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The Chinese’ Ridiculous Aversion To Seatbelts 2

China’s “seatbelt t-shirt” – Photo courtesy of hljnews / carnewschina Despite China’s national seatbelt legislation coming into effect in 2004, seatbelts are still not widely used in China almost 10 years later. In fact, virtually nobody in China wears a seatbelt while travelling in the rear seat of an automobile. This, despite the fact that ...

Volvo Technology For Inattentive Drivers 1

Photo screenshot from Volvo YouTube video Volvo has recently announced new sensor technology that automatically applies the brakes if a cyclist obstructs the path of the car. From the YouTube video: All of Volvo’s new cars sold from May will include the sensors, which initially warn drivers with a row of red lights that flash ...

Toronto Police: To “Serve and Protect” Whom Exactly? 11

Toronto Police Service car photo courtesy of Stewart Rand The Toronto Police Service, with its long history of blaming the victims when it comes to traffic fatalities, has kicked off its latest blame the victim campaign, which it is calling “Do the bright thing”. The campaign urges pedestrians to wear fluorescent clothing so that distracted ...

19-Car Pileup Caught on Camera 2

19-car pileup in China – photo snapshot from YouTube video  A 19-car-pileup that happened on February 7th was caught on camera in Wuxi, Jiangsu, China. Scroll to 1:00 to see the cars begin sliding in to each other. Several drivers from the pileup get out of their car and risk their lives to apparently try ...

China Traffic Light Art Installation Confuses Tourists, Journalists

Photo of Chongqing’s traffic signal art installation courtesy of Shanghaiist In Chongqing China, the world’s “most confusing traffic lights” have been baffling tourists and journalists alike. The UK’s Daily Mail reported in May 2012: Motorists in China have been left bemused by this traffic signalling system, where officials installed over 20 sets of lights on ...

Shanghai License Plate Costs Same As Brand New Fully-Loaded Sedan 1

Shanghai traffic congestion – Photo courtesy of Bert van Dijk In Canada, as in the United States, registering a license plate for a new car takes mere minutes, and assuming you have a valid driver’s license and insurance, anyone can do it for a nominal fee of about $100. In China, registering a license plate ...

External Airbags on Cars: Novel Idea? Or Band-Aid Solution? 11

External airbags photo courtesy of Fast Company There has been talk for several years now about putting airbags on the exterior of automobiles to protect pedestrians and bicyclists if they get hit. The idea originated in the Netherlands and was lauded by our friend Mikael at Copenhagenize back in 2010. Mikeal wrote in 2010: So, ...

Free Parking? At What Cost? 1

Car parking lot – Photo courtesy of Zachary Korb In most suburban areas, and some urban areas, big box stores are surrounded by expansive parking lots where motorists can park their cars for free. But the significant costs to buy the land and pay to build and maintain these parking lots are built into the ...

Roundabouts Gone Wrong 2

Australia Roundabout Sign – Photo Courtesy of John Jack Rice We recently posted an article discussing the benefits of roundabouts. Roundabouts are an inexpensive and effective way to increase traffic flow, calm traffic, and improve safety while reducing the environmental impact of motor vehicles. We wrote: “When there is enough space to construct them, roundabouts ...

Roundabout Junctions: Efficient, Inexpensive 19

Collingwood, Ontario roundabout design – Photo courtesy of the Town of Collingwood We have all dealt with “stop and go” traffic. Drivers accelerate quickly, then slam on their brakes when they hit a red light. Then accelerate quickly again, and repeat. This harmful style of driving wastes gas, creates unnecessary pollution, and creates unsafe conditions ...