The Road Ahead : April May 2007
28 APR/MAY 07 YOU SAID IT! EMAIL: ROADAHEAD@RACQ.COM.AU. FAX: 3257 1863. MAIL: THE ROAD AHEAD, P.O. BOX 4, SPRINGWOOD, QLD 4127. PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS. LETTERS TO 'YOU SAID IT' WILL NOT RECEIVE AN INDIVIDUAL REPLY. Share your views with us Run-flat reluctance I'm responding to G. Stark's views of space-saver tyres in the February/March 2007 issue. I wish I had a spare tyre or even a space-saver tyre. But BMW has decided we need neither and in its wisdom has fitted 'run-flat' tyres to many of its vehicles. I recently got a puncture -- the computer told me so. It further told me not to exceed 80 km/h until the nearest tyre service. Now the bad news: run-flat tyres can't be repaired and for my car it cost $900 (for a new one). Still more bad news: the top tyre agent on the Gold Coast does not carry these tyres and had to order one. So because I got a puncture, my car is now off the road, which means I've had to borrow/hire a car. I'm concerned about taking this car anywhere remote. P. Forrester, Gold Coast Oil supply hike The constant discussion about petrol pricing seems to overlook one very important fact: all the major oil companies who supply the industry are also retailers. No matter what business one may be in, if the manufacturer/ supplier sets up shop next door, you cannot compete. Unless oil companies are divorced from retailing there is no competition in the market place. Oil companies should be wholesalers only, with one gate price to all retailers, who can then compete on a level playing field. A. Vinten, Mount Warren Park What's going on? I'm amazed at the lack of respect some motorbike riders have for other road users, as well as themselves. These are the idiots who ride down the centre line at lights, cut down the inside on the highways, ride too close to your vehicle, weave in and out of traffic, speed excessively in low speed limit areas, and wear thongs, singlets and shorts when riding. Helllllooo ... what planet are these twits on? I've been a safe motorbike rider for years and I'm constantly amazed at the lack of commonsense displayed by fellow motorcyclists. P. Featherstonhaugh, Brisbane Foggy blues When are police going to crack down on the boneheads who drive in clear conditions at night with their driving/ fog lights on? Book a few of them and the rest might turn them off. B. Flanagan, Forest Hill Bus headache Iwould like to see P. French of Mt Gravatt East come and live in Crestmead for six months without a vehicle. Let me give you an example of how 'good' public transport is here. A few months ago I needed to get from Mt Gravatt to Crestmead, so I called to find out how I could do it. I had to walk from my friend's house to Mt Gravatt Plaza, which is about a 10 minute walk. I could then catch a bus to Garden City, catch another bus to Marsden Park shopping centre, then catch another bus to a stop which is about a 10 minute walk from my home. If the buses connected as they were supposed to, it would take me about two hours to get from point A to point B. If they didn't, I dread to think how long it would have taken. That's just one example of the lack of public transport in Brisbane. G. Curran, Crestmead On your bike In support of the P. French letter regarding alternative forms of transport, there is one obvious vehicle that should be considered. The most efficient form of transport on the planet can travel 1030 km on the energy equivalent to one litre of petrol and worldwide there are 1.4 billion in use compared with 340 million cars. C02 emissions are zero and users of these vehicles can expect health benefits. Slow down and save Ihave been reading with interest the concerns about fuel prices in Queensland and the impact on weekly family budgets. There is a simple thing that people can do to save fuel and money: drive more slowly. During the 1974 oil crisis, governments in the UK and USA made slower speeds mandatory. A reduction in speed limit from 75 mph (120 km/h) to 55 mph (89 km/h) amounted to a 17 percent fuel saving per km. Of course, there are many other benefits of reducing speed limits, hence the now almost universal reduction to 40 km/h around schools. Dr M. Gray, Queensland Conservation Council Editor: For writing this edition's best letter, Dr Gray will receive copies of Caravan Survival Guide and Beacon to Beacon. These books, which include a wealth of information, are available for purchase at the special member prices of $23.95 ($27.95 for non-members) and $29.95 ($34.95) respectively, from most RACQ offices, or via RACQ's online shop at racq.com.
June July 2007