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Motorway Speed Limits...


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https://www.lbc.co.uk/news/truss-hints-she-could-scrap-motorway-speed-limits/

I'm starting to like Liz Truss! No more smart motorways (I'm not fussed either way, while the extra capacity is great they do seem rather dangerous!) but no more speed limits would be ace! Works well in Germany, why not here! Would go some way to improving driving standards on motorways too which are currently rock bottom in terms of lane/signal discipline. 

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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not sure the Numpties that sit in the middle lane/s or don't move back to the inside after overtaking; stopping the numpties from driving on motorways, will enable faster cars to travel quicker. 

Darryl & Sue

Proud to drive and own since new a true British supercar the Evora GT430

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  • Gold FFM

I'm always surprised when reading the negative views on smart motorways. The last 10 years we got 8 sections (short by UK standards) in Flanders where the emergency lane can be opened to cope with high traffic volumes during rush hour. They seem to work quite well, 2 are on my commute from the office to the Workshop and have made greatly reduced the time I'm stuck in traffic. There are emergency havens for vehicles in trouble, but those are rarely used. 

Brussels on the other hand is creating ghost lanes, i.e. sections of motorways or main roads were lanes are closed off for no good reason, causing jams (and accidents) due to the inevitable increase in traffic on the remaining lanes. But I'm sure someone thought it was a good idea... Or just wanted to annoy motorists some more.

No more mandatory speed limit would be nice, another reason to take the Esprit on roadtrips to UK.

I have made many mistakes in my life. Buying a multiple Lotus is not one of them.

 

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@Escape - 38 killed on smart motorways in last five years - BBC News

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In the five years before the road was converted into a smart motorway there were just 72 near misses. In the five years after, there were 1,485.

That's why.

 

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  • Gold FFM

I do wonder what can cause this difference? It's not like the average Belgian driver has much of a clue, plenty of middle lane huggers etc over here. We usually don't get lower speed limits when the congestion lane opens either.

Are there any other aspects of smart motorways that I'm missing? Surely all those accidents and fatalities didn't happen just because of broken down vehicles and the lack of a hard shoulder? I'm not aware of any increase in accidents over here.

Not trying to start an argument, just trying to understand. Congestion lanes are about the only new road infrastructure we got in the past decade to help cope with ever increasing traffic.

We also have some politicians that seem to be of the opinion if you just let traffic grind to a halt there will be no more accidents... I'd hate to see them use UK as an example to close the congestion lanes!

Filip

I have made many mistakes in my life. Buying a multiple Lotus is not one of them.

 

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  • Gold FFM

In my experience, smart motorways are awful. What happens is, because the inside lane sometimes becomes a filter lane so people have to move in and out of it, a lot of Lorries and super slow cars sit in the next lane across which instantly gets you back down to 3.

Faster lorries overtake and mid-Laners now sit in the one from fastest lane. This means you have an empty inside lane and everyone trying to approach the speed limit in the outside lane but it's clogged because everyone is trying to get into it.

You then have people who are aggravated with this tonking up the 'slow' lane which is totally empty. This has the effect of causing more near misses because people don't use their inside mirror because they don't expect to be under taken. Anyone in the 'silly little lay-by' are now at more risk because the cars coming up in the lane next to them are the fastest on the motorway.

It's fairly illogical but since the M4 was converted to a smart motorway it's slower and far more painful to drive in whilst also more dangerous. Great job guys!

I also don't think they should remove speed limits completely, I hate to say it but in this country, I reckon the first month will be a mess of teenagers and people in crap cars going faster than their car is in the condition to go or their skills allow. Germans are used to it and have good lane discipline (for the most part).

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Not having somewhere to stop in en emergency is dangerous, it's as simple as that. The use of the extra lane has to be in conjunction with a much reduced speed limit whilst it is in use, not just reliant upon operators noting a broken down vehicle and closing the lane (which people also then ignore)

Another issue is the seemingly arbitrary reducing of speed limits. Last month I drove around 20 miles of motorway at a 50 mph limit because of the (and I quote from the signs) "System on test". Drove back a week later and the system was still "on test". Empty motorway and 50mph limit controlled by Average speed cameras.

Blessed with the competence to be a slave to the incapable.

Currently without a Lotus, Evora 400 Hethel Edition in Racing Green with Red leather and 2010 Evora N/A in Laser Blue and 1983 Lotus Excel LC Narrow body in Ice Blue all sadly gone.

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  • Gold FFM

@TdM good explanation, thanks. Very surprised we seem to be more disciplined so as to make congestion lanes work! While typically not as busy as the next lane, they are being used and do provide a noticeable increase in capacity.

I do wonder, if there is one lane less, surely the idiots are still hugging the middle and right lanes? I noticed the left lane was often empty on my last trip to UK, despite the other lanes being rather crowded. Without a congestion lane, you'll run into capacity problems sooner, and that will lead to more people undertaking because the 'slow' lane is not used as it should. Hard to see how that is more of a problem with an extra lane to spread the traffic. A reduced speed on just the congestion lane, to prevent under taking might help, but could also lead to even less people using that lane.

As for dynamic speed limits, while they can be useful to warn for upcoming jams, I agree that is certainly not always the case. As I said we don't often have a speed limit when the congestion lane opens, but we do have them on other occasions. Often without a clear cause and by themselves causing big variations in speed resulting in over and under taking and leading to dangerous situations. I do know those controlling the traffic flow sometimes try to deliberately cause a mild jam to alleviate a critical point downstream. Not fun when you're in it, but it can increase the average speed if done properly.

Unfortunately very few things are done properly these days it would seem...

I have made many mistakes in my life. Buying a multiple Lotus is not one of them.

 

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  • Gold FFM

Yes, variable speed limits and warning signs are another bug bear. The warnings are put up but 90% of the time you never come across the issue they are stating is there.

Sometimes they also don't throw out an 'end of restriction' sign so nobody knows when it is finished.

These two pieces of mismanagement combine to completely undermine the system because now nobody trusts it.

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Rachel got a speeding course as the M20 had a 50 limit and 'Report of Pedestrians' sign up. I've seen this sign a lot and haven't ever spotted the pedestrian yet. Nice way to make some money, she was doing 60mph at the time on a virtually empty motorway at 10pm! 

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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Another technique that seems to be designed to raise revenue is the alternating speed limits. The gantry shows 60 then the next one shows 50, then 60, then 50..... Definitely trying to catch people out.

If I'm on a motorway then I just set cruise control. It's probably more fuel efficient than all that speeding up and slowing down.

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My brother drove down to us in Chichester from Yorkshire a couple of weeks ago. He does the drive fairly frequently but said it's become so much more stressful recently due to all the 'managed' motorways. As you say, the overhead gantry signs are constantly changing up and down by 10mph, which means (a) it's easy to miss a change and drive through 10mph over and (b) the more conscientious drivers spend more time focused on checking each sign than what's happening on the road ahead of them...

 Altogether they seem to be a good money maker in terms of fines but otherwise counterproductive, certainly in terms of safety.

Not worth starting anything now...🍺

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