Are roads safer with no central white lines?

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Bryn Mawr
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bryn Mawr »

To quote from the attached article , 'Absurd, barmy, crazy'



Are roads safer with no central white lines? - BBC News

The argument made by the proposers is that the traffic slows down therefore the roads are safer.

I would argue that the traffic slows down because the roads are less safe.

What say you?
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AnneBoleyn
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by AnneBoleyn »

I say what you say.
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Betty Boop
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Betty Boop »

Here in Cornwall you don't often see white lines... :D
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Snowfire
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Snowfire »

Major roads in places like India rarely have white lines. It seems to reinforce an idea you can use any part of the road at any time. I think statistics, or even a casual observation of Indian roads and it's traffic would maintain that dividing lines might facilitate a little order and therefore make it safer
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Bruv
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bruv »

Double white lines on dodgy corners are a life saver.
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Bryn Mawr
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bryn Mawr »

Betty Boop;1492287 wrote: Here in Cornwall you don't often see white lines... :D


At ten foot wide with ten foot dry stone walls either side there's not much room for them :-p
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spot
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by spot »

I drove round Marble Arch with no white lines once, a long time ago. I still remember.
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gmc
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by gmc »

I could see it working in towns but on rural roads at night I think they're essential just to se here the road is going plus they give an indication how sharp the bend is if you iknow what to look for which i suspect most people don't..

There's a country road I use every day with no white lines, one of those tyat are fun to drive fast on, it doesn't seem to slow down those dickheads cornering in the middle of the road forgetting there might be something coming. I've lost count of the number of times I've had to brake hoping they'll miss me. Once was involved in crash where the oncoming car went off the road demolishing 20 feet of fencing and writing his car off on the king post. Said it was my fault as he had to swerve to avoid me because I was in the middle of the road, which I was as it was a single track road with passing places. I mak it a rule to never swerve the car going too fast will usually swerve to avoid you I suspect because they know they'r going too fast.

On the other hand it might slow down all those 4x4 drivers that think the line is there for them to straddle so they can keep in the middle of the road.
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Bryn Mawr
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bryn Mawr »

There was a short piece about it on last nights news discussion program where the "pro" interviewee said it was essential given to reduction in funding of the Police forces around the country.

I suspect that's more the point - cost saving for the councils.
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FourPart
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by FourPart »

I understand the meaning behind it, but I think it would only be of any short term benefit as its only benefit at the moment is that people aren't used to it. Once people become accustomed to it, it won't make a damned bit of difference.

There is one road on the other side of town, though, that I feel ill at ease with, as it's wide enough for 2 x 2 lanes. Indeed, even when it comes to the traffic lights it's marked in 2 lanes each side. However, on the main run it is only marked with the single central lane. As a biker, my training has been to ride in the centre of my lane. However, from the lane markings I can't be certain if 'my lane' is between the edge of the road & the central lines, or some imaginary lane marking on each side. If I take the former view, then it would be like riding along the lane marker lines between the driving & overtaking lanes, and if I take the latter I'm constantly riding a little to the left of Zone 1 (lanes have 3 'zones' for bikers - Zone 1 for left turn, Zone 2 for general riding & Zone 3 for right turn). Either way, someone else is likely to have the opposite interpretation & is going to lead to frustration & road rage.

GoogleMaps Street View always makes roads look narrower than they actually are, but this view of the road demonstrates the approach to the traffic lights, where the markings are. From the positioning of the cars, and how the road even narrows at that point, you can see how wide the road really is.

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.92793 ... 6656?hl=en
gmc
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by gmc »

In a car I would sit in the middle. I know of a couple of roads that are similar near stirling , almost like then old three lane roads, if you keep to the left people will pass you and if there's someone coming the other way they too are forced to keep left or if an oncoming car does the same thing at the same time you have to pull in. If you don't keep left idiots tailgate you trying to intimidate you to pull over to force you to pull over it's a 60mph road joining a motorway with a lot of hgv's to avoid a few seconds delay people do the stupidest things.

Not saying I'm perfect I reckon evry hundred miles you dive you do something stupid that could result in a shunt if unlucky or another driver isn't paying attention you become a good drever learning from your mistakes.
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LarsMac
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by LarsMac »

When I was in Italy, it seemed that few people really paid much attention to the lines, anyway. I don't know about safer, there, but it would probably reduce the distraction for tourists.
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FourPart
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by FourPart »

LarsMac;1492308 wrote: When I was in Italy, it seemed that few people really paid much attention to the lines, anyway. I don't know about safer, there, but it would probably reduce the distraction for tourists.


I've seen videos of Italy's roads - not what I'd call safe by any means.
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Saint_
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Saint_ »

When the roads are wet or covered with drifting snow, the occasional glimpse of the center lines are a lifesaver.
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Bryn Mawr
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bryn Mawr »

Saint_;1492454 wrote: When the roads are wet or covered with drifting snow, the occasional glimpse of the center lines are a lifesaver.


True and even more so in fog.
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FourPart
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by FourPart »

Same in the rain on the bike when faced with the glare of an oncoming car's headlights - it help detract from the 'rabbit' syndrome, when you otherwise feel drawn towards the light. Looking down towards the lane markings help keep you on the right track.

Actually, on a similar theme there's a part of road on my route home which is a real death trap in the rain. There's a set of pedestrian crossing traffic lights, immediately followed by a right angled bend to the right. Fortunately I'm familiar with the road, but when it's raining the Green lights are really bright & the chevrons behind them indicating the sharp bend are totally invisible - until you're on top of them. True, the lines aren't much help there, but it shows how hazardous bright lights can be.
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Bored_Wombat
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by Bored_Wombat »

FourPart;1492303 wrote: I understand the meaning behind it, but I think it would only be of any short term benefit as its only benefit at the moment is that people aren't used to it. Once people become accustomed to it, it won't make a damned bit of difference.


I think that this is the correct response. Or that it will get more dangerous, because it's not clear if you're in your lane if the vehicle is wide.

I recall that when countries change the side of the road that they drive on it is accompanied by a short term drop in crashes, because people are being careful, as they don't know what the hell is going on.

I suspect that this is the same effect here.
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LarsMac
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Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Post by LarsMac »

If all the drivers are from the same system, (Left hand, or Right hand drive) then instinct would lead them to dodge in a fashion that is safer. For example, in the UK, when two people meet they will instinctively move to their respective left so as to pass each other with driver's side to the oncoming vehicle, and very quickly adjust speed to attempt safe passage. Likewise, in the US, they would move to their right.

I found it quite natural when driving in the UK to move to my left to pass oncoming traffic when driving the smaller (unmarked) country roads.

The problem I encountered was the time we drove into UK with a German rental, so we were "driving on the wrong side of the road" for the car. My instinct was to move to my right, and I had to take great care to resist that impulse a few times.
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