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  #81  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2013, 5:27 PM
WarrenC12 WarrenC12 is online now
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Washington state has many digital speed limit signs that change based on traffic flow.

They are even "per lane" as sometimes the HOV has higher rates than the regular lanes, due to less congestion, etc.

I know it's a pilot project, I wonder if/when results will be available.
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  #82  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2013, 5:55 PM
makr3trkr makr3trkr is offline
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"should the speed limit [singular] on BC's highways [plural] be higher, remain the same, or be lower"

The question makes it sound like the only option is a blanket raising of limits across the board, which of course is not what is actually happening (false premise).

Each highway (in fact each segment) is being reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

I wouldn't put a lot of stock in the poll -- something about lies, damned lies, and statistics.

Last edited by makr3trkr; Dec 6, 2013 at 6:36 PM.
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  #83  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2013, 9:15 PM
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Originally Posted by makr3trkr View Post
http://engage.gov.bc.ca/safetyandspeedreview/

"The Province is conducting province-wide consultation and engagement to seek input about safety and speed limits on B.C.’s rural highways as part of the Rural Highway Safety and Speed Review. ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is partnering with Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to support this Rural Highway Safety and Speed Review and ongoing safety improvements for B.C. drivers.

Feedback is sought regarding safety on B.C.’s rural highways with respect to speed limits, slower-moving vehicles, wildlife hazards and the use of winter tires."



They aren't seeking input on any highway corridors in metro Vancouver. Not surprising, but still disappointing.

So Highway 99 to Lilloet is up for review, for example (a winding, climbing, narrow, undivided road).

But I can't ask why the speed limit on Highway 91 isn't 100km/hr (when that was the design speed, as stated by the engineers themselves):

"The geometric design standards used in the design of the Annacis Highway System are typical of an urban expressway with a design speed of ... 100 km/h (60 mph)."
http://www.ite.org/membersonly/itejo...f/JGA88A21.pdf

And, in the 2003 speed limit review report, Highway 91 was named as a "candidate road segment for 100 km/h speed limit"
http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/publications...iew_Report.pdf

Nor can I suggest that, on the new three and four lane segments of Highway 1 from Langley to Vancouver, trucks be prohibited from using the left lane (as in Seattle).

So, colour me underwhelmed. This feels like more of a PR move than anything else.
Despite living in Alberta, I frequently drive many rural BC highways. Took me an hour and a half to fill in for all the roads I've been on more than 5 times in the past year and a half.
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  #84  
Old Posted Dec 7, 2013, 2:39 AM
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I would like to change how speed limits are set and communicated. Highways outside of cities should have high and standardized speed limits (not varying) at the 85percentile + 10% at the fastest stretch (example). This way you only need signs indicating these limits at the start of the highway, end of the highway and on entrances to the highway. I would then want them to focus more on recomended speed limit signs and use those along the highway, often, to indicate what is coming up and recomend a speed (something actually useful unlike arbitrary enforceable maximum speed limit signs).

For example Coquihala from Hope to Kamloops can have a maximum speed limit of 150kmph, the limit is set and you dont have to worry about it changing. As you drive you would have recomended speed limit signs, say the maximum recomended speed could be 110kmph, in turns and other sections lower.

The enforceable maximum speed limit should be set to the maximum overall safe speed on the stretch of road. The recommended speed should be just that, a recommended speed. People will pay attention to it and take it in to account if it is used fairly. Say you are driving 120km ph with a recommended speed of 110kmph and you see a sign of a recommended speed limit of 60kmph and a sign indicating the danger (say a turn) then you will drop your speed accordingly to what you consider safe. Of course though the recomended speed limits must be predictable and fair so people can use them.
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  #85  
Old Posted Dec 9, 2013, 10:46 PM
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The coquihalla is a prime spot for this. Bump it up to 130kph in the summer months and then move it around when the weather is inclement. Even south of the fraser on the No. 1 could be that way. Traffic vs. no traffic etc. They already have the timing equipment in there to show travel times, i'm sure its a software tweak and some new signage to start changing the speed limits.

My typical observation is that when there is a moderate amount of traffic on most highways traffic tends to flow at around 120-130 and that is enough to tell me that there is something wrong with the limits.

Also if you read the question for that survey it is extremely strange and poorly worded.
In almost all cases I qualified my support for higher speed limits with the introduction of truck limits and/or inclement weather or night time speed limits. Again, the Coquilhalla is a perfect example. When it's dry in the summer and it's light until 9pm, 150km/h (or more) is perfectly acceptable. A truck limit should be introduced at 115-120km/h however. When the weather turns, the limit could (or should) be reduced to 100km/h or perhaps even lower. That highway can get tricky.

I feel the same way with many sections of the crowsnest as well as the Sea-to-Sky. Obviously not as high as 140km/h on the Sea-to-Sky, but there are definitely sections that could handle 110km/h (where divided). Come winter, that's one of the worst highways for people driving with lousy all-season tires and tourists, or even summer tires. Snow + congestion can cause a huge mess. I also think there are far too few winter tire checks north of Squamish.

I would support a mandatory winter tire (or snow-rated all seasons at the very least) legislation in BC, outside of the Capital Region and Lower Mainland as well.
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  #86  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 3:43 AM
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Originally Posted by cornholio View Post
I would like to change how speed limits are set and communicated. Highways outside of cities should have high and standardized speed limits (not varying) at the 85percentile + 10% at the fastest stretch (example). This way you only need signs indicating these limits at the start of the highway, end of the highway and on entrances to the highway. I would then want them to focus more on recomended speed limit signs and use those along the highway, often, to indicate what is coming up and recomend a speed (something actually useful unlike arbitrary enforceable maximum speed limit signs).

For example Coquihala from Hope to Kamloops can have a maximum speed limit of 150kmph, the limit is set and you dont have to worry about it changing. As you drive you would have recomended speed limit signs, say the maximum recomended speed could be 110kmph, in turns and other sections lower.

The enforceable maximum speed limit should be set to the maximum overall safe speed on the stretch of road. The recommended speed should be just that, a recommended speed. People will pay attention to it and take it in to account if it is used fairly. Say you are driving 120km ph with a recommended speed of 110kmph and you see a sign of a recommended speed limit of 60kmph and a sign indicating the danger (say a turn) then you will drop your speed accordingly to what you consider safe. Of course though the recomended speed limits must be predictable and fair so people can use them.
These suggestions are entirely sensible and would be popular with any rational person. As such there is no way they will ever be brought into practice!
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  #87  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 3:54 AM
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Yeah, there are rational people that disagree.
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  #88  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2014, 5:20 AM
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Originally Posted by red-paladin View Post
Yeah, there are rational people that disagree.
Why? The higher speed limits are basically pointless because literally everyone ignores them. Advisory limits though are very welcome and I will take notice of.

I drive trucks and my company's are limited to 105. When driving on single lane highways posted at 100 we drive to our limiter and rarely have to slow down for people. And if you do cause a semi to slow down while driving a car, you're pretty much an asshole.
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  #89  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2014, 5:26 PM
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And if you do cause a semi to slow down while driving a car, you're pretty much an asshole.
How's that? What makes you entitled to drive your semi in excess of the speed limit? A car decides to obey the law and you think they are the asshole in this situation? Really?
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  #90  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2014, 6:17 PM
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How's that? What makes you entitled to drive your semi in excess of the speed limit? A car decides to obey the law and you think they are the asshole in this situation? Really?
This is symptomatic of the general mind set that speed "limit"s are a minimum rather than a maximum.

I drive in the slow lane, usually at or only very slightly above the speed limit. On roads with a single travel lane I pull over where possible if traffic behind me doesn't get a passing opportunity within a few minutes. I think that's perfectly reasonable behaviour, and if it happens that it causes a semi to slow down then I'm sorry, but that's just tough luck.
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  #91  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2014, 6:24 PM
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Originally Posted by red-paladin View Post
Yeah, there are rational people that disagree.
Rational is in the eye of the beholder. There are some "rational" people I think are insane, and vice versa that you might disagree with.

Personally, what I consider "rational" is Milo's suggestion, although I'd stick the limit at the 85th, not 85th+10%.

Also, what's with these tabs at the bottom of threads indicating whether or not a topic continues? I find it irrational. Since when did people become that daft? Might as well put up tabs reminding people to breath.
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  #92  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2014, 7:19 PM
aberdeen5698 aberdeen5698 is offline
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Also, what's with these tabs at the bottom of threads indicating whether or not a topic continues? I find it irrational. Since when did people become that daft? Might as well put up tabs reminding people to breath.
I like them. The page number buttons are usually invisible (scrolled off the bottom of my screen), so this reminds me when there are more pages without having to scroll down to see the buttons (which I sometimes forget to do).
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  #93  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 1:06 AM
milomilo milomilo is offline
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How's that? What makes you entitled to drive your semi in excess of the speed limit? A car decides to obey the law and you think they are the asshole in this situation? Really?
Well, seeing as it is rare for us to be slowing down for cars and are often overtaken, it shows that nobody agrees that 100 is a sensible limit. Our trucks drive in a convoy a lot, and having them all at the same speed is useful to keep the spacing and helps with fuel economy. 105 is a safe and sensible speed on a good road.

To be honest, the asshole comment was more for being cut off by cars pulling out, as to be honest it's very rare we're stuck behind people doing 100.

I would happily support a law that all heavy vehicles had to governed to the (exact) same speed - it would help ease congestion on certain roads hugely by preventing them overtaking each other. And I'm not going to pretend truck drivers are perfect either, having a (US plated...) B-train fly past me while I was doing 110 in a car on the QEII was one example of truck drivers driving far too quickly.

But for cars, there are many instances of speed limits being far too low, and if the majority ignore them, then they are pointless.
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  #94  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 1:19 AM
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Originally Posted by aberdeen5698 View Post
This is symptomatic of the general mind set that speed "limit"s are a minimum rather than a maximum.

I drive in the slow lane, usually at or only very slightly above the speed limit. On roads with a single travel lane I pull over where possible if traffic behind me doesn't get a passing opportunity within a few minutes. I think that's perfectly reasonable behaviour, and if it happens that it causes a semi to slow down then I'm sorry, but that's just tough luck.
Roads are the arteries of the economy, however, and the more efficient they are , the better it is for Canada's economy. It won't just be that one truck you slow down either, it could be dozens of other vehicles behind it while that truck spends a few minutes getting back up to speed, who will then be forced to overtake, putting those road users in a more risky situation.

Ideally, everyone would do the exact same speed, and 95% of the time there is no reason that should be below the speed limit outside of urban areas in good conditions.
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  #95  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 6:43 AM
aberdeen5698 aberdeen5698 is offline
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Ideally, everyone would do the exact same speed, and 95% of the time there is no reason that should be below the speed limit outside of urban areas in good conditions.
I agree. And since we already have a big sign telling everyone what speed to go, why shouldn't that be the one speed? Why is it that every driver has to add his or her own individual premium to that speed?
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  #96  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 4:05 PM
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I agree. And since we already have a big sign telling everyone what speed to go, why shouldn't that be the one speed? Why is it that every driver has to add his or her own individual premium to that speed?
I think everyone should go only 50kph. It is a nice, slow, safe speed.
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  #97  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 6:17 PM
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Anyone that thinks drivers drive to fast or speed limits are too high in BC have never left the province imo and or are bad drivers. I have no issue making such a blanket statement because quite frankly drivers in BC actually drive slow. You spend any amount of time in Europe in countries with far lower accident rates, and you'll find they drive WAY faster on roads far narrower. Why? Because a) they are used to it, b) they are better drivers, and c) speed actually reduces distractions.

There are numerous studies on C also that show the faster you drive, the more focussed you are on driving and the less distracted you are on things. Ask any traffic cop (trust me I know what quite a few think) what causes more accidents and it isn't speed. You crash a car going 80kph vs 100kph, and the end result will most likely be exactly the same.

9 times out of 10 accidents are caused by either someone driving not to the conditions (or their vehicle not being outfitted to the conditions aka summer tires in snow) OR driver distraction aka talking on cell phones, eating a burger, changing radio stations, or even having a full on conversation with a passenger. People have this notion though that speed is an issue largely because of how the media reports major incidents. The media asks the Police PR about an accident, and like a good officer they say "Well we can't rule out speed, alcohol, etc. etc." and what the media then reports is "Crash happened on HWY 91, Police not ruling out speed or alcohol."

That's accurate, but what does the court of public opinion aka your average listener now think when they hear that? I've done the little test on dozens of people and every single person thought "Oh the accident was caused by speed or alcohol." Funny, it probably ended up being caused by distracted driving but the media won't ever say "Oh remember that crash on HWY 91? Turns out it wasn't speed or alcohol but rather someone on their cell phone." so that incident just gets stored in most people's brains subconciously as "yet another speeder causing havoc on the road!"

Ask truck drivers on the road what is the most dangerous thing that happens every day for them? These are people on the road all the time, far more than the majority of people on these forums. I guarantee you it will be distracted drivers and people cutting them off and slamming on the brakes (not respecting the stopping distance of a fully loaded truck). You won't hear "speed" come out of any of their mouths.

It's not speed. Speed is simply the easiest thing for police to enforce because there is no real arguing outside the margin or error on radar guns. Gun says you are 10kph over the speed limit, nearly impossible to argue against that. But distraction becomes more difficult to enforce. You don't know how many people on cell phones deny it yet they cause far more traffic incidents on the road every day than those driving 10-15kph over our very slow speed limits. Speed limits are also completely arbitrary and if you want an example of that, drive i5 between Washington State and Oregon. You will be humming along at 75mph car/65 Truck in Washington, then cross a bridge into Orgeon, be on the same highway with the same conditions, and magically the limit will drop to 65mph car/55 truck. Why? The highway is the same, the conditions are the same, the design is the same. It is as wide, as straight, yet why 10mph slower (a full 16kph slower)?

Because it is completely arbitrary.

Outside metro Vancouver though there is another factor I do think needs to be taken into account by everyone driving, and those are animals. I still think speed limit should just be that, a LIMIT. That doesn't mean you _have_ to drive it or 10kph over it. They should be sufficiently high enough that the majority of people driving are OK driving a little under it.

But I'll give you a case and point. I was driving back from a hunting trip in October from Vanderhoof in my F250 pickup. Truck was fully loaded with a boat on the roof and I had a UHAUL trailer I was pulling back for a friend filled with DFO fish tanks. We hit Clinton about an hour before sun set and stopped to eat dinner at the pub with 2 other hunters we were just hunting with who were going to stop in Clinton and hunt a bit longer.

By the time we left it had just turned dark, so my buddy and I got in my truck and started back to Metro Vancouver. I've driven that stretch a lot and I know that about an hour before dark to about 2 hours after dark Highway 97 and Highway 1 past Cache Creek become deer crossing central. So even though the speed limit is posted 90kph through that stretch, I was humming along around 75-80kph because:

1. It gives me about 4 seconds extra time to react to Deer if I see them up ahead and
2. I need a heck of a lot more space to stop a fully loaded F250 pickup with a boat on the roof towing a UHAUL full of fish tanks!

Despite that, I had people in pickups and cars up my behind flashing me near constantly for "going too slow." I had quite a few cars pass me on the left on straight aways and proceed to race ahead at at least 90-100kph.

And guess what?

From Clinton to Chilliwack, I saw 7 Deer hit and actually almost hit 1 myself. All of the deer hit were vehicles that passes me. Now had they driven slower on that stretch given the driving conditions, would they not have hit those deer? I can't say for certain.

But that's what is missing in the vocabulary of many of four drivers in this Province. The ability to adjust their driving habits to the conditions. Speed limits unfortunately are a method used to try and enforce that but it's just a band aid in my experience.

I would much prefer our speed limits to bump up over time, more advisories to be posted, and people be required to go to school to get a drivers license and go through more regular re-tests. If I want to be a professional engineer for example, I have to constantly go to school and constantly proof my abilities. In BC (and much of the world), you take a simple stupid road test and are handed a driving license basically forever.

Nobody gets re-tested unless they do several things absolutely ridiculous and end up in court over it. I say force all new drivers to go through very strict driving schools, do several tests, require logged hours of experience, then mandatory re-testing every 10 years (2 drivers license renewals). Also stop honoring international driving licenses for permanent residents.

Speed limits aren't the solution to the actual problems on the road.

Last edited by jhausner; Jan 3, 2014 at 6:31 PM.
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  #98  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 6:36 PM
aberdeen5698 aberdeen5698 is offline
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You crash a car going 80kph vs 100kph, and the end result will most likely be exactly the same.
Did you take high school physics? Speed may not be the biggest cause of accidents, but it is the biggest cause of the consequences.
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  #99  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 6:43 PM
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Did you take high school physics? Speed may not be the biggest cause of accidents, but it is the biggest cause of the consequences.
Yes, took university physics also actually and while you can write on a piece of paper car 1 is driving at 80kph and applies x force to the brakes for y time, and car 2 is driving the same stretch at 100kph and appliex x force to the brakes for y time, which will stop faster, these thought experiments don't translate to the real world.

We all apply braking power differently given similar situations. Each vehicle stops differently based on its mass and the road conditions. Different tires provide different levels of grip. Different levels of distraction change reaction times when our brain registers an issue such as spinning out of control or someone at a dead stop in front of us.

"Physics" doesn't ultimately matter in the real world when it comes to the consequences of an accident which is exactly why people that say "Well drive slower and less people will die" don't live in the real world. My own experience has proven to me that an accident at 80kph vs 100kph based on what typically causes said accident, very rarely results in a different 'consequence.'

Car loses control at 80kph and cuts across into oncoming traffic vs a car at 100kph, the likelihood of death is more or less the same in real life, and speed becomes less a factor than having a BARRICADE there to prevent the head on collision in the first place.

That's why you can't just say "WELL PHYSICS SAYS DUR."

http://www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/osmv/share...s2008-2012.pdf does

2008 through 2012 (5 years)

Fatal Accidents Heavy Vehicles: 20%
Fatal Accidents Alcohol and/or Drug: 28%
Fatal Accidents Speed: 34%
Fatal Accidents Distraction: 28%

Now you may think, well wait Speed is higher than the other 3? What gives? Well speed still only contibutes to (remember there can be multiple contributors) 34% or ALL fatal accidents in BC over 5 years. That means 66% of all fatal accidents had nothing to do with speed. Also speed is determined based on it being one of:

1. Excessive speed over 40kph the posted limit
2. Driving at an unsafe speed
3. Not driving a speed condusive to the given conditions aka this can actually be doing the speed limit BUT it being icey or snow covered so you're not technically breaking the law but you crash because you were driving too fast for the conditions thus "Speed" becomes a contributing factor

Finally if you look at all the numbers, in 5 years from 2008 to 2012, 1654 road fatalities were recorded and the fatality rate has been declining generally since 2010. That's not a lot in the grand scheme of how many motor vehicles are on the road and driving around in BC every single day. 331 per year. Let's compare to non-fatal accidents:

2012 in BC according to ICBC: 260,000. 260,000 total crashes, 281 fatalities. That is 0.1% of all accidents in all of BC being fatal and fatality numbers do include pedestrians, cyclists, everything. Anyone killed by a motor vehicle.

Seems our roads are quite safe from a death perspective, even speed wise.

Last edited by jhausner; Jan 3, 2014 at 6:57 PM.
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  #100  
Old Posted Jan 3, 2014, 6:48 PM
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Originally Posted by aberdeen5698 View Post
Did you take high school physics? Speed may not be the biggest cause of accidents, but it is the biggest cause of the consequences.
Did you ever get beyond high school physics? A substantial part of engineering work is risk/reward optimization.

Mobility is a speed dependent reward, while the risk is obviously crashing cost and injury. The risk however is dependent different on who's driving, what vehicle they have and the road conditions. So, what you have 56% more energy if you're travelling at 80km/h vs. 100km/h. If the risk is almost nil, 1.56 x almost nothing is still almost nothing.

To ignore the other half of the equation is exactly the problem.

I'd say about 90% of the drivers out there pick a pretty reasonable speed to drive based on what the risks are at any given time. The other 10% say, well I better just do what the sign says. In most cases the government in most cases picks a really conservative speed, that would allow your 80 year old granny to drive a fully loaded semi with reasonable level of safety most of the time. So you end up with people humming along at a comfortable speed, and people pretending that they drive a semi truck in the rain with the reaction times of geriatric. This causes all sorts of unnecessary traffic interactions, which in turn creates a greater overall risk for all users of the road.
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Last edited by Alex Mackinnon; Jan 3, 2014 at 7:02 PM.
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