Posts tagged crash
I’ve seen this ad, produced by Sussex Safer Roads partnerships, three times in the last few days, so the chances are, you may have already seen it too. But the message it shares is so important, and the method of delivery so subtle, mouldbreaking and inspired, that if even one more person sees it and passes it on, it is worthwhile to share again.
It is called ‘Embrace Life’ and its sole purpose is to persuade you to always wear a seatbelt. You’d think that would be easy, given the proportion of car occupant fatalities who didn’t belt up, but the problem, which I’ve just illustrated is that to get the message across you have to talk about death, injury and crashes. And when you do that, people switch off. No-one thinks it will happen to them. And even having seen a graphic portrayal of the gruesome results of failing to clunk-click, the intended recipient of the message has dissociated the ad from their own life.
What this film does, is to come at the problem from a different angle, and with an impact that is emotional without being scary or sensational. I think the experience may vary from person to person, some may cry, others may feel uplifted, but I defy anyone not to be moved in some way.
Daniel Cox, the writer-director has this to say:
“It was central to the development of the project that we root the concept of wearing a seat belt firmly in the family domain, and create the advert so that it could be viewed by anyone of any age. Children are so important as opinion formers within their family that we felt it imperative to have a child take a pivotal role in relaying our message. One key aspect to the storytelling is that we developed Embrace Life to be non-language specific, so that the message wouldn’t become lost when viewed by visitors to, or residents of, the UK where English might not be their first language.”
I’ve waffled enough. Watch the ad.
And whilst there is no doubt that the riskiest group of drivers on the road are the young, it is also true to say that elderly people pose a statistically higher risk to insurance companies than those in their middle age. They are, though, categorically much less dangerous than young drivers, and given this, it is surprising how hard it can be for older drivers to arrange insurance.
Many companies appear to be fearful of health-related issues causing accidents, and there are a number of other factors that appear to be at work. Premiums can be pushed up for all older drivers as slowly worsening reactions and the onset of old age result in, usually minor, bumps and knocks. But premiums shoot up faster for women.
Why is this? In many cases women suddenly take up the majority of driving after years of occasional use, when they lose their partner, or if he suffers health issues. Ladies also have longer lifespan and better health on average are also more likely to have a part time job, volunteer and socialise, which puts them on the road more.
All of this, though, should not stop an older driver from obtaining a competitive insurance quote, and although reports suggest that many mainstream companies are not offering insurance to over 80s, or even over-65 year-olds, there are competitive quotes available and we are able to offer and older drivers insurance quote for as long as you are able to safely drive.
And though younger drivers are much riskier, the unfair stereotypes of older drivers and women drivers being dangerous persist. Don’t look now, but, I think I’ve found the culprit:
It has come to my attention that a certain large energy supplier has told its staff that they must reverse into their parking bays when they arrive at the office. Although this diktat has been issued under the guise of health and safety, the Health and Safety Executive and RoSPA do not seem to agree.
You have to say that although not a major problem for most of us, this peculiar rule will inevitably mean that some employees will have to arrive a good hour earlier. People like this…
Yes, apparently it’s safer…
Our tip, if you work for the company concerned, make sure you have a rock solid car insurance policy!
One of our colleagues came into the office today and was telling us about a holiday in gay Paris. In the course of the conversation she mentioned that a tour guide at the Arc de Triomphe had told her that no car insurance policy in the world was valid on the crazy ten-lane, twelve exit roundabout / junction that encircles the monument.
This sounded a little unlikely. Even though the junction is clearly more dangerous than most, insurance works on the basis of pooled risk, so it would be highly unusual, and probably the thin end of the wedge, if insurers started singling out even one dangerous junction and excluding cover.
What’s more, the policies we offer which provide Europe-wide car insurance cover don’t have any such specific exclusion attached to them, so the worldwide claim of the guide was definitely wrong. Some more research was in order.
Checking the internet, there were a lot of other folk who had been told the same by the Parisian guides, and repeated it on their blogs or sites, but no citation of a verifiable source. So I obtained a copy of a policy document from Macif, the largest French car insurance company. Sure enough, there are no specific exclusions listed there, so I made some further enquiries.
It turns out the the truth is rather more prosaic, but no less interesting. Owing to the complexity of the road system around the Arc de Triomphe, the insurers have an agreement to settle all claims on a knock-for-knock basis, with each company bearing 50% of the total loss. This is to avoid the protracted disputes and legal challenges, which would arise when trying to determine who was at fault for the accident.
In fact this is no different to what happens in many situations, in this country and abroad, where fault is hard to determine, or where the expense of determining who was at fault would not be worthwhile.
So, simply, the story is a myth, presumably either something has been lost in translation, or the French tour guides are having fun telling stories to the tourists.
If you’ve ever felt stung by the rising cost of motoring, spare a thought for the three poor motorists in China who were stung to death by an enormous swarm of angry bees, after the lorry which was carrying scores of bee hives and many millions of bees.
Here is the obligatory pic of the aftermath.
Despite what you may have heard about China, that hazy background is not fog, but is in fact the massive swarm of homeless bees. They are still causing chaos and have accounted for a further three deaths as unprotected motorists have tried to avoid being stung.
All of the environmental advantages of taking the bus to work are negated by two things:
First, hundreds of freeloading pensioners, who ‘need’ to get their shopping at rush hour, taking all of the seats.
Second, drivers like these:
According to the esteemed Asia Insurance Review, researchers at Queensland University in Australia have found that :
A woman who is chided or criticised by her husband or male companion while she is driving is more than twice as likely to have an accident.
Apparently, 168 female students underwent a computer simulated psychological driving test. Half of the group were informed that the test would find out why men were better drivers then women, the other half were simply told the researchers were exploring the mental processes in driving.
Almost half the former group struck a (computerised) pedestrian who appeared suddenly, but only a quarter of the second group did.
The result of this – if women are bad drivers, it’s probably a bloke’s fault, hence womens’ car insurance is cheaper.
Yep, that must have been what happened here. After a quality attempt at parking, this lady is attempting to reverse out for another go.
The film initially looks like it might be a rather naughty romp in a car, but gradually reveals a very serious anti-drink drive message that really merits the 2.5 million views it already has on Youtube. Don’t watch it if you’re easily distressed.
Here’s one for those of you sitting insurance exams…
They’ll probably leave it there, where an estate agent will describe it as
“a charming bungalow in a unique location, river views, good road access”
Makes me glad that people don’t generally try delivering fully assembled houses on trucks in this country.
That’s modifications to your body.
Today’s Times carries the story of Welsh teenager Jessica Collins who was involved in a serious car crash in Germany. Apparently her injuries were exacerbated by her belly-button stud being pushed by her seat belt through her body and almost to her spine. Doctors described the injuries as being like a bullet wound.
There’s more on icwales.
Unlike a certain satire site, I’m not going to suggest that removing your seatbelt would be an appropriate course of action if you have a navel piercing. And much as I understand the distraught parents’ pleas for teenagers to remove their piercings, the circumstances of the accident suggest that this was a freak incident.
But what you might do, if you have a piercing somewhere in your abdomen, but which you should certainly do anyway, is to check whether the seatbelt fits you correctly. For correct operation the lap part of your seatbelt should go over the pelvis region and not the stomach. The diagonal strap should pass over you shoulder and not your neck. If your seatbelt doesn’t fit, you can usually adjust the height of the seatbelt via the b pillars, and often the c pillars too.
The danger of news stories like this is that they will either put people off wearing a seatbelt, or – more likely – give the 10% of muppets who still drive without one another convenient but bogus reason to not belt up.
By wearing your seatbelt you will significantly raise your chances of surviving a serious accident – over 2,500 lives are saved a year, which means 250 are still being lost needlessly, and that’s to say nothing of the serious injuries prevented.
In contrast injuries caused by seatbelts are rare, usually amounting to bruising, often in the course of preventing more serious injuries, and only vanishingly rarely anything as serious as has afflicted poor Jessica.
You can find out more about seatbelt safety in this pdf download from RoSPA.
So remember – “Clunk, click – every trip” – and by all means get rid of your belly studs if you want, I’m not a fan.
And remember that modified car insurance is comparatively safe!