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Old January 5th, 2015, 04:09 PM   #12061
verreme
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
When have they built the route to France via the Viella tunnels?
The first tube (Túnel Alfonso XIII) opened in 1948, the second one in 2007. Note that the newer tube (Túnel Juan Carlos I) is two-way, and the old one is an emergency tube that's also used by trucks carrying hazardous materials, which are forbidden on Juan Carlos I. I don't know when did they build N-230/N125 north of Viella.
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Old January 6th, 2015, 01:01 AM   #12062
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Finally - it will be legal, as the Schengen Borders Code makes it clear that you must not be impeded when crossing the border, but it is silent on the issue of surveillance (as long as you don't have to slow down/stop for it).
Well, you do have to slow down. There is a limit of 30 km/h on every Finnish Schengen crossing, accompanied with a notification of camera surveillance.

The public crossings, at least. Not sure about private ice roads.
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Old January 6th, 2015, 01:42 AM   #12063
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When have they built the route to France via the Viella tunnels?
It wasn't a route to France indeed, just a tunnel to Aran valley (which its capital is Viella).

In 1920, king Alfonso XIII (great grandfather of current king Felipe VI) visited the valley and it was requested to him to build a tunnel because the valley was completely isolated with the rest of Spain.

As I said, you can point a line with north Pyrenees and south Pyrenees looking where rivers go. For instance, this geographic boundary in Andorra will be located in Envalira pass, where Pas de la Casa is northern Pyrenees and the rest of the country is southern Pyrenees. Between Spain and France the geographic boundary in the Pyrenees matches in a lot of cases with the real border but not always.

Works were halted because of Spanish war which finished in 1939, just half year before WWII started.

After Paris recovery by allied forces where some Spaniards were inside (those who emigrated after Spanish war to France and six months later another war started), these ones planned to attack Spain. I try to sum-up because.

It was in late October 1944, one year that "winter had started too soon". They hadn't good army but one of the boss was born in the valley and knew it quite well as well as they had the "surprise factor".

In October 1944 the only way to arrive Viella was from Barcelona via Bonaigua pass with a barely country path and totally covered of snow.

The civil guard asked for miltary aid to Barcelona but they took several days to arrive due to the snow. They were... 50.000 people against those 4.000 who had make the "invasion".

They advanced into Spain quite fast the first day but they had to stop because local police was located in good positions.

It is known that the fact that Bonaigua pass had so much snow was quite relevant. In one side army troops took a while to arrive but in other side, invasor troops wanted to arrive there. Maybe attacking from the mountains will isolate totally the valley.

It was a five days war only in that valley. It wasn't the unique but the biggest (we could chat a lot about it but it is more history rather than borders).

Spanish government decided to take again the tunnel project and it was opened three and a half years later. With it, Viella wasn't isolated but it was a strategic tunnel rather than for communications. They didn't do any business with France... and for those more than three years, I think that there was as many military people in the valley as population trying to avoid another attack.

The tunnel was opened to traffic and it operated for a long time.

It is quite curious because it was considered, in 2000, the most dangerous tunnel in Europe (new tunnel had the project in 1989 and works started after several changes in 2002) and... in so many years they had only two accidents.


Wikipedia entrance for this tunnel (in Spanish) talks quite well about safety problems
http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/T%C3%BAnel_de_Viella

But... the tunnel is not international, it just reach Viella.
I guess that route to the border had existed always cos it is the natural way (going down into the valley).
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Old January 6th, 2015, 02:03 AM   #12064
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Well, you do have to slow down. There is a limit of 30 km/h on every Finnish Schengen crossing, accompanied with a notification of camera surveillance.
Do authorities give a reason for this?
(not that I wanted to condemn Finland for surveilling its intra-Schengen borders - with today's masses of economic migrants, it quickly becomes an issue of national security.
I say any EU regulation that might undermine national security of a member state should be treated as void. It is, of course, difficult to draw an exact line of when this is the case ...)
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Old January 6th, 2015, 12:42 PM   #12065
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Do authorities give a reason for this?
Why should they?

The free-flow traffic is only one aspect regarding to the arrangement at the borders. The Schengen agreement allows any action at the border based on the local jurisdiction if they do not have border control as an objective. It is, for example, allowed to set up arrangements ensuring traffic safety at the borders.

The Schengen Border Code introduces two contradicting rules:

Member States shall remove all obstacles to fluid traffic flow at road crossing-points at internal borders, in particular any speed limits not exclusively based on road-safety considerations. At the same time, Member States shall be prepared to provide for facilities for checks in the event that internal border controls are reintroduced.

So, the authorities are allowed to set up a channeling arrangement as a preparatory measure, and this arrangement definitely requires a speed limit for road safety

What comes to the Finnish-Norwegian border, the rules are slightly different because Norway is not an EU Country, and not belonging to the EU Customs Union. Anyone carrying goods to declare must use the official border crossing points, and the customs are entitled to perform checks. (Technically Norway is not a member to the Schengen agreement: It has made a separate agreement with EU to implement the Schengen arrangements.)
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Old January 6th, 2015, 12:47 PM   #12066
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Well, you do have to slow down. There is a limit of 30 km/h on every Finnish Schengen crossing, accompanied with a notification of camera surveillance.
That is not exactly true. The new street in Tornio crossing the border (Krannikatu) close to the new bus terminus does not have that speed limit (if not introduced since my last visit).
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Old January 6th, 2015, 12:56 PM   #12067
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I dont know why you talk a lot about video surveillance at border crossings. Afterall there is video surveillance almost everywhere. There cameras on motorways to check te traffic flow. Where there is toll for truck there are cameras on gates. We are almost everywehre under video surveillance.
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Old January 6th, 2015, 07:45 PM   #12068
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So, the authorities are allowed to set up a channeling arrangement as a preparatory measure, and this arrangement definitely requires a speed limit for road safety
My understanding of the Schengen Borders Code is slightly different to yours. It is intended that traffic can pass freely, but an area should be available for conducting checks if needs be. That should be to the side (or perhaps in the middle) of the road - but it shouldn't be a permanent feature. The best example I can think of is on the Czech D1/Polish A1 - there's an area at the border that can be used if needs be. But there should be no permanent speed limit or barrier. I think the EU has consciously chosen to ignore lower limits provided they aren't being used to systematically control travellers - after all, the Schengen Borders Code is silent on the issue of actually monitoring the border. As I recall, the original intent for Schengen was that traffic would slow down (but not stop) through manned border crossings. It was only with the passing of the Single European Act (and subsequent abolishing of Customs controls within the EU) that meant that Schengen had to evolve into the current format.
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Old January 6th, 2015, 10:50 PM   #12069
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Talking about impedements for Schengen border crossings ... is there any way to impede the Polish customs officers from stopping on a daily basis lots of vehicles in Budzisko (PL/LT)Since 2012, each time I crossed that border I saw them there ... which is why I try to avoid that road too.
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Old January 7th, 2015, 07:08 AM   #12070
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Originally Posted by Eulanthe View Post
My understanding of the Schengen Borders Code is slightly different to yours. It is intended that traffic can pass freely, but an area should be available for conducting checks if needs be. That should be to the side (or perhaps in the middle) of the road - but it shouldn't be a permanent feature.
There is no such a statement. The member countries have a wide freedom to interpret the text as they wish.
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Old January 7th, 2015, 12:56 PM   #12071
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That is not exactly true. The new street in Tornio crossing the border (Krannikatu) close to the new bus terminus does not have that speed limit (if not introduced since my last visit).
Maybe so. I haven't visited Tornio for some time either, as far as I know the area around Krannigatan (Swedish side) is under construction anyway. Last time I was there, and also as seen on Google Street View, there aren't even country names signposted at the border.

However, on the Finnish side right after the borderline Krannikatu ends in a roundabout so you'll have to slow down anyway. The cameras are easily seen right next to the roundabout with Street View.
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Last edited by OulaL; January 7th, 2015 at 01:13 PM.
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Old January 7th, 2015, 11:43 PM   #12072
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There is no such a statement. The member countries have a wide freedom to interpret the text as they wish.
I'm not so sure that's true. The EU clearly intervened at La Jonquera when the French and Spanish were using the old infrastructure to carry out 'identity' controls. What you posted - as I read it - means that they should be able to reintroduce checks if needs be - but they are also required to maintain fluid traffic flow. There's a press release from the EU on this -

Quote:
Permanent infrastructure for the cases of a temporary reintroduction of border control may be maintained to the necessary extent, as long as it does not represent an obstacle to fluid traffic flow and lowered speed limits. In the view of the Commission, it is however unacceptable that some Member States maintain speed limits for "traffic security" reasons, in particular when the old infrastructure is still present at the crossing-points.
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Old January 8th, 2015, 06:18 AM   #12073
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That's true but to compare...in my region there are four international crossings.
One of them which has more traffic (Somport tunnel) was built after Schenger and without booths (and without place for them in case of).
The other three ones remain former booths and passes were refurbished to avoid the maximum speed in each area. Although they could be used for random checks, no police presence is there
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Old January 8th, 2015, 06:54 AM   #12074
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Originally Posted by Eulanthe View Post
I'm not so sure that's true. The EU clearly intervened at La Jonquera when the French and Spanish were using the old infrastructure to carry out 'identity' controls. What you posted - as I read it - means that they should be able to reintroduce checks if needs be - but they are also required to maintain fluid traffic flow. There's a press release from the EU on this -
NATO Mode (No Action Talk Only) - arrangements accepted. The World is full of point speed limits. Why to bother?
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Old January 8th, 2015, 11:51 PM   #12075
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Border crossing Vrbica-Valcani between Serbia and Romania (report is in Hungarian to make things more interesting I guess)

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Гранични прелаз Врбица према Румунији:

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Old January 9th, 2015, 12:05 AM   #12076
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Maybe it is in Hungarian because Hungarians are living on both sides of the border ? It wouldn't be a surprise because for instance Hungarians live also along the Slovakia/Ukraine border just like Poles live along the Lithuania/Belarus border (in these cases, as you can imagine, communication is quite complicated nowadays).
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Old January 9th, 2015, 12:24 AM   #12077
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Maybe it is in Hungarian because Hungarians are living on both sides of the border ? It wouldn't be a surprise because for instance Hungarians live also along the Slovakia/Ukraine border just like Poles live along the Lithuania/Belarus border (in these cases, as you can imagine, communication is quite complicated nowadays).
It is, and the lady in end of video lives in Romania but speaks Serbian.
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Old January 9th, 2015, 12:29 AM   #12078
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Actually that lady is from a village populated by Bulgarians (and her last name ends in -ov too). Now that would have been an extra twist, if she spoke in Bulgarian
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Old January 9th, 2015, 04:24 AM   #12079
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Crossing to Reynosa México from McAllen Texas.




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Old January 9th, 2015, 05:26 PM   #12080
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It is, and the lady in end of video lives in Romania but speaks Serbian.
What does the woman say?
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