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Entries in Safety (5)

Tuesday
Jan172017

Air Bags

Of all the safety features on any vehicles the air bag was one of the first developed over 40 years ago by General Motors.

Think about this...the air bag is 40 years old.

It goes back to when folks in many instances adamantly refused to buckle up a seat belt in a vehicle. The air bag was there to protect these folks that were refusing to buckle up.

Now its widespread on videos. But way back in the early days of air bags, seeing a vehicle pulled towards a solid barrier with dummies not buckled up; clearly depicted the violence of coming to a sudden stop. Perhaps we still overlook the violent effects of coming to a sudden stop with a vehicle.

Today we jump in any vehicle a quickly overlook the fact that we are surrounded by a bunch of instantly inflatable bags.

Just like coming to a sudden stop is violent, an inflating air bag is just as violent since it has to deploy in a few milliseconds.

Perhaps you remember when air bags were deploying with such force that smaller adults and children could be injured by the air bag.

The bottom line is that all vehicles offer better protection to occupants because of air bags in case of an accident. Yes...you still need to buckle up.

Obvious that if air bags start grenading, spreading shrapnel when they deploy its a problem...its a huge problem. This problem has been ongoing for a couple of years now with a regular announcement of new cases/possibilities.

You have to wonder who knew what, where, when, how can this keep on going for such a long time?

 

 

 

Friday
Dec022016

Vroom Room

Good Morning,

Its Friday, its the Vroom Room, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation and please tell your friends.

Its the last month of the year, only a few weeks to Christmas...a bit of a WoW moment.

Are you somewhat fatigued about all the talk and more talk, and even more talk about the US President elect? We agree it takes your breath away...

Safety

Have you noticed that we have the safest vehicles on the planet. It took decades to arrive at this level of safety in vehicles. At the same time we have some lethal folks driving those safe vehicles.

Are we reverting back to the days of "no seat belts" and a "solid steering column"? What do you think?

Technology

A few days ago we made a reference that in showrooms there is asymmetry in technology. In case you missed it...click. Reflect on this...when you have a conversation with anyone "its eyeball to eyeball" and a when you take out a sheet a paper (think tablet) to visualise a "deal" its one sheet (symmetry).

Pipelines

They are a hot issue in Canada...really hot. At the same time we know that rail cars filled with crude can turn into hot issues too.

Engines

If you have been around racing long enough, you surely remember small block Chevies painted "porch grey" with an Traco sticker on the valve covers. A brief history of Traco...click. The modern Tra-Co take a look...click. Way back in the day Traco was short for Travers and Coon, and if you are a Chevrolet fan you surely remember the porch grey engines.

If you have been following drag racing for a few years (decades) you surely remember "Elephant Motors" (Hemis) and Ed Pink...click. The web site is here.

Still with drag racing, if you are familair with a yellow dragters with Greer-Black-Prudhomme on the side, you surely heard of Keith Black the engine builder for the dragster. A fascinating video of Don Prudhomme firing up the Keith Black motor in the dragster...click.

Our usual old race cars, a stunning photo galley of the Goodwood Members Meeting.

 

 

 

Wednesday
Sep142016

The Rental Car Experience

If you travel you have surely rented vehicles on occasions, if not regularly. Its part of the course, land at an airport, get the rental you reserved, conduct your business, and subsequently return the rental and get back on a plane.

Perhaps you are even a regular customer at a specific rental company.

You might even want to experience different vehicles.

In our case The Colonel is the one doing business with rental companies. He could not care less what vehicle he gets, until it fits what was reserved (compact-medium-full size).

Lets leave it to chance and see what will appear as a vehicle. At times at the counter you might be given a choice, it becomes a decision of the same stuff in a different shell.

As you probably know some rental companies are stretching the kilometers of their vehicle fleet, while some locations out the mainstream inherit these higher kilometer vehicles. Now it gets interesting, the vehicle has higher kilometers, more wear and tear, with an increased wear factor especially doing daily rental duty.

At the same time the rental company is on a mission to save money, and "wear and tear" item becomes an additional cost that if possible should be avoided.

The customer gets a daily rental to cover only a few kilometers, or several hundred kilometers depending on the location.

As a customer if you get a "newer" vehicle covering any distance is not an issue, all vehicles run well, and if the climate is a "nice sunny day" its not a problem at all.

If the vehicle has additional "wear and tear" its not a sunny day, its snowing, or raining, the distance the customer has to travel is on unfamiliar roads/highways. Now the fun begins, and as a customer you suddenly realise that the rental company that should be very familar with the local roads and weather conditions immediately turns stupid.

"Do you want winter tires?" Its currently snowing at a good rate, the road I have to travel on is not the best, and you (rental company) ask such a stupid question. Besides the fact that winter tires are an option.

The lesson...

If you get a vehicle with higher kilometers, inspect the vehicle, make sure it has appropriate tires for the driving conditions you will encounter. If it not the case, do not take the vehicle, ask for another, or go to a different renatl agency.

 

 

Friday
Mar252016

Vroom Room

Good Morning,

Its Good Friday, its the Vroom Room, make yourself comfortable, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti join the conversation.

We agree, the world, mankind, still needs Divine intervention and saving...let's leave it at that. Take a moment to be thankful, and appreciative for what you have; we too often take it all for granted.

Corvette Racing could have probably done a 1-2 in GTLM at Sebring same as Daytona, a #1 is good.

The F1 season opened in Melbourne with expected results, its encouraging to see Ferrari get more competitive.

The Camaro ZL1 with a 10 speed automatic, interesting track car from our perspective.

At some point in your life, have you done something foolish, reckless with a car. No need to answer, we know that we have all had "brain fades" at one time or another. Hopefully not so much today. At Strada occasionally we recount a memorable moment.

In case you missed The Black Charger from a few years ago.

The Suburban Story again from a few years ago.

The Drive Story again from a few years back, the drive was from a few decades earlier.

Imagine for a moment when cars did not have telescoping steering columns, seat belts, ABS brakes, traction control, or crush zones to name a few. By today's standards the car was "unsafe", now get foolish with such a car. Enough...

We all deal with technology on a daily and ongoing basis, Andy Grove of Intel passed this week. An interesting and informative article on Andy Grove.

Next week we will be doing our first review of 2016, and to follow the trend its a truck, stay tuned.

Our usual old race cars, is a fascinating story from the 1966 Sebring race, yes 50 years ago take a look 1966 12 Hours of Sebring.

 

 

Monday
Feb222016

The Winter Tire Episode

When The Colonel travels and requires a vehicle at an airport its usually through the same daily rental company. For a multitude of reasons it been a long running tradition to deal with this company and the service is usually quite good.

On a few occasions there have been hang ups that have been resolved very quickly.

Once there was a situation of a car with badly worn tires which was absolutely not safe, and it was resolved immediately.

This last time its been an interesting, and eye opening experience.

We all know that in winter there is a ton of snow in the Maritimes. We reserved a car, the pick up is at a smaller airport, and the question "Do you want a car with winter tires?" absolutely, look outside its snowing, its windy.

We get a car with winter tires which is the safe way to drive in winter conditions in the Maritimes.

Upon returning the car, we observe that the final total is "elevated", and notice a daily charge for winter tires.

Its the Maritimes, its winter, how can anyone in the business of renting vehicles charge for winter tires?

Go figure...

In the meantime we contacted the company through Twitter and received a timely response.