Other Info on the Internet

Modern speed limiter functions & associated (Internet) information:

Note: Because there is an increasing quantity of information available concerning speed limiters, it may be important for readers to be attentive to that which is correct and that which is “misinformation”.
Much of the current [since around 2007] information on the Internet is headed by abbreviations such as "ISA" (intelligent speed assistance) etcetera, but only the most practical of these systems are endorsed by New Zealand top-speed limiting organization, as detailed below.

We provide on this website some articles explaining the common sense approach to speed limiting the modern vehicle – and – in conjunction with these we provide examples of quite ridiculous misinformation.

We therefore recommend that first time visitors should read the (four page) article Other Speed Limiter Information on the Internet > below:
As well as this article, there are several shorter ones that deal with “handy to know” aspects of road craft and vehicle dynamics - as they apply to the limiting of a vehicles top speed: e.g. What Is a PTW Ratio.  /  Vehicle Weight Factors in Licencing ...  

The only website article we have been able to find that contains in-depth research to the topic is PR/96 Speed Control Devices for Cars..Fildes &Lee-1993...>.
On page 18 of that pdf document is a heading, 'Relationship Between Speed & Crash Involvement'. _...Fildes & Lee (1993) provide a detailed review of research into the involvement of "excessive speed" in serious crashes. Subject to (their - as the report states) concerns about the reliability and appropriateness of the research, they conclude that "evidence from clinical studies seems to suggest that excessive speed is probably involved in between 12 and 16 percent of (all) crashes..." and "excessive speed to be at least a contributing factor in up to 30% percent of FATAL crashes in Australia 1991-92".  Statements which complement our initiative for top-speed limiting, as expounded on this site.

For wider searches see:< www.-devices-to-help/drivers-control-... >< Sweden-moves-from trials-to implementation... > < Banari/Info-tech/speed-sheild- > <


Other applications:
Need a Work licence?  You may be able to approach the courts with a view to obtaining a ‘work licence’ on receipt of your vehicle having been 'top speed' limited.

Own any delinquent teenagers? If you are the parent or caregiver (petrol purchaser) for a teenager of average responsibility/attitude you may like to investigate the possibility of having your family vehicle speed restricted to a top speed of around 120km/h.  This website may soon be able to provide useful information relating to how/where to have this simple and straightforward electronic calibration effected on most models of the modern car.  Subject to posting in 2011 we note that Ford-My^Key (USA) along with several other companies have started providing a Top-speed limiter "app" targeted especially for parents of teenage drivers. However, we wonder why this 'app' is simply standard procedure for drivers of any age??  See also, comments by Professor J^Banzhaf...


Other Speed Limiter Information on the Internet.
(Article created February 2006)

There are a number of Internet web-sites dedicated to vehicle ‘speed limiters’.
Some of these contain flawed information on the subject, and some are completely spurious.

We critique below, one web-site, that is (evidently) dedicated to detracting from any of the benefits offered by speed limiters; as it contains several totally spurious and/or fallacious arguments put forward against their use. However, many other websites contain pages describing speed-limiter attributes.

The majority of web-site information however, deals almost exclusively with external speed limiting technologies - and explains various aspects of these. The draw-back with these external systems’ is that they control speed through the use of [complex] technology such as Radio-Telemetry-configuration. . . for instance GPS systems that are interfaced with satellite, and then ground based transponders - etcetera. [Search also: UK Tests Speed Limiters on Fleet Vehicles- 2009...} & < ISA/Austraila/Research... >
Not only would such systems be very expensive, they will also need a lot more development to ensure they work reliably.  Interestingly though, the British Road Safety Authorities were already conducting some trials (re: 2005) with these types of systems.  "Indications show, that for crash reduction, they appear very effective."  [Refer to: www.timesonline.co.uk/London/tests...].
Another useful Link is <www.etsc.eu/documents/ISA%20Myths.pdfor < www.PREVeNT-Crash-European... >
Oliver Carsten, professor of transport safety at Leeds University, stated, in 2005, "The trials have been incredibly successful...".  That was in 2005, and now 'the rest is history' as the saying goes, regarding validation for using the remedy.

Importantly however; these trials are using external speed-limiter systems. That is, they require all of the (peripheral) infrastructure alluded to above [and with its obvious costs].
The only possible advantage to be gained from these external ESL [
read; What Is An ESL] systems would be that (assuming they could be made to work reliably) they could be used to control speeds in ALL speed zones - provided of course that the road in question was equipped with the necessary, and expensive, infrastructure.
[Though the ability to control all speed zones would have advantages in terms of reducing trauma that occurs in these (slower) speed limit areas, would it not be more useful at this stage, to simply use the INTERNAL mechanisms - which vehicles have been equipped with for many years.]

Privacy issues: of importance also is that the ‘external’ systems will have serious consequences for individual freedom of movement and related privacy issues - in that the system - by its very nature - will need to spy on motorists.
No such ‘civil-liberty’ concerns apply to the interna
l systems or functions - that are already embedded in the vehicles' ECU!

Spurious Arguments against the effectiveness of speed limiters:

The author of the Internet article “Limiting Speed - Limiting Safety” is attempting to argue that if use of the limiters were to become commonplace, the result would be a perpetuating situation of unbearable driving dynamics - associated with the fact that all vehicles would (the argument goes) be travelling at the same speed - or within a very small margin, of the same speed.
The author argues (incorrectly and fallaciously) that this scenario - of same-speed’ by virtually all vehicles - would create boredom, and a “convoy driving” syndrome - and other [unsubstantiated] problems.

The fallaciousness of the argument is aptly demonstrated by crash statistics relating to current speed limits. The argument presupposes that "convoy driving syndrome" will be exacerbated by limiting all vehicles to one specific top speed, which implies in itself that convoy driving syndrome is a problem worse than allowing drivers the means to speed excessively unimpaired!   (I.e. That it is better to be able to drive at an unpredictable excessive speed than it is to follow a pattern within known boundaries.)

Contrary to this self-serving argument, convoy driving can actually be a useful phenomena which increases the safety and the throughput of the highway.
Indeed, no crash statistics are attributable to convoy driving syndrome - whereas speeding features all the time.  Were the use of speed limiting technology to become commonplace, it is no more likely that every driver would (then) travel at exactly the same speed as it is now.

In regards to the activation margin- suggested at 18-20km/h - the discretionary powers and related capacity of Road Policing Officers - to apply enforcement and penalties - would still (obviously) apply to the posted limit.    Read also: Two Dead after Driver Passes on Yellow Lines

Further; it is difficult to see how the “Convoy driving” or other similar scenarios, could suddenly become an important aspect, yet not have similar manifestation through the “current” heavy enforcementt of speed limits.
That enforcement already encourages 85 percent of drivers to drive very close to - the maximum limit. [Q; Are the people inventing these excuses really this stupid, as their logic suggests?]
I.e. According "their" logic, presumably those who ignore limits now, would be far too skilled to be afflicted with the “convoy-driving” - that might occur after regulation?

Most ridiculous of all; mention is made of hypothetical scenarios concerning motorcycles - with a pretext that on occasion these could have their road holding dynamics placed in jeopardy by speed limiters? Once again, the 17 to 20km/h margin would negate this - not that it even applied or has any logical merit in the first place.
Any other theories? - concerning speed limiters and implications for motorcycles - should be directed to the parents of Erin Jane Burgess, or perhaps to the New Zealand Police Complaints Authority. Re: 190km/h motorcycle pursuit, EFI machine, May 2003, two fatalities. Refer< www.-Kuran Brunton^_PCA_report... >.

[NB. The rationale behind speed limiter regulation is, and always has been, to minimise the excessively high speeds - that account for approximately 10 percent (only) of crashes, but that nonetheless are nearly always fatal!]

In New Zealand, road transport authority statistics show that over a period between 1996 and 2001, impact speeds above 125km/h have accounted for approximately 80 lives each year!

Q; What other kind of industry would tolerate this statistic - especially in the face of a simple and effective remedy? I.e. There would never be this many fatalities produced by ANY of the (unsubstantiated) syndromes and scenarios put-forward in the article (opposing the use of limiters) on the formerly cited web-site - if there were any at all.

Question; Could some recent tragedies in New Zealand, such as Waitohe-Temuka Road, 07- 01- 2006 and SH1 near Te Hana, 15/ 01 /2006, serve to further demonstrate that limiting excessive speed would reduce the likelihood and severity of serious crashes.
These two crashes [cited] were still under investigation at time of publishing of this essay, however, it will not be surprising if it is shown that an imprudent decision - to attempt to use a speed above 125km/h - was a major contributing factor in the tragedies.

Perhaps, and in view of the above, an inherent lack of suitable levels of ‘manipulative skills’ were also a factor. If so, that is why the open road limit for NZ is 100km/h.
[Note; with faster acceleration capabilities of modern vehicles, there is even less need for high top speeds.   Refer also: "Overtaking Analysed".]

The fact that the British Traffic Safety Authority endorse the utilisation of “externally controlled”, (GPS integrated, etc,) electronic regulation of vehicle speeds, sums up the question pertaining, surely.  [It also appears that London's ‘Transport Planners’ are likewise convinced of the benefits.]
, and as mentioned above, the system they are promulgating is one where a level of ‘radio telemetry’ configured with high-way ‘transponder points’ and futuristic satellite GPS interfacing ..." might be used.  Yet most [if not all] of such convoluted radio-telemetry’ type solutions are unnecessary however - because of the availability of ‘ECU’ based internal mechanisms, that vehicles already have manufactured into them. These would provide the most efficient and cost effective method of attaining the objective.    Refer also: "Overt Challenge to Authority..."

Privacy Issues with GPS systems:
As stated previously; with ‘external’ systems, ALL of the vehicles occupants will be affected by the privacy and / or civil-liberty” aspects, associated with that type of technology.
onversely, ECU ‘internally based’ speed-limiters will not contravene any civil liberties issues for the vehicle’s occupants.

Other [bogus] arguments presented against speed limiters:
Another, fallacious type, argument used by the author in the website [Limiting speed- limiting safety ] is that varying wheel/tyre size [diameters] would partly circumvent the accurate activation of the limiter mechanisms. This relates to the fact that, (for example) a larger diameter wheel - whilst recording the same number of revolutions - will travel slightly further on account of its greater circumference. The author argues that this dynamic may cause considerable variation in the activation speeds of some vehicles - in comparison to others.

However, -and notwithstanding that this would tend to minimise their much vaunted convoy syndrome? - it once again is quite fallacious because if as recommended by sensible advocates, there was a 17 - 20km/h margin, then this margin would supersede the problem posed by larger wheel diameters. If such a dynamic as caused by a ‘wheel diameter aspect, is as relevant as the web-site author attempts to make out it is, then why is it not able to be used as a defence for escaping liability for speeding infringements?
NB. There is a five percent (only) margin, allowed in respect of (New Zealand) Warrent of Fitness wheel diameter variations. Similar inconsequential diameter variations will apply in other countries.]

The British Government, are evidently waiting for completion of their trials (at time of writing, 2006 ) and other expediency issues - with the utilisation of radio-telemetry-based external speed-limiters. The fact they are endorsing the technology, in 2005, should be ample evidence to demonstrate that there is no viable argument for danger, or ‘convoy syndrome’ - or any other fallacious pretext.  It will be for the British motorist to decide whether they are prepared to accept this, more complicated and expensive, solution.

Note: Vehicle manufacturers have been voluntarily installing speed limiters for many years, but, disappointingly, have set them to activate at ridiculously high speeds. Perhaps the families of victims – of crashes resulting from some of those (excessive) speeds - could write and ask them, “why”?

An informative web article illustrating the many spurious 'MYTHS' about speed limiting, and complementing the associated FACTS as presented in this site, can be found @ <www.etsc.eu/doc/ISA%20Myths.pdf>.

Driver Fatigue and Speed Limiters

In New Zealand - over recent years - the problem of driver fatigue has been shown to be a factor in many ‘cross-centre-line’ incidents.

In respect of the potential hazard posed by drowsy drivers, it should be remembered that when a driver falls asleep at the wheel, they may often inadvertently "press" the accelerator.  With modern cars able to accelerate to high speeds very quickly, this poses an extra hazard in terms of greatly increased kinetic energy if they should crash.


Read also; "Other Websites feedback" -