes have to be made to tackle the bad foreign apples urgently - making LOTS of blind-spot mirrors compulsory, checking of lights and signals on arrival in the UK, and enforcing UK working-time regulations are all easily possible. I can't see the first two costing a fortune to implement either, the last might be more costly - but only if you enforced a system of tachograph use even for foreign drivers - which I think is a good idea. OK, it would mean some foreign rigs would need them fitted, and there would be administration - but it wouldn't impede trade or logistics and bring the EU to its knees, and maybe that would be one change which wouldn't inconvenience the responsible foreign drivers while having a positive effect on smartening-up the shabby ones.

    iii) related to (i) - The shabbier contingent of UK HGV drivers should be sorted out just as much - this probably comes down to VOSA being given more battenburg Galaxies and the dayglo wombles turning their attention away from coning-off two lanes of a motorway to retreive a napkin when three Police traffic cars have already turned-up to do it. I don't think there would be a dramatic re-think of law governing drivers and vehicles required - just better enforcement of what's there.

    4) I have to say in summary, from my own observations (I haven't carried-out a controlled study, but on average I spend very little over an hour of every working day outside of my car) there are some shocking HGVs and drivers on our roads, from here, there, everywhere. At the same time some of the HGV drivers on our roads are the best examples of gentlemen (and I guess ladies), indeed, knights of the road. To the bad ones, shame on you - I hope the law catches you. To the good - a salute, I'm appreciative of the courtesy you offer and the service you provide.

    5) On the issue of the two Royal Mail artics straddling lanes...

    If there were three (or any number I guess) lanes of moving traffic in front of them - that's shocking, and certainly something which shouldn't be happening. If however, there was standing traffic ahead, perhaps with three lanes merging into two, or even one. Fair play to them. I can see quattrojames' utopian-vision of how queues for a merge would work - it'd be great if people started to join the open lanes close to the blockage, but with enough time so that everyone approaching the queue only has to slow to the speed of the slowest vehicle in front. The fact is though, that there are an IMMENSE number of idiots on UK roads who don't appreciate the idea of merging in time. They think the best plan is to tear down the outside of a merging-queue, right up to the cones, and then push in. The fact then is that they've stopped to try to get in, the traffic behind them pulling the same stunt has stopped - trying to get in; and the other lane or two which were merging nicely, have also had to stop to let the others in. Even when that standing traffic gets moving again, there is a 'slowdown' filtering back down all the lanes of traffic right to the end of the queue. So, if the Royal Mail drivers were trying to prevent antics of that sort, fair play - I'd not think any less of them - in fact, on occassion my own blood has boiled enough to make me do exactly the same in a Golf.

    Anyway, that's my tuppence... Well, that's probably about £20 worth, but still...

    Regards,

    Rob.
    #38
  40. treblesykes
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    treblesykes Member

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    [Oct 25, 2008]
    Fair play faction one, I'm glad someone else understands what the royal mail trucks are up too. It might not be legal but its a great idea.
    #39
  41. Neilybabs
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    Neilybabs New Member

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    [Oct 25, 2008]
    articulate and precise.
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