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Old February 8th, 2015, 12:49 PM   #10281
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Driver ability in the US depends where you go. In some areas like NYC and Boston, it seems like signalling before changing lanes is an optional thing for many people. I don't recommend driving in either city. I'm from the east coast and have been in Seattle for a few months, drivers here are more timid and uncertain in general, they procrastinate until the end to merge. I feel like a more aggressive driver out here than back east.
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Old February 8th, 2015, 01:18 PM   #10282
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Originally Posted by Xusein View Post
they procrastinate until the end to merge.
I learned to speed up on acceleration lane and merge in the last 30% b/c it's easier to merge on almost the same speed than being slower.
If a regular lane ends, one should drive to the end. If traffic is dense you shouldn't merge before (only if the other lane is empty)...
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Old February 8th, 2015, 04:01 PM   #10283
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Originally Posted by Xusein View Post
Driver ability in the US depends where you go. In some areas like NYC and Boston, it seems like signalling before changing lanes is an optional thing for many people. I don't recommend driving in either city. I'm from the east coast and have been in Seattle for a few months, drivers here are more timid and uncertain in general, they procrastinate until the end to merge. I feel like a more aggressive driver out here than back east.
Passed through Boston a couple of years ago on the way home from Maine. Used 93 (through the Big Dig and the Southeast Expressway) rather than 128 because going through the city would be more visually interesting. I don't know if there was a full moon that day or something but those people are wacko. (And I hate generalizations, and love Boston.)
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Old February 8th, 2015, 07:18 PM   #10284
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Even using Rt. 128 would be going way out of the way if you were driving to New York and other various points south from Maine. The quickest way would be to use I-495, I-90/Massachusetts Turnpike, I-84, and I-91.
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Old February 8th, 2015, 08:39 PM   #10285
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Typical driver in "a hurry" in Warsaw, Poland and road merging . Does Americans drive like that too?

They installed now many concrete barriers at the end of merging in order to "calm" that kind of behavior .
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Old February 8th, 2015, 10:36 PM   #10286
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I have roughly about 20 years of experience driving in Europe and roughly about 20 years of experience driving in the States. In my opinion, the good thing about the typical American driver is a relatively high level of courtesy and a relatively low level of aggression, while the bad thing about the typical American driver is a relatively low level of driving skill. I think far more European drivers than American drivers react quickly and correctly when faced with a challenging emergency situation. If we could randomly select 100 American drivers and 100 European drivers and test them on a racetrack under comparable conditions, I would bet money on the Europeans having the faster average lap times by a significant margin.
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Old February 9th, 2015, 01:35 AM   #10287
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Passed through Boston a couple of years ago on the way home from Maine. Used 93 (through the Big Dig and the Southeast Expressway) rather than 128 because going through the city would be more visually interesting. I don't know if there was a full moon that day or something but those people are wacko. (And I hate generalizations, and love Boston.)
In most countries driving in big cities is a bit "crazy", or better say "different" than in rural regions or small cities
Someone coming from Scottish Highlands to London would probably say the same what you said about Boston. On the other hand some of the "city" drivers would struggle to drive fast on narrow, often single lane, roads in rural areas.

I guess the same is in the US. People driving in congested places like NYC or Boston develop different road etiquette and different set of skills than guys driving trucks on gravel roads.
It doesn't mean that some of them are better drivers than the others, they are just different, adapted to their road environment.

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I have roughly about 20 years of experience driving in Europe and roughly about 20 years of experience driving in the States. In my opinion, the good thing about the typical American driver is a relatively high level of courtesy and a relatively low level of aggression, while the bad thing about the typical American driver is a relatively low level of driving skill. I think far more European drivers than American drivers react quickly and correctly when faced with a challenging emergency situation. If we could randomly select 100 American drivers and 100 European drivers and test them on a racetrack under comparable conditions, I would bet money on the Europeans having the faster average lap times by a significant margin.
You are probably right with the track situation but I would be careful with generalising and throwing all European drivers into one category. Differences in driving styles are much bigger between European countries than between the US states. What is common between average Italian driver and average Swedish driver? I would say very little. Or between Dutch and Greek? Or Polish and British?
And that's even before we extend the idea of Europe to Ukraine or Russia. But that would be a stretch
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Old February 9th, 2015, 03:14 AM   #10288
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Exactly. I think drivers in most European countries would not respect HOV lanes. I was in Toronto in 2013. I drove on an empty HOV lane while the regular lanes were congested. This would never work in Germany neither Italy!
You have to be careful on those, if you don't have someone in the car, OPP will practically shoot at you And they are always there!
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Old February 9th, 2015, 05:51 AM   #10289
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Even using Rt. 128 would be going way out of the way if you were driving to New York and other various points south from Maine. The quickest way would be to use I-495, I-90/Massachusetts Turnpike, I-84, and I-91.
Depends on traffic. 95 between Providence and New Haven can be pretty quiet, you avoid Hartford, you can take the Merritt and not deal with trucks.... It took me something like nine hours from Brunswick, Me., to my mother's in northeastern New Jersey, using 95, 93, 95 again, 295 around Providence, 95 again...somehow I got up to the Merritt, then the Hutch, the Cross-County Parkway, the Henry Hudson, the GWB, the New Jersey Turnpike and 22. On a Friday. With pouring rain pretty much all the way through Massachusetts so by the time I hit the New York suburbs it was rush hour. The traffic reports suggested the Tappan Zee was worth avoiding, hence my weaving through the Westchester parkways, and I forgot the Henry Hudson Bridge was a toll bridge.

Anyone who's not very familiar with the Northeastern U.S. is now totally lost.
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Old February 9th, 2015, 06:14 AM   #10290
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Good thing I've spent my life traveling Philly to Fall River.

Hi Vince Lombardi Rest Area!

Hi Chinese buffet in East Haven!
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Old February 10th, 2015, 12:03 AM   #10291
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Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
Depends on traffic. 95 between Providence and New Haven can be pretty quiet, you avoid Hartford, you can take the Merritt and not deal with trucks.... It took me something like nine hours from Brunswick, Me., to my mother's in northeastern New Jersey, using 95, 93, 95 again, 295 around Providence, 95 again...somehow I got up to the Merritt, then the Hutch, the Cross-County Parkway, the Henry Hudson, the GWB, the New Jersey Turnpike and 22. On a Friday. With pouring rain pretty much all the way through Massachusetts so by the time I hit the New York suburbs it was rush hour. The traffic reports suggested the Tappan Zee was worth avoiding, hence my weaving through the Westchester parkways, and I forgot the Henry Hudson Bridge was a toll bridge.

Anyone who's not very familiar with the Northeastern U.S. is now totally lost.
I used to do very much that same route, at least the bottom half of it, when my prior wife had friends in Stratford and then Bridgeport, CT. Coming from down near Atlantic City, we went up there a couple of times a year. And during the 80s, I worked for a company HQ'ed in Wilton CT, so the trip from Philly had to be done a couple times a year. NJTPK, GWB and so on. There simply was no easy way.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 01:47 AM   #10292
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
Wait, so we're defining good driving by the ability to drive a manual now?

Well, at least I can parallel park.

(33 years of driving and never been at fault in an accident....)
It's debatable but driving a manual requires more attention to driving. I'm not saying ALL drivers in the US are bad, I'm just saying overall the average driving skill is worse than in Europe.


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Originally Posted by John Maynard View Post
Disciplined drivers in Poland, what a joke . Every time I go downtown and there is slow down or a traffic jam, or simply someone wants to drive faster, they "automatically" turn right into the bus lane When a pedestrian is crossing on zebras, they make an avoidance maneuver No body respect the speed limit When you are driving 60-70 km/h in town center and someone is in a hurry, he fishtail you and hit the brakes just in front of you to "punish" you . Near schools or hospitals no one slows down . And that are only some examples on how Polish drivers are "disciplined" and respectful of the traffic laws .
Truth is that many Polish drivers are generally more attentive to their surrounding and anticipate faster, because of bad drivers. Unlike in Western Europe, were people are usually more attentive to their speed indicator and traffic rules.
Everything you described I see daily here in the US, but you were on point with a keyword there, ATTENTIVENESS. Drivers in the US are by far less attentive to their surroundings, other drivers, and especially pedestrians. Yes there is a fair share of aggressive and crazy drivers over in Poland but overall I felt like the average driver was much better than most places in the US.

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Originally Posted by John Maynard View Post
In comparison, Germans are far more disciplined and law-abiding drivers; however, they do have their share of stupid drivers too as Kanadzie wrote.UOTE]
Stupid drivers are everywhere, I was never trying to say otherwise.

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Originally Posted by John Maynard View Post
America drivers are in IMHO quite well disciplined. Just look at the HOV lane, which would be unthinkable in most places in Europe, because no one will respect them .
Also, the flash light incomprehension is not necessarily an indicator of poor driving, but maybe in America they don't teach this ?
Well you would obey the HOV lane once you get a or are threatened with a $600+ fine right? In Texas for example they use infrared cameras to catch HOV violators. In places without these cameras like Los Angeles for example it doesn't take long to find somebody in the HOV lane who isn't supposed to be there, risking a nice fine of course. This is basically like speed cameras in Europe, they place them in areas they want people to slow down in. They may or may not teach it here depending on the state/city but the driver education is often poor and its very easy to get a license in the US.

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If speed limits were based on the worst drivers, Poland would probably have one of the lowest speed limits in EU . Though, they increased them recently, that in spite they had the First traffic-related death and serious injuries rate in the whole EU, but it was for the motorways and expressways, were this rate is the lowest of all kind of roads .
Poland has poor infrastructure for a country of its size, obviously thats changing fast but still very much behind of where it should be ideally. The traffic-related fatalities will decrease as the infrastructure gets better.

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Originally Posted by John Maynard View Post
For the educational point, I was never taught how to drive high-speed in CH, and it was quite frightening the first time I quit CH to Germany, but I got used to and enjoyed it very quickly .
Really? Thats unexpected!

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Originally Posted by MichiH View Post
I'm German and don't agree.


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Originally Posted by MichiH View Post
I try to avoid parking parallel. I'm not used to do it and I think I'm to stupid .
Avoiding parallel parking is different than not knowing how to and especially not being required to know how to when obtaining your license. Just like in the US maybe you live in the suburbs and have plenty of regular parking. However even in the US when you drive into a city you more than often need to parallel park.

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Originally Posted by MichiH View Post
There are many stupid drivers on German roads. I happens very often that drivers try a lane change w/o signaling or not checking if there's a car on the left lane... .
I saw maybe a few cars not using their signal but I did not see anyone blocking the left lane in Germany.

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Originally Posted by MichiH View Post
On the other hand, I love chaotic driving in Italy. I was in Turin for four days one year ago. Back in Germany I passed the first traffic light at the airport. My co-driver said "you should return to German driving style. Light was red" .
I forgot about Italy..


Quote:
Exactly. I think drivers in most European countries would not respect HOV lanes. I was in Toronto in 2013. I drove on an empty HOV lane while the regular lanes were congested. This would never work in Germany neither Italy!

I think North American drivers are more disciplined although an American co-worker of mine always says "Americans are stupid" on many matters (politics, arms, debt,...).
You are a risk taker and got lucky lol. Canada can be pretty strict with traffic violations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xusein View Post
Driver ability in the US depends where you go. In some areas like NYC and Boston, it seems like signalling before changing lanes is an optional thing for many people. I don't recommend driving in either city. I'm from the east coast and have been in Seattle for a few months, drivers here are more timid and uncertain in general, they procrastinate until the end to merge. I feel like a more aggressive driver out here than back east.
I agree completely, I felt that out west the drivers are less aggressive and actually drive better. Even in places like California it was nothing like the east coast.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichiH View Post
I learned to speed up on acceleration lane and merge in the last 30% b/c it's easier to merge on almost the same speed than being slower.
If a regular lane ends, one should drive to the end. If traffic is dense you shouldn't merge before (only if the other lane is empty)...
You learned correctly then! People who merge too early often disrupt the flow of traffic if they cut off a car or may or may not be at highway speeds yet. Entering at the last second is not good either. Ideally you should begin to merge towards the end of the lane taking full advantage to get to highway speeds and give traffic on the highway plenty of time to see your entering the highway.

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Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
Passed through Boston a couple of years ago on the way home from Maine. Used 93 (through the Big Dig and the Southeast Expressway) rather than 128 because going through the city would be more visually interesting. I don't know if there was a full moon that day or something but those people are wacko. (And I hate generalizations, and love Boston.)
Driving in the Boston area you learn the term "m*******" and apply it to the drivers. Terrible. I've done the same drive from central Long Island to Boston and back. For me honestly rush hour in Boston was the worst and driving into Long Island it can be hit or miss with traffic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Maynard View Post
Typical driver in "a hurry" in Warsaw, Poland and road merging . Does Americans drive like that too?

They installed now many concrete barriers at the end of merging in order to "calm" that kind of behavior .
I've seen that here too, maybe with more traffic typically.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post
I have roughly about 20 years of experience driving in Europe and roughly about 20 years of experience driving in the States. In my opinion, the good thing about the typical American driver is a relatively high level of courtesy and a relatively low level of aggression, while the bad thing about the typical American driver is a relatively low level of driving skill. I think far more European drivers than American drivers react quickly and correctly when faced with a challenging emergency situation. If we could randomly select 100 American drivers and 100 European drivers and test them on a racetrack under comparable conditions, I would bet money on the Europeans having the faster average lap times by a significant margin.
I can agree with this for the most part.



Sorry for derailing the thread everyone! I was just making a general rant-like comment.

Last edited by I-275westcoastfl; February 10th, 2015 at 02:01 AM.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 03:36 AM   #10293
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It's debatable but driving a manual requires more attention to driving.
It's not necessarily true. Even if you think that you change gears effortlessly and without thinking it stills occupies part of you attention. It might be only a small part but in some crucial moments, when every part of second matters, it can make a difference.
I learned to drive in Poland driving manual cars but I actually prefer automatics. Of course the problem is that there are some truly atrocious automatic transmissions on the market but if you get a good one it really is great stuff and actually I think it let you concentrate more on what's happening around the car. Even if just by a small margin.

Quote:
Everything you described I see daily here in the US, but you were on point with a keyword there, ATTENTIVENESS. Drivers in the US are by far less attentive to their surroundings, other drivers, and especially pedestrians. Yes there is a fair share of aggressive and crazy drivers over in Poland but overall I felt like the average driver was much better than most places in the US.
Maybe average Polish driver has better technical skills (like power sliding etc ) but I have to say I way prefer driving in the US, or in the UK, or even in Spain. I feel 10x safer in any of those countries than in Poland.
Poland is full of wannabe macho morons trying to prove they can drive F1 car on city streets even if they drive 15 year old VW Golf.
I rather prefer lost farmer in Kansas or slow pensioner in Florida,

Quote:
Poland has poor infrastructure for a country of its size, obviously thats changing fast but still very much behind of where it should be ideally. The traffic-related fatalities will decrease as the infrastructure gets better.
And when social attitudes to driving change. People in Poland still just assume that law is there to be broken. Like during the communism. Somehow speeding in city you can say that you defy the "system"

Quote:
I agree completely, I felt that out west the drivers are less aggressive and actually drive better. Even in places like California it was nothing like the east coast.
Well, drivers in LA are as aggressive as in NYC or Boston, it's just the fact that they spend more time on freeways and that's where this behaviour is more visible. I have experienced more bad freeway driving in California than anywhere else.


Quote:
Sorry for derailing the thread everyone! I was just making a general rant-like comment.
Well, I do the same
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Old February 10th, 2015, 11:30 AM   #10294
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in Europe the dumbest stereotpyical blonde woman can drive a manual and parallel park. .
Of course she can
All of my female friends have one thing in common - they all have problems with parking - especially parallel parking...and I'm from Europe

Last edited by navigator1; February 10th, 2015 at 02:14 PM.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 01:39 PM   #10295
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Of course she can
All of my female friends have one thing in common - they all have problems with parking - especially parallel parking...and I'm from Europe
I know some blond girls who drive probably better than 80% "wannabe" F1 drivers commenting on this forum.
One of them (dark blond) can park better than anyone else I know, including myself. The last thing is not difficult as I'm not actually that fantastic at it

So be careful with your statements
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Old February 10th, 2015, 02:13 PM   #10296
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And Danica Patrick is better driver than all off us...combined...

So what's your point?
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Old February 10th, 2015, 03:07 PM   #10297
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Wow. The topics on these threads change faster than an 8 year old with ADD.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 07:19 PM   #10298
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I saw maybe a few cars not using their signal but I did not see anyone blocking the left lane in Germany.
Well, if the Autobahn is totally empty... Yes. Most of the drivers use the right lane. If there is nose-to-tail traffic, the left lane is the most busiest one. If there's just "dense" traffic, there are many left or middle lane hoggers - especially in metropolitan areas during rush hour. I'm used to drive on Autobahns like this (e.g. A81 Heilbronn - Stuttgart, 2x3 lanes with AADT 90,000-130,000 vehicles/day). It's very annoying (note, one can also block the left lane while driving 180km/h ). There's a big speed difference on German Autobahns compared to US or Canadian highways.

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Originally Posted by I-275westcoastfl View Post
I forgot about Italy..
There's a huge difference b/n Germany and Italy!

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You are a risk taker and got lucky lol. Canada can be pretty strict with traffic violations.
Why, I had 4 co-drivers on board .
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Old February 10th, 2015, 08:40 PM   #10299
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And Danica Patrick is better driver than all off us...combined...

So what's your point?
My point as pointless as yours

Let's try stick to the US Interstates.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 10:42 PM   #10300
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Yet, my point was the abolishing of speed limits in long and boring, rural and straight, Interstate Highways and freeways .

Then I-275... and others answered that Americans are unfit to drive faster because they do not have the experience and are "uneducated and poor drivers", just like kids behind wheels. Which I respond: Of course they don't have the "experience" because they never drove faster than 65-75 mph and are used to strict enforcement of these limits !
For the lack of experience, it was my situation too, and I gave an example latter.

OFF-TOPIC: BTW., there is a parallel here in Europe about gun control issues, how we shouldn't allow law-abiding citizens to own a gun: the same is being said in Europe, because people are: "irresponsible, not mature enough, not able to defend themselves", same as Americans on their drivers .
Is this the kind of society we want: because "People are unfit and too stupid to be responsible"?


Then came the stereotype of the blonde behind the wheels .
Then I-275... said that we European are the best drivers in the world, because we have manual cars and lots of parallel parking . My response is: (semi-)automatic cars are safer than manual one because you don't have to concentrate on gears and clutch. Also, it's extremely nasty to change all the time gears and clutch when you are stuck in a traffic jam . Moreover, if (semi-)automatic gears were more dangerous it wouldn't be adopted on F1 and almost all racing cars and sport cars nowadays .
Then someone answered that we European have far more skills and are way better than US drivers, as if any decent scientific study was conducted on this matter.
My answer is: To obtain a driver's license in Europe, it won't take you 1 or 2 working day as in many States in America, but more likely 1 or more months, there can be find a part of the answer.
However, when you go to the Motor Vehicle Department in Poland, all your acts and sayings are now recorded, even when you go to the counter your nose gets directly exposed in front of a cctv camera and mic before you can see the lady, examiners records you, to be used against you in case of bribery attempt; because for decades people unable to pass their driver's exam just bought their license .

Then it was something on road merges, which I posted a video to show how it is in Poland, and asked vs. American on Interstate freeways.
Then answered that US drivers are worst of all kind and even crazier than Polish drivers already are .
From there it has completely derailed and was gibberish .
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