Check Your Speed

speedo

In Australia, before the year 2006, speedometers could legally be plus or minus 10%. This means that a speed of 100km/h the speedo could indicate anywhere between 90km/h and 110km/h.

Some of those 2006 cars are still on the road. Many of them have had tyres replaced, which can put the speedo out even further. Most states with roadworthy inspections do not test the accuracy of the speedo at all.

After 2006, the law was changed to read – The speedo must not indicate a speed less than the vehicle’s true speed or a speed greater than the vehicle’s true speed by an amount more than 10 percent plus 4 km/h. However this law applies when vehicles *arrive* in the country – once they are sold, nobody checks any of this again as far as I am aware.

So when I got my car in 2010, I tested the speedo with satellite apps and GPS. My car was officially 10% out. If I was doing 100 as seen on the speedo, I was really doing 91. And I adjusted my driving accordingly so that I was not constantly being overtaken by everyone.

After 5 years, we noticed my tyres had begun to craze. So we replaced them. Not long after that I tested my speedo again and it was now correct instead of 10% out. So I had to unlearn all my adjustments.

How many people reading this have done any checks on their speedometer? Does anyone reading this know for certain whether their speedo is accurate? Do you test it regularly? Did you know about these laws especially the one before 2006 if you have a 2006 vehicle? Did you know that you could be driving 10% slower than you expected in a brand new car you just bought and drove off the dealers yard, and that by changing the tyres you could suddenly be doing a new speed as a surprise to yourself, even though the speedo shows you the same speed?

I am guessing the answer to all of those questions is no. And this is how a lot of people get fined and accidents get caused because people are going slower than they think they are, and the person behind gets frustrated and road ragey.

driving

True Speed

Back in October, Andrew from High Riser wrote about the Australian Design Rules. I replied with the following comment.

I will like to mention the most hilarious of the Australian Design Rules – that vehicles may not under-read the speed, but may over-read the speed by anything up to 10% + 4 km/h

This means that if your vehicle’s *actual* speed is 100kmh, the displayed speed is permitted to be anywhere between 100kmh and 114kmh!

I have tested my Volkswagen Polo via several different means, and it is out by 10%. EG at 110km/hr on the speedo, my actual true speed is 100km/hr. Now that I know this, I can drive accordingly. To do 60, I need to do 66. To do 80, I need to do 88. It could be worse, it could be the full 10% *plus* 4km/hr, and I’d forever be doing maths in my car. And I failed maths, quite badly. :)

However, there are a whole bunch of people out there who do not know this, and many of them believe their speedo is supposed to be accurate! These people are likely wondering why people keep overtaking them when they *think* they are doing the speed limit, but they are actually doing less than the speed limit and in the case of 100km/hr, they may be doing less than 90 as a surprise to themselves.

Since making that comment, recently a discussion was held on this topic community Facebook group that I belonged to after someone posted that they were driving at the speed limit and continually being overtaken. Another group member raised the Australian Design Rules and advised the someone to do some tests on their speedo. Theirs was out the full 10% plus 4km/hr.

So, this is my heads up to you. Test your speedometer. There are many smart phone apps you can get to do this. Plus, if you are using a satnav, this will often give you an accurate true speed.

cars, driving

Crash Down To Earth

Today was the kind of day I think I should have stayed in bed. Or stayed at home and did chooky chores..

I woke up with a not-awesome sinus. There’s a wattle tree near the chicken coop – not on our property unfortunately – which I am allergic to.

I had to go to work so even though I was feeling pretty blah I got up and moving. With all the rain the last few days my Polo smells a bit like wet dog, even though I don’t have a dog. Even so, j’adore my Polo, so I got in and headed off to work.

First this old lady tries to hit me while I am next to her – she started moving into my lane while I was still in it. I had to brake and swerve.

Not keen on this, I accelerate past her at which point she moves into the lane behind me.

I have my blinker on as I am going around the corner, and I have to stop at the roundabout for a car, so I start to slow down in order to stop.

She does not slow down – in fact she accelerates. I hear this enormous bang at which point I realise this crazy lady has hit me in the rear. My car stalls. She hits me a second time, almost pushing me out into the intersection.

I stop the car and get out yelling at her, as you do when you’ve had a scare and you think the back end of your car has been pushed in. She tries to tell me she had both feet on the brake trying to stop. If that was the case, how did she hit me a second time?

Anyway I tell her to pull into the side street and sort it out.

I wouldn’t let her leave until the police got there because frankly I thought she was either drunk or a nutter.

Thankfully there isn’t a lot of damage to the car mainly just some scratches on the bumper and I think she might have pushed it in and it popped back out again by itself but I am starting to think there might be damage to me. I’ve had a splitting headache ever since and my neck and back are pretty sore.

To add insult to injury, she tells me while I am leaning on the back of the car, shaking and feeling like I was going to throw up, not to worry because these are just cars, just metal, and she’s had breast cancer so she knows what is important.

Anyway, what a crap day. I’ve taken some Nurofen Plus earlier this afternoon but they did zip. I might have to break out the big guns and Panadeine Forte myself to bed.

My poor Polo. :( I’m so angry.

Angry Snoskred, driving

Reverse

wool1

I’ve seen this so many times now and it never fails to completely stop me – and everyone else who happens to be around – in their tracks. We were actually packing our shopping away in Aldi when the truck arrived, and knowing how amusing this can be, I grabbed the I-phone and got a couple of shots.

wool2

The drivers of these trucks have to be extremely talented to get into this loading bay. There are always cars parked on both sides of the road and the drivers have to get very close to them! There is a very tight squeeze to get into the loading bay – probably less than a metre on either side of the truck if it were parked exactly in the middle of the bay..

country life, driving

Ghostly visions.

Last night after the usual Chinese dinner, the other half and I chose to drive home via the new town we want to live in, just to see what it is like at nighttime. It was a beautiful night, with a big almost full moon and occasionally fog over the cow pastures. I wished I’d had my camera because the cows were spooky out there in the fog.

When we got to the town we parked in a carpark overlooking the sea, turned off the car, and aah the silence and peace. It was really lovely. I’ve already moved there in my head. I’d heard that often there are kangaroos in the streets at nighttime there though we didn’t see any on our travels through town.

We did the drive like a big round circuit and the drive back to the town we live in now was down a road only recently completed. We drove down that road when we first got to town, it was a dirt road through forest back then and we got the car absolutely filthy. The first part of the road has a lot of reflectors, it’s almost blinding because they are new.

Then out of the darkness at the side of the road, a ghostly vision appeared – it was a very large kangaroo, standing there looking at us. The other half slowed right down – you never can tell what a roo will do, which way it will hop, or even if it will stay perfectly still. The first one did not move.

A little further down the road we saw the second one, again we slowed down. This one looked at us for a bit and then took off away from the road. A bit further down the road we saw a fox standing there. A few more roos, and we were back to the main road. That’s the first time I’ve ever seen them at night.

animals, country life, driving

I have cookies.. :)

We went for a drive to the big shopping centre about 50kms away. It was a nice day out. I took a few little pictures too.

alien

Some months ago we discovered something new when out driving. I’m not sure what it is supposed to be – the other half says it is a u turn bay, but there’s no signs suggesting that. It’s just in the middle of nowhere, too. I personally suspect it may be an Alien Landing Site and if we go there at – as my nephew used to call it – “Dark Time” we might find bright lights and be beamed up into the night sky.

road

Around here, there seems to be an odd way of going about fixing the roads. When something is wrong, they just seem to lay more asphalt on top of the road in a bizzare hope that this will fix the problem. This means you often find roads that look really nice for a few weeks, then the large trucks driving on them every day, the traffic, and other wear and tear, has an effect which makes it highly dangerous again. I do not think this is what the NRMA has in mind when they say fix our bloody roads.

werri2

This is the other end of Werri Beach which has appeared here before. :) There’s another shot of it on my upload for today of the 365 photo blog, which I am now up to date on ;) yay! And it’s even better because we haven’t officially started yet. I’m just kind of in training, getting the modalities in place. ;)

The beaches around here sure look nice, and if I weren’t so terrified of sharks and various other sea creatures, I might be tempted to go for a swim. But I am terrified of sharks and other sea creatures, so I think not, at the moment. I’d like to go snorkelling when it gets hot this year, maybe, on a netted beach a couple of hours south I have heard of.

beaches, driving, photography, photos