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All Blog Posts Tagged 'Martin-Cassini' (21)

Rise in road deaths

The transport select committee, chaired by Louise Ellman, is concerned about the rise in road deaths, 51 up on last year to 1901. It took no notice of submissions from me and Kenneth Todd about the role of traffic lights in causing congestion, so it’s doubtful they would listen to our critique of road safety policy. Is it surprising there are fatalities when the root cause of danger on the road – priority – goes untreated? Ellman is “shocked” that 27% of young male drivers are involved in…


Added by Martin Cassini on July 18, 2012 at 14:39 — No Comments

Gulliver's travails

Congestion caused by volume of traffic is acceptable. We’re in the same boat. No problem. But congestion caused or aggravated by unnecessary traffic control – you know, making us stop for no reason other than the light is red – is unacceptable. Human intelligence is a superior, wondrous thing. Yet traffic control reduces us to the level of unthinking robots. The red light brigadiers are Lilliputians disabling Gulliver.

Added by Martin Cassini on January 6, 2012 at 15:40 — No Comments

New traffic lights - old mistakes

Traffic lights are being installed at a T-junction near Bideford despite my proposal for a less expensive, safer FiT (filter-in-turn) solution. Story here.

Added by Martin Cassini on September 22, 2011 at 13:00 — No Comments

Speed rap

They say that any publicity is good publicity. I’m not so sure. Anyway, it’s out there, so it might as well be on here. One news story here, another here.

Added by Martin Cassini on June 2, 2011 at 15:51 — No Comments

Today and Ed - joint shame?

The Today Programme’s big interview this morning was Ed Miliband. So now we know what Labour would do about the deficit. Or do we? All I gleaned was that Ed would spread cuts over four years, "and go out and ask the people what they think". Brilliant! Evan Davis hopped about like a goblin (do Today presenters get bonuses for interruptions?), accusing Ed of a willingness to fall behind on deficit…


Added by Martin Cassini on March 31, 2011 at 12:30 — No Comments

Traffic Lights on The One Show

This snappy item was mostly about why traffic lights are "necessary", but there’s a bit near the end which spreads a bit of FiT philosophy. Video.

Added by Martin Cassini on March 10, 2011 at 12:00 — No Comments

Road rage (at self)

"What don’t you like about traffic lights?" I was asked by The One Show’s Anita Rani in Portishead today for an item that is due to air tomorrow (Wed 2 March). "They make us stop when it’s safe to go. They take our eyes off the road. They encourage inappropriate speed, generate hostility, extend journey times. They deny infinite filtering opportunities and expressions of fellow…


Added by Martin Cassini on March 1, 2011 at 22:30 — 1 Comment

Party time

The Standard reports a party thrown by BJ for outgoing TfL roads boss, David Brown (salary: £316,655 pa). An unnamed TfL spokesperson claimed Brown was "a first-class manager who has saved London £100s of millions". Funny, 1000 new sets of traffic lights, each costing £150,000 + running costs, sprang up under Brown’s watch. He refused to appear on my Newsnight report, and always…


Added by Martin Cassini on February 25, 2011 at 19:00 — No Comments

Why I hate lollipop men and women (2)

Lollipop men and women facing the axe from council cuts have sparked claims that children will face greater danger as a result. In 2009, twelve under-18s were killed or hurt on UK roads every day. Prof John Wann of Holloway College says that children's perception of speed is undeveloped (is that stating the obvious?) Like Brake, he wants more regulation. They see the…


Added by Martin Cassini on February 13, 2011 at 11:30 — No Comments

Awesome Welles

Last night’s Culture Show had a clip of the BBC Arts programme, Monitor, in which Huw Wheldon asked Orson Welles, "You had never made a film before, so where did you get the confidence to make Citizen Kane?" Welles replied, "Ignorance!" Commenting on the clip, Stephen Frears said, "The more you know about a subject, the more aware you are of the problems, and the less adventurous you…


Added by Martin Cassini on February 11, 2011 at 14:30 — No Comments

Cool Hand Fluke

Re the Guide Dogs Association for the Blind in the Telegraph: in the inimitable line uttered by the chain gang boss in Cool Hand Luke, "What we have here is a failure to communicate." From Boris…


Added by Martin Cassini on January 13, 2011 at 16:00 — No Comments

Equality not priority

If, instead of rule by priority (a traffic engineering model), we lived by values of equality (a social model), then the cogs in the current machine that clash – above all safety and efficiency – would mesh. Like shuffling cards we'd merge in turn. Congestion would melt away and roads would be safe. The spanner in the current works – priority – stems from railway engineering. Clearly rail needs segregating from road – trains need greater…


Added by Martin Cassini on December 29, 2010 at 18:30 — No Comments

Organ of state improperganda?

Not content with running an article about higher-cost ‘speed awareness’ courses to fund retention of speed cameras, today’s Times runs a leader in support of this new form of indirect taxation. It refers to "academic research which concludes that speed cameras save 800 lives a year". That was the skewed Allsop report which I was invited to challenge on Nick Ferrari’s LBC show the other week. The just, sustainable way to achieve appropriate…


Added by Martin Cassini on December 28, 2010 at 14:00 — No Comments

Road outrage

£750,000 spent re-modelling the Shinfield Rd junction in Reading, which included new signals, has made matters worse (story here). To a degree, solutions are location-specific, but in most cases, equality will solve the conflicts contrived by priority. Isn't it time we changed the engineering model…


Added by Martin Cassini on December 16, 2010 at 17:30 — No Comments

Rural junction getting FiT?

Recently I submitted a proposal for a FiT solution at the Westleigh T-junction near Bideford. The junction has a bit of an accident record, and Devon Highways want to install traffic lights. Hans "shared space" Monderman used to say shared space was for urban rather than rural locations. But if you accept the advantages of equality over priority, FiT could work almost anywhere, especially at junctions where single…


Added by Martin Cassini on November 6, 2010 at 14:30 — 2 Comments

Mobile phone use and traffic controls

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. If mobile phone use is banned because it takes our eyes off the road, should traffic lights, speed cameras and speed limits be banned for the same reason? On our way back from Folkestone the other day, on the outskirts of London, we hit congestion. Almost invariably, the snag was traffic lights blocking natural flow. At the junction of Sidcup Rd and Court Rd we had to endure…


Added by Martin Cassini on November 5, 2010 at 15:00 — No Comments

Revolution on the road?

Some councils are wising up to ideas of traffic deregulation, which until recently they resisted tooth and nail. Yes, a road revolution is in the air. But most councils still miss the wider context, so, for the time being, we are still required to conform to the technocrat’s idea of how we should act. Under the current system of PRIORITY, we must continue to live (and die) by rules that derive from railway engineering.…


Added by Martin Cassini on October 26, 2010 at 18:30 — No Comments

Fairness hardwired

Today's behavioural psychologists say a sense of fairness is hardwired into us. Yet we have to suffer an unfair traffic control system, one that confers unequal rights on different road-users, that forces us to act against our better nature and better judgement. In 2008, when I pitched lights-off trials to Boris/the GLA, he…


Added by Martin Cassini on October 10, 2010 at 16:00 — No Comments

The word is spreading

There is an excellent piece about traffic lights as symbols of state control here. It seems to have been prompted by my videos. Know what a minarchist is? Nor did I. But I must be one.…


Added by Martin Cassini on October 9, 2010 at 17:30 — No Comments

Bristol lights-off trials

After shelving our 2008 proposal for a lights-off trial, Bristol, after pressure from the successful trial in the nearby town of Portishead, could delay no longer. But instead of giving us a few meaty four-way junctions, we were given two small, partly one-way junctions. One was at the foot of a straight downhill stretch which encouraged inappropriate speed. Also, the council was "unable" to fund a public awareness campaign -…


Added by Martin Cassini on July 19, 2010 at 18:00 — No Comments

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