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edited June 2007 in Campaign
Safe Speed issued the following PR at 11:59:

PR518: Dodgy and discredited statistics in response to 'scrapcam' petition

news: for immediate release

Downing Street has trotted out some dodgy and discredited statistics in
response to the 28,000 signatories of the famous 'scrap speed cameras' petition
which closed on Tuesday.

The response from the Prime Minister's office in full with Safe Speed comments
inserted and marked with a '*'.

====================================================
Thank you for taking the time to register your views about safety cameras on
the Number 10 web site.

Speeding kills. It is a contributory factor in 26% of all fatal accidents in
Great Britain.

* No it isn't. According to Department for Transport figures exceeding a speed
limit it is a contributory factor in 12% of fatal crashes. We know that many of
those are caused by reckless and 'abnormal' driver behaviour.


The facts are stark. If a child pedestrian is hit at 30mph they stand an 80%
chance of surviving. But if they are hit at 40mph they stand an 80% chance of
dying. That is why the Government is committed to achieving appropriate vehicle
speeds on the roads as part of its integrated road safety strategy.

* The true facts are more encouraging. In 2005 in built up areas (20, 30 and 40
mph speed limits) 11,000 child pedestrians were injured out of which 47 were
killed. 0.42% were killed. So clearly we're not running into them at 'speed
limit' speeds because at 30mph we would have killed 2,200. The claim is grossly
misleading. [2]


We are succeeding in changing attitudes, and in making drivers realise that one
of their responsibilities is to comply with speed limits. The proportion of car
drivers who comply with the 30mph limit has greatly increased over the last few
years.

* Hardly greatly - and the means of gathering the information changed in the
year when the biggest fall was recorded - but that's NO HELP AT ALL when road
deaths aren't falling significantly. We don't need more compliance - it's a
false objective. We need safer roads. And we aren't getting them.


Safety cameras provide a valuable and cost-effective method of preventing,
detecting and enforcing speed and traffic light offences. Their use is based on
solid evidence. All reliable research from around the world clearly
demonstrates that cameras reduce speeds and save lives.

* Solid evidence? I'm afraid not. The 'evidence' is dominated by statistical
errors and a total failure to consider the side effects of the policy.


Independent research (new window), published in December 2005, shows that
safety cameras had saved around 1,745 people from being killed or seriously
injured, and had prevented around 4,230 personal injury collisions on Britain's
roads each year.

* That very same report reveals - buried in appendix h - that 'regression to
mean effect' accounts for a full three quarters of the benefit claimed. To make
the claim while ignoring the know error is nothing less than a FRAUD.


And while they are saving lives, safety cameras will remain a key part of our
road safety strategy.

* They aren't saving lives. That's why they must go. That's why 28,000 signed.
=================================================


____ _______, founder of SafeSpeed.org.uk, said: "I am ABSOLUTELY LIVID that 10
Downing Street has sent out inaccurate and grossly misleading to the 28,000
signatories of the 'Scrap Speed Cameras petition'. How dare they! Lives are at
stake. This is a matter of public safety and misleading statistics cause
resources to be miss-allocated and that means that the opportunity to save
lives is missed."

"Dodgy statistics won't save lives. The Prime Minister's office needs to do far
far better than this."

"I demand the right to communicate with the 28,000 signatories by email. Every
one agreed to receive up to two emails when they signed."

"I challenge 10 Downing Street to put up ANY of their experts for public debate
on the issue. We'll soon so just how dodgy their claims and statistics are."

<ends>

Notes for editors
=================

Official response: http://www.pm.gov.uk/output/Page12127.asp

[1]
http://www.dft.gov.uk/162259/162469/221 ... oadacc1802
See table 6.

[2] http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SafeSpeedPR/message/227

Posts

  • The EndorserThe Endorser Posts: 191
    Th stats are flawed anyway. As a hard done by copper, it's one of my jobs to deal with RTCs (unless i can order one of my minions to do it for me), and as such we're at the coalface collecting the data from which the govt, and others, come up with their stats.

    Anyway, in all but the most very, very serious such incidents, perhaps as few as 1 in 500, there is no scientific accident investigation, so how the hell does anyone know whether speed is a factor?

    From my own observational experience, I would say it is - all the obvious arguments about reduced opportunities for safe reaction as speed increases, and the disipation of kinetic energy can easily be observed first hand, but to put an actual number on such incidents, when only a tiny fraction is minutely examined is plain preposterous. 88% of people know that!

    <i><b>Eating baby elephants since 1969</b></i>
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  • <blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by The Endorser</i>

    Th stats are flawed anyway. As a hard done by copper, it's one of my jobs to deal with RTCs (unless i can order one of my minions to do it for me), and as such we're at the coalface collecting the data from which the govt, and others, come up with their stats.

    Anyway, in all but the most very, very serious such incidents, perhaps as few as 1 in 500, there is no scientific accident investigation, so how the hell does anyone know whether speed is a factor?

    From my own observational experience, I would say it is - all the obvious arguments about reduced opportunities for safe reaction as speed increases, and the disipation of kinetic energy can easily be observed first hand, but to put an actual number on such incidents, when only a tiny fraction is minutely examined is plain preposterous. 88% of people know that!
    <hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">
    Psychology in road safety is far, far more important than physics. And all fatal accidents are investigated thoroughly. Only 12% of those accidents involve any speeding vehicles, and of those, many were drunk, illegal, joyriding and/or escaping from police.

    When you turn up to an RTC, I suspect it's usually something like "He overtook in a stupid place", "She didn't look before pulling out", etc, etc. Sometimes it'll be "He was going too fast for the conditions". But how often is it "He was going at 70 in a 60, which was too fast, and if he'd just been going at exactly 60 or below, he would have been OK"? Virtually none of the time I would have thought. There's virtually always an obvious main cause which renders the posted speed limit irrelevant.

    However you try to twist it, the number of accidents caused by speeding drivers who are otherwise law-abiding, because they are speeding, is vanishingly small. And yet cameras can only do anything whatsoever about drivers with registered cars who are going over the posted limit; going too fast for the conditions within the limit, dangerous overtaking, and ALL other causes of accidents are not helped in the slightest by silly devices that take photographs.

    And making out that "speeding" increases the severity of all types of accidents is disingenuous: firstly, it's going too fast for the conditions rather than speeding, and secondly, it's far better to try and avoid the accident altogether in the first place, rather than assuming that it's inevitable and trying to make sure it "only" occurs at 60mph or whatever. It will never be possible to STOP the other types of accidents with cameras, or even lessen the impact most of the time. You have to tackle the cause of each type of accident. There are no shortcuts and you can't automate or simplify the enforcement process.

    If you really, genuinely, truly and honestly want to know more, this is not the place, as there are too many trolls with a set-in-stone anti-car agenda. All the answers to your questions and much much more are at http://www. . Assuming that you really are a police officer, I'm sure you genuinely want safer roads for everyone, and that you don't have an anti-car or power-trip agenda. If that's the case, I urge you to at least visit the forum a few times, post a few questions, and make up your mind when in possession of all the facts. There are other police officers there and they haven't got into trouble. One of them was even in favour of cameras until he saw the light. You know it makes sense. [;)]
  • Mister PaulMister Paul Posts: 719
    The one who was in favour of cameras until he saw the light forgot that a few months previously he was not in favour of cameras, until he pretended to change his mind so that he could pretend that he had seen the light.

    It took all of 3 minutes to reveal that scam.

    __________________________________________________________
    <font size="1">What we need is a new, national <b>White Bicycle Plan</b></font id="size1">
    __________________________________________________________
    <font>What we need is a new, national <b>White Bicycle Plan</b></font>
  • Tourist TonyTourist Tony Posts: 8,628
    Bye bye Paul.

    If I had a stalker, I would hug it and kiss it and call it George...or censored
    If I had a stalker, I would hug it and kiss it and call it George...or censored
    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?o=3 ... =3244&v=5K
  • Speed camera petition: 28030 sigs and unsucessful.

    Cyclists HC petition: 29846 sigs and succesful.

    Bikes are traffic.
    Bikes are traffic.
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