Sunday, 24 August 2014

The Highway Code in 100 words

The Highway Code in 100 words was an exercise in reducing the bloat and distilling the essential spirit of the Highway Code, when it was last published in 2007.
It came from a pro-speed, anti-camera motoring campaign group's forum, but is none the less interesting for that !

SafeSpeed Admin (v.1) - Paul Smith, RIP
Safe use of the roads is about skills, attitudes and responsibility. You should be predictable and always co-operate with other road users. Keep a constant look out all around for conflicts and stay well away from trouble. Leave extra space to allow for the mistakes of others. Don’t take risks or compete with others.
We drive on the left. Be aware of signs and regulations. Always ensure that you can see and be seen. Always ensure that you can stop well within the distance that you know to be clear. Being safe is always more important than being right.

COAST was their favorite acronym:
  • Concentration
  • Observation
  • Anticipation
  • Space
  • Time

SafeSpeed Admin (v.4)
Keep a constant look out all around. Recognise and anticipate danger and keep clear space from it. Develop your skills. Take personal responsibility for your safety and the safety of those nearby.
Be predictable and considerate. Make sure you can see and be seen. Co-operate with those around you – give them space. Never take risks, drive unfit or compete with others.
Be aware of signs and regulations and why they are there. Drive on the left. Always ensure that you can stop within the distance that you know is clear. Safety is paramount and far more important than priority.
Particularly noteworthy, given the pro-speed stance, is that 'clear stopping distance' is pulled pretty-much verbatim from the full Highway Code, Rule 126.
Noteworthy, because it is probably the most-scorned rule, yet it causes the most damage, injury and death ! [citation needed]

 It's an interesting exercise - there was a proposal for a detailed 200-word version, which never materialised.
There's surprisingly little overlap, so merging the two comes close to 200. What would we add ? Maybe we should aim for a 140-character limit, as in Twitter ?

Sir Mark Everard Pepys' Ten Commandments of Motoring - 1937

These used to be printed in Roadcraft, the police driving and riding manual.
  1. Perfect your Roadcraft.
  2. Drive with deliberation and overtake as quickly as possible.
  3. Develop car sense and know the capabilities of your vehicle.
  4. Give proper signals, use the horn and headlights thoughtfully.
  5. Concentrate all the time to avoid accidents.
  6. Think before acting.
  7. Exercise restraint and hold back when necessary.
  8. Corner with safety.
  9. Use speed intelligently and drive fast only in the right places.
  10. Know the highway code and put into practice.
Reminds me of