Posts Tagged ‘accident’

“Free Tibet” Subaru Wagon vs. an SF Cabbie: Which One’s the Bad Driver?

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

The Subie driver, that’s who.

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How would you find out that you’re one of SF worst drivers? I mean, who’s going to tell you? So yes, you can make a right on red and rely on others to avoid you, but that’s not the way to drive, right?

Just saying

Cowboy Pilots, Air Safety and the Metric System: A Modest Defense of Fox News on AirAsia Flight QZ8501

Monday, December 29th, 2014

So cue the outrage here.

I don’t watch the cable TV news myself, but here are a few points:

1. American-style measurements are all over the aviation industry, like measurement of speed (in nautical miles per hour) and altitude (in feet). Pilot confusion with differing measurement systems has killed passengers and crew IRL.

2. And yes, international travel isn’t as safe as domestic travel, for a host of reasons. American pilots have better training, on average, and they have an easier job of it, not having to deal with the Intertropical Convergence Zone and Russian paramilitaries, for starters. Not a single passenger has died due to a crash on a domestic flight on a large (we’re talking about something bigger than a private jet or a regional airliner) jet since 9/11. And if you want to talk about international flight on 100+ seat jets either going to or coming from America, we’ve lost a total of three passengers (on an Asiana flight at SFO) since 2001, that horrible year.

3. And the thing about cowboys – that’s a reference to the Boeing / American approach to automation vs. the Airbus / international approach. So a “cowboy” pilot has greater power to do something stupid, but also a greater ability to get out of trouble. A “cowboy” is more likely to have military experience. A cowboy is the opposite of a “college boy.” Oddly enough, the computer-assisted cowboy and cowgirl pilots are doing better, on average, than the auto pilot-reliant college boys and girls.

The job of these hosts is to be appealing (by looking good in a suit or a fuchsia(?) minidress(?), to look somber (due to the tragedy) and to goad the invited expert into saying what s/he knows in an interesting way. Seems as if they were getting that job done.

So yeah, asking about the metric system sounds like a stupid question, I’ll agree. But everything the hosts were talking about comes from real life, it comes from someplace. It’s not just Fox News waving the flag.

IMO.

So laugh at Fox if you want, but they’re doing their job better than Jezebel / Isha Aran is doing its job of debunking Fox News. And, bonus, Fox News consulted an expert and Jezebel, which doesn’t know much about aviation, did not.

So, Fox News 1, Jezebel 0.

This Sidecar TNC (Transportation Network Company) Van was in an Accident and Then It Wasn’t Properly Repaired, IMO

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

The orange side mirror cozy tells us that that this minivan is operating as a Sidecar and the fact that its front wheels are closer to the median than the rear wheels when it’s going straight down the highway tells me that it was in an accident and then it wasn’t properly repaired:

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Click to expand

IMO

Is this a particularly dangerous sitch? Prolly not.

And, in fact, Lady Diana would have been better off in this vehicle* with this driver** on these roads*** and with San Francisco EMTs**** at the ready than she was in her deadly accident in France.

And it’s not an SFMTA-approved San Francisco taxi cab with more than a half million miles on the odometer.

But still, this Sidecar aint right.

IMO

*A Mercedes Benz S280 that had badges saying “S600″ and “V12,” an S280 that wasn’t repaired properly after being stolen for its airbages, an S280 that handled differently turning left vs turning right

**Not drunk, let’s hope.

***Pick America’s poorest state and try to find exposed support beams without a guardrail ala that tunnel in Paris. You can’t. 

****American-style “scrape and scoot” response vs. a French-style “stay and pray” let’s-take-more-than-an-an-hour-to-get-to-the-hospital approach…

The SFMTA’s Crazy Traffic Signals at Fell and Shrader in the Western Addition, Just North of the Panhandle

Friday, November 14th, 2014

The SFMTA makes all kinds of mistakes all the time, but it’s afraid to admit that it ever might have made a mistake ever, oh well.

Check out the newish light signals at Fell and Shrader:

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(Filmed in Nike-Vision, except this woman is a real person who lives in the area and just happened to be passing through – quite unacceptable to those who reside in Niketown.)

So I understand the red bike and the upraised hand signal – so far so good.

And I understand the next phase, the I-do-what-I-want phase:

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And then there’s this:

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And this:

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And then this:

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And then back to all-red.

So now I understand what the SFMTA means, but I needed to study the lights.

IMO, the SFMTA should be focused on safety instead of ideology. IMO, the SFMTA should strive to keep things simple. IMO, the SFMTA should factor human nature into into its signal schemes. For example, this woman here entered into the intersection way late and had to rely upon the driver seeing her. Is the SFMTA at all curious as to why people might be confused by this unique-in-the-world intersection with its current signal setup? Not at all.

Oh well.

Attention Tour Bus Operators: After a Fender-Bender, Get Your Rigs Out of the Middle Lane of Oak Street – Don’t Be Calling Your Insurance Agent

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

So, yes, you had a little fender-bender with your big bus, and yes, it was related to the endless tinkering  done by the SFMTA MUNI DPT DPW bowl of alphabet soup. So what! It’s not that big of a deal. CSI San Francisco isn’t going to send it’s Go Team and the NTSB isn’t coming neither.

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Therefore, get your bus out of the roadway, pull it over. Sure, take a couple iPhone shots first, sure. But then get outta the way. THIS IS SFPD POLICY. Don’t you know this? You had at least two employees on the scene, why not have one, I don’t know, let’s call him the Driver, drive the bus to one side of the road or the other. Did you call the SFPD? IDK, but if you did, don’t you want them to show up? Now, how are they going to do that if you block the road, which, as stated, is a noteworthy bottleneck already, due to ongoing construction efforts, for umpty-ump minutes?

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I cry foul.

A Good Cyclist and a Bad Cyclist on Fell Street at the Crazy, SFMTA-Designed Intersection with Shrader

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

The light for this car was green green green, perhaps for two seconds as the cyclist that you can see on the right came down from the Panhandle bike path, camera left.

OTOH, the cyclist on the left saw the lights and managed to not  run the red light – you can see her sort of chuckling at her friend there.

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IMO, this would have been a 100% cyclist-at-fault accident, but I’m not 100% sure it would have gotten written up as such, oh well.

I’m also not sure why the SFGov/SFMTA/SFBC Establishment established this set-up to route traffic from the bike path into Golden Gate Park/JFK Drive – I suppose it’s a bit faster for cyclists, compared with the obvious alternatives.

But the whole system breaks down if the nut behind the steering wheel, or in this case, the handle bars, doesn’t know when she has lost the right of way…

DPW’s Grisly Tableau – But Safety First, I Suppose

Friday, September 26th, 2014

Here it is:

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I suppose it’s OK for the DPW to lecture me about bike/ ped safety. But hey, DPW, would you, in turn, want to listen to me about the safety of your operations, about a culture of safety for your employees? Oh, no, not really?

OK fine…

The Problem with Gary Bauer of Bauer Limousine Using the Term “Intelligent Transportation” for His Buses: He’s Not All That Smart

Monday, August 4th, 2014

To wit:, here’s a fine capture from drunkonthebeach:

So Gary Bauer, if you want to have a reputation of being intelligent, you should attempt to become a Lecturer at UC Berkeley.

OTOH, if you want to continue being a wealthy, politically-connected rent-seeker, well, keep up the good work…

It’s Rough Out There, So Put a Goofy-Looking Go-Pro Video Camera on Your Motorcycle Helmet Why Not?

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

Thusly:

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I can’t object to this – seems like a good idea to me.

(But a slim Sony ActionCam could be the better way to go…)

The Aftermath of a Typical Audi vs. MUNI Bus Fender Bender Accident, in NoPA, Right in Front of NOPA

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

(Would any of these people have been here 15 years ago? I srsly doubt it.)

Note that I call this accident an accident because it wasn’t on purpose…

Anyway, let’s chalk this one up to the unnecessarily expensive Audi, which has just one defective part: THE NUT BEHIND THE STEERING WHEEL