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Old September 11th, 2009, 08:09 AM   #741
TheCat
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I find it interesting that in general it seems that in Europe speed limits on motorways are really high whereas inside cities they are very low, whereas it is the opposite in North America. Well, at least that's what I find in Canada, but I think the US is usually the same.

For example, I find that in general the speed limits on the streets of Toronto are reasonable. Most of our main streets have a limit of 60 km/h, and some streets (in fact, many in the suburbs) have a limit of 70 km/h. Most people go about 10 km/h over the limit and it's usually fine. Limits of 50 and 40 usually occur on small residential streets (usually 50, with school zones having 40; there are also places where a flashing sign indicates that 40 applies when the sign flashes, during school hours, and otherwise it is 50). Limits of 30 km/h or below are almost non-existent. I don't think I've ever seen a street with such a limit in the Toronto area.

On the other hand, on the motorways, the situation here is the same as in the US. It's 100 km/h on all of them (110 in some provinces), including on long straight sections of high quality roads. The only exception are urban expressways, where the limit is usually 90 km/h.

The reason for this is probably related to Europe's older cities, which have smaller streets that often wind and go up and down slopes. Also, in Europe there is much more multi-modal transportation (bicycles, trams, etc.). But the side effect of this is that newer streets that are of much higher standards automatically get marked down.

I think the motorways/freeways here in Canada (well, in Ontario) should have a default limit of 120 km/h. I would not support anything higher, because it is just an unfortunate fact that the standards of our freeways are lower than the ones in many European countries in terms of pavement quality (the construction/design is good I think, but due to bad weather and lack of investment the pavement usually deteriorates to very bad levels, and it is not rare to have serious bumps on the 400-series freeways, which are of the highest class in the province of Ontario). While people do go faster (I've driven 130 and even 140 before), 120 is the most optimal one IMHO. The current 100 limit is too low however, and like some people mentioned about the US, is never followed even closely ("going with the flow" in Ontario usually means 120-130).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebasepoiss View Post
Which also upsets me in Estonia, is that we don't bother to put extra speed limit signs on rural roads. Which means that a dirt road with a 90km/h speed limit can have sharp, blind 90-degree turns which are trouble already at 60km/h.
I think a curve warning sign is enough in this case, since it is the driver's responsibility to reduce the speed in this case. It wouldn't make much sense to place speed limit signs before each obstacle in the road, but it is VERY important to let drivers know that an obstacle exists, especially in the dark.

What they actually do in North America (and I believe in Europe it is not common?) is to place advisory speed limits (number on yellow background) under signs warning of various curves or on on-/off-ramps. I actually like these, because I find that they provide a good safety margin on some blind curves, especially when the car you drive doesn't handle like a sports car. They are usually about 10-20 below the comfortable speed, but it's fine to go a bit above because they are just advisory and have no legal restriction. I find that following them approximately prevents the feeling of the centripetal force on the vehicle's occupants
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Old September 11th, 2009, 09:54 AM   #742
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An interesting thing about the U.S. and Canada is that rural two-lane highways do have higher speed limits in the west. Above 60 mph is no exception, while Germany has 100 km/h as a general non-urban limit, which is the highest in Europe. (though I thought some remote Swedish roads allow up to 110). Some two-lane roads in Texas allow 75 mph (120 km/h).
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Old September 11th, 2009, 04:35 PM   #743
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.... Another thing, I hate the dramatic speed change you get sometimes, I once went from a 100kmh to 50kmh what the hell is that!?!
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Old September 11th, 2009, 05:47 PM   #744
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Quote:
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In Kosovo a speed limit of 35km/h is quite common in sharp bends and narrow roads... There is one in my village ... Not as unusual in the US but in Europe it can be very unusual to not have a speed limit ending with 0.
It's even worse in Albania with ridiculous 20 km/h before curves.

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An interesting thing about the U.S. and Canada is that rural two-lane highways do have higher speed limits in the west. Above 60 mph is no exception, while Germany has 100 km/h as a general non-urban limit, which is the highest in Europe. (though I thought some remote Swedish roads allow up to 110). Some two-lane roads in Texas allow 75 mph (120 km/h).
Or 130 km/h in the Northern Territory (Australia). Hungarian 2-lane motorroads also allow 110 km/h (I think Croatian too, or just 4-laned, not sure).
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Old September 12th, 2009, 04:36 AM   #745
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It's even worse in Albania with ridiculous 20 km/h before curves.
I guess not that bad when you consider the landscape difference in Albania and Kosovo. Albania is more mountainous and another thing is in Albania they have less crash barriers than in Kosovo. 35kmph should really be 30, it is just giving people a chance to go 40 and get away with it in dangerous situations.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 05:27 AM   #746
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The Northern Territory state used to have no speed limits.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 07:13 AM   #747
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Quote:
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.... Another thing, I hate the dramatic speed change you get sometimes, I once went from a 100kmh to 50kmh what the hell is that!?!
That's called a speed trap lol.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 03:06 PM   #748
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In Britain the convention is this:

- built-up area single carriageway - 30 mph (~50 km/h)
- built-up area dual carriageway - 40 mph (~60-70 km/h)
- rural single carriageway - 60 mph (~100 km/h)
- rural dual carriageway and motorway - 70 mph (~120 km/h)
There are those in-between roads, for example grade-separated urban dual carriageways with fairly narrow lanes, short acceleration lanes and heavy traffic that usually have a 50 mph limit, as well as winding rural roads with heavy traffic (the A6 in the Peak district for exampls).

Most of the times such rules are applied logically but there's a bit of A610 between Nuthall and Heanor which used to be national speed limited (70) but got downgraded to 40 and 50 - very annoying.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 03:14 PM   #749
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The Northern Territory state used to have no speed limits.
or cars...
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Old September 12th, 2009, 04:36 PM   #750
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Quote:
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.... Another thing, I hate the dramatic speed change you get sometimes, I once went from a 100kmh to 50kmh what the hell is that!?!
Lol, in my state (New South Wales), we go from 100km/h straight to 40km/h for school zones which are like a few hundred metres long. It used to go down to 60km/h but then this person who runs "The Pedestrian Council" (not a government body) complained and got it down to 40km/h. He was also the one who got school zones implemented in the first place. Now there are 40km/h school zones which run for several kilometres, enforced by speed cameras on major arterial roads :\.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 09:32 PM   #751
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCat View Post


I think a curve warning sign is enough in this case, since it is the driver's responsibility to reduce the speed in this case. It wouldn't make much sense to place speed limit signs before each obstacle in the road, but it is VERY important to let drivers know that an obstacle exists, especially in the dark.

What they actually do in North America (and I believe in Europe it is not common?) is to place advisory speed limits (number on yellow background) under signs warning of various curves or on on-/off-ramps. I actually like these, because I find that they provide a good safety margin on some blind curves, especially when the car you drive doesn't handle like a sports car. They are usually about 10-20 below the comfortable speed, but it's fine to go a bit above because they are just advisory and have no legal restriction. I find that following them approximately prevents the feeling of the centripetal force on the vehicle's occupants
This is a good example. The blue squared sign means advisory speed.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 12:55 AM   #752
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In norway they now wants to reduce all speeds to max 70km/h except on the motorways/separate lane roads.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 09:28 PM   #753
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Obsession with lowering number of accidents is really going to far. Modern vehicles are superb machines but soon people would have to travel with the speeds they traveled 50 years ago.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 09:31 PM   #754
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I agree. While I think reducing traffic fatalities is a very good thing, it has to remain realistic. The number of traffic fatalities dropped threefold in most countries in the past 30 years, while traffic increased like threefold too.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 09:48 PM   #755
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In my opinion, further reduce in number of accidents is only possible with extreme (and stupid) measures.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 09:52 PM   #756
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They could give some more attention to driving under influence. But many police departments choose for the easy speed camera. Traffic safety is there to generate revenue

The Polish police detained 86,000 people last year for DUI. That's quite something. All potential traffic accidents.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 11:03 PM   #757
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They detained a lot of people in Slovenia too. But police is never around on Fridays or Saturdays when a lot of people are driving under influence. They have to take serious offenders back to police station and that means police loose around 30 minutes-1 hour of traffic patrol. So on those "busy" days they are never around.
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Old September 14th, 2009, 05:21 AM   #758
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On the subject of low speed limits in IL, not only its too low for a midwestern state(even 70 is low IMO), but they strict on enforcing it on what I read, but OH and VA is much worse.
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Old September 14th, 2009, 09:11 AM   #759
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We have tons here. A flat, strait, and separated 2x2 or larger highway is usually 80km/h (50mph) max. On Vancouver Island, there is a highway that is basically a flat line for the most part...the maximum speed is 110km/h (68mph)...ridiculous
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Old September 14th, 2009, 08:18 PM   #760
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In school zones and some other "Dangerous" areas speed limit of 40 or 50 km seems O.K. (btw in the photos of the first page are km or miles ?)
But 100 km speed limit in a narrow street, sorry but its really dangerous. Might cause deaths
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