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Author Topic: Should the speed limit on certain stretches of motorway be abolished?  (Read 9780 times)

Offline dentstudent

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I was out this weekend going to Lake Konstance. Much of the motorway between here and there are unlimited, so I could travel at 100mph with impunity (I couldn't go any faster anyway because of the car I've got!). The motorway way a 2 lane carriageway, and where there were junctions, a limit was imposed, restricting speed to 120 kmh (75 mph).

Do you think that stretches of motorway in your country should be de-limited, perhaps according to time of day, traffic flow, proximity to junctions etc?
« Last Edit: 02/07/2007 17:54:16 by dentstudent »


 

Offline Karen W.

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WOW Oue highest speed limit here is 65 miles per hour. LOL I cannot imagine driving 100 miles and hour I would have a heart attack.. LOL No kidding.. Once I had my foot on it and was at 85.. Man if you don't think that was scary I almost flat stopped.. scared the soup out of me. We have 50 mile an hour section required daylight headlight zone between Arcata and Eureka as we have Indianola cut off that has had many fatal auto crashes so they have imposed a slow down and headlight zone 4 lane freeway with intersection on northbound traffic. into north or southbound freeway entrances..it is a mess and a highly patrolled high cost ticket zone.. if you are a local they sock it to you if you are speeding or have no headlights on in daytime! 
 

Offline dentstudent

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scared the soup out of me.

That's a new one on me!  :D
 

Offline dentstudent

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Poland has just brought in a law that, like Sweden, you must drive with your headlights on the whole time. It seems to be done voluntarily in Germany, especially wet weather driving, or for valley roads.
 

Offline Karen W.

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I think they should just make every vehicle regardless to where when the key is turned on the lights come on.. if the engine is off the lights are off all automatic like a lot of motorcycles!
 

another_someone

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It is common in Scandinavia that cars are by law required to have side lights switched on by the ignition - this is because of the high latitudes - it means that during the winter months you have very long hours of darkness, and throughout the year, you have long hours when the sun is very low on the horizon.  The problem is, when it is dark, it is fairly obvious that you should have lights on; but when you are driving with the sun low behind you, it is noty obvious to you, but very obvious to anyone driving opposite you, who simply sees a blinding sun, and a small dark shape emerging from it.

Only thing I don't like about requiring cars to have headlights on all the time is that it makes photography more problematic because you have all these bright lights where you do not want it - but the balance between road safety and photography clearly has to be on the side of road safety.

As for speed limits, until 1973 we did not have speed limits on our motorways - they were introduced as a fuel saving measure, and once introduced, never removed.  De facto, motorway speeds here on open road tend to be about 90mph, despite this being illegal.

Yes, I do enjoy driving in Germany.  When I used to work in Munich, and driving up to Hamburg for the ferry home (in the days when DFDS actually ran a ferry service from Hamburg to Harwich), it was lovely just to open up to 120mph and not have to be looking over my shoulder for police.

The only problem with German driving is tailgating on the fast lane, which makes them very prone to having nasty high speed pile ups (I think they are getting better about that than they used to be).
 

Offline dentstudent

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The only problem with German driving is tailgating on the fast lane, which makes them very prone to having nasty high speed pile ups (I think they are getting better about that than they used to be).

This does happen, but not to any great extent. And certainly to a far lesser extent than I have seen in the UK. It would appear that German drivers, because cars can be travelling substantially faster than you, are aware that they have rear-view mirrors, and use them accordingly.
 

Offline dentstudent

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Only thing I don't like about requiring cars to have headlights on all the time is that it makes photography more problematic because you have all these bright lights where you do not want it

Do you take photo's of traffic? Or the surrounding area? I'm intrigued....
 

another_someone

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The only problem with German driving is tailgating on the fast lane, which makes them very prone to having nasty high speed pile ups (I think they are getting better about that than they used to be).

This does happen, but not to any great extent. And certainly to a far lesser extent than I have seen in the UK. It would appear that German drivers, because cars can be travelling substantially faster than you, are aware that they have rear-view mirrors, and use them accordingly.

As I said, I noticed it less this year than in the past, but my experience was quite the converse to yours, that it does happen more in Germany than in the UK.

You are right that on the autobahns cars are expected to move out of the way sharpish - and there is far less lane hogging than there is in the UK.  Anther difference is that they will also move out into the fast lane more readily - while in the UK, they will wait for a gap in the faster traffic, in Germany, they just make their own gap.  This I imagine makes it more acceptable to move back into the slow lane quicker (if you need to wait a long while until you find a gap to move out into, you are less likely to relinquish that gap than if you know that you will quickly be able to come out again later if you so wish).

Another factor that used to contribute to tailgating was that German cars would not flash the car in front to get off the lane.  In the UK, the normal way of asking someone to move off your lane is to flash your headlights at them, while the Germans tended to sit a few inches off your rear bumper, with their left indicator flashing.
 

Offline Karen W.

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It is common in Scandinavia that cars are by law required to have side lights switched on by the ignition - this is because of the high latitudes - it means that during the winter months you have very long hours of darkness, and throughout the year, you have long hours when the sun is very low on the horizon.  The problem is, when it is dark, it is fairly obvious that you should have lights on; but when you are driving with the sun low behind you, it is noty obvious to you, but very obvious to anyone driving opposite you, who simply sees a blinding sun, and a small dark shape emerging from it.

Only thing I don't like about requiring cars to have headlights on all the time is that it makes photography more problematic because you have all these bright lights where you do not want it - but the balance between road safety and photography clearly has to be on the side of road safety.

As for speed limits, until 1973 we did not have speed limits on our motorways - they were introduced as a fuel saving measure, and once introduced, never removed.  De facto, motorway speeds here on open road tend to be about 90mph, despite this being illegal.

Yes, I do enjoy driving in Germany.  When I used to work in Munich, and driving up to Hamburg for the ferry home (in the days when DFDS actually ran a ferry service from Hamburg to Harwich), it was lovely just to open up to 120mph and not have to be looking over my shoulder for police.

The only problem with German driving is tailgating on the fast lane, which makes them very prone to having nasty high speed pile ups (I think they are getting better about that than they used to be).

GOOD GRIEF MAN ARE YOU GUYS STARK RAVING MAD!!!! 120 MILES PER HOUR.. AND TAILGATERS AT THAT SPEED... oh my gosssssssssh...yousaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! man tHERE IS NO WAY NO WAY THAT i EVER WANT TO BE IN A VEHICLE TRAVELING THAT FAST ON THE GROUND!! holy crud!!!
 

another_someone

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Only thing I don't like about requiring cars to have headlights on all the time is that it makes photography more problematic because you have all these bright lights where you do not want it

Do you take photo's of traffic? Or the surrounding area? I'm intrigued....

What I meant was for instance if one takes a picture of a townscape, the odd car may be inconspicuous in the picture, but a car with headlights on is scarcely inconspicuous (that is the purpose of having the headlight on).  I suppose with modern digital photography it is slightly less of a problem since you can always edit out the headlights.
 

Offline Karen W.

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do YOU TAKE PHOTOS OF TRAFFIC? IN hIGH TRAFFIC OR LOW?..
 

Offline dentstudent

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Another factor that used to contribute to tailgating was that German cars would not flash the car in front to get off the lane.  In the UK, the normal way of asking someone to move off your lane is to flash your headlights at them, while the Germans tended to sit a few inches off your rear bumper, with their left indicator flashing.

This sounds more like France to me. And flashing someone in the UK normally results in a series of digitation!

Perhaps it depends on the region of Germany.

Also, German autobahns are generally 2 lanes, and so lane hogging is less likely. There also appears to be a large difference in the volume of traffic on the autobahns - not only in Germany, but also in many European countries.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Sorry bout the caps me was tired..
 

Offline dentstudent

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It is common in Scandinavia that cars are by law required to have side lights switched on by the ignition - this is because of the high latitudes - it means that during the winter months you have very long hours of darkness, and throughout the year, you have long hours when the sun is very low on the horizon.  The problem is, when it is dark, it is fairly obvious that you should have lights on; but when you are driving with the sun low behind you, it is noty obvious to you, but very obvious to anyone driving opposite you, who simply sees a blinding sun, and a small dark shape emerging from it.

Only thing I don't like about requiring cars to have headlights on all the time is that it makes photography more problematic because you have all these bright lights where you do not want it - but the balance between road safety and photography clearly has to be on the side of road safety.

As for speed limits, until 1973 we did not have speed limits on our motorways - they were introduced as a fuel saving measure, and once introduced, never removed.  De facto, motorway speeds here on open road tend to be about 90mph, despite this being illegal.

Yes, I do enjoy driving in Germany.  When I used to work in Munich, and driving up to Hamburg for the ferry home (in the days when DFDS actually ran a ferry service from Hamburg to Harwich), it was lovely just to open up to 120mph and not have to be looking over my shoulder for police.

The only problem with German driving is tailgating on the fast lane, which makes them very prone to having nasty high speed pile ups (I think they are getting better about that than they used to be).

GOOD GRIEF MAN ARE YOU GUYS STARK RAVING MAD!!!! 120 MILES PER HOUR.. AND TAILGATERS AT THAT SPEED... oh my gosssssssssh...yousaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! man tHERE IS NO WAY NO WAY THAT i EVER WANT TO BE IN A VEHICLE TRAVELING THAT FAST ON THE GROUND!! holy crud!!!

Speed isn't inherently dangerous. Some of the worst driving I've seen was in the US with undertaking, tailgaiting and erratic lane-changes. And at 55, you can still have a nasty prang.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Yes yOu can but 120 miles an hour you can have a quick heart attact to.. OOOOOH I am a whimp! WOW!!! OH my GOSH!
 

another_someone

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Perhaps it depends on the region of Germany.

That is pretty much true of everything in Germany - Germany is still a conglomeration of principalities at heart.  Some Lander, such as Bavaria and Sedgwick-Holstein, will scarcely recognise they are part of Germany at all.

Also, German autobahns are generally 2 lanes, and so lane hogging is less likely. There also appears to be a large difference in the volume of traffic on the autobahns - not only in Germany, but also in many European countries.

Depends on the autobahn.  Yes, there are far more autobahns in Germany than motorways in England, and they are able to spread the traffic load a bit better; but nonetheless there are many 3 lane autobahns (even back in 1994/1995 there were major road construction projects upgrading the 2 lane autobahns, particularly around the densely packed Koln and Dusseldorf areas.  What I have not yet seen are many 4 or 5 lane autobahns, and the English are already beginning to upgrade many motorways in the South-East to 4 and 5 lane).

I agree that the autobahns in Bavaria were under far less strain than in the north, so there were more 2 lane stretches - and travelling through that dramatic scenery, with the deep valleys, could have some quite remarkable side winds - plus the German autobahns were often not well cambered through the bends.
 

Offline Carolyn

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Ooohhhh I would love to have de-limitless sections of interstate here!  In Florida I think the max is 70 mph, it may be 75 in some places.  The fastest I've driven is 95 and I LOVED it!  Would loved to have gone even faster but I was on a country road and I was afraid of being busted or of another deer running out in front of me.
 

Offline dentstudent

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I agree that the autobahns in Bavaria were under far less strain than in the north, so there were more 2 lane stretches

and Baden-Wuerttemberg, where I am.
 

Offline dentstudent

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Ooohhhh I would love to have de-limitless sections of interstate here!  In Florida I think the max is 70 mph, it may be 75 in some places.  The fastest I've driven is 95 and I LOVED it!  Would loved to have gone even faster but I was on a country road and I was afraid of being busted or of another deer running out in front of me.

I think that country roads shouldn't necessarily come into the de-reg rule as they are often much more dangerous due to the small road accesses, bends, farm machinery and so on which are not allowed onto the UK motorways, but it certainly is exhilerating!
 

another_someone

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and Baden-Wuerttemberg, where I am.

I had not realised that there was a single Lander covering from the Schwartzwald (where I think you mentioned you lived) all the way to the Schwabische region.  I had always regarded them as distinct areas.

 

Offline dentstudent

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and Baden-Wuerttemberg, where I am.

I had not realised that there was a single Lander covering from the Schwartzwald (where I think you mentioned you lived) all the way to the Schwabische region.  I had always regarded them as distinct areas.







The Schwarzwald is entirely within the Lander B-W. The Lander of Bavaria neighbours B-W. Schwabia is made up of the administrative region of Swabia in Bavaria and a large part of eastern B-W. All very confusing, especially for a non-native!
 

Offline ukmicky

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As for speed limits, until 1973 we did not have speed limits on our motorways - they were introduced as a fuel saving measure,
Partly, the fact that someone drove an AC Cobra down the M1 at 185 mph was the main reason for them  restricting the speed limit, the fuel crisis was just an excuse.
« Last Edit: 02/07/2007 21:06:30 by ukmicky »
 

Offline ukmicky

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I think they should increase the speed limit on some stretches of motorway ,but only for cars under a certain age and for drivers with 2 or more years experience.
 

another_someone

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I think they should increase the speed limit on some stretches of motorway ,but only for cars under a certain age and for drivers with 2 or more years experience.

The Italians apply the concept of variable speed limits based on engine size.

The problem is that applying different speed limits to different vehicles (let alone to different drives) is almost unenforceable (particularly when you mostly rely on speed cameras to catch speeding motorists - although as yet these have not been widely deployed on motorways, but they remain the predominant means of enforcement of speed limits wherever they are enforced these days).
 

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