GEM Motoring Assist is encouraging pet owners to ensure their animals are safe and comfortable on car journeys this week. The call comes as forecasters predict sunny and warmer weather for later in the week, with temperatures rising into the high 20s by the weekend. GEM chief executive Neil Worth warns that it's both dangerous and illegal to leave an animal in a hot vehicle. "If the dog becomes ill or dies, you are likely to face a charge of animal cruelty under the Animal Welfare Act 2006," he warns. "This offence can bring a prison sentence of up to six months and/or a fine of up to £20,000." GEM has compiled a short checklist designed to ensure dogs stay safe and comfortable on car journeys: Leave your dog at home on warmer days. If you do need to transport your dog, bring plenty of fresh drinking water, and a bowl. Ensure your dog is able to stay cool on a journey. Don't let your dog travel unrestrained. Instead, use a proper travel basket or crate to create a safer space. Dog seatbelts and travel harnesses are also available. Make plenty of stops on long journeys give your dog a good drink of water. Animals are unable to sweat in the way that humans can. Dogs cool themselves by panting and sweating through their paws, so it only take a a few minutes for dogs left in cars on hot days to begin experiencing the distressing symptoms of heatstroke. If you suspect your dog is developing heatstroke on a journey, stop somewhere safe and find somewhere cool and shady. However, if signs of heat exhaustion become apparent (for example excessive thirst, heavy panting, rapid pulse, fever, vomiting, glazed eyes, dizziness), you should go straight to a veterinary surgeon. If you see a pet in a vehicle on a hot day, take immediate action. For example, if you're in a supermarket, roadside service area or garden centre car park, note the car make, model, colour and registration number, then go inside and ask for an announcement to be made. If this doesn't bring the owner out, or you're in a location where finding the owner is impossible, then dial 999 and ask for the police.
Four out of 10 households in the UK used their car as an additional space to work, place to relax or even to catch up on TV shows during the pandemic, according to new research by Peugeot. The study of 2,000 drivers found 41% of households with four or more people said they had started to use their car for other purposes than driving during Covid-19 lockdowns. With home schooling and remote working now the new normal for many, cars have taken up a new purpose, ranging from providing a relaxing refuge to acting as a remote office space. When asked which activities drivers had turned to in their cars, more than half said finding a quiet place to relax away from others, while for 47% their car became a place to catch up on TV shows, and 43% used their cars as a place to read books. A third of respondents said they have used their car as a remote office for work. With 58% of respondents struggling to find time for themselves during lockdown, the car has become a place of peace and quiet, according to the research. Peugeot also found 37% of households said they would be more likely to use their car in this way if they owned a zero emissions-capable vehicle, that did not emit fumes when turned on, allowing them to keep warm or stay cool without idling an engine.
Sexy images of revving cars hugging tight bends at speed impact the viewer's mind less than seeing relevant people talking about the vehicle. That's the surprise research finding by Autovia. The research used a unique patented technology called Steady State Topography which measures second by second brain responses quantifying which moments of audio and visual content are encoded into long term memory. Readers of the popular Autovia title, evo were invited to browse articles and videos as they usually would while Neuro-Insight researchers measured the electrical activity in different regions of their brains. They could then see which moments impacted viewers most positively - and what was most likely to be instantly 'encoded' into memory. Around 80 evo readers were wired up and invited to read four articles about cars, in the way they usually would, without being told what the researchers were looking for. The surprising finding was that while dramatic external images of a performance road car naturally excited the viewers, what stuck in their minds and felt most relevant was when presenters were talking directly to the viewer about the cars, making them feel more involved.
Rolls-Royce has been associated with world speed records on both land and water for more than a century. But while the exploits of Sir Malcolm Campbell are well documented and widely known, another British hero who set three land-speed records using Rolls-Royce engines has been largely overlooked by history. Now, after more than 80 years, Rolls-Royce recalls this hero's inspiring exploits. With the new Wraith and Dawn Black Badge Landspeed Collection, the marque uncovers and retells the remarkable story of the redoubtable Captain George Eyston, and his extraordinary car, Thunderbolt. Born in 1897, George Eyston was fascinated with motorsport from childhood, racing both cars and (under an assumed name) motorcycles while still at school. His degree in engineering at Trinity College, Cambridge, was interrupted by the Great War, in which he served with distinction, rising to the rank of captain and winning the Military Cross. He spent the 1920s and 30s developing and driving racing cars; a talented inventor, he also held a number of patents, particularly in the field of supercharging. In 1935, Eyston was among the first British racers to travel to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, where he set new 24-hour and 48-hour endurance speed records. He subsequently received the Segrave Trophy, awarded to 'the British national who demonstrates Outstanding Skill, Courage and Initiative on Land, Water and in the Air'. In 1937, he returned to the Flats and went on to set three world land-speed records with Thunderbolt. This extraordinary machine had three axles, eight wheels and weighed seven tonnes, earning it monikers such as 'behemoth' and 'leviathan' in contemporary reports. The body was made from aluminium and, in its original form, had a blunt, heavyset profile topped with a large triangular tailfin.
Summer has finally arrived but it doesn't come without its dangers. In 2019, the British Veterinary Association recorded a three year high in the number of dogs left in hot cars. Here's some advice on how to keep your pets safe and what to do if you find a dog suffering in a hot car. The facts are that within 10 minutes, a car temperature can increase by 10??C. The heat can be fatal to our furry friends so it's vital that new and experienced owners alike remember the facts: The inside of cars can heat up at an alarming rate, even if you only leave the car for a short amount of time: o 10 minutes can see a 10??C increase in temperature. o 20 minutes can see a 16??C increase in temperature. o 30 minutes can see a 19??C increase in temperature o One hour can see a 23??C increase in temperature o Over one hour can see a 24 to 29??C increase in temperature. Heat exhaustion can occur when the bodies temperature reaches 32??C Heatstroke can occur when the bodies temperature reaches over 40??C And remember, heatstroke can be deadly for dogs. Never leave an animal alone in a vehicle for any amount of time. When faced with the dilemma of leaving your pet alone or unloading the whole car and dragging a canine around while you quickly run an errand - you might be tempted to leave your poochy pal on their own for a few moments. However, even if you've taken precautions like parking in the shade and cracking a window, it's not enough. Dogs don't sweat like humans and can only lose heat through panting. This means they struggle to regulate their temperature if stuck in a hot space and the effects can be deadly. What to do if you see an animal left unattended in a car in the heat Call for the owner and alert staff if you're by a shop. If you see a dog alone in a car during summer, you should first check to see if the owner is nearby. If you're near a shop, inform the staff and security, they'll be able to make a shop-wide announcement to alert the owner. Then call 999. The local police have the authority to break a car window to rescue an animal in danger but you should not attempt to gain access to the vehicle as you could be fined for criminal damage or injure the animal inside the car. Check the doors and inform the police of your intentions. If there's no alternative, you should first check the doors to see if the car has been left unlocked. If you do have to break a window to save the animal make sure you call 999 and let the police know what you're doing and take photos and videos to clearly record the situation. You should also note down the license plate number and any witness details.
The latest data from the Department for Transport has revealed the UK postcodes where cars are most likely to pass and fail their MOT tests, with Scotland and the South West of England home to numerous failure hotspots. When it comes to the areas where cars are most likely to pass their MOT, Nottingham (87%) had the highest pass rates, whilst London postcodes also performed well, with 10 postcodes from the capital achieving over 77% pass rates. The postcodes with the highest MOT pass rates are: 1. NG (Nottingham, Nottinghamshire) - 87% 2. EN (Enfield, London) - 79% 3. SL (Slough, South East) - 78% On the other end of the scale, cars in the KY postcode (Kirkcaldy, Scotland) were the most likely to fail their MOT test in 2020, with a pass rate of 70%. The DD postcode (Dundee) ranked third, also with a pass rate of 70%. Outside of Scotland, postcodes in the South West of England didn't fare well, with eight of the worst ten pass rates located in the region, with the PL postcode (Plymouth, Devon) experiencing the lowest pass rate in England (70%). The postcodes with the lowest pass rates in the UK are: 1. KY (Kirkcaldy, Scotland) - 70% 2. PL (Plymouth, Devon) - 70% 3. DD (Dundee, Scotland) - 70%
Motorists aspire to drive a medium-sized car throughout their driving life, no matter what their age, reveals new research from Direct Line Motor Insurance. Choice of cars and the number of new drivers and cars on the road is accelerating, analysis shows. The top 10 selling cars now only account for around 26 per cent of all vehicles on the roads compared with 29 per cent five years ago. Around 575,000 new drivers are hitting the UK's roads every year with the number of cars rising by 2.4 million in five years. But medium-sized cars such as the VW Golf, Ford Focus or Audi A3 are the vehicles motorists on the whole are most likely to drive or aspire to have. A quarter (25 per cent) of motorists drive this size of car and believe they are the most appropriate for their age group, while 15 per cent aspire to driving them. Just nine per cent wish to drive SUVs and eight per cent want a sports car. The under-25s and motorists aged 45 to 54 break the mould on aspirations - they dream of driving luxury vehicles such as the BMW 8 series or Mercedes S Class even though they are most likely to drive small cars, such as a Renault Clio. Analysis of official data found attitudes to car ownership varied for different life stages. It revealed what the key indicators are for people either buying their first car or changing their vehicle. The data also shows getting a driving licence and owning a car is becoming more popular - the percentage of the British adult population with a full licence was 76.5 per cent before lockdowns compared with 73.3 per cent in 2014. The percentage of under-25s with licences increased to 36.7 per cent from 35.3 per cent over the same period while the percentage of 25 to 34-year-olds with licences rose 3.6 per cent to 73.6 per cent. With many drivers unable to take their test and secure a driver's licence in 2020, it was a challenge for many, but the trajectory of those who want one has continued to increase over time. The life event that is most likely to drive someone to buy a new car is inevitably passing their driving test with 26 per cent saying that was their reason to buy. However, 16 per cent said starting a new job was their reason for buying, ahead of 11 per cent who bought because they started a family or after moving to a new area (also 11 per cent). Expanding their family was the reason for buying a car for eight per cent of people.
According to a recent survey of 824 drivers by InsuretheGap, 87% of drivers say they have a car which was hardly used during the pandemic. And almost one in ten (9%) took a car off the road using a SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification). When checking on their unused car, a third (33%) had a flat battery, 17% had low tyre pressure and one in twenty (6%) found mould on the interior. Others suffered from scratched bodywork, locked handbrakes and one driver's catalytic converter was stolen while the car was parked up. Only 28% said they hadn't had any problems with an unused car. Over half of drivers (55%) took their car out for specific journeys just to keep the battery topped up, with almost a quarter (23%) feeling guilty for doing this, and 24% worried about being stopped by police for non-essential travel. When it comes to getting their car back on the road, a quarter (25%) said that they took their neglected car for a long drive, 30% have cleaned it (7% professionally), 35% have checked the tyre pressure, 10% have had to jump start it, 11% have had to buy a new battery and one in ten (10%) have asked a garage to check it over. 14% are thinking of getting rid of the unused car. The drivers in the survey also spoke of their frustration at not being able to drive much in the last twelve months, with one driver saying they had driven, according to their service, 44 miles in the six-month period from September 2020 to the end of March 2021. Savings on fuel costs have been a silver lining for many, however, with one driver saving over £250 a month on petrol.
Almost one in seven (14%) UK drivers have considered getting rid of their car because of the pandemic (17% men and 11% women), rising to one in three (35%) under 34s. According to a new survey of 2,000 UK drivers by InsuretheGap, over half (56%) say they do not need a car as much as they did before the pandemic (53% men and 59% women). Working from home is the reason that 40% of drivers aged 65 years and under say they have less need of a car, rising to 58% of under 34s. Drivers are also thinking about down-sizing their vehicles, with over a quarter (26%) saying their next car is probably going to be smaller. However, 73% of drivers say having a car is still a necessity, and avoiding public transport is an important issue for 61% of drivers (59% men and 63% women). Whilst drivers might not be using their cars as much, almost a third (29%) still wash their car regularly (34% men and 24% women). Under 34s (41%) are the most likely to clean their cars, compared to only 25% of the over 55s. Ben Wooltorton, Chief Operating Officer of InsuretheGap.com, said: "Cars sitting idly outside homes has caused many of us to revaluate our car usage with some considering selling their cars or downsizing. However, for the vast majority having a car is still a necessity for their day-to-day life and particularly when we're being encouraged to avoid public transport."
With the sale of new petrol cars banned by 2030, the UK needs a vast investment in both generation capacity and, particularly, distribution to meet the increased demand for electricity this will bring. But with this 9-year clock quickly ticking, £billions of essential investment is being held back through a lack of information and data. A new App, to be developed by Zuhlke UK will start overcoming this by providing green investors with data, models and insights that it is hard for outsiders to the UK electricity sector to acquire. The new app will save potential investors months of effort in finding data they can trust and decide the best locations to install charging infrastructure, with value added information such as demand at different times of day and in different seasons. The current UK electricity grid was primarily set up to deliver electricity to industrial centres in the 1950s, not the widespread high demand we will soon find when, for instance, everyone arrives home at 6pm after work and plugs the car in. For instance, the Hinckley nuclear power station in Somerset was created to supply electricity to the industrial areas of South Wales. To get the electricity from Hinkley to the nearby Somerset town of Yeovil to charge cars, it effectively goes via South Wales to Didcot (near Oxford) and then back to the West Country. That is a simplification, but it illustrates that clever minds have to come together to solve many big problems facing the UK's electricity infrastructure. When you consider the increased power demands from the suburban car owners of such conurbations as London, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow it is easy to see that without huge and well targeted investment, Britain in the 2030s will have regular brownouts from the demands of electricity-guzzling cars replacing petrol ones.
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