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General Chat Thread, The M5 crash in General; A lot of debate raging over whether the fireworks display / bonfires nearby caused the accident. Without wanting to sound ...
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    MK-2's Avatar
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    The M5 crash

    A lot of debate raging over whether the fireworks display / bonfires nearby caused the accident.
    Without wanting to sound too harsh, as I'm sure it is a terrible time for all families involved, but speed and distance have got to be a major contributor here.
    According to one report, it said the initial accident happened and cars behind unable to stop in time hit them. Unable to stop meaning going too fast to stop in the current driving conditions.
    If it was already foggy, surely you have adjusted your speed and distance already. If it suddenly becomes a lot darker, then shouldn't you drive even more cautiously?

    I'm in no way saying this is the whole reason, but surely it does come in to play? There is even a report saying the Transport Secretary has said it is too early to be blaming speed for the accident; well no not really, if the driving conditions were already foggy and wet, surely one major factor would be speed?

    If the fireworks were taken out of the equation, and it was just a foggy, wet night, what would be the reason for the crash?

    As I said, I in no way mean to disrespect the families involved, but the media are doing a good job of whipping up a frenzy of hatred towards the fireworks display person.

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    tommej's Avatar
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    I think it's a bit early to be jumping to conclusions, and I fully doubt anyone will be found ultimately responsible. Very sad for everyone involved.

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    It may just be that whoever drove into the sudden fog/smokebank just didnt know what to do - and maybe braked too suddenly or swerved or something.
    We came home on Friday night and drove into what seemed to be fog -it was just THERE out of nowhere - and it was white, not grey. Once you were in it though you could smell that it was smoke from a local bonfire.

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    I read an interview with one driver who was lucky enough to get through the carnage, apparently you just suddenly hit a dense wall of fog/smoke and you couldn't even see the front of the car, plus there was lot's of standing water with car/lorries skidding all over the place. Very scary and yes there 'may' be incidences of people driving too fast, but I certainly wouldn't be jumping to that conclusion at the moment.

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    From what i've seen of the news it wasn't foggy, that was the first thought, it was the cloud of smoke from the fireworks. I can see where this is all leading though as they'd started on BBC news last night, Speed Limits On Motorways. Speed doesn't kill, it's the wrong applcation of speed that kills in certain circumstances

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    DT2
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommej View Post
    I think it's a bit early to be jumping to conclusions, and I fully doubt anyone will be found ultimately responsible. Very sad for everyone involved.
    I agree, however an accident a number of years ago on the m6 (I think) was in similar circumstances (said bonfire smoke instead being fog) and the contributing factor there was drivers being unable to see well enough ahead to be able to stop. MK-2 has a very valid point - people generally do not adjust their driving speed to match the conditions. That is not pointing the finger, just a mere observation without blaming any one.

    DT

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    MK-2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    It may just be that whoever drove into the sudden fog/smokebank just didnt know what to do - and maybe braked too suddenly or swerved or something.
    We came home on Friday night and drove into what seemed to be fog -it was just THERE out of nowhere - and it was white, not grey. Once you were in it though you could smell that it was smoke from a local bonfire.
    The reports say that one (possibly two) lorries jackknifed which would have been a big factor yes

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    Quote Originally Posted by MK-2 View Post
    There is even a report saying the Transport Secretary has said it is too early to be blaming speed for the accident; well no not really, if the driving conditions were already foggy and wet, surely one major factor would be speed?
    What, the transport secretary who recently said he wanted to raise the speed limit to 80mph on motorways? Surely not!

    Sure speed and most importantly speed appropriate for the conditions AND distance to the vehicle infront are THE main factors. No one at the fireworks display was driving the cars and it's always possible that some hazzard will manifest itself. Safety is ALWAYS the responsibility of the drivers of the vehicles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MK-2 View Post
    the media are doing a good job of whipping up a frenzy of hatred towards the fireworks display person.
    I thought that this morning too - bet the poor guy feels absolutely awful!

    Presumably a public fireworks display would have required a H&S assessment, which must have been deemed OK for it to go ahead... why not blame whoever said it would be safe?

    I don't really mean that, but it seems that the media always needs to blame some individual for every problem and it's frustrating.

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    MK-2's Avatar
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    I don't know why people are quoting me as "jumping to conclusions" when I'm not. I asked if speed and distance were a factor? I didn't say that is the only thing that killed them.
    One article I read quoted "it is thought two lorries jackknifed behind the initial accident, and vehicles behind them presumably unable to stop in time then piled up behind the lorries".
    If you see an accident in front of you and are unable to stop in time, likelihood is you are going too fast for the current conditions.

    Also, according to the police in that area: "We do believe that while there was fog and it was difficult conditions in the area...there was very significant smoke across the carriageway. That, in effect, caused a bank similar to a fog bank, which was very distracting and very difficult to drive through."
    So it was foggy, the smoke just added to it.

    I am not jumping to any conclusion, but my question still stands.....if the firework smoke is taken out of the equation, what does the pile up get attributed to?

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    If the firework smoke is taken out of the equation, what's to say there would have been a crash at all?

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    DT2
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    Quote Originally Posted by MK-2 View Post
    I don't know why people are quoting me as "jumping to conclusions" when I'm not. I asked if speed and distance were a factor? I didn't say that is the only thing that killed them.
    One article I read quoted "it is thought two lorries jackknifed behind the initial accident, and vehicles behind them presumably unable to stop in time then piled up behind the lorries".
    If you see an accident in front of you and are unable to stop in time, likelihood is you are going too fast for the current conditions.

    Also, according to the police in that area: "We do believe that while there was fog and it was difficult conditions in the area...there was very significant smoke across the carriageway. That, in effect, caused a bank similar to a fog bank, which was very distracting and very difficult to drive through."
    So it was foggy, the smoke just added to it.

    I am not jumping to any conclusion, but my question still stands.....if the firework smoke is taken out of the equation, what does the pile up get attributed to?
    A: The general public's inability to correctly adapt their driving technique to the given road conditions.


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    Just as an addition, this is an eye-witness quote:

    The thing that made me realise how bad it was, was you could hear the thud of cars hitting into lorries. One car overtook us going at about 60 or 70 miles an hour and just crashed straight into a lorry
    So yes, if the firework display caused the initial accident, they could be held accountable. But at the same time, if driving at night in fog and you overtake at 70mph......

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    Quote Originally Posted by MK-2 View Post

    I am not jumping to any conclusion, but my question still stands.....if the firework smoke is taken out of the equation, what does the pile up get attributed to?
    It gets attributed to the firework smoke, you are jumping to conclusions that the drivers weren't driving at safe speeds and distances to cope with the the small amount of fog, adding in a solid wall of smoke suddenly changed those conditions.

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    Hitting a wall of fog and smoke is incredibly disorientating. It would be sudden, unless everyone drive everywhere at 20 MPH in case they come across this type of freak condition, and most likely unavoidable.

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