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Journeys : April May 2010
... and again Thank you for Richard Bovill's interesting and inspiring 'My slice of the island' in Motor News Journeys. In these days when we are constantly confronted, sucked in and over whelmed by the language of government and big business, couched in economic jargon that is quite divorced from broad social concer ns such as people and community, it is easy to feel powerless. So it is most refreshing to have Richard make that fundamental con nection between economic and social well-being. He speaks a language that we can understand because it involves us. Richard just makes sense. His down-to-earth, grass-roots perspective re-empowers us as individuals and communities, encouraging us to assert ourselves and make a difference. Sally McGushin Mt Stuart Reminders for all With so many drivers either ignorant of, or ignoring our road rules, perhaps all drivers -- not only the elderly -- should be given road r ule reminders when we renew our licences. The rules do change from time to time or are added to, so maybe there is not enough publicity when they are changed. And after all, not all drivers are R ACT members who are kept up-to-date with your excellent magazine articles. Susan Adderley Brighton Speed and inattention Speeding has long been said to be the principal cause of road accidents, without any meaningful attempt to define it, except as anything above the designated speed limits. Recent figures published by Tasmania Police indicate that inattention has been a factor in at least 50% of accidents. Each driver has a speed at which he or she is comfortable in varying circumstances. The greater the speed, the more intense is his or her concentration. Conversely, a significant cause of inattention is the circumstance in which the driver is forced to drive slowly for a con siderable distance. Some members have criticised the use of the cr uise control, but they are a discipline upon the driver who would other wise travel at his natural and faster speed. Frederick Auld Midway Point Travelling on FG Durdin wins a $50 travel voucher for the letter on advanced driver training. We welcome letters on any motoring or travel-related topic. Keep them brief -- we reserve the right to edit. Contact us by post, fa x or email and please include your postal address. We missed crediting the photographer wh took the fine sho of Richard Bovill on the cover of our February- March issue. Our apologies to Katie McDougall of The Advocate. taking it too. Knowing that she doesn't get enthusiastic about something unless it really is very good, I decided to enrol in the next Drive Smart! course. It was a good decision -- I learned so much more about driving and handling a car. The course is not expensive. The instructors are very skilled drivers; they treat all students, from beginner drivers to veterans like me, as people who are responsible, intelligent and able to exercise self-control. They did not play on our emotions but exhorted us to think about our driving, and to remember others on the roads and our responsibility to drive safely for their sake as well as our own (for example, no tailgating or road-hogging). They showed us how keeping our vehicles well- maintained also helps us drive safely. We saw films of how to handle the car in different situations and had talks on all aspects of safe driving, including being aware of potential hazards, road conditions and staying alert. Best of all, they took us on a long drive and demonstrated what they had told us. Finally, each student went on an hour-long drive with an instr uctor who noted not only where improvement was needed, but also what the student did right. All this reinforced what we learned in the classroom session. An optional part of the course (but included in the price) was a session on how to control a car in a skid, something which is not intuitive. In Tasmania, where gravel roads and ice on the road in winter are common hazards, knowing how to deal with a skid can save your life. I would encourage any driver who has never done so to take a course like the AIAM's Drive Smart! course, no matter how long they have been driving a car. FG D urdin In praise of Richard Bovill ... We would like to compliment you for the wonderful article about Richard Bovill in the Febr uary-March issue of Motor News Journeys. What a portrait you painted of this great man who is trying to do so much to help Tasmanians buy food grow n right here on this wonderful island. It was a real insight into far m life and what we must do to protect our very special Tassie far mers in all the many for ms of agriculture we practise here to maintain our fantastic healthy and wholesome food source. More stories like that please. And don't be ashamed to push our Tassie food growers, as the R ACT is Tassie too! Warrick Holmes Feb/Mar10 My slice of the island Farmers' advocate Richard Bovill -- page 42 Walk the Kokoda Track -- page 65 Spirit slugs motorhome drivers Travelling on the Spirit of Tasmania in 2009 we paid $1094 for our motorhome and trailer (a total of 12 metres in length) plus a disabled cabin for two adults. When booking in September 2009 for similar sailing dates this year, we were told the fare would be $1406, which is the discounted pension rate. Taken aback at the huge increase in such a short time, we were told that the large increase was due to TT Line's change to two-season pricing -- there would no longer be a shoulder season with lower fares. There is certainly no incentive for mainland tourists to bring their RVs to Tasmania! As well as the increase in Spirit fares, some of the highways and major roads are in very poor condition and there is a severe lack of signed rest areas where self-contained tourists can free-camp for the night. Mainland states have catered well for the RV traveller, with well-ser viced rest areas and signs advising the distance to reach them. One asks whether the Tasmanian Gover nment wants these visitors to come to Tasmania? Les and Donna Haigh Lindisfar n e 11 April / May 10
Feb March 2010
RACT MNJ June July 2010