A message from Alan Bone

Dear Friends, Members, Associates and colleagues,
May I start by giving my apologies for my absence recently, to the point my wife had also been in contact with the Salvation Army in an attempt to find me!
I took on the role as President at the same time as I was made redundant at age 62 I had to go into the big wild world and either find a job or start my own business. Starting my own business I did and although successful has taken over everything else in my life. I’ve missed my wife, boat, children, grandchildren and contact with GAM.
I had a very pleasant coffee with Graham Ranshaw last weekend and we discussed that in a future role I will make a bigger effort to attend Sunday Runs and Committee Meetings and will stay in contact with GAM electronically when I am away on business.
Like you I’m still heavily involved in trying to educate drivers, to improve their on-road skills and increase road safety through my business – a specialist driver training company. Most of my work is with the National Health Service, working in England, Ireland,Scotland and Wales. What I will say is that I do believe with these emergency response courses, it is a way that driving skills can be cascaded down through friends and family and give people a pride in the way the drive. I tell all the drivers I put through the Future Qual Btec  Level 3 course that they are automatically able to receive an IAM ‘First’ which is a wonderful accolade to the work you are all delivering to improve safety on our roads.
Lots has changed with the IAM and I must get up to speed with it all and the only way I can do this is to make some time for myself, family and the IAM which I do want to do. Everyday is a learning day I keep saying and we as trainers, educators to people we meet through either the IAM or through professional courses run by the Emergency Services must never close our eyes to. But, I must tell you something funny that happened last week, I thought I knew it all until I was told by an 18 year old medical student that I was teaching that the marker posts on a motorway depicting distances on the A or B carriageways are in kilometres not miles!!! Why then are the motorway distances to next destination signs in miles? Countdown markers in yards? Phones are a kilometre apart and there are fifteen smaller markers between not ten? No wonder we’ve confusion on our roads and now that included me! I have to admit that since 1972 when I first went onto the Police Traffic department I’ve been telling everyone the wrong thing.
I do hope to be at the next Sunday Run on 23rd April and I thank all the supporters of the Guildford Group for their continued support and efforts you all put in.
Best Regards,
Alan Bone
President, Guildford Advanced Motorists.

Moves towards driverless cars must not produce lazy drivers reliant on gadgets, says IAM RoadSmart

IAM RoadSmart has expressed concern that cars with growing levels of autonomy could make motorists lazy and over reliant on gadgets – with far reaching implications for the potential reduction of people killed and seriously injured on the roads.
IAM RoadSmart, the UK’s biggest independent road safety
charity, strongly supports this conclusion from yesterday’s (15 March) House of Lords Science and Technology Committee report  Connected and Autonomous Vehicles: The future?
The report sets out recommendations for the government to ensure it makes policy and investment decisions that enable the UK to receive maximum economic and safety benefits from autonomous vehicles.
IAM RoadSmart also added that there is widespread concern from the charity’s members about the ease with which a driverless car could be hacked – with research showing there are many places security could be breached in a modern vehicle on sale today. Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, said: “When it comes to driverless cars, IAM RoadSmart members are not keen to give up full control and are also very concerned about hacking, so we welcome the House of Lords Technology Committee’s view that cyber security is an important issue.
“The implications for future driver competence and training as we become more reliant on technology are still far from clear, and it is vital that the government supports the committee’s call for further research in this area.
 “IAM RoadSmart is already responding to this call by providing research grants and organising a conference in October on how we safely manage the transition to autonomous cars.”
The House of Lords’ committee said in its report: “Autonomous cars could have negative implications for drivers’ competence, making drivers complacent and overly reliant on technology. This is of particular concern in emergency situations, where a driver may react slowly to taking back control of a vehicle.
“The Government should give priority to commissioning and encouraging research studying behavioural questions and ensure it is an integral part of any trials it funds.”