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View Full Version : WHY there are so many so-called 'accidents' on the roads.


G-CPTN
29th Sep 2006, 16:43
Just heard an interview with the bloke who drove for nearly eight miles at 80 mph the wrong-way along the M4 Motorway. The guy seems incapable of coherent THOUGHT.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/wiltshire/5392504.stm
police who chased alongside him on the opposite carriageway. They then raced on ahead, pulled over, jumped over the central reservation and stood on the carriageway signaling him to stop.
Once he pulled over near to Membury Services, police said he still did not realise what he had done.
His wife Fatma, 38, had to be helped out of the car and was taken to Great Western Hospital for treatment for severe shock.
THEN I realised that we have to share the highways and byeways with people who are of below-average intelligence (as well as those of above-average intelligence) and this is NOT a racial or religious slur - I'm including people of ALL origins.
As there is NO test of intelligence associated with the driving test (certainly pre written test) we have people of low-intelligence handling potentially deadly devices mixing it with those with a will to live.
How do we stop this carnage?

Intelligence, as such, however, doesn't guarantee competant driving. One of the cleverest Engineers that I ever worked with (OK, make that TWO) were accidents waiting to happen when driving. HOW the pair of them were avoided on a daily basis I shall never know.

This thread is as a result of my continued irritation at 'the media' referring to vehicle collisions as 'accidents'. The overwhelming of these events are as a direct result of someone's stupidity (or occasionally criminal behaviour). When did you last hear of a true 'accident'?

Jerricho
29th Sep 2006, 16:55
As there is NO test of intelligence associated with the driving test

At least there is a test. Procreating offspring on the other hand............

G-CPTN
29th Sep 2006, 17:02
At least there is a test. Procreating offspring on the other hand............
YOUR parents managed to beat the system.

frostbite
29th Sep 2006, 17:22
YOUR parents managed to beat the system.

Not even a smiley!

Painkillers wearing off?

AcroChik
29th Sep 2006, 17:28
When did you last hear of a true 'accident'?

A true accident would involve true randomness, that is, an event involving a combination of circumstances in which there was no intention by any party. The closest I can come to an example of this might be Brownian motion, observed by (and named in honor of), British botanist Robert Brown.

A way to envision Brownian motion is to imagine you're observing a collection of pollen grains floating and suspended in a dropplet of water. To do this in reality you'll need a microscope. Now, the water is made of molecules, all of which are in constant motion. This motion causes the grains of pollen to move. In theory, the grains of pollen follow random tracks as the energy in the water moves them around. Predicting the tracks of the grains of pollen is mathematically complex.

This is also the core idea underlying brilliant work done by Louis Bachelier in his 1900 Ph.D. thesis, The Theory of Speculation, in which he used Brownian motion to model financial markets and explore a branch of calculus called stochastics.

Einstein described and solved the mathematics underlying randomness as observed in Brownian motion in his 1905 paper, On the Motion—Required by the Molecular Kinetic Theory of Heat—of Small Particles Suspended in Stationary Liquid.

I happen to be wading through this stuff now in school.

I imagine all auto accidents involve intention, though perhaps they fail to achieve the outcome intended by the drivers.

Dons nerd hat :8 and heads for the exit before she's banned.

Hoping
29th Sep 2006, 17:59
So there you have it, the word "accident" doesn't actually exist as the majority of the english speaking population thought it did. It must involve "true" randomness.

Let's see what the dictionary has to say on the matter...

"an unfortunate event resulting especially from carelessness or ignorance"

I think you're studying too much!
; )

brain fade
29th Sep 2006, 18:02
Surely it's a matter of intent?

ie if one intends to hit that lampost, it's not an accident when one does.
On the other hand, if one was merely distracted by ones wife for example, then it's an accident.
Or should we blame the wife........or the sun for coming out from behind a cloud and dazzling one, or should we blame that low flying pigeon that drew your eye away etc etc.

Some are stupid or idiotic. Some are acts of wilful badness. Some are due to reckless speed, but not many as speeding drivers are mainly paying great attention to what's going on.
But most are, well.........accidents! :hmm:

woolyalan
29th Sep 2006, 19:00
Surely it's a matter of intent?

That is exactly what I would say, but lots of people now disagree, especially the police. If there is a crash its now a Road Traffic Collision rather than Accident.

When I asked why they simply say, there is always someone at fault! :confused:

Noah Zark.
29th Sep 2006, 19:08
A statement by some Police force (Exactly which one I missed as I was getting ready to leave for work) now acknowledges that five times more accidents are caused by people's lack of attention than by speed.

Orac has in fact provided the exact statistics in another thread on J.B.

woolyalan
29th Sep 2006, 19:12
:rolleyes: like people not looking what they are doing and forcing me literally onto the round about... idiots:ugh:

G-CPTN
29th Sep 2006, 19:21
That is exactly what I would say, but lots of people now disagree, especially the police. If there is a crash its now a Road Traffic Collision rather than Accident.

When I asked why they simply say, there is always someone at fault! :confused:
H U R R A H !

Jerricho
29th Sep 2006, 19:33
'Tis alright Frosty........

The subtelty is lost on him.

Conan The Barber
29th Sep 2006, 19:55
"an unfortunate event resulting especially from carelessness or ignorance"
Much like this thread?

Gertrude the Wombat
29th Sep 2006, 20:24
A statement by some Police force (Exactly which one I missed as I was getting ready to leave for work) now acknowledges that five times more accidents are caused by people's lack of attention than by speed.
That's just pissing around with semantics, though, isn't it.

Another way of looking at it:

"All "inattention" accidents are actually caused by speed, ie by the driver choosing to drive too fast for the conditions, ie for the level of attention he has choosen to apply to his driving. In extreme cases, where the driver chooses to apply pretty well no attention at all to his driving, a reasonable speed would be zero."

woolyalan
29th Sep 2006, 20:41
I always thought most accidents occured at a junction where 1 birk plainly didnt see the other birk coming, and decides to pull out, who then proceeds to smack the original birk in the side.

one dot right
29th Sep 2006, 21:05
Woolyalan,just an aside , but the word berk actually comes from the rhyming slang of Berkshire hunt I'm sure you can imagine the rest!;)

G-CPTN
29th Sep 2006, 21:08
Maybe the driver who HITS the other vehicle is at fault, as they were clearly not travelling at a speed such that they could stop within the distance that they could see to be clear?

G-CPTN
29th Sep 2006, 21:10
Woolyalan,just an aside , but the word berk actually comes from the rhyming slang of Berkshire hunt I'm sure you can imagine the rest!;)
Wouldn't that be bark?

woolyalan
29th Sep 2006, 21:42
well it isn't like that in MY house! :p :}

rotated
29th Sep 2006, 22:50
Most 'accidents' happen because the majority of folks drive with their head in their arse, pure and simple. I was nearly run down not once, but TWICE in the last week at a crossing next to Rotty Jr's school; there is a stop sign before said crossing and both drivers (one male, one female) completely ignored it and the fact that there was pedestrian traffic. :ugh:

Three 4-5 year olds were just killed here when a guy travelling at unsafe speed while attempting adjustment of his audio system plowed straight into a group of thirty or so kids...:mad:

Carelessness pure and simple, and deliberate ignorance of the basic physics of two tons of machine resting on 600 sq/cm of rubber is responsible for the majority of wrecks.

Perhaps if driver's training included full skid and recovery, and a simulation of causing a death through poor attention and technique, people would realize what they're actually at behind the wheel.

But then again in this culture of selfishness they'd probably forget it all as soon as the cell phone rang... :*

*rant over*

ormus55
29th Sep 2006, 23:11
think it was the rac that did a survey at a motorway services one day. they got a 100 drivers to take an eyesight test.
about 30% should have been wearing glasses whilst driving but werent.
and 2 peeps were certifieably blind!

when the guy says,, sorry mate didnt see you, hes probably telling you the truth.