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121 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 1973935 13-Mar-2018 12:52
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Re the suggestions that NZ switching to driving on the other side of the road will save lives and money, I can't really see how it would do either.

 

Saving money in the long term - perhaps, after a substantial time to cover short term costs, and even then the financial benefit may be somewhat dependent on other countries in our region with vehicle markets that affect ours (Japan, Australia) switching as well.

 

Saving lives - also questionable. More than half of all tourists to NZ come from nations that drive on the same side of the road as us. Road quality and lack of median separation is probably a far greater factor than driving side.

 

 

 

Getting the discussion somewhat back to EV news, I've had a PHEV (Outlander) for one month now. I guess you can call that wading waist-deep in the shallow end of the EV pool without fully taking the plunge. Well, perhaps neck-deep because it has eliminated almost all our fossil fuel use.

 

So far it is reducing our petrol use more than 99% but once we start taking more extended trips (and if we didn't, eventually the car computer would periodically force some petrol use anyway to avoid what's in the tank going stale) I estimate it will probably be about a 90 to 95% reduction.


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1974080 13-Mar-2018 16:05
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It would be very difficult to do unless Australia did it as well, and most of our tourists by far come from there.

 

Self driving cars are probably the solution here, in 10-20 years it just won't matter.  I can see rental cars being mandated to be self-driving, that should cut down on the more horrible accidents.


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  Reply # 1974095 13-Mar-2018 16:28
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happyfunball:

 

I can see rental cars being mandated to be self-driving, that should cut down on the more horrible accidents.

 

 

You have some evidence that says that rental cars are more likely to be involved in "the more horrible accidents" than other cars?

 

Actually, I can see motorways as being the best home for self-driving cars. It's a controlled environment, with lots of money spent on road engineering, so it should be easier for a robot to drive than in city streets with all kinds of hazards, or country roads with ill-defined (if any) markings.

 

 


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1974123 13-Mar-2018 16:44
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frankv:

 

You have some evidence that says that rental cars are more likely to be involved in "the more horrible accidents" than other cars?

 

Actually, I can see motorways as being the best home for self-driving cars. It's a controlled environment, with lots of money spent on road engineering, so it should be easier for a robot to drive than in city streets with all kinds of hazards, or country roads with ill-defined (if any) markings.

 

 

If you are driving the wrong way on the motorway and you have a collision, it could be quite horrible.  I suspect tourists do this more often than residents but I don't have 'proof' no.  They certainly end up in the news so perhaps its not that common.

 

Motorways are a great place for self driving cars already, check this list out: https://www.cheatsheet.com/money-career/new-cars-practically-drive-themselves.html/?a=viewall

 

 

 

 


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1974127 13-Mar-2018 16:54
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happyfunball:

 

It would be very difficult to do unless Australia did it as well, and most of our tourists by far come from there.

 

 

I am pretty sure that changing the side of the road we drive on would be a majorly expensive and difficult thing to do.  I don't think it would be worth it unless Japan, UK & Australia also did it.  If a decision was made that all countries would all have the cars driving on the right side of the road then there would certainly be some advantages.  If it were to be done then now is probably better than latter (a few decades ago would have been even better) due to the increased change of cars as we switch to EVs.

 

 


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1974217 13-Mar-2018 20:48
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MarkH67:

 

happyfunball:

 

It would be very difficult to do unless Australia did it as well, and most of our tourists by far come from there.

 

 

I am pretty sure that changing the side of the road we drive on would be a majorly expensive and difficult thing to do.  I don't think it would be worth it unless Japan, UK & Australia also did it.  If a decision was made that all countries would all have the cars driving on the right side of the road then there would certainly be some advantages.  If it were to be done then now is probably better than latter (a few decades ago would have been even better) due to the increased change of cars as we switch to EVs.

 

 

 

 

After we have self driving cars, the change would be much easier don't you think?  A self driving car could be safe on either side of the road, and doesn't care where the steering wheel is.  Its the cameras/LIDAR position(s) that count.

 

Then I guess in 20 years the question will be, why bother?


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  Reply # 1974337 14-Mar-2018 07:05
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happyfunball:

 

After we have self driving cars, the change would be much easier don't you think?  A self driving car could be safe on either side of the road, and doesn't care where the steering wheel is.  Its the cameras/LIDAR position(s) that count.

 

Then I guess in 20 years the question will be, why bother?

 

 

I think the major expense of changing from driving on the left to driving on the right is in traffic engineering. e.g. all the motorway on/off ramps will function in the opposite direction, which they  may not be well-situated for.

 

 


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  Reply # 1974339 14-Mar-2018 07:13
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frankv:

 

happyfunball:

 

After we have self driving cars, the change would be much easier don't you think?  A self driving car could be safe on either side of the road, and doesn't care where the steering wheel is.  Its the cameras/LIDAR position(s) that count.

 

Then I guess in 20 years the question will be, why bother?

 

 

I think the major expense of changing from driving on the left to driving on the right is in traffic engineering. e.g. all the motorway on/off ramps will function in the opposite direction, which they  may not be well-situated for.

 

 

 

 

Good point, not every ramp system is symmetrical, A to B doesn't always work with B to A. Similar issue with bus doors.

 

What are the $ savings? Sure, we could buy more cars easier from the US but why would we want to do that, they aren't great quality. We have no issue getting RHD cars here. All I can think of is less car accidents from tourists, and from us when we tour. Unless AUS changes, then we just build in a more local tourist accident issue


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  Reply # 1974402 14-Mar-2018 08:26
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tdgeek:

 

Good point, not every ramp system is symmetrical, A to B doesn't always work with B to A. Similar issue with bus doors.

 

What are the $ savings? Sure, we could buy more cars easier from the US but why would we want to do that, they aren't great quality. We have no issue getting RHD cars here.

 

 

Also controlled entry car parks - kiosks would need to be turned 180-deg and barrier arms relocated to be after the kiosk for the swapped lanes.

 

Intersections signs like stop and give way would need to be moved across the road. Lane signs would need to be replaced.  Speed limit signs would need to be rotated 180* within their frames.  All little expenses that would add up rapidly to a very big number.

 

The thing that seems insurmountable to me is that it would all have to happen in a very short time frame.

 

I think (don't know) that because more LHD (steering wheel on left) cars are produced they would be cheaper than RHD cars.  Given that the savings would be private (cheaper new cars, maybe) and the expenses public, I can't see their being a net national benefit.





Mike

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  Reply # 1975350 14-Mar-2018 08:44
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MikeAqua:

 

tdgeek:

 

Good point, not every ramp system is symmetrical, A to B doesn't always work with B to A. Similar issue with bus doors.

 

What are the $ savings? Sure, we could buy more cars easier from the US but why would we want to do that, they aren't great quality. We have no issue getting RHD cars here.

 

 

Also controlled entry car parks - kiosks would need to be turned 180-deg and barrier arms relocated to be after the kiosk for the swapped lanes.

 

Intersections signs like stop and give way would need to be moved across the road. Lane signs would need to be replaced.  Speed limit signs would need to be rotated 180* within their frames.  All little expenses that would add up rapidly to a very big number.

 

The thing that seems insurmountable to me is that it would all have to happen in a very short time frame.

 

I think (don't know) that because more LHD (steering wheel on left) cars are produced they would be cheaper than RHD cars.  Given that the savings would be private (cheaper new cars, maybe) and the expenses public, I can't see their being a net national benefit.

 

 

I guess the signs issues can be handled by local councils, so that's probably not too bad. Cost of a few hundred million as a one off is not too bad. I doubt cars would reduce in price as Japan already has a mass market for RHD, SK probably also has efficiencies with exports to Japan and Australia as well as us.

 

Good idea, but as you say, a public expense and no payback


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  Reply # 1976345 14-Mar-2018 08:59
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tdgeek:

 

What are the $ savings? Sure, we could buy more cars easier from the US but why would we want to do that, they aren't great quality. We have no issue getting RHD cars here. All I can think of is less car accidents from tourists, and from us when we tour. Unless AUS changes, then we just build in a more local tourist accident issue

 

 

I think it would mean cheaper new vehicles, especially from China and Korea. But less cheap 2nd-hand cars, since we couldn't get them from Japan any more, and I don't think China or Korea has a big surplus of 2nd-hand cars.

 

The stats don't support the contention that tourists from LHD countries have more accidents than NZ residents anyway.

 

A world standard for LHD would be a good thing.

 

 


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  Reply # 1976379 14-Mar-2018 10:27
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frankv:

 

The stats don't support the contention that tourists from LHD countries have more accidents than NZ residents anyway.

 

A world standard for LHD would be a good thing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Think you mixed your LH and RH there?

 

since most of the world is already RHD, making them all change to our LHD system would be far harder!


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  Reply # 1976384 14-Mar-2018 10:32
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PhantomNVD:

 

frankv:

 

The stats don't support the contention that tourists from LHD countries have more accidents than NZ residents anyway.

 

A world standard for LHD would be a good thing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Think you mixed your LH and RH there?

 

since most of the world is already RHD, making them all change to our LHD system would be far harder!

 

 

:-)  I think you got it wrong!   You mean our left side of the road, which is RHD which is few, only NZ, ENG, AUS, JAP that I am aware of, Cook Islands I guess as well


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  Reply # 1976389 14-Mar-2018 10:40
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tdgeek:

 

  I think you got it wrong!   You mean our left side of the road, which is RHD which is few, only NZ, ENG, AUS, JAP that I am aware of, Cook Islands I guess as well

 

 

In this part of the world there are a few more,  Honk Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, then there are India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, + South Africa, and a big chunk of SE Africa,

 

IF the EV Car boom takes off in India like it has in China,  being RHD will not be all that bad,


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  Reply # 1976394 14-Mar-2018 10:50
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wellygary:

 

tdgeek:

 

  I think you got it wrong!   You mean our left side of the road, which is RHD which is few, only NZ, ENG, AUS, JAP that I am aware of, Cook Islands I guess as well

 

 

In this part of the world there are a few more,  Honk Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, then there are India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, + South Africa, and a big chunk of SE Africa,

 

IF the EV Car boom takes off in India like it has in China,  being RHD will not be all that bad,

 

 

Here's a list of who drives on what side of the road

 

How many on the left and right





Regards,

Old3eyes


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