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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just wondering how driving has changed over the past 20, 30, 40 years?

I have been driving 6 or 7 years now. In that time I have noticed an increase in speed awareness (speed cameras) and noticeably more and more vans seem to be cropping up trying to catch you out.

I have also witnessed many traffic calming scheme being introduced which are mainly put a raised curb in one lane and make it so that one lane has priority over the other and more and more speed humps being introduced. Also, and possibly more annoying, reducing 2 lanes to one and marking the old lane off with white diaganol lines (really infruriates me, why bother, what a waste of road!)

I have witnesseed mainly 30 limits being dropped to 20 and 40 limits being dropped to 30. Haven't witnessed many NSL roads change.

I haven't noticed a decrease in coppers on the beat.

So, what was it like years ago? Many of us have just started driving or have been driving under 10 years. My dad says it used to be better in some ways and worse in others. I.e. he's been caught speeding, he can recall, about 14 times. Not once has he paid a fine or had points put on his licence as they were all over 20 years ago and the copper just gave him a warning and le him on is way.

But, in other respects it was worse. He always mentions the smog and yellow lights! He always mentions trying to keep your car on the road was a difficult task and a trip to the breakers was a normality. You'd pick up a new wing for instance and stick it on, regardless of the colour.

But overall, he said driving 30 - 40 years ago was 10x better than driving now. Everyone had respect for each other, you had respect for the cops and they had respect for you. Now, it's all automated regardless of whats happened and a snapsho in time. He says he used to enjoy it and would like to enjoy it again and it's not just cus he has got older, but more because someones always waiting to catch you out.

Comments?
 

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I haven't been driving that long at all, infact 6.5 years total. However I have noticed that since then, infact over the last year, more and more people up here (not sure if it's everywhere) seem to be taking greater risks at traffic lights. It used to be that people may be an 'amber-gambler' but now some are clearly heading through them when they have been at red for several seconds, almost counting on the 'wait' gap that most (not all) traffic lights tend to have before the red red-amber starts for the other traffic...
 

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I think its all about safety now. Speed cameras everywhere, but you slow down for them, so i guess its safer at the blackspots but overall i'm not too sure.

Drink-driving - frowned apon a lot more now. Also using mobile phone when driving - notice this a lot more now, that people who drive poorly are usually on their phone...idiots! lol

I can't really comment that much more as i'm still young compared to some guys here. [;)]
 

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I have also witnessed many traffic calming scheme being introduced which are mainly put a raised curb in one lane and make it so that one lane has priority over the other and more and more speed humps being introduced.?
Exeter is used as a test bed for new traffic measures before they go national, so you see alot of things first there. Turning the main road from Countess Wear to town from a 4 lane road to a 2 lane road with 2 bus lanes was one of the stupidest things anyone has ever conceived, for example and now popular in many other towns.?
I have also been driving 7 years (24 and also passed in Exeter too LOL), and I haven't really noticed anything change, just the shear appaling driving you can get away with as there are few if any cop cars around to stop you. As long as you don't speed, you are generally free to do whatever the hell you like. When we started, cameras were grey and that made life much harder - mind you, they are about to bring that back so I hear so that was short lived.?
One positive thing is tollerance towards drink driving has dropped massively. 20 odd years ago it was wrong but generally accepted by all accounts...I don't think you will find many people of our generation especially who would consider it ok, at least not anyone who is otherwise law abiding?
 

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I'll have been driving for 20 years as of 4th Feb ..... OMG !!!!! 20 years !!!! and my observations are;

1, People seem to be dumber, ignorant and oblivious to other road users these days on the road.

2, People don't use their indicators at all so it seems these days.

3, Speed limits have been stupidly and pointlessly reduced in lots of places.

4, Speed cameras are GOOD !!! ....Traffic Police are BAD !!!... you can take counter-measures against cameras in the form of road angel etc... real Police, you can't. Note:- this only applies to those roads where stupid speed limits exist as in 3 above + motorways.

5, Traffic / congestion has got silly.

6, Rat-runs have systematicaly been blocked off for no reason at all except for the self satisfaction of NIMBY's

7, Traffic light phasing has gone bonkers, you wait far longer.

8, Roundabouts don't work anymore but would if speed bumps were introduced to slow traffic down on them (note this is the only place I think they are neccessary). Also we should consider the continental approach to them whereby traffic getting onto the roundabout has priority, this seems to work better.

9, Building 12 lane motorways like the M25 by Heathrow is pointless as there are SO many middle lanes to sit in, the donkey people have so much more choice where to exhibit donkey behaviour.

10, Still love driving but not as much and frustration sets in very quickly these days.
 

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I started driving in 1982. The seat belt law came in a while after (!!).

The main difference now is that the roads are far more crowded. This crowding, as proven by nasty scientists over the years with rats and poor people, causes aggression. That aggression is what is termed road-rage. It isn't necessarily the fault of those being aggressive, it's just a predictable reaction to being trapped on over-crowded roads.

Motoring is faaaaaaar cheaper now. Back in '82 very few people had new cars, and almost nobody had more than one in their household. IIRC, petrol was about ?1.50 per gallon and the fully comp insurance on my 1850cc Dolomite was ?400! An 18 year old friend insured his 3 litre Capri TPF&T for ?900!

Cars are much faster now. It's difficult to find a car that can't do 100MPH or more and 0-60 in less than 12 seconds. Now. worse than that and you really are Captain Slow.

I prefered driving back the '80s, but then I was young, free, single and had money to burn..... til I bought a Chevette HS!!

Tony
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have also witnessed many traffic calming scheme being introduced which are mainly put a raised curb in one lane and make it so that one lane has priority over the other and more and more speed humps being introduced.
Exeter is used as a test bed for new traffic measures before they go national, so you see alot of things first there. Turning the main road from Countess Wear to town from a 4 lane road to a 2 lane road with 2 bus lanes was one of the stupidest things anyone has ever conceived, for example and now popular in many other towns.

I have also been driving 7 years (24 and also passed in Exeter too LOL), and I haven't really noticed anything change, just the shear appaling driving you can get away with as there are few if any cop cars around to stop you. As long as you don't speed, you are generally free to do whatever the hell you like. When we started, cameras were grey and that made life much harder - mind you, they are about to bring that back so I hear so that was short lived.

One positive thing is tollerance towards drink driving has dropped massively. 20 odd years ago it was wrong but generally accepted by all accounts...I don't think you will find many people of our generation especially who would consider it ok, at least not anyone who is otherwise law abiding?
Well, Christmas Eve in Exeter the police stopped 3000 cars for random spot checks. 130 something were unroadworthy. Guess how many drivers were over the limit, think you will be quite shocked. This was between the hours of 7 and 12pm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have also witnessed many traffic calming scheme being introduced which are mainly put a raised curb in one lane and make it so that one lane has priority over the other and more and more speed humps being introduced.
Exeter is used as a test bed for new traffic measures before they go national, so you see alot of things first there. Turning the main road from Countess Wear to town from a 4 lane road to a 2 lane road with 2 bus lanes was one of the stupidest things anyone has ever conceived, for example and now popular in many other towns.

I have also been driving 7 years (24 and also passed in Exeter too LOL), and I haven't really noticed anything change, just the shear appaling driving you can get away with as there are few if any cop cars around to stop you. As long as you don't speed, you are generally free to do whatever the hell you like. When we started, cameras were grey and that made life much harder - mind you, they are about to bring that back so I hear so that was short lived.

One positive thing is tollerance towards drink driving has dropped massively. 20 odd years ago it was wrong but generally accepted by all accounts...I don't think you will find many people of our generation especially who would consider it ok, at least not anyone who is otherwise law abiding?
Well, Christmas Eve in Exeter the police stopped 3000 cars for random spot checks. 130 something were unroadworthy. Guess how many drivers were over the limit, think you will be quite shocked. This was between the hours of 7 and 12pm.
Oh and Mike, if you come back down to Exeter for any reason (visiting family etc) be careful, SPECS between the first main turn off, which I think goes onto the A30 into cornwall and the airpoirt turnoff. Certainly northbound, not sure about Southbound as I forgot to check. They are not in operation yet though.

Plus the cops like to sit on the diagonal lines of the airport turnoff joining the M5 northbound. Nearly went into the back of them once as they weren't fully on the lines and were half blocking the joining lane. [*-)]
 

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Good thread...

Ok here goes.... /Rant on.....

One of the biggest changes I have noticed over the past few years is how people drive on the motorways. I travel on the M1 from J37 to J26 each day and occasionally up the M62 / M606. The biggest problem is peoples ability to 'see' the car in front of them. I say 'see' because as soon as they see a brake light lit up they automatically hit the brakes themselves rather than 'looking' to see if the distance between the cars is being reduced, or even just let go of the accelerator pedal...

watching the snake of brake lights dance up and down the motorway can be quite hipnotic, so I just jump in the slow lane and boot it up the inside :)

/Rant Off!

Ta!
 

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I dont know how driving has changed as such since i only been driving a few years, but i've noticed so many more traffic calming rubbish being put in. Especailly speed bumps which annoy the hell out of me. My uni campus roads are totally covered with speed bumps, their like every few metres and their so unnecessary.
What annoys me further is the state of our roads - ie the money should be spent doing up roads that havent been resurfaced in like 300 years, rather than all this traffic calming nonsense. I swear the roads are so bad around me i think i'm gonna get a few broken ribs one of these days!
 

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Petrol was 60p/gallon when I started driving,and it cost about ?30 to buy a new bumper for a Capri,and "sports" cars had 5JX13in wheels fitted and were considered real bling in those days,innit!

Chris.
 

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I remember a chat I hand with my grandad shortly before he died.

He used to be a traffic cop back in the 50s/60s. He was also military trained for their vehicles. So it was fair to say he was a trained and competent driver in his days.

Yet at 83, he was virtually petrified of driving on anything other than a quiet road. He never drove in town centres once in his 70s or built up areas. He always took the quiet route somewhere, even if it took twice as long, and had grown old on country roads in a quiet part of Dorset

It wasn't so much the fact he had got old, it was more the attitudes and lack of respect shown on the roads that put him off driving. It is now a dog eat dog world out on the public roads unfortunately and he could never get his head round how it had gone...

Our generation are used to it, and the pace. Old people aren't, hence why our impatience these days makes us see them as a danger to themselves and other road users, especially when you rush an old and slow mind into making a decision on the road.
 

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The roads are appalling!motorways are appearing to suffer grooves from lorries(like the m25) , speed cameras are bad! we seriously need more traffic cops on the roads! no speed camera has ever caught a terrible driver, only the ignorant ones that are compelled to speed!, no one indicates at roundabouts!and what about those that turn right at roundabouts,or go all the way round after enterring the roundabout in the inside(slow ) lane?we need more police on the roads to catch the drink drivers! this country fleeces us of road tax to pay for illegal immigrants,for the pointless war in iraq,and afghanistan, and to fund projects in other countries that have no respect for ours!what about the potholes that damage cars,the worn out motorways,and roadworks that seem to take longer to complete than the wembly football stadium?!?!  rant over! LOL!
 

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We didn't have sat.navs,but strangely enough we still got to where we needed to be without them.And we didn't have brain dead numpties trying to send text messages whilst driving,but strangely enough,we still managed to communicate with each other just as well.

Chris.
 

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The roads are appalling!motorways are appearing to suffer grooves from lorries(like the m25) , speed cameras are bad! we seriously need more traffic cops on the roads! no speed camera has ever caught a terrible driver, only the ignorant ones that are compelled to speed!, no one indicates at roundabouts!and what about those that turn right at roundabouts,or go all the way round after enterring the roundabout in the inside(slow ) lane?we need more police on the roads to catch the drink drivers! this country fleeces us of road tax to pay for illegal immigrants,for the pointless war in iraq,and afghanistan, and to fund projects in other countries that have no respect for ours!what about the potholes that damage cars,the worn out motorways,and roadworks that seem to take longer to complete than the wembly football stadium?!?! rant over! LOL!
Amen to that.[Y]

I have been driving for many years now and I have seen these, traffic calming measures introduced. But the car thieves don't give a crap about the stolen car they're in.

The Police, spend their time giving ASBO's to everyone they can, not getting to know the community IMO.

There was a time when I was younger way back in the 70's, if you swore a policeman you'd get a thick ear. Now, well My local police station shuts a 5pm and it not open til monday 8am.

The roads where I live are probably the worst in the whole country, they have more pot holes than a teenage acne victim. (sorry if there are any acne suffers reigstered)

Back on topic! Yes driving has changed for both good and bad. I can't wait for when I'm a pensioner, then I can have my own VW mobility scooter to terrorise the pavements of Lincolnshire. LOL [;)]
 

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25 years ago I could drive my 1100 deluxe Escort home from work with my foot flat to the floor and only just break the speed limit.

My 2nd car Dolomite Sprint cost ?750 and ?750 to insure at 18, however 127bhp from a 2 litre in 1975 is not that better now!

The main advance in my opinion is brakes, they now stop you! and you turn a key and it starts!

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Theres a stretch of road I use which is sunken drain city. I'm going round actively missing them. The man hole covers are at least 2 inches lower than the tarmac. Add to that crumbling road surfaces around the potholes from the car tyres eroding away the edges when they hit them and it's becoming silly. Though assumed this was an isolated case.

2 weeks ago they started putting roadworks up, and I was actually happy. They have completed them now. Manhle covers still sunk 2" into the ground, 4 big potholes (where the surface has broken away and a hole about a foot wide has appeared and were hitting the old tarmac) have appeared and get bigger every day.

So what were the roadworks doing? Taking up the existing pedestrian crossing and installing a pelican crossing (I think it's pelican, where pedestrian presses button on lights). Anti skid tarmac running up to this and 4 new 'slow down' flashing signs when your just about above 30.

Thing is, the pedestrian crossing was fine and was visable from both directions. The new pelican crossing is practically on the roundabout. So now have cars backing up on the roundabout and people beeping, people suddenly coming to a halt in front of you and a queue going round it (only a smallish one with one lane).

Theres literally space for 2 cars to fit into the road coming off the roundabout before the pelican crossing.Used to be space for at least 4-5 cars.

So, what did I see this morning to combat this 'danger'?! A pole has been errected coming towards the roundabout. I reckon, with the flashing signs, this is going to be a speed camera.

To give an indication, 2 years ago this road which is a good road, or was before they resurfaced and did all these things to it was a 50mph road. It was dropped to 30mph. (50-30 is quite a big drop!).

What with it being 50 2 years ago, reduced to 30, a pelican crossing which has been made more dangerous for the cars involved, potholes and lowred manhole covers.....is this some kind of conspiracy theory? I.e. make it more dangerous, introduce an accident (been 1 already since it was all changed in on the roundabout) to install speed cameras?

As it used to be 50, not many people take much notice of the 30, me included. There are no houses around, no pavements until you reach the very end of the 2 mile road (where the pelican crossing is) and it's got one bend in it and one joining road. 30 is far to slow. It's certainly made me think.

Make roads more dangerous, introduce silly pelican crossings in stupid places, leave the road falling to pieces and install a cash machine at the side. Afterall, they know full well that no one takes any notice of the 30. Many a time I have followed police down there who also, take no notice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I have also witnessed many traffic calming scheme being introduced which are mainly put a raised curb in one lane and make it so that one lane has priority over the other and more and more speed humps being introduced.
Exeter is used as a test bed for new traffic measures before they go national, so you see alot of things first there. Turning the main road from Countess Wear to town from a 4 lane road to a 2 lane road with 2 bus lanes was one of the stupidest things anyone has ever conceived, for example and now popular in many other towns.
Just noticed this bit Mike and know where your on about, a bus lane that stops stats, stops starts, you merge into it, then get told to get out etc!

I have heard they are thinking of blocking off more of the road from the countess wear roundabout down to marsh barton. I.e. if your on the countess wear roundabout, go down to the next one (cant remember name) over the raising bridge and then the road to marsh barton which is currently 2 lanes is supposed to be being cut down to 1 lane each way. They have already started doing this if your coming in from plymouth way on the A38 and going towards the marsh barton roundabout. What used to be 2 lanes there is now 1 lane and they have reduced it from NSL to 40mph. Sure you know the road, again, nice and clear and not many cars on it to be honest!
 

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What used to be 2 lanes there is now 1 lane and they have reduced it from NSL to 40mph. Sure you know the road, again, nice and clear and not many cars on it to be honest!
?

I know exactly where you mean, used to have many a thrash along that dual carriageway as I lived off the Teign Valley turn off just after Chudleigh, so was my way home from Exeter if leaving from Countess Wear or Marsh Barton...I remember the stupid white markings just past the garage to cut it down to one lane, but 40MPH? Honestly
 
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