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  1. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerbil View Post
    These U-Turns on highways are a bloody menace. But more so are the buses and trucks who use them from the middle lane, because if they stopped in the right hand lane they would not be able to use them as they are too big to make the turn.

    The U-Turns will gradually disappear as roads slowly improve, but the least they could do in the meantime is start ticketing the drivers who try to use them from the wrong lane.
    This is not just a normal U turn accident and the video shows what this bus driver did, he went out the entrance of the gas station instead of the exit, then tried to use the u turn that he was already past for the opposite direction for which it was intended instead of driving in the correct direction to the next U turn lane and using it properly.

    But yes, you are still right about them being a menace, although even those large vehicles can be turned from the correct lane, it just takes some skill, the bus and truck drivers at home do it correctly all the time.

  2. #127
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    ^ ah right. I hadn't watched the video. In that case he's a cnut.

  3. #128
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    Ah,yes, perhaps as big a cvunt as all the others who have crashed planes or operated badly on a patient who represented a mistake and all too quickly was buried and lost to oblivion etc, etc, etc.

    Get real chaps. The driver made a mistake but your western, christian revenge shite has no purchase here.

    It's Thailand, not a repository for western sensibilities.

  4. #129
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    Perhaps the FO could put something like:

    You wouldn't expect monkeys and chimps to operate a roadfull of vehicles in a safe and human-like manner, so don't expect Thais to.

    In their FO advice.

  5. #130
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    ^That's exactly how it would read if Clarkson did their copy.

  6. #131
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    Very odd you should say that, I was just watching his 'Meet the Neighbours' series where goes to France.

  7. #132
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  8. #133
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    ha! he got into your brain.

  9. #134
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    Bastard. He probably said something like that as he was driving around the Champs elysees and its 13 lanes of traffic, without a single white line to indicate a lane between them, let alone 13.

  10. #135
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    He doesn't do half measures does he? I haven't seen the India special of Top Gear yet, but I've read it's already getting complaints for it's casual racism.

  11. #136
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    ^Really enjoyed the India special the other night...can't say I noticed any racism, but hey, I'm not a politically correct media fuckwit so i probably wouldn't!

  12. #137
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    You're right Al. Jeremy Clarkson in row over Top Gear India special | Media | guardian.co.uk

    Bunch of humourless anal wankers.

    included Clarkson driving a Jaguar around an Indian slum with a toilet fitted in the boot. "This is perfect for India because everyone who comes here gets the trots," he quipped
    True, funny not racist.

    Another gag involved putting banners with seemingly innocuous slogans – such as Eat English Muffins – on the side of trains. However, the banners were strategically placed so that when the trains carriages split a new, offensive, phrase emerged: "Eat English Muff."
    How terribly offensive.

    Some newspapers took a dim view on other, somewhat tame, incidents. The Daily Star, which dedicated the front page and a double-page spread to the incident in its edition on Friday, accused the presenters of "ridiculing" the Indian train system by "opening the doors of the moving carriages in fits of giggles and leaning outside".
    Coming from the Daily Star, the rabble rousing paper of the chavs.

    The BBC has so far received 23 complaints that the string of crude jokes and gags were "offensive to India and Indian culture". There were also some complaints against the show by some users on Twitter, with a small number of users of the micro-blogging service accusing the show of "casual racism". and "racist stereotyping
    Jesus, this country is ridiculous. Truly pathetic.

  13. #138
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    I know mate. There were even complaints about it being shown at all because of a murder of an Indian student in Salford.

  14. #139
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    Bus driver jailed over deaths of gap-year Britons
    Tom Harper
    6 Feb 2012


    Victims of negligence: Bruno Melling-Firth, Max Boomgaarden-Cook and Conrad Quashie, all 19 and from London, died when their bus crashed in Thailand

    A Thai bus driver has been jailed for causing a bus crash that killed three London gap-year students.

    Max Boomgaarden-Cook, Bruno Melling-Firth and Conrad Quashie, all 19, had just started a "trip of a lifetime" when their coach veered into oncoming traffic and was hit by another bus last June.

    Angered by the Thai authorities' lack of action, the boys' families started a campaign to highlight the country's appalling road safety record.

    After months of behind-the-scenes pressure, the Thai courts finally brought a case against the driver, Chan Noisri, who was convicted last week of five serious offences including negligent driving causing death. Noisri was jailed for two years.

    Polly Cook, mother of Max, said she was relieved at the sentence but added: "Although some justice has been done, nothing can ever make up for the loss of my precious son. To know the driver's actions contributed to Max's death - which could easily have been avoided if he'd driven with more care - is difficult to bear.

    "If I or the boys had known about the terrible legacy of Thailand's roads, perhaps they would have made a different choice about the way they travelled whilst they were on their trip."

    The boys, who knew each other from The Charter School in Dulwich, were travelling on a coach from Bangkok to Chiang Mai when the accident happened. Mrs Cook, Bruno's mother Gillian Melling and Conrad's mother Amanda Bean are campaigning for greater road safety in Thailand, which is among the 10 worst countries for crashes in the world, with more than 1,000 deaths a month and 80,000 injuries a year.

    Ms Bean said: "Losing him has turned my life upside down. I'm determined to get the message about road safety to as many people as possible to prevent other families suffering as we have."

    Mrs Melling, from Waterloo, said: "I want to implore the Thai authorities to do everything in their power to make their roads safer so the boys did not die in vain. We'll continue campaigning for change in our sons' memory. "

    Clive Garner, head of the travel law team at Irwin Mitchell, is representing the parents. He said: "While I welcome the sentencing, this horrific loss of young lives is evidence of the scale of problems on Thailand's roads. "

    thisislondon.co.uk

  15. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mid
    I want to implore the Thai authorities to do everything in their power to make their roads safer so the boys did not die in vain.
    Does she really think they're really going to listen ?

  16. #141
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    They'll let him oot when the dust settles or if he can get some money.

  17. #142
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    she is in clowed cookoo land .

  18. #143
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    This driver really deserves the 2 years, he is not a scapegoat. If you have not seen this channel 4 video, also referenced also above, even after he plead guilty to killing 5 people, when the British reported asked him if he had anything to say, the drivers response was that he did not do anything wrong, that he was stopped in the road waiting to make a turn and was hit. That complete lack or remorse or willingness to accept responsibility warrants a severe prison sentence.

    http://www.channel4.com/news/the-und...hailands-roads

  19. #144
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    error..

  20. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    error..
    It's there, at 3 minute 40 seconds.

  21. #146
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    Interesting to note that he probably wouldn't have gone to jail had the parents not pursued this so rigourously.The channel 4 skit said that usually these negligent drivers get a suspended sentence. Just pointing out the inconsistancy of Thai justice although I'm pleased he's gone down.

  22. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobR View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    error..
    It's there, at 3 minute 40 seconds.
    I was going to write a comment about the safety of the adoption of these gaps in the central divides, but checked more fully the written reports.

    Not have been able to read any police report, the allegations of being hit in the back by another bus seem to be a continuous part of the story and corroberated by the fact that the people situated in the back of the bus were killed.The allegations of the bus leaving by the stop entrance, the allegation of the bus being sideways across the road, are only made in the video. I cannot really see on the video, taken by an ambulance crew allegedly, where the bus was hit.

    Having been sat in a taxi queuing to do a U turn in the "outside lane" I know the feeling. These types of traffic management tools should be stopped.

    Then innocent people will not die when drivers in Thailand are forced to drive to the safe controlled junctions.
    Last edited by OhOh; 07-02-2012 at 09:45 PM.
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

  23. #148
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    The three mothers united in grief after their their sons were killed in horrific bus crash during Thailand holiday

    By Catherine O' Brien

    Last updated at 1:07 AM on 19th February 2012

    After three teenage friends died just days into a dream trip, their mothers discovered the shocking truth about Thailand’s ‘perilous’ record on bus safety. Here they talk to Catherine O’Brien about their campaign for stricter controls and to raise awareness among other young travellers


    Bruno, Max and Conrad had been looking forward to what they thought would be an adventure of a lifetime

    Amanda Bean was getting ready for work when, from her bedroom window, she saw a police car pull up on the street below. Intrigued, but not initially alarmed, she assumed the officers must be there to see one of her neighbours. A couple of minutes later she looked again and noticed they were still sitting in their car. ‘It was only afterwards I realised why,’ she says. ‘They would have been coordinating with the others to ensure that we were all told at the same time.’

    At that moment – 7.30am one Tuesday last June – two other patrol cars were drawing up outside the homes of Polly Cook and Gillian Melling. Less than a week earlier, the three women had, with effusive hugs and tears, said goodbye to their teenage sons who were heading to the Far East for a ‘rite of passage’ gap-year holiday. Max Boomgaarden-Cook, Bruno Melling-Firth and Conrad Quashie were four days into their nine-week trip when they boarded an overnight bus that was never to reach its destination.

    ‘As soon as the bell rang, I realised something terrible must have happened,’ Amanda says. Gillian’s recollection is chillingly similar. She recognised the police officers’ uniforms through the glass of her front door. ‘I didn’t want to open it because I knew they could only be there for one reason,’ she says. Polly’s reaction when finding herself face to face with the officers on her doorstep was instant. ‘I said, “It’s my son, isn’t it?”’ she recalls. ‘And they said, “Yes.”’ All three were told the same sketchy details. Conrad, Bruno and Max, all aged 19, had been travelling from Bangkok to Thailand’s northern city of Chiang Mai when, six hours into the 12-hour journey, their bus crashed. The collision with another bus happened after midnight – around 6.15pm the previous evening UK time. As far as the police were aware, the boys were killed instantly. ‘They said they didn’t know anything else,’ says Amanda. ‘They handed me a piece of paper with a number for the Foreign Office, and told me it would be open at 9am. They asked if I would be all right till then. And then they left.’


    Grieving mothers (from left) Amanda Bean, Polly Cook and Gillian Melling, who are united in their fight to get safer transport in Thailand.

    Eight months on, the profound shock into which Amanda, Gillian and Polly were plunged that day is still palpable. But as the impact of the boys’ deaths sinks in and some startling facts emerge, their mothers also find themselves gripped by a steely resolve. ‘Thailand is a country with an appalling road safety record,’ says Polly. ‘And our boys’ legacy must be to change that.’

    According to the World Health Organisation, the death toll from road accidents in Thailand is among the worst worldwide. Officially, between 2000 and 2010, an average of 12,000 people were killed on the country’s roads each year, but as police record a death only if it occurs at the scene of the crash – rather than within 30 days as is accepted practice in most other countries – these figures are widely accepted to be distorted. The real figure is estimated to be closer to 20,000 annually (this compares with 3,000 deaths a year in the UK – a country with a similar-sized population). The British Embassy in Bangkok confirms that last year 17 British nationals died in road traffic accidents in Thailand and a further 36 were seriously injured.

    ‘The one thing I would never have thought to say to Conrad is, “Don’t get on a bus”’

    Most backpackers are aware of the risks of riding motorcycles or scooters; few are aware of the hazards of travelling by buses. According to the Thai travel industry’s trade publication TTR, coach operators plying their trade on Highway 1, where Conrad, Max and Bruno died, ‘are notorious for speeding and bus drivers are often under the influence of alcohol, pep pills and drugs. There are frequent accidents and highway police take little or no legal action against the companies that are usually owned by elite or powerful members of Thai society who consider themselves above the law. Road safety standards are a disgrace and the travel industry has failed to lobby the government for change and stricter controls on bus transport.’

    ‘We just had no idea,’ says Polly. ‘And nor did the boys.’ Amanda nods. ‘Like all parents, we gave them lists of dos and don’ts,’ she explains. ‘I told Conrad to keep his money safe, to be wary of what he ate and not to take any drugs. But the one thing I would never have thought to say to him is, “Don’t get on a bus.”’



    The crash that killed their sons

    After months of campaigning, the three women have secured an undertaking from foreign office minister Jeremy Browne that travel advice to British nationals heading for Thailand will be reviewed. They are also lobbying the Thai Embassy about efforts to improve road safety. ‘It breaks our hearts that we can’t change what has happened,’ says Gillian. ‘But we won’t rest until the laws are tightened and bus companies are held accountable for their safety records. Meanwhile, every parent and every young person needs to know that travelling across Thailand by bus, especially at night, is perilous.’

    Gathered around Polly’s kitchen table drinking tea, Gillian, Polly and Amanda speak with the intuitive familiarity of old friends. They have much in common. And all three live in South London, all three are teachers – Polly and Amanda teach English at Lambeth College, Gillian teaches art and is also a practising artist – and all three are single mothers – Polly has a younger son, Leo, 17; Amanda has a daughter Talia, 14, and Gillian has a daughter Bella, 22, and son William, 17. Yet until the boys’ deaths, they concede that life was too busy for them ever to be more than passing acquaintances.

    The bond between their sons, however, was tangible and potent. Conrad and Bruno had been at the same school – the London Nautical – since the age of 11. At 16, they had moved to the Charter School in Southwark, where they met Max. As inner-city boys, they were savvy and streetwise. They shared a love of hip-hop and dubstep music and spent as much spare time as they could – along with their wider circle of devoted friends – going to clubs and festivals. Max, probably the most outgoing of the three, dubbed them en masse as the RSBs.

    ‘It stood for Really Sexy Boys. And that is just what they were – gorgeous young men,’ says Polly.

    Behind their larky exteriors, however, Max, Conrad and Bruno each possessed a softer, serious core. All had long-term girlfriends – Conrad and Max had been in the same relationships for four years, while Bruno had been going out with his girlfriend since he was 17. ‘The relationships were a sign that they were pretty stable – and also very loving,’ says Amanda, 48. Like most teenagers, they had been through phases when their school work was not as good as it should have been. Max, once a promising athlete, had gone slightly off the rails at 15 after breaking his leg during a sports-day race. ‘He started smoking and drinking and, for a while, he was a handful and a worry,’ Polly recalls. But he had long since knuckled down and secured a place at Manchester Metropolitan University to study history and politics. Conrad, always the more gentle and laid-back of the three, had been bright enough to be placed on his school’s ‘gifted and talented’ register and was also due to go to Manchester Metropolitan to read history. Bruno was the creative one. He had just completed a foundation course in photography and was going on to do a four-year degree at Glasgow College of Arts. ‘They all had so much to offer,’ says Gillian, 55. ‘They were on the cusp of adulthood and buzzing with spirit and energy. One of the hardest things for me to get used to is living without Bruno’s sense of humour. He was so on the ball, so funny, and I would give anything just to have him make us laugh one more time.’


    Conrad


    Max


    Bruno

    Bruno, Conrad and Max had all taken a gap year after leaving school and began talking about a backpacking trip early last year, along with a fourth friend. Each of them had to work to pay their way – Max was a lifeguard at his local lido and Conrad and Bruno worked in a café. By Easter, they had enough money to book their flights. Their plan was to start in Bangkok, head to the north of Thailand and cross the border first into Laos and then Vietnam, Cambodia, Bali and back to Phuket. They were insistent that they made all the arrangements themselves. ‘I made sure Max had the right jabs and proper travel insurance, but it was very much their trip and they didn’t want us involved,’ says Polly.

    Two days before they left, the boys gathered with their families – including their fathers (Max’s father Gerhard Boomgaarden is a publisher, Bruno’s is the actor Julian Firth and Conrad’s dad Paul Quashie works in computer programming) and the brothers and sisters from their extended families – for a farewell drink. There were to be no tearful airport scenes on departure day – just hugs in the privacy of their homes. ‘I wanted to go to Heathrow, but then I realised that nobody else’s parents were going,’ says Amanda. ‘I ended up waving them goodbye through the barriers of the tube station. They didn’t even look back – they were so excited.’ Later, she recalls, Conrad called her in a panic from Heathrow, wanting to know if she had put malaria tablets in his rucksack. ‘I told him I had, and said, “I love you.” He said, “I love you, too.” And that was the last thing he said to me.’

    As soon as they arrived in Bangkok, the boys met up with Conrad’s girlfriend Elisa Smith, 19, who had been backpacking around the Far East since April. They spent three days together browsing markets, riding in tuk-tuks, playing street football and celebrating Conrad’s 19th birthday, which fell on 25 June – the day after they arrived. But they also took time to get messages home. ‘We all had emails that weekend saying what a great time they were having,’ says Polly. At some point, Elisa took them to the Kho San Road, where they booked their bus tickets from a Western-run ticket agency for about £25 each. ‘They could have travelled by train, but it would have been about twice the price – and they were on a budget,’ Amanda explains.

    ‘I still wake up every morning and there is this moment before it hits me – “Oh no, Max is dead”’

    On Monday 27 June, Elisa left Bangkok to travel back to the UK and the boys boarded their bus, which set off on the 470-mile journey to Chiang Mai at 6.30pm. Polly, Amanda and Gillian know through their friend, who survived with only minor injuries, that they were sitting towards the back of the bus. ‘He told us that they were all awake and were laughing and joking, right up until the accident happened,’ says Polly. It took months for full details of the accident to emerge, but a police report has now revealed that the driver of the bus on which the boys were travelling pulled out on to a six-lane motorway from the entrance, rather than the exit, of a petrol station. As he straddled the bus across the central reservation, another coach, which was overtaking two trucks at high speed, smashed into its side at the rear. There were no seatbelts on the boys’ bus and the seats were not even bolted to the floor. Max, Conrad and Bruno died instantly of head and multiple injuries. The driver of the oncoming bus was also killed and one other passenger – a Korean – died later in hospital. Around 40 people were injured. Last month, the driver of the boys’ bus was given a two-year jail sentence for reckless driving, but, says Polly, no action has been taken against his employers. ‘If we are going to effect reform, the bus companies have to be held accountable for the boys’ deaths and forced to raise their safety standards.’

    The boys’ bodies were flown back to the UK a week after the accident and although there was some talk of a joint funeral, the families decided that it was right to mourn them as the individuals they were. The three funerals were spread out over a week. Amanda and Gillian have since had commemorative tattoos inscribed on their left arms. Amanda’s spells out a lyric from one of Conrad’s favourite songs, ‘It’s that ancient love that you won’t outgrow’. Gillian’s says simply, ‘Love you forever Bruno Albert’. Polly has established a charity, the MBC (Max, Bruno and Conrad) Foundation, which will fundraise for local youth projects, including Whippersnappers, a music, sport and arts venture, and the Lambeth Cricket Academy, to which Max belonged. She has already forged links with the J Dilla Foundation in America which is promising to provide a place on its international scholarship programme (J Dilla was a hip-hop record producer who died of lupus in 2006 – Max was a big fan).

    As mothers, they are finding that just as there is no single way to raise children, there is no single way to grieve for them. Polly decided she would sort out Max’s possessions straight away and divide them into those she wanted to keep, those she wanted to give to friends, and those she would donate to charity. ‘I couldn’t face the thought that I would still have them in ten years’ time.’ But she has found that completing the task cannot fast-forward the bereavement process. ‘I still wake up every morning and there is this moment before it hits me –“Oh no, Max is dead.” Every day, I have to remind myself of that.’

    Gillian cannot bring herself to change anything in Bruno’s bedroom, but she has determined to complete a photography project that he started, capturing the construction of the landmark Shard skyscraper in London. Amanda has placed Conrad’s precious collection of guitars – he played every night when he got home from school – around her sitting room. She also finds it comforting to wear his clothes. ‘People ask, “Is life getting back to normal?”’ she says. ‘But this is our normal now. We’ll learn to live with it, but we’ll never get over it.’



    mbcfoundation.org.uk
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  24. #149
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    Quote Originally Posted by StrontiumDog
    mbcfoundation.org.uk
    All "profits" go to:

    About Us | Whippersnappers

    More non profitable private organisations for the south London single mums.

    Neither lists it's income or where it's accounts are monitored.

    Good Daily Mail readership profile.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BobR View Post
    This driver really deserves the 2 years, he is not a scapegoat. If you have not seen this channel 4 video, also referenced also above, even after he plead guilty to killing 5 people, when the British reported asked him if he had anything to say, the drivers response was that he did not do anything wrong, that he was stopped in the road waiting to make a turn and was hit. That complete lack or remorse or willingness to accept responsibility warrants a severe prison sentence.

    The undocumented dangers of Thailand's roads - Channel 4 News
    I get a different impression. The driver looks rather remorseful in the video, did say that he was sorry. He did say it was an accident to make things seem softer, but that's the Thai way, you can't expect him to handle it in exactly the same way a Farang would. After all, he did stay at the scene of crime and pleaded guilty in court.

    He deserves the two years for being reckless and taking that shortcut... but that move was probably done many times before by him and others. This merits an investigation, and also traffic mitigation measures to make the move impossible in the future. Overall, the driver seems like a decent-enough chap who made a mistake.

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