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Towtug

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1 minute ago, chrisn7 said:

It seems me that a certain curiosity about such accidents is a good thing so we can understand how we might the same fate avoid ourselves, especially if something other than excess speed is involved.

 

No one has yet mentioned the actions of other drivers potentially forcing the caravanner to take action.  People love to cut in front of a caravan for no reason. 

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5 hours ago, WispMan said:

Why oh why do we have to speculate on how these accidents happened, every time they are posted on CT?

 

There are experts on RTAs who do this for a living. Leave it to them and don't forget that peoples nearest and dearest may well be reading these posts.

 

Yip, the best learning can be taken after an investigation has taken place rather than from the armchair or passing the scene.

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6 hours ago, macSpot said:

My daughter passed this yesterday morning. She said the tow car was on it's side and the caravan looked twisted. Also there was another car involved, which was on it's roof. I wouldn't like to speculate how that happened.

Yep! That's right. We passed it yesterday. We wondered if speeding was involved.  Probably never find out. 

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I often get involved in the post incident investigation, but honestly without being on the scene and being able to test or hypothesise and back that up with measurement and actual data speculation has little or no value at all.

 

With high value assets such as air and rail, proper investigation are carried out and we all learn from them. With RTC unless theres a fatality the forensic investigations rarely occur and theres no central publicly accessible  reporting system , in addition Insurance assessments are rarely thorough and as a result we rarely learn from them.

 

On another subject " I think it's unfair to call motorists rubber neckers" as a result of a couple of fatalities involving emergency responders on European roads I took part in a study of incident dynamics.

The conclusion in part showed that the way that incidents were conducted contributed to this effect. At the scene traffic approaching from a considerable distance, especially in the opposite direction sees a mass of lights etc , at that point they dont know if it is their side or the opposite so the natural reaction is to slow down, that causes a pulse effect as following traffic also slows, it's not specifically the case that people slow to look (although admittedly that is a human reaction) it's more to so with caution. 

Supplementary incidents on the opposite carriageway tend to happen initially about a quarter of a mile away as the first pulse slows enough to catch someone out.

You may have noticed in some European countries they now erect screens and turn off the Blues especially those forward facing. This was as a result of the learning from this report.

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1 hour ago, Towtug said:

At the scene traffic approaching from a considerable distance, especially in the opposite direction sees a mass of lights etc , at that point they dont know if it is their side or the opposite so the natural reaction is to slow down,

 

I once approached what must have been a major incident as there were many police, ambulance and fire engines attending.  The weather was drizzle and it was night time on an unlit major road.

 

I’m sure all those attending were concentrating and involved in doing their job.  But the approaching traffic were almost blinded be the mass of flashing lights.  Driving past was very difficult and dangerous.

 

It must be very difficult for the first responders to consider that impact when at the scene.

 

John

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4 hours ago, Custard Avenger said:

 

No one has yet mentioned the actions of other drivers potentially forcing the caravanner to take action. 

 

And what pray do you base that pretty serious accusation  on?

 

 Yes there was another vehicle involved (according to someone who passed the scene) but there is NOTHING to even suggest that the “other” vehicle driver was at fault other than wild speculation.

 

Andy

Edited by Mr Plodd
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6 hours ago, Mr Plodd said:

 

And what pray do you base that pretty serious accusation  on?

 

 Yes there was another vehicle involved (according to someone who passed the scene) but there is NOTHING to even suggest that the “other” vehicle driver was at fault other than wild speculation.

 

Andy

He said potentially and accused no one.

In addition there is NOTHING to suggest that the "other" vehicle was not at fault.

 

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We have no evidence at all to use as a basis for speculation as to causes, all we have is a pair of photographs which quite clearly show that the caravan was in collision (at moderate to high impact speed) with something large and solid on its nearside front corner with little or no damage to the offside or rear half of the nearside. There is a distinct possibility, based on location (but nothing more than a possibility ) that the "something large" was a tree.

There are reports of another damaged vehicle but nothing conclusive to connect the two incidents.

Stability issues, speed, bad driving and/or fault are all totally unsupported speculation.

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17 hours ago, Towtug said:

On another subject " I think it's unfair to call motorists rubber neckers" as a result of a couple of fatalities involving emergency responders on European roads I took part in a study of incident dynamics.

The conclusion in part showed that the way that incidents were conducted contributed to this effect. At the scene traffic approaching from a considerable distance, especially in the opposite direction sees a mass of lights etc , at that point they dont know if it is their side or the opposite so the natural reaction is to slow down, that causes a pulse effect as following traffic also slows, it's not specifically the case that people slow to look (although admittedly that is a human reaction) it's more to so with caution. 

Supplementary incidents on the opposite carriageway tend to happen initially about a quarter of a mile away as the first pulse slows enough to catch someone out.

You may have noticed in some European countries they now erect screens and turn off the Blues especially those forward facing. This was as a result of the learning from this report.

Totally agree with this. If drivers did not slow down and carried on at the speed they were doing, they would be called irresponsible. 

 

I remember years ago on Tomorrows World (shows how long ago it was!) they showed the effects of a line of traffic, with the front car braking and slowing down a little. Eventually the concertina effect meant that cars further down the line were stationary. 

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23 minutes ago, phutchison said:

Totally agree with this. If drivers did not slow down and carried on at the speed they were doing, they would be called irresponsible. 

 

I remember years ago on Tomorrows World (shows how long ago it was!) they showed the effects of a line of traffic, with the front car braking and slowing down a little. Eventually the concertina effect meant that cars further down the line were stationary. 

A more recent example [about 15 years ago, when Johnny Walker presented the Radio 2 5pm Evening Show!] was given by a Police Inspector[?] or similar rank who had completed an MBA Thesis on traffic flows. He busted the myth that rolling roadblocks were slowing traffic down by showing that, rather than traffic coming to a complete halt at the scene of the accident, and tailbacks developing as cars edged forward a few yards at a time, the rolling roadblock [before smart motorways], smoothed out the traffic flow and held a low, but pretty constant speed. He said that this also frustrated drivers, because, by the time that they reached the scene of the collision, the bottleneck was cleared and there was no apparent reason visible for the rolling roadblock to have been used! Sometimes, you just cannot win ...

Steve

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13 minutes ago, marchie1053 said:

A more recent example [about 15 years ago, when Johnny Walker presented the Radio 2 5pm Evening Show!] was given by a Police Inspector[?] or similar rank who had completed an MBA Thesis on traffic flows. He busted the myth that rolling roadblocks were slowing traffic down by showing that, rather than traffic coming to a complete halt at the scene of the accident, and tailbacks developing as cars edged forward a few yards at a time, the rolling roadblock [before smart motorways], smoothed out the traffic flow and held a low, but pretty constant speed. He said that this also frustrated drivers, because, by the time that they reached the scene of the collision, the bottleneck was cleared and there was no apparent reason visible for the rolling roadblock to have been used! Sometimes, you just cannot win ...

Steve

On the occasions that as a civilian I drove a police vehicle with markings etc on the motorways in the UK, we were instructed to never to travel at 70mph as that would cause tailbacks.  We had to decide whether to travel at less than 70mph or more than 70mph.

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1 hour ago, Durbanite said:

On the occasions that as a civilian I drove a police vehicle with markings etc on the motorways in the UK, we were instructed to never to travel at 70mph as that would cause tailbacks.  We had to decide whether to travel at less than 70mph or more than 70mph.

I hope you always chose 'less than'....Don't want to be giving the public the wrong impression. Afterall they dont know it's a 'civvie' driving it and just assume it's the Police rushing to get to the next tea stop!

 

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On 08/08/2019 at 09:02, WispMan said:

Why oh why do we have to speculate on how these accidents happened, every time they are posted on CT? There are experts on RTAs who do this for a living. Leave it to them and don't forget that peoples nearest and dearest may well be reading these posts.

 

The formal reports from such bodies can take months to appear, and when they do they are generally just filed away unless there is a particular lesson to draw to the attention of other professionals, such as car manufacturers, and the emergency services. It is rare that the results of these investigations, although available, are reported by the general media or discussed by the general public because it is very cold news by then. As a result lessons are rarely learned from these reports by the general public.

 

It is therefore no bad thing that these accidents are reported, and possible causes generally discussed, at the time as it reminds us of the possible consequences of speeding, poor loading, sidewinds etc.  Speculation is not the same as drawing conclusions.

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2 hours ago, Bolingbroke said:

 

The formal reports from such bodies can take months to appear, and when they do they are generally just filed away unless there is a particular lesson to draw to the attention of other professionals, such as car manufacturers, and the emergency services. It is rare that the results of these investigations, although available, are reported by the general media or discussed by the general public because it is very cold news by then. As a result lessons are rarely learned from these reports by the general public.

 

It is therefore no bad thing that these accidents are reported, and possible causes generally discussed, at the time as it reminds us of the possible consequences of speeding, poor loading, sidewinds etc.  Speculation is not the same as drawing conclusions.

One of the most useful things available in other spheres are the Accident Investigation Branch reports (Marine, Rail and Air)

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3 hours ago, Guzzilazz said:

One of the most useful things available in other spheres are the Accident Investigation Branch reports (Marine, Rail and Air)

This is because they are convened conducted formally. It would be nice to think that some of the investigative work I've done in the past could be used in this way but in the eyes of the public they dont warrant it.

I recently had to wait until 2am to witness a recovery of a HGV where the driver claimed a steering failure, as the cost in holdups etc was seen as prohibitive.

Edited by Towtug

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9 hours ago, Bolingbroke said:

 

The formal reports from such bodies can take months to appear, and when they do they are generally just filed away unless there is a particular lesson to draw to the attention of other professionals, such as car manufacturers, and the emergency services. It is rare that the results of these investigations, although available, are reported by the general media or discussed by the general public because it is very cold news by then. As a result lessons are rarely learned from these reports by the general public.

 

It is therefore no bad thing that these accidents are reported, and possible causes generally discussed, at the time as it reminds us of the possible consequences of speeding, poor loading, sidewinds etc.  Speculation is not the same as drawing conclusions.

In reality, full investigation of RTCs is seldom, if ever, done unless there is a fatality or life changing injury. Priority is given to treating any injuries and clearing the highway

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On 09/08/2019 at 23:11, Stevan said:

In reality, full investigation of RTCs is seldom, if ever, done unless there is a fatality or life changing injury. Priority is given to treating any injuries and clearing the highway

You reckon?  The UK seems to spend more time with roads/lanes closed for "investigation".  On mainland Europe they really do "clear the road" as the main priority

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12 minutes ago, Guzzilazz said:

You reckon?  The UK seems to spend more time with roads/lanes closed for "investigation".  On mainland Europe they really do "clear the road" as the main priority

 

That is because, in the event of a fatality, or the possibility of a fatality, the Police must abide by the Home Office publication “The Road Death Manual” and THAT dictates very precisely what must be done.

 

The primary thing that it dictates is that, in order to ensure everything possible is investigated at the scene, the initial presumption must be that it is a POSSIBLE murder scene. So you have to start at that and work back. Yes I know it seems daft if it’s a single vehicle that’s hit a tree but once things are moved evidence WILL be lost. Likewise if the road is opened before everything has been looked at. 

 

Modern collision investigation (by the police) is a very complex and detailed process and until you have actually been involved it’s very difficult to appreciate just how much work must be done before anything is even touched. 

 

The speed at which many continental roads are re-opened after fatalities is a clear indication to me that they do NOT investigate fatalities, or potential fatalities, any approaching as thoroughly as the U.K. police do. 

 

Andy

 

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23 minutes ago, Guzzilazz said:

You reckon?  The UK seems to spend more time with roads/lanes closed for "investigation".  On mainland Europe they really do "clear the road" as the main priority

Yes! Those closures will have been for fatalities or life threatening injuries.

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23 minutes ago, Guzzilazz said:

You reckon?  The UK seems to spend more time with roads/lanes closed for "investigation".  On mainland Europe they really do "clear the road" as the main priority

 

Could that be because they accept accidents happen, instead of trying to find some to blame for it.

 

I recall sitting on the M62 for 5 hours because someone had left a note and jumped off a motorway bridge.

 

We were eventually told that the delay was because they had to investigate to determine if that person had been pushed!

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6 minutes ago, Grandpa Steve said:

 

Could that be because they accept accidents happen, instead of trying to find some to blame for it.

 

I recall sitting on the M62 for 5 hours because someone had left a note and jumped off a motorway bridge.

 

We were eventually told that the delay was because they had to investigate to determine if that person had been pushed!

In effect, you are saying that unnatural deaths should not be investigated! 

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And if it was your nearest and dearest I am sure you would want to be sure they were the ones who had written the note AND that it hadn’t been written under duress wouldn’t you??

 

Andy

 

Only a very tiny percentage of collisions/crashes call them what you will are true “accidents”, the vast, and I do mean vast, number are caused simply by driver error of some description. As one heavily involved in forensic accident investigation and reconstruction for many years I speak from a position of considerable personal knowledge and expertise. I KNOW, rather than just speculating on, exactly what is involved.

1 minute ago, Stevan said:

In effect, you are saying that unnatural deaths should not be investigated! 

 

Well said!

 

Andy

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Andy, your points are well made and accepted. 

 

But there is a government "value" set on a life - my experience is from the rail industry and the cost of improvements to (say) level crossings, and if the cost is greater than the value, then the improvement will not be made...  So if on the one hand £100k (used to be the value set on a life) why would the cost to the economy of hours  of time lost not be considered in a similar way?

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