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France deploys its first average speed cameras


Article by: Darren Griffin
Date: 20 Jun 2012

pocketgpsworld.com
New average speed cameras have been deployed for the first time on a French motorway and began testing today ahead of full use from 1st August.

The 'radars-tronçon' have been installed on a stretch of the N57 and are being targeted at accident prone road sections and roads close to tunnels and bridges.

French road safety agency Sécurité Routière hopes the cameras will stop speeding drivers slowing down for fixed speed cameras before accelerating but motoring organisations criticised them claiming that they were designed to make money.

As in the UK, unlucky motorists who fall foul of the new cameras will find out when the fine arrives in the post.



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Comments
Posted by Tangsoodogb on Thu Jun 21, 2012 11:38 am Reply with quote

The N designation, (N57) or Route Nationale is an A road equivalent.
Motorways start with A eg A1.
Have the cameras been put on motorways or a-roads?


 
Posted by guydavies on Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:44 am Reply with quote

Yes, but just as in the UK, where some A roads are two or three lanes in each direction, the same is true of N roads in France and some of them are more dangerous due to the fact that the junctions are not split level. You have some very quick N roads with tiny little country roads feeding straight onto them.

I'm no fan of speed cameras when they're placed simply to make money, but I can see that some N roads would benefit from keeping the average speed sensible over a distance.


 
Posted by phmode on Fri Jun 22, 2012 12:44 pm Reply with quote

I travel in France regularly and, just like in UK, I maintain three figure (mph) cruising speeds on both four and two wheels in national speed limit areas.

I find the drivers in France to be far more accommodating when it comes to allowing faster traffic to overtake. They don't have the Rosbif attitude of overtaking from the front of the queue on motorways, they stay in the nearside lane until the faster traffic has overtaken them and then the slower traffic has its turn.

However, there are some things about French drivers that fill me with dread and by far the worst is the national motoring memory of 'priorite a droite', now largely consigned to the 'poubelle'.

There are stretches of the N10 north of Angouleme (minor motorway standard, 2 lanes and a 1/2 hard shoulder each way with central divide of armco or hedging) where the long, straight and fast road plummets over blind crests with minor road junctions either on the crest or in the dip beyond and the locals dawdle out of these turnings as though they still have the right of way, as their parents and grandparents used to have. To be fair, even on my bike, coming onto that stretch of road from the side roads feels like a gamble with my life.

Of course, the French aren't stupid and the road is speed limited and VERY aggressively policed at these black spots because the lower speed limits last for about 3 to 4 miles each with sometimes only two blind junctions in that distance and of course, folks slow down over the jumps and then gallop away again along the straights till the next jump.

I can see average speed cameras doing a very good job along these shorter stretches, but I can also see the temptation to join up the dots, just like local authorities in UK are doing with the dreaded creeping 50 limits.

It won't be long before the 'short' stretches of average speed limits are all simply joined up; the technology is already out there and the political will is waiting in the wings.

Any day soon, we are all going to wake up to find men with red flags standing by our vehicles waiting to take us for a walk and we will doubtless wonder how we got here.

Maybe it's because I remember the freedom of the open road (and indeed, the open roads themselves) before Tom Fraser and Barbara Castle got their hands on the speed limit signs, but it seems to me that we have had the best of times on the roads; better, safer, faster cars and bikes with all the liberties and very few restrictions.

Sadly, I see this all coming to a very sticky end and I forecast that is due to happen by about 1984...or have I missed something?


 
Posted by Gurubarry on Fri Jun 22, 2012 4:42 pm Reply with quote

Excellent post phmode , I live in France and vouch for every word . Just got home from the 24 heures au Le Mans , and saw the new cameras being installed ....under a bridge ....very sneaky . I rely on PGPS Data for my tom tom to keep my points, needed it just once ...the guy overtaking me was flashed .... but speeds have really dropped her I find .


Don't Take Life too Seriously-You'll Never Get Out Alive

 
Posted by M8TJT on Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:13 pm Reply with quote

Gurubarry Wrote:
... and saw the new cameras being installed ....under a bridge ....very sneaky .
Have you reported them?? Very Happy


I'm getting a whip for my cat.

 
Posted by Gurubarry on Sat Jun 23, 2012 11:45 am Reply with quote

Sorry, I tried before, but I can't fathom out how you do it Embarassed

Perhaps it's my French ISP that messes it up .

Is there a "How to " if the procedure given doesn't work ?


Don't Take Life too Seriously-You'll Never Get Out Alive

 
Posted by cunnind on Sat Jun 23, 2012 12:19 pm Reply with quote

There are various French sites with camera installation details and the weekly car mag here also has a page with that weeks latest cameras.
Thr 4th gernration round pole cameras are hard to spot but the film on the TV news about the average speed cameras show them as grey boxes over each lane hung from bridges.
The prioritaire a droite here is also very much misunderstood by the locals as well. Many have signs of a X and this means priority from the right and there are many where I live, but then just as often there is no sign and my French wife says 'just be careful'! Luckily most locals approach these junctions carefully.
I notice most of my local friends drive within the speed limits now, gendarmes pop up eveywhere. A couple of years ago I came through our village at 2am and was stopped by 6 gendarmes, one holding a pump action gun! They are always very polite so if you are in the wrong it is not worth trying to argue.

I find French drivers much more polite about letting you change lanes then in the UK - less stress here. I live in the middle of France and the only traffic jams around here is when the cows are moved to another field.


 
Posted by M8TJT on Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:59 pm Reply with quote

Gurubarry Wrote:
Sorry, I tried before, but I can't fathom out how you do it Embarassed
Up near the top of this page on the right hand side is a big yellow pointy finger. If you click on that you should see the submission map. Zoom in to where 'your' camera is. This should display the camera icon. Click on the icon. This will fill in the details of the cam on the yellow bits of the form above and below the map. Near the top of the yellow bits is a drop down. Chose 'Change existing cam' and fill in the new speed. Confirm the 'country' box (below the map) and click the 'Send entry' button. Simples (providing your ISP lets you get at it all.


I'm getting a whip for my cat.

 
Posted by Gurubarry on Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:14 pm Reply with quote

Thanks ...I'll give it a go !


Don't Take Life too Seriously-You'll Never Get Out Alive

 
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