Evasion of motoring rules and regulations is no longer simply a guilty secret of the motoring underclass, as insurance fraud becomes more commonplace according to new research from www.Uswitch.com, which finds that one in ten drivers are lying to their insurance company.
Not all false information given is intentionally, but approximately 1.5 million drivers (6% of the driving population) knowingly lie about basic details such as their age and address. People claim to be older, or living in a better area to get cheaper insurance and around 750,000 people fail to declare any driving convictions (e.g. speeding offences and bans).
Read Full Post »
The train is losing its environmental advantage over the car as vehicle efficiency is improving according to a new study commissioned by the Rail Safety Standards Board.
The report finds that modern diesel-powered trains are so polluting that a family of three or more would be responsible for at least double the carbon dioxide emissions on many routes when travelling by rail compared with driving in a typical medium sized car.
The study urges Government to electrify key elements of the rail network to allow greener electric trams to replace diesel ones. The Virgin Voyager, one of the most advanced diesel trains on the network was found to have the highest emissions of any British Train, 112g/pkm, compared with just 40g/pkm of CO2 for the best-performing electric trains operated by GNER between London and Edinburgh. The increased weight of carriage air conditioning and other services is a key reason behind this.
GNER train emissions will have reduced to 28g/pkm by 2022 due to more efficient power generation, whereas the Voyagers, which expect to stay in operation onto after 2030 will remain unchanged. When present trends are taken into account the average car will have reduced emissions to 98g/pkm by 2022, sufficiently lower than some Diesel trains.
These findings come as interesting news and go someway to combat the very prevalent ‘anti-car’ lobby. The most efficient and environmentally sound transport system is one that makes suitable use of all the elements, whether it be road, rail, cycling or walking. Both road and rail infrastructures need to do more to reduce the environmental footprint of travel and the public needs to be given good quality information to make sound judgements on transport choices rather than relying on existing myths and prejudices.
(Source: Rail Safety Standards Board and The Times Online 13th July 2007)
Read Full Post »
Women are more likely to be verbally abusive to other drivers on the road according to a survey of 1,000 drivers by BMW.
These findings turn traditional gender stereotypes on their head as women were found more likely to say ‘idiot’ and less likely to say sorry to other drivers. Men are also slightly more likely to say thank you (48%) than women (46%). There is also evidence that a new unofficial language has been developed for the road using headlight signals.
The RAC Foundation has long recognised that communication on the road network is an important issue that can have very confusing and aggrivating consequences. The Foundation is due to publish some findings and recommendation on this issue shortly.
(Source: The Secret Life of Cars and what they reveal about us, BMW, 2007)
Read Full Post »