Acura RSX, ILX and Honda EP3 Forum banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
578 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another good article from Jim Kenzie

http://wheels.ca/reviews/article/327608

Aug 16, 2008
I may be the only engineer in history to graduate without taking a course in statistics (long story).
But you hardly need a Ph.D. in higher mathematics to see right through this latest attempt by the Ontario Provincial Police to justify their massively unconstitutional "stunt driving" law, whereby the police officer gets to be judge, jury, executioner and bail bonds-person, all in one.
Is the widely advertised and blatantly posted "50-over" law acting as a deterrent, as the OPP is claiming?
Not, apparently, to the 150 people who were charged under it on the Civic Holiday weekend.
In my view, which I have stated a million times before, and have backed up by global research data, if a road is designed to be driven at 130 km/h no amount of speed limit enforcement we can afford is going to have significant impact – you should pardon the expression – on the speed most people drive.
If it did slow us down, it would also have approximately zero impact – again you should pardon the expression – on the crash stats because, as we shall soon see, speed is not what kills. Bear with me.
So these crazed street racers (who otherwise look, act and drive much like you and me because they are you and me) are not really going 50 over, they are going 20 over, and should be dealt with accordingly.
That is, they should pretty much be left alone if they are otherwise driving intelligently.
Incidentally, if you do manage to get your stunt driving case to court, something even alleged arsonists, child molesters and murderers get to do, and are found innocent, you don't get your impound fee returned, your towing charges reimbursed, or compensation for having lost the use of your vehicle for a week.
And the two court challenges that I know of to this regulation, based on different points of law, are slowly working their way through the system. We'll let you know when there's more news.
But I digress ...
The OPP also announced that officers had laid 7,740 charges this past holiday weekend, including 5,643 speeding charges, which comprise about 70 per cent of the total.
That's a bit higher than the 63 per cent outlined in the Ministry of Transportation's Annual Safety Report for 2004, the latest year for which data are available on the MTO's website.
Never mind that according to that same Annual Safety Report, "speed too fast" and "speed too fast for conditions" (separate entries in the crash reporting system, apparently, and in both cases, not necessarily simply exceeding the speed limit) was fingered as the "apparent driver action" contributing to only 13 per cent of fatal collisions, and 6 per cent of property damage collisions.
What? They write 70 per cent of tickets for something that causes only 13 per cent of fatals, and 6 per cent of property damage crashes?
Am I the only one who sees a bit of disproportionality here?
Good Lord, Commissioner Fantino, hadn't you better find out what is causing the other 87 and 94 per cent of crashes right smartly, and start charging people with those actions?
To save your people the trouble of finding that data, here's the link:
http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/saf....htm#table_2.8
It's Table 2.8. You're welcome.
But don't the results speak for themselves? According to the OPP, we have had 80 fewer road fatalities this year compared to last year.
Surely, that is worth the effort?
Well, the only other joke in the statistical world (other than the "liars, damned liars and statisticians" chestnut) is that two points make a straight line, three points make a trend.
The traffic fatality trend line in Ontario has been dropping pretty much consistently since about 1927. Trying to attribute a year-over-year outcome this small to any single intervention is way beyond the pale.
Well, what about 33 per cent fewer fatalities this past weekend, versus the same weekend last year?
Same caveat, with an added fillip. Anybody remember what gasoline cost last August?
Exactly.
Anybody change their driving plans based on the price of fuel recently?
Exactly.
And anybody remember what the weather was like last summer? Now, that was Global Warming – almost drought-like most of July and August.
This year? Anybody tempted to trailer their Top Gun to Lake Tippecanoe behind their Tahoe when they could practically float the thing in their own driveway?
Exactly.
Come on, commissioner. If you want the public to get behind any program to reduce collisions on our highways – and who doesn't want that? – you have to start looking into what is actually causing them, and act accordingly.
As one whose family has been savaged by a traffic tragedy, wouldn't I agree that any life saved is worth the effort?
Sure, but not if that same effort could have saved 10 lives or a 100 lives.
When you can assign eight police officers and four cruisers to staff a speed trap on a wide viaduct with no cross streets or any urban activity of any sort, as the Toronto Police Service does on the Prince Edward Viaduct on Danforth Ave. on a regular basis (especially if half that detail is nailing people for flashing their high beams which, as we all now know, is patently not illegal), or to any number of usual-suspect fishing holes set up by police forces of all stripes, then you cannot tell me that this has anything do with traffic safety.
I am not sure what it does have anything to do with.
One thing cops like about speeding charges is that they can measure something, and they can get an easy conviction.
But if the correlation between the activity and the goal is about as robust as the famous linkage between women's hemlines and the economy, well, I think somebody's got a lot of explaining to do.
Maybe not having taken a statistics course has been a benefit all these years.
Jim Kenzie is Wheels' chief automotive writer.He can be reached [email protected]
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
260 Posts
No offense but Jim Kenzie is a retard. He piggy backs off the work of others and tries to make it his own. I've read numerous articles on hardcore engineering traffic practices that he's tried to dive into and it was completely wrong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
59 Posts
i've gotta agree with this jim kenzie dude.
this law has a lot of flaws in it. like why doesn't it work like our other traffic violations, in terms of fighting it off. What's stopping an officer that just doesn't like your car from pulling you over and giving you a 50 over ticket and impounding your car even though you did nothing wrong? where do you go for justice in this case? it sounds like you can't even fight this ticket...
 

·
Hello World
Joined
·
6,338 Posts
i've gotta agree with this jim kenzie dude.
this law has a lot of flaws in it. like why doesn't it work like our other traffic violations, in terms of fighting it off. What's stopping an officer that just doesn't like your car from pulling you over and giving you a 50 over ticket and impounding your car even though you did nothing wrong? where do you go for justice in this case? it sounds like you can't even fight this ticket...
You can fight it, but you will never be refunded for your costs if you win.

Guilty before proven innocent, and when proven innocent they still keep your moniez.
 

·
fucks.given =< 0;
Joined
·
3,773 Posts
No offense but Jim Kenzie is a retard. He piggy backs off the work of others and tries to make it his own. I've read numerous articles on hardcore engineering traffic practices that he's tried to dive into and it was completely wrong.
Traffic engineering and a retarded money grabbing law are two different things .
 

·
8th and final RSX summer!
Joined
·
1,016 Posts
The law was never brought in for safety. Car impounding + high fines are more revenue and since it's debt-based revenue that is collected off speeding tickets, it is very valuable to the Superior Court Bank.

As stated fatalities have been dropping every year, and are always lowest when gas prices are highest because the population as a whole slows down to save on gas. The over-50 law has nothing to do with safety and if you know how to settle public debts you won't even worry about speeding tickets anymore ;)
 

·
Breast inspector by appt.
Joined
·
9,240 Posts
anyone who does 50 over in the city or on a major highway is stupid and deserves to lose their car. go out into the country if you have a need for speed.
 

·
rawr
Joined
·
24,782 Posts
Anyone wanna go street racing????????

I know a sick bridge that my Pegeut 207 diesel (wagon) will do 0 to 100km-h in about 21 days. Any takers?
 

·
dbl-O
Joined
·
5,500 Posts
Anyone wanna go street racing????????

I know a sick bridge that my Pegeut 207 diesel (wagon) will do 0 to 100km-h in about 21 days. Any takers?
sorry, i'm out, as much as i love street racing, i don't participate in races i know i can't win :)
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top