I don't see what the fuss is about.
This island is so stupidly allergic to change, even good change. I firmly believe in "if it aint broke, don't fix it," but I also believe that if something can be genuinely improved then what on earth is the problem?
Also it's us being the difficult ones, not the rest of the Europeans, as we're the only ones (except Ireland and Malta) who drive on the left, and we're the very only ones who use this funny old imperial system with random harder-to-calculate numbers like 14 and 16 and stuff. It makes much more sense to divide things into 10s, 100s, 1000s etc.
Having said that, I have no problem with miles and feet as I have grown up here, but I can definitely understand the difficulty people have with feet and inches as the measurements are unnecessarily complicated, and as Snowball said, it's a safety issue so that should definitely outweigh any pointless quaint backward outdated mentalities people may have.
I have driven a British car on the continent and a continental car in Britain. It's easy enough to convert mph/kph, but I'd reckon it's a lot more difficult for a lorry driver to convert metres to feet/inches in a split second and work out if it's safe to pass or not; so for this reason I think it makes sense to make dual signs, just better to be safe than sorry. As solely a car driver frankly I never think of or bother to look at the height/width warning signs as there is no need, but for a foreign lorry driver it must be confusing when you see a load of higher numbers separated by apostrophes and stuff and you only have a short time to calculate whether it's safe for you to pass or not. Then they are focusing their concentration on maths rather than what's happening on the road.
The signs on the Menai Bridge are in feet/metres AND Welsh/English. There's never been a problem. Any such problem is purely invented.
Last edited by 98selitb; 20-10-09 at 19:31.
Tommy, my satnav has a "lorry" provision, which I use when I have the caravan in tow. But it doesn't have a height clearance facility.
It is a (supposedly) good quality Panasonic unit (it cost enough), but there are several shortcomings which seem to be common to all satnavs.
If you happen to get off course, it will try to correct you, and this is where you can get into problems. It will not then respond to a corrective route suitable for lorries; it tries to take you onto the first available turning. I think this is why we hear of so many lorries getting stuck in silly situations.
When we have the caravan in tow, my wife "shadows" the satnav by noting the list of places it should be passing through, and relates them to the road atlas.
This is important because, if you suddenly hit a diversion, the satnav can be useless until you get back on course. This is because the diversionary route may not relate to the direction the satnav has been set to travel.
We found our method worked well in France, and I would never rely solely on a satnav.
snowball, i do know what you mean about the sat nav's, it wont give me an alternative route when im going somewhere and i have to divert, it just keep's trying to get me back onto the road im trying to get away from
If I drift of the course with the 200 model I have, it directs back on route straight away.
Which is handy as I always seem to drift off course
Do foreign drivers really wait until they approach a bridge before trying to convert their metres into feet and inches?
All they need to do is ascertain their measurements in imperial units before they set off and remember them. I know if I was going to the continent I would do that (in reverse)- and I'm no Einstein.
well thats what i would have thought was the simple answer, at work we have well over 100 tractor units and many more trailers, all the trailers have the height marked on the front of them, and the tractor units have the height of the fifth wheel marked on the cab, add these together and you have the total height of the trailer, it's more difficult with flatbed trailers i guess, but then the driver should know the height of the bed, and the height of his load before its loaded
Gosh - this is great to be an old stick in the mud! Vive la difference! I have no intention of being bullied into a one size fits all - and we all know that's a complete farce - just look at other threads on this forum!
No objection to others' alternative views - indeed for this country to survive, it's the views of the thinking people that need to be heard and listened to by them upstairs. (as still not back on the new system - please accept Big Grin!)
Only my opinion, but I think metres are far simpler, more logical and easier to remember than feet and inches. I think it would be easier for us to adapt to metres than someone who's familiar with metric to get used to imperial.
Originally Posted by Airbag
There are files available for some sat navs that show low bridges, well known in trucking and I think motor home circles. I don't think it is anything to do with the signage really; it's more likely to do with being lost in a foreign country driving on the "wrong" side of the road. Follow one and you will see what I mean.