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  #61  
Old 12.04.2011, 16:59
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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assuming i dont have priority at all times is nonsense: if thats the case I would drive at 20km/hr on a 60km/hr road. No body wants that. you should make sure you know what you are talking about before you press others in such an aggressive way. I think you demonstrated your lack of exact knowledge on the rule by insisting that cars on the right have priority at all times. This simply is NOT true when you consider all the signage, lights etc.
Notwithstanding the criticisms of Ittigen's delivery style, his point that you should assume priority from the right at all times is correct.

It is and remains resolutely the one (stupid, IMO) rule across continental Europe and is probably the cause of most accidents. It is, however, still there.

The key thing is that there are many exceptions (as pointed out by many others here).

You need to get to grips with those exceptions sharpish for your own safety, as much as that of others, as I do know of drivers and indeed driving instructors who advocate applying or asserting your priority when on the road. Very foolish, again IMO, but the fact remains that such drivers do exist and will "take" their priority as is their "right" and hang the concequences.
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  #62  
Old 12.04.2011, 17:07
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Depends on the roundabout and its markings. In a 30kmh zone - priority right applies. Elsewhere it will depend, as I said on the markings. If the cyclist came through "sharks teeth" (as they were labelled elsewhere) they would be at fault.
I wrote the cyclist was in the roundabout, not entering. Quote: ... moves from the outside of the circle...

If there were no markings then the driver would be at fault.

Ittigen - you need to accept that there isn't a universal rule on this. And that specific road marking and road signing is applicable. There is, more later!

As for priority right - it isn't a carte blanche to do whatever the hell you want - if a driver is halfway across the junction you'd be a fool to pull out (because it your priority). You'd also be foolish to barrel up to a right turn having priority - and assume it is safe to turn.
When a car is in a junction he has the priority, and the car on the right cannot force it's way into a junction. Which explains my insistance that if in doubt you should give way! Why is this concept so difficult? Hitting another car at 50 Kph results in serious injuries.
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  #63  
Old 12.04.2011, 17:09
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

Meh, I wasn't even aware of the "priority from the right" rule and have driven "Unfallfrei" for the last 16 years in CH, blissfully happily in my ignorance.

So there.
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  #64  
Old 12.04.2011, 17:12
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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assuming i dont have priority at all times is nonsense: if thats the case I would drive at 20km/hr on a 60km/hr road. No body wants that. you should make sure you know what you are talking about before you press others in such an aggressive way. I think you demonstrated your lack of exact knowledge on the rule by insisting that cars on the right have priority at all times. This simply is NOT true when you consider all the signage, lights etc.
I wrote that if you do not understand the situation you should give way to the cars on your right.

Have you ordered the book yet, or are we going to read soon that the police want to take away your license for 3 months?

Traffic question - priority of road

http://www.cooldriving.ch/flash/cool01.swf?lang=en sometimes there are more than one correct answer

.

Last edited by Ittigen; 12.04.2011 at 18:06. Reason: added the link
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  #65  
Old 12.04.2011, 17:20
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Meh, I wasn't even aware of the "priority from the right" rule and have driven "Unfallfrei" for the last 16 years in CH, blissfully happily in my ignorance.

So there.
'til tomorrow...

take care Paddy...
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  #66  
Old 12.04.2011, 17:58
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

Ittigen - your actual wording was "You are driving carefully in one of the many Swiss roundabouts and a cyclist moves from the outside of the circle, straight across your path towards the centre."

If you want to be pedantic - your use of outside is deliberately misleading. "Outside of the circle" would suggest from the outside of the roundabout - IE entering the roundabout.

Perhaps you wanted to say:

"You (a driver) are driving on a roundabout. A cyclist in the near side lane moves across your path into the offside lane. You brake but still hit them. Who is at fault?"

If you were to take a measure of junctions * usage - you'll get more exceptions than priority right.

As for the question - the answer is the driver - as the vehicle from behind. It has nothing to do with priority to the right.

Last edited by dodgyken; 12.04.2011 at 18:12.
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  #67  
Old 12.04.2011, 18:28
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

The book you want to buy is "Driving Today Switzerland", which includes the Swiss Highway Code in English.

Have a look here...
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  #68  
Old 12.04.2011, 18:48
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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I checked again today, and surely there is a priority sign (no black lines in the yellow square) on that stretch of the road. Its a 60km/hr road, so it wouldnt make sense from a dynamics point of view not to have such forward priority. BUT, there are two lanes, one through and one left turn, and they both have lights. Maybe I mistaken these as it was suggested earlier.

But, maybe in Binningen things are different, that you MUST yield regardless of a "no need to yield" sign that you have, and cars can come to a complete stop from 60km/hr in just 10 meters...never been there myself
You don't have to yield always even in Ittigen....

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Thanks, and yes I am angry, that many of you have never bothered to read the Swiss rules. Every 6 months or so someone pops up and asks an innocent question, and then all hell breaks loose as nobody can explain a rule without a joke or an insult.
Because on the forum we have to read what was written by the OP and many times it's not really clear what is going on.

In the case of the OP he said he was a traffic light. He also said he was in the left lane. MY understand would be that the OP probably was in a left turn only lane. It makes much more sense then a PoR issue in what he described. BUT it could also have been that he was at the intersection described earlier.

THAT is why we can't always (even you!) tell the OP what they are doing wrong (if anything). So really, you should chill out. I told the OP also to take a few driving lessons. I didn't flip out on him.
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  #69  
Old 12.04.2011, 18:56
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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You will want to look out for this road sign:



and it's sister without the black diagonal slash...
Just showing a sign without explaining its meaning isn't a lot of help IMO...if he doesn't know the rule, he won't know the sign.
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Old 12.04.2011, 19:43
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

I've probably posted this before on similar threads, but the concept of priority to the right DOES exist in the US. The main difference though is that, to my knowledge, you will never encounter such a situation on a main/major road (only side streets). On side streets in the US where there are no traffic signs or signals, the car approaching the intersection from the right has priority.

I think the confusion American drivers have here is that this priority exists on main roads as well and, given the higher rate of speed at which cars are approaching an intersection, you're often almost into an intersection before you can see cars from the right or left.
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Old 12.04.2011, 21:05
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Just showing a sign without explaining its meaning isn't a lot of help IMO...if he doesn't know the rule, he won't know the sign.
NOBODY who lives here and drives here should need this explaining. If you do not know what this means, you should keep quiet and look it immediately...
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  #72  
Old 12.04.2011, 21:13
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

We are actually talking about life and death here - so it is important, surely. Nothing to do with being Swiss, anal retentive, or whatever.

Do you think the excuse would stand up in the Police station, Insurance office or Court 'sorry Guv, I've only been living in CH for 1, 2 , 3 years - so didn't know what the sign meant?'

Last edited by Odile; 12.04.2011 at 21:43.
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  #73  
Old 12.04.2011, 21:17
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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I've probably posted this before on similar threads, but the concept of priority to the right DOES exist in the US. The main difference though is that, to my knowledge, you will never encounter such a situation on a main/major road (only side streets). On side streets in the US where there are no traffic signs or signals, the car approaching the intersection from the right has priority.
it's typically the same in switzerland too.
I've been driving for less than 1 year, but all across switzerland, and the only place which is not a 30 km/h zone where there is a right of way from the right is this one:
http://maps.google.ch/maps?hl=it&sll...02064&t=h&z=20

it's pretty dangerous actually if you don't look carefully and rush in at 50 km/h.
That curved triangle sign on the floor you see is the standard now, but in some 30 km/h zones you may not find it (it's like a curved-in square).

anyway the swiss are going to enforce the rules on you, so learn fast. Uncivilized behaviour is not expected. Getting your license requires effort here, idk about the rest of the world but afaik standards are lower.

Maybe buy a quiz program with digital database of the theoretical stuff, it contains exercises about the concept of right of way and other useful stuff, or find one online like the one that was linked.

On multi-lane 50 km/h roads, what you need to pay attention to are the arrows on the floor and in the traffic lights.
If you get on the wrong one and there's people to your side or there's a continous line dividing the lanes, you have to go in the prescribed direction even if you got it wrong.
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Old 12.04.2011, 21:43
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

Traffic rules - and for the record, the legal code of the road - is virtually the same world-wide, as well as most of the signs.

For the edification of those who believe that all signs should be in writing, signs have been selected internationally, to help drivers (and not to hinder them); but it requires a bit of common sense and memorization effort, ideally done when passing the test. Hey, you can practice for the UK test.

Precedence to your right and no-overtaking on the right side are two of the most hardfast rules. Break them - and if caught, you are in trouble. Get in an accident, and it will all be on you.
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  #75  
Old 12.04.2011, 21:48
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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NOBODY who lives here and drives here should need this explaining. If you do not know what this means, you should keep quiet and look it immediately...
Really? Isn't that kind of what the OP was trying to do? He didn't know the rules, asked a question and probably learned more about priority to the right than he knew existed.
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  #76  
Old 12.04.2011, 22:49
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Traffic rules - and for the record, the legal code of the road - is virtually the same world-wide, as well as most of the signs.
Plenty of stuff on Wikipedia about traffic rules and how the Vienna Convention attempts to standardise such. An example of standardisation on road signs in Europe at least is here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compari..._traffic_signs
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  #77  
Old 12.04.2011, 23:04
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Traffic rules - and for the record, the legal code of the road - is virtually the same world-wide, as well as most of the signs.

Precedence to your right and no-overtaking on the right side are two of the most hardfast rules.
But there are three situations where you are allowed (In one you are even ecouraged!) to overtake on the right side in Switzerland, do you know them?

One of them is on this demonstration, it is when there is one green sign above 2 lanes and one smaller sign above right lane:

http://www.cooldriving.ch/flash/cool01.swf?lang=en sometimes there are more than one correct answer

Last edited by Ittigen; 12.04.2011 at 23:14.
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  #78  
Old 13.04.2011, 00:06
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Rule of thumb: Swiss people hardly ever honk. If they do you are really wrong about something. If several ones did - well, you got the point.
You are kidding right? As long as they are safely in the cocoon of their automobile they will bravely sound their horn at anything that annoys them, usually more than once.

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I checked again today, and surely there is a priority sign (no black lines in the yellow square) on that stretch of the road. Its a 60km/hr road, so it wouldnt make sense from a dynamics point of view not to have such forward priority. BUT, there are two lanes, one through and one left turn, and they both have lights. Maybe I mistaken these as it was suggested earlier.
Maybe, sometimes the positioning of the lamps seem to have been arranged for aesthetic reasons rather than actual usefulness. But there is another possibility. Given the Swiss preference for driving through red lights, coupled with the fact that you drove through on green just as the light had changed, it could well be possible that they are simply expressing their anger at you for not allowing them to break their own highway code.

The give way to the right rule is tricky to get used to but thankfully there are a limited number of scenarios. Get a local (or someone that knows how to drive) to explain the rule to you. I doubt that you need massive re-education as some have suggested though.

Happy motoring.
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  #79  
Old 13.04.2011, 00:17
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Re: crazy swiss driving habit, or is it me?

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Really? Isn't that kind of what the OP was trying to do? He didn't know the rules, asked a question and probably learned more about priority to the right than he knew existed.
Yep. And asking where to buy brown sugar or Marmite or if CHF70,000/year is enough to live on in Basel are more sensible questions...
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Old 13.04.2011, 00:24
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There are cases where the priority right rule is taken to the extreme by some people. Where I work, there are two driveways coming together from our company and another's. Both buildings are somewhat 'downhill' so visibility is very bad where the two driveways come together. You can't see someone coming until the very last second, yet those coming from the right barrel through full speed ahead without a glance. Quite scary.

I've also seen accidents happen from 'being polite'. Someone 'gives' someone else the right of way and it causes confusion and then an accident.

Dan
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