The Instigator
brian_eggleston
Pro (for)
Winning
13 Points
The Contender
Republican95
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points

Motorway fast lanes should be reserved for the sole use of advanced drivers

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/11/2009 Category: Technology
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,128 times Debate No: 10420
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
Votes (3)

 

brian_eggleston

Pro

Preamble:

This opening argument is based on the British experience but the same principles would no doubt apply in other Western countries so I would welcome any counter arguments using other countries' data, laws, etc.

Resolution in Full:

Firstly that the fast lane on British motorways should be reserved for car drivers who have passed the I.A.M. Advanced Driving Test (1,2) and, secondly, that the speed limit in this lane should be increased by 50% to 105mph.

Definitions:

The fast lane: the outside-most overtaking lane on British motorways
Motorway: British equivalent to the German Autobahn or American interstate highway.
I.A.M.: Institute of Advanced Motorists

Contention:

The speed limit on British motorways hasn't changed since the first ones were built way back in the 1950's and is still set at a ridiculously low 70mph.

To put this in perspective, back then, the best selling car in Britain was the Morris Minor (3) which had a top speed of 64mph. Fifty years on in 2009, Britain's best selling car is the Ford Focus (4) and even the least powerful version of this model will easily crack a ton while the sporty RS variant will keep on accelerating until it finally runs out of puff at 163mph (5). And with ABS brakes standard on all models there's no problem bringing the Focus to a standstill either.

How times have changed in fifty years! Even the most pathetic car on sale in Britain today, the asthmatic 3-cylinder Malaysian-built invalid carriage-impersonating Perodua Kenari (6) is easily capable of breaking the current speed limit and also comes equipped with such safety features as a passenger crumple zone and dual airbags – features that were completely unheard of when the 70mph limit was introduced.

In short, the average modern car is a far safer mode of transport at motorway speeds than the equivalent vehicle was when the speed limits were first introduced.

Now, with traffic congestion costing the British economy �20 billion a year (7) a solution to get motorists from A to B faster without the huge expense and environmental destruction of building new roads has never been more urgent.

Fortunately, a simple solution is to hand. If those drivers who were professionally qualified to drive vehicles safely at speed had the outside lane on motorways reserved for their sole use it would be safe to increase the speed limit in this lane to 105mph, thus reducing their journey times by up to 50% and significantly alleviating overall congestion in the process.

Thank you.

(1) http://www.iam.org.uk...
(2) http://www.iam.org.uk...
(3) http://www.minormania.com...
(4) http://www.topgear.com...
(5) http://www.timesonline.co.uk...
(6) http://www.perodua-uk.com...
(7) http://www.htma.co.uk...
Republican95

Con

I thank Brain for starting such a thought provoking debate and I look forward to it. I would like to challenge my opponent's idea on the grounds of two arguments.

Argument 1: Feasability
Even though my opponent's idea might be good in theory, actually trying to apply it would be a logistical nightmare. So, if my opponent's proposal becomes law, anybody who has passed the IAM Advanced Driving Test would be able to drive in the fast lane. However, there is one major flaw in this proposal. Do you sincerly believe that the police are going to pull-over everybody driving in the fast lane and make sure they have passed their IAM Advanced Driving Test?

I believe not.

And this can only lead to one thing. Since it is just down-right unfeasable for such a thing to happen, that means that it would be quite easy for someone who hasn't passed the IAM Advanced Driving Test to just pull into the fast lane and drive. Except, now they could travel at up to 105 mph.

Which brings me to my next point:

Argument 2: Safety
Every year how many people die beacause of preventable automobile accidents in the UK? The answer: too many. The sad reality is that speed, most of the time, plays a crucial part in the survivability of an accident. By increasing the speed limit on British roads, more accidents could, and probably would, happen. This would lead to more deaths. And it is simply not worth it.

Another point, increasing the speed limit in ONE land increases the liklehood of an accident in ALL lanes. Unfortunatley, black ice, swerving, and other bad driving habits/conditions will happen regardless of what lane you're in. If a driver can drive 105 in an outer lane, but others can only go 70, that is a difference of 35 miles per hour. A car in the outer lane (fast lane), for instance, could see a deer on the road one night and have to swerve into another lane, but the speed limit in that lane is only 70mph. This would be highly dangerous, because people driving in the slower lanes wouldn't exactly a vehicle entering their lane at 105 mph.

Conculsion: Deaths due to driving accidents will happen regardless of what your score was on the IAM advanced driving test. Traffic laws should be the same on the same streach of road, this only makes sense.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1
brian_eggleston

Pro

I would like to extend my thanks to Republican95 for his contribution an should like to respond as follows:

Feasibility.

My opponent is right to point out that it would be impossible for the police to check that every car in the fast lane was being driven by a suitably qualified driver and, in any case, this process would cause delays, thus defeating one of the main purposes of the scheme.

Instead, I suggest that advanced drivers should be issued with badges that would be placed inside the windscreen (windshield) that could be read automatically from machines fitted to overhead gantries and bridges, similar to those systems that already exist and are well proven. Florida's Sun Pass scheme (1) is a good example but similar systems are widely used around the world.

Safety.

My opponent is right to point out that many people are killed on the roads every day but my scheme is intended to make progress on motorways safer as well as faster.

I notice, by the way, that my opponent comes from America. Have you ever been to America? If not and you like cars you should go there because America is the most car-friendly country in the world. Bar none.

Americans love their cars so much they can hardly bring themselves to get out of them. For example, when they are hungry they get hamburgers from drive-thru McDonald's, when they need money they get cash from drive-thru ATM's and when they fancy a beer served by a busty bikini-clad dolly-bird, they drive to a roadside branch of Hooters (okay, then they have to walk from the car to the bar stool, but everybody has to get some exercise sometimes).

Yes, I love the American way of life and there's nothing I like more than drop the roof on my American cousin's sports car and head for the interstate to give that big V8 some proper welly.

Ah, but there is a fly in the ointment. The speed limits in America are as low, or in some places even lower, than they are in Britain and what's worse is that most people actually obey them. Furthermore, there is little or no lane discipline there and most drivers just pick a lane seemingly at random, hit the cruise control button and sit in that lane for mile after mile regardless of whether they are overtaking anything or not.

Obviously this is extremely frustrating for the enthusiastic motorist who wishes to explore their vehicle's full potential or a busy businessman who is late for his next meeting and accidents will and do occur when they try and weave their way through the traffic. However, if the slower drivers were confined to the slow lanes, advanced drivers could make safe and swift progress in their dedicated fast lane.

Of course, accidents will still happen but speed doesn't kill, bad driving does and you cannot legislate against idiots getting behind the wheel of a car unless you ban driving altogether.

In conclusion, by encouraging people to improve their driving by taking the Advanced Driver course, overall road safety will be enhanced and, furthermore, the dedicated fast lanes will reduce congestion and also benefit the economy in the process.

Thank you.

(1) http://www.sunpass.com...
Republican95

Con

I thank my opponent for his reponse.

I wil begin by definiding my arguments.

1. Feasibility
My Opponent: "Instead, I suggest that advanced drivers should be issued with badges that would be placed inside the windscreen (windshield) that could be read automatically from machines fitted to overhead gantries and bridges, similar to those systems that already exist and are well proven. Florida's Sun Pass scheme (1) is a good example but similar systems are widely used around the world."

But this would once again fail. The badge is being put on one's car, not on a driver's liscense or anything. What if it wasn't your car. What if it was your girlfriend's, or your mom's? So you see, the problem still remains. Unqualified drivers could still drive in the fast land and this would lead to unsafer thoroughfares. The plan is downright unfeasible.

2. Safety
I will abandon my safety argument and go soley on my feasibility argument.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 2
brian_eggleston

Pro

With many thanks to my opponent for his considered response, I should like to address the issue of feasibility as follows:

I accept that there is likely to be abuse of the system, rather like there is abuse of the blue badge system, whereby able-bodied people "borrow" their handicapped relatives' blue badges so that they can park for free or use disabled parking bays.

However, despite this abuse few people would argue that blue badges should be abolished altogether in order to put a stop to their misuse. That would be a classic case of throwing the baby out with the bath water. The answer instead is to crack down hard on those people who misuse blue badges and similarly harsh penalties should be applied to those drivers who misappropriate Advanced Driver permits.

Thank you.
Republican95

Con

My opponent's argument seems like a good anaology, but it is not.

Which poses a more severe risk to the safety of drivers?

a) able bodied people parking in spaces reserved for the handicapped
b) Bad drivers going 105mph down our interstate highways

This is a toughy.

The answer is obviously "B".

The point made about feasbility still stands without a tarnish.

===
Conculsion
===

The program described by my opponent is not feasible and will lead to unqualified drivers wrecking havoc on the wellbeing of law-abiding drivers. It is horrible and just will not work. Please vot PRO.
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Korashk 7 years ago
Korashk
Agree B/A: Pro
Conduct : Tie, I didn't see any violations i this category
Spelling/Grammar: Pro, I noticed a spelling error by Pro and none for Con
Arguments: Pro
Source: Pro, Con had no sorces and pro had valid ones.
Posted by nonentity 7 years ago
nonentity
Ohhh haha no, I'm Canadian! Okay that is fast!!
Posted by brian_eggleston 7 years ago
brian_eggleston
Oh, sorry, I just assumed you were one of those Americans that thinks that we use the metric system like the rest of Europe!

B/t/w, 105mph is about 170kph - not that fast really.
Posted by nonentity 7 years ago
nonentity
What do you mean by "no need for calculations"? If I don't understand what 105mph means then how am I supposed to understand if that's really fast or not? We use the good old metric system in Canada, the one actually based on science. :)
Posted by brian_eggleston 7 years ago
brian_eggleston
No need for calculations, we use good old miles per hour in the UK, just like the US!
Posted by nonentity 7 years ago
nonentity
I'm vaguely aware that 1mile = 1.6km but it's 4 in the morning so I'm too lazy to do the math. Is this debate serious? lol
Posted by Alex 7 years ago
Alex
Oh and Wiki is most definitely a source, the ultimate source in fact!
Posted by Alex 7 years ago
Alex
Every country should adopt Germany's speed limit rules.
Posted by brian_eggleston 7 years ago
brian_eggleston
Thanks for accepting the debate Republican95, but it's one o'clock in the morning here in London so I will reply to your comments tomorrow some time.
Posted by brian_eggleston 7 years ago
brian_eggleston
Fixed!
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Pote 7 years ago
Pote
brian_egglestonRepublican95Tied
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Vote Placed by Korashk 7 years ago
Korashk
brian_egglestonRepublican95Tied
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Vote Placed by bigtree 7 years ago
bigtree
brian_egglestonRepublican95Tied
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