100 most dangerous sections of road in Spain

100-most-dangerous-sections-of-road-in-spain

The Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska, accompanied by four time World Champion motorcycle rider Jorge Martinez Aspar, gave a presentation last week in which he told the audience that new signage would be displayed in the 100 most dangerous sections of road in Spain for motorcyclists. The idea is to give greater warning to motorists driving along these segments of the road network.

Averaging around 2 kilometres each in length the dangerous sections of road reach across the whole Spanish territory. A study of the sinuosity of the road and the mortality rate over the last five years helped identify the dangerous stretches.

Referring to the data held on the accident rates for motorcyclists he focused on the magnitude of the problem faced. Grande-Marlaska said, “When faced with a problem in road safety, the first thing to do is to inform and educate the user and then monitor and control compliance with the regulations that affect them.”

A list of the 100 most dangerous sections of road in Spain

The DGT website has a complete list of the 100 most dangerous sections of road in Spain.

These chunks of the road network will now feature new signage. The new high-visibility road signs warn you that your speed may monitored. In addition, the authorities have added the mortality rate over the last few years in an attempt to force home the seriousness of the message.

More surveillance

The first sign has already appeared on the M131 at kilometre 4.3. The full roll-out is expected to be completed before Easter 2021. The plan is for further studies to try and improve the design of these sections. In the meantime, those responsible for monitoring road safety will intensify their efforts on these particular sections of the road network. Expect more surveillance and control by the road traffic authorities. This includes the use of police helicopters and drones to monitor traffic speed and illegal road maneuvers.

Part of the drive behind these latest efforts is that 2019 saw 466 motorcyclists die on Spanish roads, 45 more than the previous year. Motorcycles comprise a significant percentage of the fleet of vehicles on Spanish roads. In fact, 5.5 million two-wheeled vehicles exist in the country, which represents 19% of total vehicles but 27% of those killed in traffic accidents.

The majority of deaths were riders between the ages of 35 and 44. Most deaths occurred at the weekend on secondary roads.

Source: DGT.es

Image: ©Miguel Berrocal

You are under surveillance

DGT under surveillance

From today and until 20 September there will be extra surveillance under the management of the Traffic Authorities (DGT) on Spain’s road network. It is part of an annual programme of special events and is extra significant as distractions are the one of the biggest cause of fatalities on the roads. In 2019 and for the fourth year running distraction was the main factor in 28% of road fatalities.

This year the municipal police will also be involved in order to further strengthen the campaign. One of the main results of distraction is a head on collision with another vehicle travelling in the opposite direction.

The authorities have 12 helicopters, drones, 216 fixed cameras and fifteen unmarked vans at their disposal.

In order to avoid distractions, the traffic authorities recommend the following:

• Before taking the wheel: Sleep well, do not ingest alcohol and other drugs, do not eat large meals, take care of the intake of certain medications.
• On the way: Better not to smoke, and if you feel drowsy, stop.
• Maintain a comfortable temperature: 21 or 22 degrees is an advisable temperature.
• Careful with the mobile: It is an important cause of distractions. Use only for emergencies and with the car stopped. It is recommended to activate the ” car mode ” in those devices that have it.
• Radio / MP3: Handling them distracts us, systems that are controlled directly from the wheel are advisable. Programming stations and CDs before the trip is a good option.
• Traveling with GPS: Trying to program a route while traveling is very dangerous. It must be done before.

 THE MOBILE: THE KING OF DISTRACTIONS

One of the main reasons for driver distraction is the use of a mobile phone while driving. Its use multiplies by four the risk of suffering an accident and the risk is comparable to driving with excess alcohol.

Using the mobile phone while driving means taking your eyes off the road for a certain time in which you travel a series of metres without the driver having control of the vehicle, since the attention is focused on the mobile.

According to the latest Distractions report prepared by RACE, 96% of the surveyed users confessed to having seen someone talking on their mobile while driving (80% on a regular basis) and 76% said they used it without speaking, only manipulating or looking at it. The report details that in the case of social networks, 18% of drivers admit to having used social networks while driving, of which 12% do so regularly. This percentage increases to 17% among young people between 18 and 24 years old. 

OTHER FACTORS THAT CAUSE DISTRACTION 

• Sleep and fatigue are two risk factors that are very unknown and at the same time highly implicated in road accidents: rear ending, leaving the road, or invading the opposite lane are very frequent types of accidents due to these factors.

• Smoking and driving: lighting a cigarette takes an average of 4 seconds. At a speed of 100 km / h, in that time we will have traveled 113 metres. According to the conclusions of various research studies, smoking while driving multiplies the risk of an accident by 1.5.

WHAT DOES THE LAW SAY?

The Road Safety Law considers it a serious offense to drive using mobile phone devices, Sat Navs or any other communication system manually, as well as driving using headphones or other devices that reduce the mandatory permanent attention to driving.

These infractions involve a fine of 200 euros and the loss of 3 points.

Source: DGT

Car accident caused by an animal in Spain

Car accident caused by an animal in Spain

Wild animals, escaped farm or pet animals can be a real danger to road users as well as the animal. As drivers you should be vigilant, especially if you see road signage that warns you that wild animals might be in the area and potentially crossing the road.

Car accident caused by an animal in Spain

Animals are not always alone either so if you see one near the road others may well be nearby. You should adjust your speed and remain vigilant. Despite our best efforts animals are unpredictable and accidents do occur.

What should you do if you suddenly come across an animal in your way on the road?

Avoid using the car horn.

If driving at night switch the lights to dipped so as not to dazzle the animal.

Try and avoid swerving. This could cause you to involve other vehicles coming the other way.

Push down on the brake firmly or progressively depending on your speed and the road conditions.

Just before impact lift off the brake to raise the front of the car. This should reduce the chances of the animal hitting the windscreen.

Do not look at the animal and focus on where you can stop your car safely.

Who is responsible if I hit an animal?

If you are involved in an accident with a wild animal, then the responsibility for the accident nearly always is yours. If not a wild animal and the animal is on the road because of a poorly maintained fence, for example, or the animal is a pet then the owner of the animal may be responsible.

Car accident caused by an animal in Spain

Does my car insurance in Spain cover me for accidents with animals?

That depends on which company and what actions you take after the incident. Some Spanish insurance companies include the cover as standard. With other companies it is an optional extra. The additional cost is often minimal. The protection against accidents with animals is not only available to people taking fully comprehensive insurance in Spain. It can often be included or added to third party fire and theft policies as well.

It is important to remember that insurance companies will need you to provide a police report. So make sure you call the Police/Guardia Civil out to the incident.

You may need to call roadside assistance if your car is badly damaged to have it taken to a local garage. Do not forget to report the accident to your insurance company and get a copy of the police report at the time if possible.

Source: www.dgt.es

ITV Campaign January 2020

ITV Campaign January 2020

The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) has just finished a campaign using 30 licence plate readers. The campaign ran for a week finishing on Sunday 26th January.

Statistics indicate that the risk of death or serious injury is double when vehicles of 10 to 15 years old are involved compared with cars under five years of age. Clearly the continual improvement in driver and passenger safety measures will play its part. However, maintenance of older vehicles is also an important factor.

30 cameras used to check valid ITVs

The Guardia Civil used the cameras along with local and regional police to read number plates and check the vehicle had a valid ITV certificate in place, similar to an MOT in the UK. The authorities then reproted vehciles without an uptodate ITV. The frequency of ITV tests depends on the age and type of vehicle you are using.

Importance of tyre tread

One of the important features of safety is the tyres. These are after all what helps keep the vehicle on the road. The recommended minimum of tread is 3mm although the legal minimum amount of tyre tread is 1.6mm. Incorrect tyre pressure, damaged or faulty suspension and bad wheel alignment can cause additional tyre wear.

Headlights

Other important elements that are regularly left for another day are vehicle lights. Not only do the lights help us see in poor conditions and at night they also help other drivers see us.

Over time lights lose their intensity. It is suggested they be changed every 40 kilometres or two years, whichever is the sooner. You should change both headlights at the same time is also the recommended advice. In a lot of cases their use is symmetrical.

Windscreen damage is usually repaired for free

It is also advisable to check your windscreen. With most insurers now offering a fast and free windscreen replacement service there really is little excuse not to get a crack repaired or replaced. You can often drive into a place like CarGlass or CristalBox and give them your insurance details and they will check with the insurer for you.

Remember if you have paid for your ITV to keep the sticker in the front windscreen. This is a legal requirement.

Source: DGT.es

Intelligent system aid for driving

Intelligent system aid for driving

The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) and the City of Barcelona have united to present new features in the implementation of the Autonomous Ready system of driving assistance.

The aim is to drastically reduce the accident rate in urban environments. The project has implemented cutting edge safety devices in vehicles. This takes into account the EU legislation that will come into force in 2022.

250 vehicles in the scheme

170 vehicles in fleets and 79 buses are already using artificial vision cameras that interpret the environment and emit sound and visual alerts in real time. The idea is to prevent collisions, detect the presence of pedestrians, cyclists and other obstacles, even in low light conditions.

The devices emit information that will allow the identification of points of risk in the city. In turn this will allow for the improvement of the road infrastructure. Additionally, the data collected can advance the research and development of the autonomous vehicle.

Human errors

The DGT, taking into account that 90% of traffic accidents are due to human errors, focuses initiatives such as Autonomous Ready within the “safe system” approach. This approach aims that human errors, sometimes inevitable, do not end in tragedy. It pursues a multidisciplinary model. This looks at roads, behaviour, speed and vehicles, so that the negative effects of these errors can be minimised.

The sytsem helps to prevent distractions from resulting in an accident or collision, providing an environment of “indirect security” to vulnerable users. This group make up more than 80% of the deaths that occur in the city due to traffic accidents.

Scheme expansion

During this year 2019 it is planned that 530 more systems will be installed in fleet vehicles and 105 in urban buses. This will be increased until it is implemented in 5,000 vehicles which circulate in the city of Barcelona. Any public or private fleet can participate in the Autonomous Ready project.

Source: DGT