Crete driving is appalling !

Chat and items of interest about Crete and Greece.
Jeffstclair
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Jeffstclair » Sat Jan 14, 2017 1:07 pm

I find driving here OK, no major problems as long as you drive defensively and put your self in the safest bit of the road ..we have truck so we take up space on the road, unlike a little hire bug ... the one thing that puzzles me is the use of hazard lights is there a rule about them in the Greek highway code?I never use mine from one year to the next, when I was learning to drive 40 years ago .I was told they were used in an emergency or a breakdown or on the motorway if there was a holdup .... but here people use them instead of indicators , to say they are pulling in ....jeff..

Danny
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Danny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 1:48 pm

I have no problem driving in Crete, people from my country which is Holland drive far more aggressively than people do here and the numerous times I've driven on the motorways in the uk I find drivers flashing lights all the time to get you to move and again like the Dutch drivers they are very aggressive. There are a few quirks and some worries with Greek drivers particularly in the villages where I reckon many of the old folk have neither a license or any road sense but by and large i'm happier driving here than in many northern European countries. Reference to hazard warning lights is very simple, if you turn left you indicate with you indicator's and vice versa if you are turning right, if you are stopping you apply your hazard warning lights because it means that you aren't turning left or right and that your car is stopping.

Jeffstclair
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Jeffstclair » Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:36 pm

Yeah I get that Danny...But is it part of the Greek driving test ? if you used 'em like that on your test in the UK you would fail 'cos thats what your brake lights do.( Edit .. I just looked it up,,, in the UK highway code says that you should never use you hazard lights if your car is moving ) ..jeff ...
Last edited by Jeffstclair on Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Danny
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Danny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:55 pm

Rules like highway code don't necessarily mean the Greeks abide by them as in other things but to me it's common sense that if you aren't turning left or right you shouldn't use indicators because you aren't turning, putting hazard warnings on means you're stopping . Makes sense to me.

Kilkis
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:58 pm

If your car was broken down and stuck in the middle of the road you would turn your hazard lights on. Since Greeks mostly park in the middle of the road they turn their hazard lights on. Makes sense? As far as I am aware it is not part of the test or the Greek highway code because parking in the middle of the road is just as illegal here as it is in the UK. Here people simply ignore the rule.

Warwick

filippos
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby filippos » Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:44 pm

Danny wrote:........ putting hazard warnings on means you're stopping.......
or you forgot to turn them off as you went on your merry way after stopping to talk to a friend yesterday morning.

Danny
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Danny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:34 pm

The point is though that most north European drivers expect Greeks to do what they are used to in their own countries, but I and a lot of my friends expect to see a car stop when hazard lights come on, that's it, Its not turning left or right because it hasn't indicated - it's stopping.

Kilkis
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:53 pm

Danny wrote:The point is though that most north European drivers expect Greeks to do what they are used to in their own countries,...


Personally I wouldn't expect Greeks to do what I am used to in my own country in any aspect of life, not just driving. They're Greek - I'm not.

Warwick

allan
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby allan » Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:12 pm

Warwick,

The roads I mentioned are the main roads out of Athens, Northbound towards the Airport, not the Toll roads, Mesogeion in particular is very dangerous. Bus lane (but if the sign does not mention any specific Greek name they use it) Center lane for others and the outside lane for the idiots, This road is only 80 kph but 150+ is the norm.

Going South to the port of Pireas on Syggrou 5 lanes meld into 2 and well you can guess the problems.

IMHO I think we feel safe because we drive the same route when we go on our journeys to the shops, to familiar places and know what and when to expect trouble.

Safe driving.

Allan

Jeffstclair
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Jeffstclair » Sat Jan 14, 2017 7:24 pm

[quote="Danny"]The point is though that most north European drivers expect Greeks to do what they are used to in their own countries,
Well I don't ... It would be very boring if we all behaved the same and world travel would be pointless ... My point was why it's done and is it a thing people get taught to do ... 'cos it does cause problems when folk don't cancel 'em ,or one rear light has a knackerd bulb ... not un common round 'ere....jeff....

filippos
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby filippos » Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:45 pm

Danny wrote:The point is though that most north European drivers expect Greeks to do what they are used to in their own countries, but I and a lot of my friends expect to see a car stop when hazard lights come on, that's it, Its not turning left or right because it hasn't indicated - it's stopping.
I certainly don't expect Greek drivers to drive like northern Europeans but maybe that's because I've been driving here since 1995 (and permanently since 2002). I've been told by Greek friends that I drive like a native (but they don't say a native of where). My previous car looked very Greek with dents and scrapes everywhere which, with one exception*, were all acquired when parked and I wasn't with the vehicle. The current car (nine months old) has gained dents in both front doors but I've reached the benign state that I don't care: it's a motorised tin box to get me from A to B.

I think the Greek habit of using the hazard lights to indicate they're likely to stop within the next couple of hundred metres is eminently sensible: I do the same. I'm not so keen on overtaking on blind bends. I'm much happier driving here than I was for most of 40+ years driving in the UK. Now, I even go out for the simple pleasure of "going for a spin".


* The exception? When the car was two weeks old I failed to spot a lump of concrete hidden in long grass when I pulled off the road and put a 1½m x 1.5cm deep groove in the passenger side door sill. Bl**dy careless and it cost me €63 to have it fixed. Had it happened yesterday I'd have shrugged my shoulders and lived with it.

Kilkis
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Kilkis » Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:44 am

It is certainly true that in some areas the road configuration amplifies the danger caused by bad driving but I don't think the basic level of bad driving is any higher in those areas, Allan. You are not likely to get anybody doing 150 kph on Kydonia in Chania because it wouldn't be possible. It is possible to do 150 kph on the dual carriageway section of the National Highway from the Souda junction to the Omalos junction, which also has an 80 kph limit, and people do but the traffic density is low enough that it isn't a huge danger. There are roads in Athens where the conditions are right to allow high speeds and the traffic density is high enough to make those speeds extremely dangerous. Most accidents in Greece are caused because Greek drivers are often poor at assessing risk. You can see it in many other activities.

Warwick

PS I've seen many high power BMWs, Mercedes and even a few Ferraris on the roads you mention but I've never seen a donkey.

Phild
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Phild » Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:10 am

Kilkis wrote: It is possible to do 150 kph on the dual carriageway section of the National Highway from the Souda junction to the Omalos junction, which also has an 80 kph limit


Interesting - I know that the limit on the westbound carriageway from after the Mournies turn-off has an 80kph limit, but that's the only sign I've ever seen indicating speed limits on the dual-carriageway section at Chania. My understanding was that the speed limit on a dual carriageway, separated by a 'hard-barrier', such as that section, was 110kph unless otherwise signposted.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. (or at least tell me where the signs are that say otherwise, because I'm getting old and confused... :-) )
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Phil
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Kilkis
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Kilkis » Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:19 am

Phild wrote:...My understanding was that the speed limit on a dual carriageway, separated by a 'hard-barrier', such as that section, was 110kph unless otherwise signposted...


To have a 110 kph limit it also has to have the sides blocked by a hard barrier such as Armco but the section from Souda to Omalos also satisfies that condition. While your understanding is correct in general I am told that Crete has a blanket 80 kph limit. Nobody seems to know for sure. A friend saw three traffic police chatting so he pulled up and asked them what the maximum limit was on the National Highway. He got three different answers.

Warwick

Phild
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Re: Crete driving is appalling !

Postby Phild » Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:45 am

Kilkis wrote:
Phild wrote:...My understanding was that the speed limit on a dual carriageway, separated by a 'hard-barrier', such as that section, was 110kph unless otherwise signposted...


To have a 110 kph limit it also has to have the sides blocked by a hard barrier such as Armco but the section from Souda to Omalos also satisfies that condition. While your understanding is correct in general I am told that Crete has a blanket 80 kph limit. Nobody seems to know for sure. A friend saw three traffic police chatting so he pulled up and asked them what the maximum limit was on the National Highway. He got three different answers.

Warwick


Ha ha! Typical!

I can categorically state that there is a "90" speed limit sign on the single carriageway ethniki westwards after the Drapanias exit in Kissamos - I had been told that there is a blanket 90 limit on the ethniki in Crete, but as you correctly say "Who knows?"
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Phil

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