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Old 02-12-2005, 03:45 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leipper
I really don't think the ad hominem and threats and challenges help anyone.


If indeed there is "proof" that every trailer and tow vehicle is at significant risk unless they have both sway control and load leveling devices, then
1) why isn't this reflected in insurance premiums?
2) why isn't this reflected in law like chains and brakes?
3) why aren't dealers required to install such devices?
Those are all very good questions.
Maybe we need more laws to protect the masses. Like those little tags on hair dryers that say, "Do not use in the bathtub". Or the nifty little warnings on lawnmower decks that say, "Do not put your hands or feet under the deck while the mower is running".
Let's add one more useless common sense law to the books. Just like the seatbelt laws. Common sense should be enough to tell you what you need to do.
Darwinism is dead. Survival of stupid people is protected by the government.
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Old 02-12-2005, 05:32 PM   #30
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1> "We are all on the Internet. If you want the proof, go look for it. You will either find something that supports Andy or you will find something that supports you."

Been there, done that, but not found anything to support this thesis. But then I qualify what I read and do not rate measured data in experimental conditions as being equivalent to an opinion expressed with nothing behind it nor any rationale to support it that flies in the face of my own experience and the data I have been able to gather and the inferences that I can determine should accrue from such opinions.

2> "I think the point Andy is making is that it is better to err on the side of caution."

I would agree about the benefits of erring on the side of caution, but this is not the proposition that was put forward as I saw it. What I read, the words I saw, were much closer to an ultimatim than a conservative bent on the risk/benefit calculation. If they were not meant as an ultimatim, then why the fuss? Why isn't reasoned discussion of the issues involved possible without the harsh words? Let's find out where the boundry is and learn why there isn't a law that requires everyone to use a Hensley or fifth wheel? (see, I can be satirical, too!)

3> "Those are all very good questions. Maybe we need more laws to protect the masses."

I try to be constructive and to provide substantive reasons for why I think the way I do. If Andy's assertion were true, then it is reasonable to expect to see certain results. The issues I raised provided several broad areas for these results to show themselves Anyone who wants to evaluate the assertions can determine for themselves thee impact of the assertions in these areas. A person who is interested in reasoned discussion would help me understand how all of the issues I raised could be accomodated with the assertions and why my logic was off. Then we would all learn something. But that isn't happening and the discussion gets destructive rather than constructive.

4> "Common sense should be enough to tell you what you need to do."

You can say this with a straight face after observing people on the road? ;-)

The fact is that common sense is often not that common. Nobody can really define what it is either. Common sense certainly isn't accepting edicts at face value or pretending that your life on the road is an either/or situation with no judgment involved.

As far as stupid people being protected by the Government, I wonder. I haven't seen laws and regulations influence behavior on the road much and stupidity always seems to have a way around any obstacle in its way. - but that is probably a topic for another day. ...
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Old 02-12-2005, 05:38 PM   #31
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Tow the way you want to tow...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leipper
1> "We are all on the Internet. If you want the proof, go look for it. You will either find something that supports Andy or you will find something that supports you."

Been there, done that, but not found anything to support this thesis. But then I qualify what I read and do not rate measured data in experimental conditions as being equivalent to an opinion expressed with nothing behind it nor any rationale to support it that flies in the face of my own experience and the data I have been able to gather and the inferences that I can determine should accrue from such opinions.

2> "I think the point Andy is making is that it is better to err on the side of caution."

I would agree about the benefits of erring on the side of caution, but this is not the proposition that was put forward as I saw it. What I read, the words I saw, were much closer to an ultimatim than a conservative bent on the risk/benefit calculation. If they were not meant as an ultimatim, then why the fuss? Why isn't reasoned discussion of the issues involved possible without the harsh words? Let's find out where the boundry is and learn why there isn't a law that requires everyone to use a Hensley or fifth wheel? (see, I can be satirical, too!)

3> "Those are all very good questions. Maybe we need more laws to protect the masses."

I try to be constructive and to provide substantive reasons for why I think the way I do. If Andy's assertion were true, then it is reasonable to expect to see certain results. The issues I raised provided several broad areas for these results to show themselves Anyone who wants to evaluate the assertions can determine for themselves thee impact of the assertions in these areas. A person who is interested in reasoned discussion would help me understand how all of the issues I raised could be accomodated with the assertions and why my logic was off. Then we would all learn something. But that isn't happening and the discussion gets destructive rather than constructive.

4> "Common sense should be enough to tell you what you need to do."

You can say this with a straight face after observing people on the road? ;-)

The fact is that common sense is often not that common. Nobody can really define what it is either. Common sense certainly isn't accepting edicts at face value or pretending that your life on the road is an either/or situation with no judgment involved.

As far as stupid people being protected by the Government, I wonder. I haven't seen laws and regulations influence behavior on the road much and stupidity always seems to have a way around any obstacle in its way. - but that is probably a topic for another day. ...

Just let me know when you are leaving and where you are going. I will stay off of the roads. No sense in tempting fate, dude.
Pattersontoo, out.
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Old 02-12-2005, 08:17 PM   #32
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"Just let me know when you are leaving and where you are going. I will stay off of the roads. No sense in tempting fate, dude."

Hey! I'm everywhere, anytime! So stay at home and play it safe. Even getting out of your driveway can be hazardous to your health (had a local cop killed in just such an accident downtown last year) so it is better to be safe than sorry by never ever getting out on the road.

For more good ideas to promote safe driving (for any that do decide to risk it), see the open letter to fellow motorists at Brain Shavings I think someone had a bit too much of sitting in traffic admiring the behavior of other drivers. So he wrote his advice for those drivers in his weblog.19 points for all of us.
http://www.brainshavings.com/mt/archives/001637.html

Other than that, Lou, I would really and sincerely suggest that attacks on others and derogatory personal comments about them is not good for your health or the betterment of these forums. We have a lot to learn from each other and insults just makes it more difficult and probably a lot less pleasant for everyone else trying to read these topics.
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Old 02-13-2005, 07:56 AM   #33
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You know, I asked my insurance agent this past week about this. He said that as always, they would pay if someone did something stupid. They always suggest that folks use proper equipment, but like a drunk driver or a person that ran a red, they'd pay if you got into a wreck, it was your fault and you didn't have the proper gear. He also said they might not have to pay your costs (only those of the other party if there is one involved) if you and/or you and your family is a grease spot on the highway, and also said that they'd most likely drop you right after that across the board when it came to policies with moving vehicles or in areas where they couldn't drop you, would raise your rates to stratospheric levels, no matter how long you'd been with them since you clearly would be a high risk.

My take is that nothing is gonna fully and totally protect anyone out there from bad things happening, but there are things that can help greatly in keeping control and reducing your chances of becoming a statistic. Having more than just a hitch on the ball is one of those common sense type things....kind of like seat belts, airbags and anti-lock brakes.

In the end, stupid is as stupid does. To argue about equipment that can enhance safety is just plain dumb, but in the spirit of free speech, everyone has the right to their opinion (even if they have no facts to back it, but insist that others have written proof). You just have to hope that when the stuff hits the fan, that these folks are no place near you when things do (not if) go south. Me, I was only a minute or two behind someone that found out the hard way...they need no facts or written documents to support what's been talked about here any longer. Some folks learn the easy way, while others insist on learning by the plank arcoss the back of the head route.
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Old 02-13-2005, 11:48 AM   #34
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"You know, I asked my insurance agent this past week about this. He said that as always, they would pay if someone did something stupid."

The limitations on what an insurance company will pay are usually detailed in the policy and the difference between unintentional and wilful negligence is usually in there. But this drags the point off topic. As noted, insurance companies raise rates when they perceive their risk to increase. For individuals, they do so in response to that individual's patterns of behavior. For groups, they do so by criteria that define the group. The point at issue is not that of individuals (this obsession on stupidity, for instance) but rather on a risk group defined by equipment and rigging selection. Insurance companies do not, as far as I know, flavor their rates by whether or not a driver is using sway control and load leveling in hitch rigging (full credit for HA or PR, half for DC or EQ, quarter for friction?). As noted by Silvertinkle they only raise rates for particular drivers who may or may not be using such equipment but do have a tendency to create insurance liability.

As an aside: "proper equipment" is an interesting issue. Look at the discussions about weight ratings (a.k.a. 'the invasion of the weight police') for some interesting takes on insurance companies and the problems of overloaded RV's.

At issue here is the a priori assumption that sway control and load leveling are critical safety components in all towing cases. Despite the assertions by at least three here that anyone who does not accept this lock, stock, and barrel is a stupid person who has no right to be on the road, there is no evidence to accept the assumption and the tactic of impugning those who might contest the assumption is, in itself, an indication of the problems with it. If sway and load leveling mechanisms cannot be discussed on their own merits, it is reasonable to conclude that those merits are weak or nonexistent.

The fact is that there is no evidence I have seen to date of any correlation between crash rates in rigs with load leveling and sway control to those without. This evidence includes a fair tenure on the road watching taffic as well as "written proof" as well as examination of logical inferences. The reasons for having sway control and load leveling hitches also tend to cast doubt on the assumption being without qualifier as well.

"My take is that nothing is gonna fully and totally protect anyone out there from bad things happening, but there are things that can help greatly in keeping control and reducing your chances of becoming a statistic."

Good point here. To me, the most important of those "things that can help greatly" is the proper exercise of judgment and knowledge rather than rote following of what someone tells you. If I am towing a mobile home with a tractor I don't need to follow the same guidelines I would if I were towing a 34' Airstream with a Dodge Intrepid. It is not an either/or decision but rather one of many subtleties that requires good decisions for the circumstances and adjustment of driving technique on the road.

It is just this point of view that has helped me to keep my own driving safe and my own insurance rates low for many years. I know that safe driving is my responsibility and I do what I can to make sure my rig and myself are up to the task when I get on the road.
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