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Saturday, 1 March 2014

Is your association interested in road safety truth or an imaginary dog?

This is being sent in one form or another to certain media, politicians and organisations that should know better and are not supporting drivers.

For many years now I have given much of my time and money voluntarily to seek for more genuine non profit and no ideologically based road safety policy.

I know that profit and ideology will never produce good road safety. On that basis we are being led to focus more on what doesn't cause accidents because of the money or green anti driver ideology, and miss real genuine causes of accidents. In fact I have identified the worst kind, of multi casualty accidents, as certainly one we could do much better with, as well as urban night time accidents; particularly involving the most vulnerable like walkers, cyclists and motor cyclists which I firmly believe are being ignored because, coincidentally, there is no profit from addressing them. 

I have realised that if our road safety is not profit based, - why should we be fooled by the piety expressed by those profiting or doing very nicely from it? – then this will also be fairer to drivers too.

I am not an apologist of idiot and reckless irresponsible drivers but I am opposed to the wholesale prosecution, profit based, of many thousands of perfectly safe drivers and the coercion on them to accept guilt by virtue of offers of lower penalty and worse, paying money to private companies for their services; the legality of which is now in question.

My CV and of my supporting colleagues in this makes me at least equal to any top police expert in the subject with the advantage of no vested interest or monetary influence to avoid the truth and the reality.

My aims are quite simple. To achieve the very best, not for profit, road safety. To stop all unnecessary prosecution of perfectly safe drivers and particularly any profiteering from that.

My slogan is: ‘Profit and ideology will never provide best road safety’

I am sure that if you are dispassionate, as a political party should be, you will not be able to fault any of the foregoing. The only people who do are, as you would expect, the profiteers and anti driver ideologists; believe me it is possible to be an anti driver driver as it is an anti people person.  You may even be one at heart but that should never affect your policy.

It seems to me that for some reason xxxxxx are unwilling to take advantage of  my work even though there is no open and overt official challenge to any of the facts and connections I have made; particularly my work on speed, why speeding occurs, and what causes accidents. Why should xxxxx avoid these things? County councillors are now starting to listen. I have addressed two separate committees in the last month.

One reason is that undoubtedly I am focusing on the profiteers and vested interests of road safety and challenging their propaganda. I am upsetting very powerful people. That should not worry a free Press in such a life and death issue with the added dimension of life changing prosecutions should it?

Another reason is the old chestnut of being too vocal, too outspoken. But this fraud road safety is all being achieved and built on the supine nature of UK’s drivers. The Alliance of British Drivers, which agrees with all of my research and conclusions has existed for some twenty years and in that time, driver oppression, taxation, penalties, and anti driver road policy, have got worse not better.  So clearly conciliation instead of direct open challenge is not an answer when dealing with profiteers and ideologists.

I am 73, and people are dying out there now. Hundreds of thousands of drivers are wrongly being over slowed, hampered and prosecuted and without any question, most of the prosecution can be shown and proved to be for income purposes alone. When, in every other aspect of sentencing and punishment which has been decreased generally, for drivers, not only have sentences been increased, including jail, but new reasons to jail drivers have been added. To achieve this, the word ‘accident’ has even been taken from the official vocabulary too. I do not see any of this as a popularity contest and time is not on my side. If the ABD are an example of a driver’s group that the officials and vested interests love, being nice has clearly failed road safety and the UK drivers so far.

So yes I do upset lots of people, but not most drivers. There are thirty five million of them and all sixty million of us cannot do without them, including you. So as a driver, what is not to like about what I do?

As a cyclist or a green ideologist there is much to despise about what I do, and indeed I do receive lots of bile, venom, personal abuse from those quarters. There are at least three parody twitter accounts just for that purpose and it worries me that you are following one of them. Let me remind you that, those groups are, by definition and by their dishonest nature, against the very aims that you so recently couldn't fault with above. Genuine non profiteering road safety and no unnecessary prosecutions of thousands of safe people with a profit motive too.

To address the green issues I have had to voluntarily read much environmental and climate science, and then adding what I read to what we all know and understand and would expect, in a nutshell ‘It’s The Sun wot duz it silly’ as any Joe Bloggs would expect and needs no consensus to tell him. ‘The Emperor has no clothes on’ So no I don’t believe in man made climate change, I know that CO2 is a life giving element and the Planet was much lusher and greener and vibrant when it was 4 times higher than it is now but in any case all of UK’s motor transport only produces 0.7% of all man made CO2. anyway. So yes I am hated by The Green Lobby. Are journalists entitled to allow a partisan stance affect their work though? An embargo on what makes them angry? Yes there are the George Monbiots but local press?

I have, as part of my work, had to address road cycling because as a very vocal minority, the cycling lobbyists have simply been bringing great attention to themselves recently. They have been making all sorts of demands ranging from more space- which means even less for drivers or if not, dedicated space at a cost of billions to us all- to more sentencing and longer jail terms for drivers and so on.

Cyclists have their own powerful ideological cross party parliamentary group. There was a recent Commons Transport Select Committee just to listen to their demands for road space, and public spending at the expense of drivers who are taxed to the tune of £50 Billion a year and not one single road safety or driving expert or dedicated drivers' group was invited to give evidence. I have now drawn this to the attention of the secretariat, showed the financial vested interest of one witness who pretended to be a pro driver expert, and have now forced a liaison with that important committee as a result. 
Surely The Cycle Lobby cannot have the floor all to them as they would seem to expect from their attacks on me?  So as a reasonable cyclist, and I have cycled for some sixty five years, at one time doing a daily fast sports style 30 mile London commute, I believe I represent the vast majority of cyclists who don’t seek to lobby against or make life harder for drivers.

Surely when any group makes so many demands from essential infrastructure and funding, and on the basis of the cycling casualties, it is the duty of any politician to be totally dispassionate and start from the basic.  The question it is their duty to ask is: ‘If there is so much wrong with road cycling, do we need it? Why do we need it?’ Of course it infuriates cyclists when I point this out. Having then thought of the question, clearly there is an answer.

The fact is that society wasn't built or sustained on manpower. We turned to the horse and camel thousands of years ago and expanded on fast, load bearing long distance non man powered transport, without which our current society wouldn't exist. Moving on to chariots, stages, wagons, traps, handsome cabs, coaches till they were eventually superseded by today’s motor transport.

An anti driver (anti as opposed to pro) pro cyclist campaigner has just published a book, 'Roads weren't built for cars'. They certainly existed and were used for thousands of years by fast, long distance, load bearing, non man powered transport with wheels, long before the bicycle was thought of. So they certainly weren't built for bicycles either. And this nonsense has been funded and supported with public money, mostly taken from car drivers.

The conclusion is a simple one. There are only two types of road user society must have and that’s walkers and drivers. The rest are indeed a non essential unnecessary liability and risk. Walkers and drivers are actually linked and paired closer, dependent on each other, than any other group is since both are essential for society's survival. Where would your paper be without both?

Are cyclists and politicians really suggesting that all the demands of the cycle lobby shouldn't require that simple question to be asked and answered? Does it make me such a bad man for asking it? ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’? Do I deserve so much hatred for raising a fair question and coming to a very obvious conclusion too?

Back to road safety, my main concern.

Road cycling is placing one’s unprotected body in the path of, mixing and competing with, lots of heavy fast moving essential machinery operated by complete strangers of varying ability and mental capacity. Whether cyclists like that statement or not, it is the reality of the situation and the concept. The concept is one where, if it were being suggested now in 2014, it would be called mad. It is undoubtedly dangerous and a dangerous choice. Under any other circumstances we would never place ourselves in such a position. We wouldn't choose to run across a field where someone was spraying machine gun bullets, despite our right to do so, in case we may get hit. Road cycling is that lottery. 

Again that observation, corroborated by road cyclists being maimed and killed daily, brings so much venom and bile in my direction. However when journalists and politicians deny the truth while people are dying and being maimed by a concept just for an ideology borders on the irresponsible. Attacking the messenger adds to their culpability.

I am not anti cyclist because I am one but I have to address their demands and claims, for road safety sake, honestly and factually and I believe I do.

I hope that you will now have a much greater understanding about my voluntary work and take advantage of it if only to balance vested interest spin, and false statements that are undoubtedly made about road safety. Please don’t allow your local police or even your personal instincts embargo any of it, as that wouldn't be in the public interest.

Seeking comfort from and patronising a dishonest, anti driver, anti genuine road safety imaginary doggy, adds very little to the credibility of those who do and especially their associations if they are not supporting the road safety sense and truths behind it.

I would be prepared to come and talk with you on the whole issue of road safety if it would help a better understanding.


Keith Peat   

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