Welcome to the York Skeptics homepage. We are a group dedicated to the promotion of science, rationalism and critical thinking in North Yorkshire. Every month we meet up for a friendly discussion and a talk from a speaker about a subject relating to science and critical thinking. Meetings take place every fourth Monday of the month at 7:30pm in The Phoenix Inn.

We now have a blog, which you can find at yorkskeptics.blogspot.co.uk.

20mph Should be the UKs default Residential Speed Limit (not 30mph)

Anna Semlyen

When?
Monday, July 28 2014 at 7:30PM

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Where?

75 George Street,
York,
YO1 9PT

www.thephoenixinnyork.co.uk

Please note that The Phoenix doesn't accept cards so you'll need some cash if you want to buy a drink!

Who?
Anna Semlyen

What's the talk about?

Road danger is the biggest risk we face daily. Learn about, and ask questions on the science behind setting speed limits. Find out why 20mph matters where people live, work, shop and learn.

The UK is in transition to a 20mph limit. 12m people already live where 20mph is, or will be the norm – eg 90% of Birmingham, 95% of York. West of York has already gone 20mph limited for side streets.

Anna will bust the speed limit myths - humps are not required and that 20mph limits do not have much effect on urban journey times. Also that 20mph limits reduce pollution and can be enforced.

Plus advice on how to be an effective activist from an award winning campaigner. Anna supports 228 20’s Plenty for Us campaign groups Nationwide, is a City of York Councillor and Transport Scrutiny Chair and author of Cutting Your Car Use, the world’s best selling guide to driving less (140,000 copies sold).

www.20splentyforus.org.uk is the National Website – Ask questions on the day, or email them to Anna via anna.s@20splentyforus.org.uk @20splentyforus

The Seven Universal Disasters

Drew Rae

When?
Monday, August 25 2014 at 7:30PM

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(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

75 George Street,
York,
YO1 9PT

www.thephoenixinnyork.co.uk

Please note that The Phoenix doesn't accept cards so you'll need some cash if you want to buy a drink!

Who?
Drew Rae

What's the talk about?

What do the Apollo 13, Challenger and Columbia accidents have in common? When you strip away the technical details, nearly everything. Why did McDonnell Douglas stage two dress rehearsals before crashing a DC-10 into a forest? How did the French intercity railway manage to stage a near-perfect re-enactment of Potters Bar? It's almost as if the same accidents are happening again and again.

In literature there is an idea (mostly discredited - but let's not spoil a good story) that there are only seven basic plots. What if there are really only seven basic accidents, replayed in different times, places and industries?

This is a talk about the power and danger of stories to explain the past and shape the future, focussing on stories of disasters.

Drew Rae is a system safety lecturer and host of the DisasterCast podcast. He tells stories about accidents to teach the next generation of safety professionals at the same time as he writes papers calling for a more evidence driven approach to find out what to teach them.