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Tuesday, 27 October 2009

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Odermatt's photos I really, *really* like. They're idiosyncratic and fun (despite their topic) and, they're all the more precious for being gone, by which I mean, no-one is likely to do those again, if only because most wrecks are now towed away within the hour, leaving little possibility for anyone to come along and shoot the deserted scenes with the uncanny sense of lonliness his pictures have.

Sorry, but this is not very funny.

Mike, you're going to hate me. I picked up a new Tesla last week and completely forgot to go through your Amazon link! SORRY!

Okay, not really, but I have seen two of them on the road... and functioning quite well.

Maybe the Prius driver has seen the Tesla website and is thinking, "Twice as efficient as a Prius, huh? I'll show 'im!"

You think that's bad... imagine coming back to pick up your $1 million car from the mechanic and finding this:

http://www.wired.com/autopia/2009/10/wrecked-koenigsegg/

What's incredible about this is that Tuareg looks barely touched.

And this relates to photography in what way?

I think this is an extreme case of static cling.

Amazing bit of failure there.

I know you were kind of joking about the Prius driver being awestruck and that leading to the crash, but for a Prius, of all things, to smash a Tesla AND shove it underneath what is a very heavy VW leads me to guess that:

1. the Prius driver did not not brake much at all before impact

2. the situation was a line of traffic stopped, perhaps suddenly, and the Prius did not notice.

The Tesla Roadster was reviewed a while back in the UK by TV chef and all-round moron, James Martin. A few days after it was published, he was issuing a (somewhat insincere) apology to outraged cycling groups. Sadly, the Daily (hate)Mail has edited its online version of the article, but other sites feature the pertinent extracts. Part-way into the article, he stated this:

"God, I hate those cyclists. Every last herbal tea-drinking, Harriet Harman-voting one of them. That's one of the reasons I live in the countryside, where birds tweet, horses roam, pigs grunt and Lycra-clad buttocks are miles away. But recently, there's been a disturbing development. Each Saturday, a big black truck appears at the bottom of my road, with bikes stuck to the roof and rear. Out of it step a bunch of City-boy ponces in fluorescent Spider-Man outfits, shades, bum bags and stupid cleated shoes, who then pedal around our narrow lanes four abreast with their private parts alarmingly apparent. Do they enjoy it? They never smile. I'm sure they just come here to wind me up."

And then, later into the article, went on to reveal this:

"Twenty minutes into my test drive I pulled round a leafy bend, enjoying the birdsong - and spotted those damned Spider-Man cyclists. Knowing they wouldn't hear me coming, I stepped on the gas, waited until the split second before I overtook them, then gave them an almighty blast on the horn at the exact same time I passed them at speed.

“The look of sheer terror as they tottered into the hedge was the best thing I've ever seen in my rear-view mirror. I think this could be the car for me."

I don't know what depressed me more - the fact that he did what he did, or that the article's style and content were so tediously hackneyed.

The Tesla driver likely didn't hear the other car. It's like that episode of "Weeds" where the neighborhood gang-banger borrowed Nancy's Prius for a drive-by shooting, so that the vic couldn't hear him coming down the street.

"And this relates to photography in what way?"

It's on a photography blog, for one thing....

Mike

Ailsa,
Funny you should mention that. I just last night read the following passage in Tim Moore's book "French Revolutions," about his Quixotic bike tour of the Tour de France route:

"Probably because I'd been more concerned with monitoring my physical condition, I hadn't really noticed the traffic before. It had certainly become obvious that French drivers treat cyclists as fellow road-users, indicating as they overtook and pulling respectfully right over to the other side of the road while doing so. There was never any of the impatient revving of engines, no I'm-bigger-than-you cutting up or jeers of 'Get off and milk it, you dozy twat' variety that make cycling in Britain such a high-octane experience."

Of course, the British probably disrespect cyclists only because the French consider it their national sport!

Mike

No, this is incredibly hilarious! Prius wrecks Tesla, SUV totally ok.

At least everyone is ok. My zero emissions vehicle would not have done very well getting shoved under an SUV.

@ Ailsa "I don't know what depressed me more - the fact that he did what he did, or that the article's style and content were so tediously hackneyed."

Par for the course for the Daily Mail as I'm sure you know, Ailsa. For those of you who are lucky enough not to know this er, publication, a "good" Daily Mail story results in you hating someone. What is amazing is that he committed a traffic offence then admitted it in the national press!

@ Mike "Of course, the British probably disrespect cyclists only because the French consider it their national sport!'

We don't really hate the French, it's just that they are so like us in some ways that it's really annoying! For certain of our ex colonies we feel more of an amused disrespect...

Shocking

Looking at the photo, it seems to me that the Tesla fell apart in the crash - with body panels askew from stem to stern. Apparently the passenger compartment protected the occupant/s. In any event, this photo does not make me want to own a Tesla.

Not that it matters but the car's name is spelt "Touareg".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volkswagen_Touareg

On a serious note, there have been at least two accidents involving Toyota products (including Prius, Camry, and Lexus ES350) caused by unintended acceleration which resulted in fatalities. The driver's floor mat can move forward and catch the accelerator pedal, keeping the throttle open. Toyota is recalling 3.8 million vehicles because of this problem, and have recommended that the driver side floor mat be removed from these vehicles.
Many of the cars and trucks that have been manufactured in the past several years are controlled by computers. These cars may have a "Power" button. It is important to know that, in Toyota products, if the ignition needs to be shut off in the event of an emergency, the "Power" button must be held in for at least three seconds to shut off the drivetrain's power. Simply pushing in the button briefly will not turn off the power. With the ignition turned off, the vehicle can still be controlled, although without power assist. Better to do this if you have to, rather than to drive off the road, or into another vehicle, at high speed.
By the way, I own a Prius, and it has been a great car.

Actually, a car that wrecks in a crash like the Tesla pictured above, absorbs most of the impact energy itself, protecting the people inside. There is a reason racing cars are designed to disintegrate in the event of a crash. Only the parts housing the driver are solid enough to withstand high impact forces.

"And this relates to photography in what way?"

It's on a photography blog, for one thing...."

Why would people watch a show about nothing: "because it's on TV!"

Marty made me giggle.

"It's on a photography blog, for one thing...."

That's much funnier than the original post!

But yes, Odermatt's photos are ace.

R.Edelman: "Unintended acceleration" has been a weird PR football since at least the late 80s. Some of the reports of it have clearly been faked, many of the cases are very probably user error, and much of the reporting on it is weird and low-fact. And yet there still may really be something there.

I've got a 2010 Camry. That floor mat is actually held in position by hooks coming up from the floor through grommets in the mat! Furthermore, small mat movement and a bit folded over under the pedal wouldn't restrict brake pedal travel, and I can't see how it would hold the gas pedal down. And finally, the brakes ought to be able to overpower the engine easily, and stop the car at full throttle (even if you forget to turn off the engine or shift into neutral). And these reports across various cars have been coming in consistently for decades, including before the fly-by-wire nature of some modern designs, where a central computer flaw really COULD explain everything.

I have not been tempted to remove my floor mat, in any case.

The van is called a Toe Rag?

Aww dude that sucks.

Poor dude. I believe the waiting list for a new one is pretty looooong

Would be nice if the photographer was credited; especially as the picture is copyright. John Nuttall (the photographer)!

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