dangerous and dangerous

September 29, 2006

BBC NEWS | Scotland | Tayside and Central | Dangerous roads upgrade urged

Campaigners have launched a petition calling for Scotland’s “most dangerous” roads to be upgraded.
TRANSform Scotland has also branded the Scottish Tories “liars and hypocrites” for demanding the dualling of the A9 between Perth and Inverness.

Of course, there are dangerous roads, badly designed roads, roads with inadequate capacity, too few signs (or in a few cases far too many). One of them is the A82, just over the hill from me. There are regular fatal crashes. Why could this be? Is it a dangerous road? Is it difficult to drive along?

Well, no. The section from Balloch to Tarbet anyway, is wide, and well laid out. You can get on the highway and basically sit there at 60 mph, admiring the view, turning the wheel occasionally. There are exactly two places between the Helensburgh turn-off and Tarbert where you have to slow down a little.

So why exactly are there so many crashes? Well, A82 is fast, but it is not straight. You sail elegantly around many many bends as Loch Lomond whizzes by to the side. So unfortunately, there are very few overtaking opportunities. And as it’s a well laid out road, it’s perfectly possible to drive down it at very high speed, in perfect “safety”, until you come around the last bend—and encounter someone trying to overtake!

And this is why I have very little patience with the “dangerous” roads lobby. Because the problem (these days) is, in the main, dangerous drivers. The UK may be the safest in Europe for road safety, but around 3,000 people a year still lose their lives. Improve the roads, sure, but unless people improve their driving, it will be an complete waste of time.


One Response to “dangerous and dangerous”

  1. […] Rounding things off this week, Otan2 writes about the real cause of road accidents. […]

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