Speed Awareness Surprises
My initial reaction to the speeding fine letter sent to mum’s in March, shortly after returning from the family gathering at Northmoor House in February, was probably to be expected.
At myself for driving at 35mph in a 30mph limit. Admittedly though, it was directed more at the serious looking copper I remembered pointing his speed gun menacingly at me as I drove past him with mum and Barry in the car.
Many conversations since with people have centred around the ‘injustice’ of it. For goodness sake it was ‘only’ 5 mph above the speed limit! On a country road just outside a small village. Why don’t they pick on the crazy drivers who flash past me gently meandering down the motorway at 60mph, while they’re going like the clappers at what looks astonishingly like 90mph? Surely that’s far more dangerous?!
I bet a few of you reading have had similar experiences?
It’s mum’s car, so I initially had the added annoyance of having to send the form back and admit my guilt so they could re-send the form. It happened when we were in NZ which made it worse – as I’d asked my sister to send me the form so I could sort it, only to discover it had to be signed and sent back by mum! Fortunately the post to NZ from UK and vice versa is generally less than one week so we managed it within the imposed time restraints.
I got to choose either three points on my license, and the effect that would most likely have on our car insurance. Plus a £100 fine.
Take a ‘Speed Awareness’ course instead. And pay £85.
For those living on land, with easy access to a car, this sounds simple. For me it was a little complex. However, I decided to chose this option to reduce the short and long term costs involved, but also because I was intrigued to learn more about the implications of what I thought must be only a minor misdemeanour.
True, the words “I bet they’re making a fortune out of this!” were uttered on a few occasions in relation to how many drivers ‘they’ (they being the police force of course!) must ‘catch’ going over the 30mph limit.
Many eye openers later …
True it was a faff to get to Worcester for the TTC speed awareness course.
True I was still quoting the ‘making a fortune’ statement as we queued up to sign in (24 of us yesterday afternoon).
True it was cheaper to choose the course than the points and fine.
But boy, there were a surprising number of snippets of information to what I’d thought I’d known, or actually had no idea about!
Like the increase in impact severity (i.e. chance of killing someone) from 30 to 35mph, the location most accidents happen (rural, urban or motorway – what do you think?), which of the three types of road has the highest percentage of fatalities, and concerningly speed limits in certain places and for different vehicles.
And I learnt another acronym that’s far too frequently used – SMIDSY.
“Sorry Mate I Didn’t See You.” 😦
I’d already been much more mindful driving since receiving the notice – now I’ll be more informed too. I reckon every driver in UK would benefit from this course.
Thank goodness we don’t have to drive on the roads too often. Give me a maximum of 4 mph on the cut any day …