Could you get home if your car was one of 1,400 destroyed ?

What changes can we make to our lives to deal with the economic and energy crises ahead? Have you already started making preparations? Got tips to share?

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adam2
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Could you get home if your car was one of 1,400 destroyed ?

Post by adam2 »

Recent events should perhaps concentrate the mind somewhat.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-ma ... r-42529615

Anyone who drives should of course be aware that the vehicle could be stolen, written of in an accident, destroyed by fire, or suffer irreparable mechanical failure.

Most responses to such an event would involve a hired car, a taxi, or an overnight stay until public transport was available.
In the incident linked to, EVERY vehicle in the large car park was destroyed.

I very much doubt that enough taxis, hire cars, or hotel rooms are available at short notice to meet the demand.

This shows the importance of having a robust "plan B"
"Installers and owners of emergency diesels must assume that they will have to run for a week or more"
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

And plan B shouldn't include having wet/cold weather gear in your car!! It would need to be in a ruck sack on your shoulder but how many people would go that far?
Action is the antidote to despair - Joan Baez
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Post by vtsnowedin »

Usually the plan B for that is call a family member or friend with a car and have them come fetch you home.
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Post by Lurkalot »

kenneal - lagger wrote:And plan B shouldn't include having wet/cold weather gear in your car!! It would need to be in a ruck sack on your shoulder but how many people would go that far?
Wandering around a crowded city centre wearing a rucksack could attract the wrong sort of attention these days although a smaller shoulder , handbag or bumbag would probably go unnoticed .
I personally don't like going into any large city and in such a situation I'd be looking at getting out rather than trying to overnight there if at all possible. Money , debit card and a phone in my pockets with probably my Swiss Army knife for goodness knows what that lives there too and a bottle of water in my hand or coat pocket and that should do. I've normally got boots on so even a decent walk shouldn't to too much of a problem , police cordons and muggers permitting.
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Post by RenewableCandy »

A lot of venues don't let you in if you've got a knife on you, even of the Swiss Army type.

Since I've never driven, I've often found myself stranded in odd places. A canal tow-path in Leighton Buzzard (after one festival, before another) being the weirdest. At least I had a sleeping-bag on me that time.

When fils and I went to a concert in Manchester we didn't get home till 5 a.m. (stranded somewhere on the transpennine railway!) and he had to go to school the next - well, same - day!

I've walked through central London at 5 on August BH morning because there was no public transport to get me to Victoria (I lived in Brighton), I've been stranded at Wembley Arena (concert again) and blagged a night on somebody's floor (that could have got ugly but instincts and luck were with me!), there'll be others but I shan't bore you.

The trick is simply to be able to walk. You think that's easy: try being female and having gone anywhere looking presentable. This is why I hardly ever wear heels!
Soyez réaliste. Demandez l'impossible.
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Post by vtsnowedin »

RenewableCandy wrote:
Since I've never driven,
I can't imagine it. Sense the purchase of my first car in 1974 I have one or more in my possession and ready to take me wherever needed every day with the exceptions due to breakdowns or accidents amounting to perhaps a dozen days in total. Of course the nearest bus stop is eighteen miles away and the line doesn't go anywhere near where my office used to be.
The trick is simply to be able to walk. You think that's easy: try being female and having gone anywhere looking presentable. This is why I hardly ever wear heels!
Climbing one mountain in heels was enough was it? :)
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Post by emordnilap »

Two of my four sisters and several other relatives have never driven. They're in England, where the public transport system is reasonable.

It should not be necessary to be able to drive.
I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
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Post by Snail »

After my current car breaks, is too expensive to repair, and gets scrapped, it'll definitely be my last.

I'm thinking public transport/taxis, folding bromptom-type bike, and walking could be a pretty good combination.

The driving license will continue to be useful for those rare occassions I need to hire a van or borrow a car.

A page with written phone numbers of family and friends is useful, if only to give someone a phone-number quickly without hassle. Since everyone uses a mobile-phone now I don't know anybody's number. Or even my own!
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

Snail wrote:... I don't know anybody's number. Or even my own!
Ditto!!
Action is the antidote to despair - Joan Baez
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Post by RenewableCandy »

vtsnowedin wrote:
RenewableCandy wrote:
Since I've never driven,
I can't imagine it.

I gave it quite a go, even took a test, but I've a subtle eyesight prob that makes it very difficult. On UK roads I'd be a bloody menace.
vtsnowedin wrote:
The trick is simply to be able to walk. You think that's easy: try being female and having gone anywhere looking presentable. This is why I hardly ever wear heels!
Climbing one mountain in heels was enough was it? :)
It was Great Malvern actually, after a conference. My feet looked like a war casualty by the end.
Soyez réaliste. Demandez l'impossible.
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Post by stumuz1 »

My take on car transport since graduating from 12 years of powerswitch.

First, in relation to the 1400 car park fire.

I drive approx. 25K miles on business a year and do not own a car.

Most car trips are in excess of 500 miles round trip so I spot hire cars from Hertz.

Total cost for the 25K miles is £800 per year plus fuel. I also get brand new cars and as a member of the ‘presidents club’ (regular customers get bumped up) get to drive the latest models such hybrids, all electric (pain in the arse) Audi, Merc’s etc.

For me the age of car ownership is at an end. So, if I had parked the car in that car park, I would contact Hertz and tell them where it was whilst making my way home, via alternative routes.

However, I still have the small holding to run so need a utility vehicle to pull a 3 ton trailer and the fishing boat.

Keeping with what I have learned from powerswitch I have had a land rover defender for the last ten years. This unfortunately fell to bits during the MOT a couple of years back.
The salty Anglesey air finally wining.

So I decided to future proof the defender by rebuilding it only using galvanized or stainless steel body parts. The brief to the builders was;
The finished vehicle should last 50 plus years and be capable of being handed down three generations whilst continuing to work daily.

So personal car transport ownership is at an end. Light work vehicles will probably always be needed.
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Post by vtsnowedin »

emordnilap wrote:Two of my four sisters and several other relatives have never driven. They're in England, where the public transport system is reasonable.

It should not be necessary to be able to drive.
Oh I quite agree for urban residents that are within a fifteen minute walk to bus stop or subway station. A car in such urban areas is an expensive nuisance.
I on the other hand live five miles and a thousand feet up in elevation of the nearest paved road. Coasting a bike down can be exhilarating fun but only an athlete can pedal back up the steepest grades. Add in that my work office was forty miles away in the next state and if you didn't drive you didn't have a job. In fact your license number and insurance carrier were lines to fill in on the job application.
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adam2
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Post by adam2 »

I have neither motor vehicle nor driving license and manage OK. I spend more than I would wish on taxi fares, but OTOH one can take a lot of taxis for the total cost of owning and running a car.

I can just about drive, and have done so on private land, I would drive on the road in dire emergency if life was at stake, or if the world as we know it had ended and thereby rendered driving licences and insurance irrelevant.

I would in general advise people to learn to drive, and to obtain a licence, it is IMO, a useful life skill and I have sometimes regretted not driving.
In many cases it might be better not to drive or to own a vehicle, but a well prepared citizen should if possible be able to drive, even if they don't normally.
"Installers and owners of emergency diesels must assume that they will have to run for a week or more"
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Post by vtsnowedin »

Well Adam2 you are never too old to pick up a new skill.
When I grew up it was a status marker. If at fifteen you got your learners permit and passed driver ed. you were in the in crowd. If you did not have your drivers license by seventeen (blind excepted) you had self chosen to be a forever loser. You couldn't get a job except at neighboring farms that had plenty of free child labor of their own, you couldn't play team sports because you couldn't get home from practice after the bus made it's one and only run. and most importantly you couldn't take a girl to the movies without a license. :wink: I got my license the Monday after my sixteenth birthday and had the appointment set up two weeks in advance.
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