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Old August 21st, 2007, 06:17 PM   #241
ElviS77
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Originally Posted by SmarterChild View Post
Isn't it true that the speed limit-less german autobahn is one of the safest road networks in the world?
True, but the accident rates in Germany are considerably higher than in Sweden with a 110 kph max speed limit (though trials with 120 have started in a few select places), Norway (100 max, plus bad roads in general) and the UK (70 mph/112 kph). I'm not saying that speed limits is everything - accidents went down when Denmark raised their motorway limit from 110 to 130 - but the more highway safety concientious countries are concerned about speed as well, and there is considerable evidence it works.

Still, I do not think motorway speed limits are the key issue (many countries with a 100-130 limit have higher accident rates than Germany - perhaps most notably the US), but it can be an indicator: Countries with high speed limits on their motorways often have a virtually unchecked speeding problem on their regular highways. Speed limits above 55mph/90kph on ordinary 2-lane roads are (with a few exceptions) fatal accidents not just waiting to happen, but happening continuously.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:00 PM   #242
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I think it also has to do with proper driving education (I guess that's a big problem in for example America). You get relatively a lot of freedom in Germany, but they also learned to take their responsablities much better. Accidents are often more seriously, but happen relatively less.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:10 PM   #243
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I think it also has to do with proper driving education (I guess that's a big problem in for example America). You get relatively a lot of freedom in Germany, but they also learned to take their responsablities much better. Accidents are often more seriously, but happen relatively less.
To some extent, yes. As I've indicated, I don't oppose a reasonable motorway speed limit (120-130 kph, possibly even higher), but it needs to be combined with a rigid traffic management regime including everything from traffic cops to "intelligent" roads and quality driving education. In addition, it makes sense to be very clear on the difference between a multilane motorway and a 2-lane regular highway. It's the latter that are true killers, also in Germany: 100 kph is way too high on most B roads, and the general speeding habit of the drivers doesn't help.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:22 PM   #244
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Tell me why I couldn't drive 100km/h here.



This is the B9 between Kevelaer and Straelen. A lot of rural roads look like this. On other rural roads even 60km/h could be too fast. The driver just has to change his speed to the circumstances.

Last edited by Jeroen669; August 21st, 2007 at 09:29 PM.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:28 PM   #245
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Another issue is, of course, drink driving. Even in Norway, where you're fined a month's wage and lose your licence for at least a year (two is "normal") for even moderate violations - the limit is .02%, and even .02-.05% might well get you there (in addition, dui is generally not accepted), it is estimated that alcohol is a factor in more than 50% of accidents. In countries which take a more lenient approach, the numbers are even worse. Being responsible when you pilot a ton or two of metal travelling 25 metres plus every second should be self-evident for all drivers; unfortunately it isn't necessarily so.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:55 PM   #246
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Tell me why I couldn't drive 100km/h here.

This is the B9 between Kevelaer and Straelen. A lot of rural roads look like this. On other rural roads even 60km/h could be too fast. The driver just has to change his speed to the circumstances.
It's mostly a matter of physics. As long as a head-on collision is a possibility, anything above 70 would probably end in death or at least very serious injury if an accident were to happen. Then again, 70 would not be acceptable to the average driver on the road on the picture...

...and that is the biggest problem. One should not (even though one can) introduce speed limits that completely violates drivers' perception of what the road can take, and then, when 2-lane roads are built to a standard where a sober, sensible driver feels he or she could do 100-110, perhaps even 120 kph without endagering anyone, even a "compromise" speed limit of 80 or 90 is difficult. This is a serious problem in Norway, since a considerable amount of our roads are good, 2-lane expressways with graded junctions. Speed limit? 80 or (rarer and rarer) 90 kph. People don't accept the limit, and the result is that these are our most dangerous roads.

On quality stretches of 2-lane roads, the amount of traffic typically makes the road dangerous. Average ADT on all Bundesstrassen in Germany is close to 10000, and even though this number includes some city streets and multilane dual carriageways, one can safely say the traffic is quite heavy even on 2-lane stretches. And the mismatch between speed limit and traffic is unfortunately shown in the number of accidents. The only viable solution is to build more dual-lane carriageways or - at least - construction of central barriers. These are, unfortunately, long-term measures. In the short term, reduced speed limits and greater police precence is the only way to reduce the number of accidents.

Don't get me wrong: There are 2-lane roads in this world where I would consider 100 kph reasonably safe. But those are of the quality we see in your picture combined with little traffic (>3-4000 ADT, which might well include the B6, that I do not know). Elsewhere, 90 is more than enough until directions are physically separated.
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Old August 21st, 2007, 11:43 PM   #247
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I don't see so much problems driving 100km/h on long 2laned roads. If you hit a truck with 70/80/100 doesn't matter much.

In the Netherlands, it goes the other way round. Long straight rural roads with AADT under 2000 often get downgraded to 60km/h.
Such things might be good for classifiing roads, but 60km on a rural road with almost zero traffic is just nonsense for drivers.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 12:22 AM   #248
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Sorry, just making sure; Does ADT stand for average daily traffic??
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 12:28 AM   #249
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Yes, it does.

AADT means Annual Average Daily Traffic. You can split that up ik workdays and weekdays, but workdays are more representative for the real traffic volumes on the roads.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 12:43 AM   #250
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I don't see so much problems driving 100km/h on long 2laned roads. If you hit a truck with 70/80/100 doesn't matter much.
Mabye 110, 120 or 130 aswell?
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 12:51 AM   #251
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single laned roads aren't designed for 120 or 130. The lanes are usually narrower (up to 3 m instead of 3,75m) and there is no emergency lane. And your viewing distance is lesser than on motorways, making 120 or 130 much more dangerous as 100km/h.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 01:16 AM   #252
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single laned roads aren't designed for 120 or 130. The lanes are usually narrower (up to 3 m instead of 3,75m) and there is no emergency lane. And your viewing distance is lesser than on motorways, making 120 or 130 much more dangerous as 100km/h.
What speeds are the roads you mean designed for?

But what about a road with 4 m wide lanes and 2 m emergency lanes (total of 12 m) with equally viewing distance as a motorway?
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 01:24 AM   #253
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100 max. Over 100 only belongs on motorways or expressways or that kind of roads.

Germany has a speed limit of 100km/h outside city limits. Excellent for driving at those long wide roads.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 01:34 AM   #254
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100 max. Over 100 only belongs on motorways or expressways or that kind of roads.

Germany has a speed limit of 100km/h outside city limits. Excellent for driving at those long wide roads.
But, what is the arguments for 100 km/h if it isn't the previous arguments you listed? Just curious
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 01:47 AM   #255
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On the expressways I drive around 55-60 mph to conserve gas even though everyone else is going 65-70mph. On street I usually go 5-10 mph over the limit.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 01:59 AM   #256
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In the city center, I usually go within the limits. Both for the higher risk it takes with pedestrians, both because in my hometown controls are relaly really hard, quite obsessive I guess.

In bypass and highways I usually go faster than the speed limits...more or less 10/20 km/h too.

Anyway I need to take really care, because are quite hard controls on motorways...and with for just 10 km/h more than the limit tolerated, here I receive the bill at home of 250 euros+2 points less on the licence.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 02:08 AM   #257
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i once drove a sports car at 190+ kph in the philipines for more than 30km strait in the expressway and 160kph in this mountain road.

speed cameras were not able to iddentify my car because i didn't have my plates on the cops cannot chase me.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 09:04 AM   #258
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In the short term, reduced speed limits and greater police precence is the only way to reduce the number of accidents
I think those measures especially reduce the seriousness of accidents, but not the real cause of them. Things like grade junctions, dangerous curves, slow traffic (pedestrians/bycycles) create way more unsafety. Those are things who have nothing to do with speed limits. Higher speed limits only cause a bigger need to overtake. A good driver knows when that's safe and when it's not, and (for instance) different lines on the pavement (markering?) can help by that.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 02:46 PM   #259
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I think those measures especially reduce the seriousness of accidents, but not the real cause of them. Things like grade junctions, dangerous curves, slow traffic (pedestrians/bycycles) create way more unsafety. Those are things who have nothing to do with speed limits. Higher speed limits only cause a bigger need to overtake. A good driver knows when that's safe and when it's not, and (for instance) different lines on the pavement (markering?) can help by that.
I agree, safe drivers generally do get this. But not always, and - in addition - not all drivers are safe drivers. And as roads get busier (ADT 3-4000 +), the number of unsafe drivers and people who have their unlucky moment increase as well. And as long as new roads aren't built or the new ones aren't rebuilt, lowering of the speed limits is the only effective option. Not just to reduce the seriousness of accidents, but also to reduce numbers, actually. It is quite obvious that as long as the human reaction time is the same when going 100 as when going 70 (and the breaking distance is doubled), more accidents will happen. In addition, reducing speed limits without increasing the police precence only leads to less respect for the speed limits.

That said, the main problem isn't too high speed limits alone, but speed limits combined with inadequate road conditions. And I agree that the main issue is making roads safer. The only thing that is truly effective for busy roads is central guard rails or barriers. As long as head-on collisions may happen, the paradox that removing dangerous curves, junctions etc sometimes INCREASE the dangers on a stretch of road will still exist.
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Old August 22nd, 2007, 03:32 PM   #260
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I don't like such a police state, Police should give crime priority, not speed enforcement. Which won't say i am totally oppose speed enforcement, but they only are checking the speed on easy cash points, instead near schools, dangerous crossings etc.
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