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Motorcyclists clocked speeding at 155mph near Norwich
Five motorcyclists were clocked speeding at 155mph (249km/h). The three men and two women were stopped by police on the A47 near Norwich in August last year. They are due to face a disqualification hearing in court in June.
Brexit: US ready for an ‘attractive’ UK trade deal
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has reinvigorated talk of a free trade deal with the UK following Brexit. It follows worries that Britain’s “special relationship” with the US had cooled. Mr Mnuchin said Britain would still be at the “front of the queue” for a bilateral free trade deal following the exit from the European Union. “As soon as the UK is ready we will be prepared to negotiate an attractive trade deal,” he told the BBC in Davos.
JP Morgan boss in new warning on Brexit job losses
The chief executive of JP Morgan has told the BBC it could cut its 16,000 UK workforce by more than a quarter if financial rules diverge after Brexit. Jamie Dimon said the US bank had not needed to make drastic cuts on day one after the EU referendum. But he revised his long-term estimate of job losses upwards if Brexit talks failed to produce an outcome close to the current arrangements. Mr Dimon added that such a scenario would harm London as a financial hub. The boss of the US’s most valuable bank had warned in the run-up to the referendum that 4,000 jobs could go if the UK voted to leave the EU.
Tesla and GM self-drive cars involved in road collisions
Two vehicles reportedly engaged in self-drive modes – a Tesla Model S and a General Motors Chevy Bolt – have been involved in separate road accidents in California. Culver City’s fire service said the Tesla had “ploughed into the rear” of one of its fire engines parked at the scene of an accident on Monday. The car’s owner subsequently claimed it had been in Autopilot mode at the time. The GM incident resulted in a collision with a motorbike in San Francisco.
UK sandwich habit ‘as bad for the environment as eight million cars’
The UK’s annual consumption of sandwiches has the same environmental impact as around eight million cars, scientists have claimed. The calculation takes into account the carbon footprint of 40 different sandwiches – homemade and ready-made – and looks at the packaging, how the ingredients are produced, and the food waste that is discarded. University of Manchester researchers worked out the carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2 eq) for the 11.5 billion sandwiches eaten every year in the UK. That generates on average 9.5 million tonnes of CO2 eq, “equivalent to the annual use of 8.6 million cars”, said Professor Adisa Azapagic.
UK government backs research into solid-state batteries for electric cars
The UK has bet on solid state batteries as the future for electric vehicles, pledging part of a £42m government grant to the technology in a bid to compete with countries in Asia. The government’s newly-launched Faraday Institution said Oxford university will lead the research into solid-state batteries, which are lighter and safer than current electric vehicle batteries. “If successful, this research will put the UK on the map as being at the forefront of battery technology worldwide,” the Faraday Institution said. “It has the potential to radically increase the speed with which we are able to make the move to electric vehicles, as well as the speed with which we can decarbonise our energy supply, with obvious benefits to the environment.” The £42m is the first tranche from a total of £246m the UK government has pledged to invest into battery technology under its Industrial Strategy.
Tesla, BMW cancel sale of cars auctioned by Presidents Club
Tesla and BMW have has cancelled the sale of cars that were auctioned at the Presidents’ Club evening, continuing the fallout from the controversial event. Tesla called the events of the night “disgusting”. One of the electric carmaker’s Model X vehicles had been purchased by the Presidents Club following the auction, but the sale will not now go ahead, the company confirmed on Wednesday evening. A spokesman for Tesla expressed disgust with the reported behaviour and said the company refused to support any organisation that held such events. The Model X, a luxury electric sport utility vehicle, was one of several upmarket cars that were auctioned off during the evening. BMW has followed Tesla’s lead and cancelled the sale of an i8 supercar that was also auctioned at the event. The car was purchased from the carmaker by the Presidents Club, but had not been delivered, BMW said.
Gone to Potholes
Potholes are more than just a nuisance. As well as wrecking car suspensions and denting tyres, they can send cyclists flying. Just two months ago we reported on the sad case of 83-year-old Roger Hamer, who suffered brain injuries after hitting a pothole that had been reported many times to Bury council. He later died. Today it emerges that funding for maintenance of local roads has declined in real terms over the past three years even when extra money earmarked specifically for potholes is included. That sum will fall by £46 million next year, which is not a saving that the Department for Transport can afford to make. Roads are the most basic of infrastructure.
Driving goes into reverse as Britain hits ‘peak car’
Britain may have reached “peak car” after government-backed research showed that the number of teenagers holding a driving licence has plummeted by almost 40 per cent in two decades. A study published yesterday said that rejection of car ownership was likely to become the “new norm” as more people communicated online rather than face to face. Researchers said it was “difficult to envisage” a return to the level of individual car use in previous decades. The study, commissioned by the Department for Transport, found that changes in living circumstances meant that most young people no longer gained a driving licence or regularly drove a car.
New MoT failure categories to be introduced this year and it’s more bad news for diesel
A set of new MOT failures are set to be introduced in the UK from May 2018 for both major and minor defects and diesel cars are also set to get stricter emissions testing. From May 2018 the MoT test is set to get a shakeup which will see the introduction of new failure and defect categories. The test will now categorise defects as Dangerous, Major or Minor. Under the new rules drivers will automatically fail their MoT test if they receive a Dangerous or Major fault, while those who receive a Minor can still pass the test. Minor faults will, however, be noted down on the car’s MoT certificate.
Death of diesel car has caused one big problem for buyers of used petrol vehicles
The demonisation of diesel cars has driven more people to buy a used petrol car and also see average prices soar. With the turbulent few years diesel cars have had, more buyers have opted for a petrol-powered vehicle as the uncertainty over the fuel type lingers. There is now a distinct lack of trust for diesel engines with revelations of its harmful effect of health and the environment. It is not just the diesel car market that is suffering, however, as the push towards petrol cars has driven up average prices, reveals Motorway.co.uk. The average price of a used petrol car rose by almost 10 per cent (9.4 per cent) during 2017. Over the same period of time the average price of diesel cars dipped by five per cent, according to the research.
Cost of buying a second-hand petrol car rises by 10% as price of diesels plummets following backlash against the fuel
The cost of second-hand petrol cars has risen 10 per cent in the past year while the growing backlash against diesels knocked hundreds of pounds off their value. Analysis yesterday revealed that owners of petrol-engined Fords are the biggest winners from what the motoring industry has called ‘anti-diesel hysteria’ – their average second-hand value jumped 11.7 per cent, or £912. Older diesel cars have been blamed in a string of health warnings for increasing the risk of respiratory problems by pumping out dangerous levels of toxic nitrogen oxides, which has seen the Government slap road tax rises on them in a bid to dissuade buyers. It has already led to a dramatic decline in sales of new, cleaner diesel cars. But at the same time, the crackdown has inflated the value of second-hand petrol cars as demand rises. The figures, based on analysis of valuations of more than 30,000 vehicles less than five years old during 2017, show that the average price of a second-hand petrol car surged 9.4 per cent, from £8,916 to £9,754 – an average rise of £838.
Road outside school is ‘too dangerous’ for a lollipop lady… but not for the children to cross
Britain’s worst school drop-off is so bad town hall chiefs have scrapped an advert for a new lollipop lady – because the job is too dangerous. Parents are now demanding action to stop cars speeding past St Barnabas Church of England Primary School in Worcester after a string of near misses and collisions. Before Christmas a young girl was struck by a car which resulted in her have a broken ankle while another pupil narrowly avoided being mown down two weeks ago. The local council advertised for a crossing attendant but were forced to withdraw it after safety officers said the job was too risky.
Smart motorway speed cameras can catch you out 24-hours-a-day – even if there’s no variable speed limit displayed
BRITS will be snapped by speed cameras 24-hours-a-day on smart motorways, according to traffic cops. Motorists will be issued with fines for breaking the 70mph limit on the M1 – even if there’s no variable limit displayed on an overhead gantry. Cameras are switched on 24/7 but only snap drivers who are caught breaking a limit that’s flashed up on the signs. But, according to The Derby Telegraph, Brits who go over 70mph on the M1 when the roads are clear will now also be penalised. The standard fine for being caught speeding is £100 and three points – but for more serious offences the punishment can rocket.