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Banning bullbars on SUVs

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  • billt44hk
    The text following is from the Hong Kong Government Transport Department s website. http://www.info.gov.hk/td/eng/whatsnew/consultation.htm It s a consultation
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 5, 2002
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      The text following is from the Hong Kong Government Transport
      Department's website.
      http://www.info.gov.hk/td/eng/whatsnew/consultation.htm
      It's a consultation paper and gives you the
      opportunity to e-mail in with your views. Reading the thing makes me
      want to scream "Is that it?" but at least it gives an opportunity to
      let off steam about the proliferation of these monstrosities-all the
      worse here in Hong Kong where there is nary a prairie, safari trail
      or even gravel track to drive over. What we have here in the most
      dense urban corner of the planet is roads and more roads. We also
      have the world record for the highest spatial intensities of carbon
      monoxide, nitrogen oxides, volatileorganic compounds and particulate
      matter. Tourism is probably the major industry so i'm probably not
      supposed to have told you these things, but another word in your ear,
      the much vaunted Environmental Protection Department has seen to it
      that 'standards' or indices are cunningly set much
      lower than those in the rest of the world, (including noise pollution
      standards) so that you can be utterly misled in our papers and from
      our Tv if you come here by reports like "the air pollution index
      today was moderate" etc
      I've sent my e-mail, saying of course that to hell with bullbars,
      ban SUVs totally as well as all large overpowered cars, of which we
      also have a high proportion....
      I dont care where you come from please feel free to write to the guy

      kmlaw@...

      You might visit on a business trip or as a tourist but you wont be
      coming to look at traffic queues of SUVs or to be threatened and
      intimidated by them. In fact i suspect the Mr Law who is dealing with
      this
      might have his heart in the right place. There's a certain suppressed
      anger about the nonsense of it all in para 4, ""They are mostly of no
      practical value for on-road
      vehicles except as gadgets or for beautification" Unfortunately he's
      still only refering to the bars not the bloody trucks.

      Bill T

      Transport Department Proposal to Ban Aggressive Bull Bars Fitted to
      Vehicle Fronts

      (Consultation Paper)

      Introduction


      To improve safety to all road users, the Government
      intends to ban all aggressive bull bars fitted to the front of all on-
      road vehicles, both in-use and new. The purpose of this paper is to
      consult the public¡¦s view on this proposal.
      Background
      2. Bull bars are fence-like attachments fitted onto or
      close to vehicle bumpers. They are designed to give further
      protection to the vehicle for off-road uses especially in wild and
      remote areas. Unfortunately, because of the grating shape of the
      bull bars and the fact that they are mostly harder than the vehicle
      body, they are likely to inflict more injuries to other road users
      than if they are not fitted should accidents occur. The potential
      danger of the front bull bar is much higher than the rear, by the
      reason that most pedestrian injuries are normally caused by frontal
      impact. It is believed that some pedestrians who were killed or
      maimed in low speed accidents involving vehicles fitted with steel
      bars could otherwise have escaped serious injury. The bull bars are
      particularly dangerous in accidents involving young children, as the
      main heavy-duty cross bar is at head height. The danger is rising
      with the increase in use of aggressive bull bars which has become the
      trend. European vehicle manufacturers have agreed to ban rigid bull
      bars from fitting onto their vehicles effective from 1 January 2002.
      To improve safety to all road users, we therefore propose to ban all
      aggressive bull bars fitted to the front of all on-road vehicles.




      Legal Authority


      3. Regulation 36 of Road Traffic (C&M) Regulations, Cap
      374 sub leg A governs that ¡§No mascot or other unnecessary
      attachment shall be carried by a motor vehicle in any position where
      it is likely to strike any person with whom the vehicle may collide
      unless the mascot or attachment is not liable to cause injury to such
      person by reason of any projection thereon¡¨.



      Justification & Proposal
      Aggressive Bull Bars


      4. Since bull bars are designed mainly for protecting the
      vehicle and driver from impact with large animals in off-road areas.
      They are mostly of no practical value for on-road vehicles other than
      as gadgets or for beautification. Removing bull bars from in-use
      vehicles will not have any roadworthiness implications. They are
      therefore unnecessary attachments.



      5. Most accidents causing injury are due to vehicle
      frontal impacts with road users such as pedestrians. An aggressive
      bull bar that is fitted onto or close to the front bumper of a
      vehicle will most likely be the vehicle component that will strike
      onto the pedestrian in an accident, and will very likely cause more
      injury than without it. TD therefore proposes to ban the front bull
      bars as a start. Rear bull bars will for the moment still be
      permitted, as accidents of pedestrians colliding with vehicle rears
      is not common. Non-complying vehicles shall be regarded as having
      contravened Road Traffic (Construction & Maintenance) Regulations.

      Non-aggressive Bull Bars


      6. Since not all bull bars are aggressive, a list of type-
      approved bull bars shall be established and updated from time to
      time. It shall also be available to the public for reference. On
      the condition that vehicle manufacturers shall provide valid proof to
      Transport Department that the bull bars are non-aggressive such that
      they will inflict no more injury to any road users in an accident
      than if they are not fitted, approval will be given to these bull
      bar / vehicle model combinations. An after-market bull bar will
      also be approved if the manufacturer can produce an acceptable
      laboratory certificate for the respective vehicle model that the bar
      is non-aggressive in the same context to the satisfaction of the
      Commissioner for Transport.


      Enforcement
      7. Enforcement shall be through regular and ad hoc
      vehicle inspections such as mandatory annual inspections, call-up
      inspections, and Police/MVE roadside inspection. Section 80(1)(b) of
      Road Traffic Ordinance Cap 374 allows a police officer to cause a
      vehicle to be examined by a vehicle examiner if he considers that the
      vehicle does not comply with Cap 374.

      8. On examination of a vehicle, if the vehicle examiner
      considers that the vehicle does not comply with Cap 374, he may issue
      a vehicle repair order or refer the vehicle to a specially authorized
      vehicle examiner (if he is of the view that the use of the vehicle on
      the road would be dangerous to other road users) requiring the owner
      to remove the bull bar from the vehicle.

      9. If a repair order is not complied with, the
      Commissioner for Transport may cancel the licence of vehicle under
      Section 25(1)(b)(ii) of Cap 374.

      10. Complaint and reports from the public and enforcement
      officers shall continue to be an effective channel to reinforce
      enforcement of the concerned regulations.


      Consultation
      11. Members of the public are welcome to express views on
      the proposal. All views expressed shall be considered for the fine-
      tuning of the final proposal. Please send your comments to Transport
      Department via email address kmlaw@t... or in written form to
      ¡§Room 3402, 34/F., Gloucester Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong¡¨ for the
      attention of Mr. K M LAW, Engineer (Motor Vehicle Planning).


      Schedule

      12. The tentative time frame shall be as follows :



      (i) Apr 2002 ¡V May 2002 Publicity



      (ii) June 2002 ¡V May 2003 a. Enforcement on
      New Vehicles only.

      b.
      Accumulation of database for compiling

      a
      list of non-aggressive bull bars.



      (iii) June 2003 - Enforcement on
      all vehicles

      (both new and in-use).



      End
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