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Worn traffic markings on the roads

(41 Posts)
M0nica Mon 12-Feb-24 19:19:12

We arrived in France this evening, in the dark and had no difficulty following the white lines and instructions on the roads, which were all fresh, very white and easy to follow, to make sure we were in the right lane, turned at the right place etc etc.

I couldn't but compare it with the situation in the UK where, where ever you go the lines are worn almost to non-existence. and at night, and in the rain, completely invisible.

It isn't a problem in my home locality, where I am familiar with my routes to and from the local towns and city so do not look for road amrkings because I know them all by heart, but last weekend I was driving round a medium sized city, which I am not entirely unfamliar with, but rarely drive in, and I found it really difficult, especially in the dark and pouring rain, to ensure I was always in the right lane, especially in situations where every junction had different priorities compared with the previous one.

French traffic authroities are just as cash strapped as in the UK, but manage to keep their road markings fresh and repair all their potholes - mind you the lack of lines, lighting and cats-eyes on their motorwys - is a struggle.

flappergirl Mon 12-Feb-24 21:34:51

Everything you've said and potholes as well! Our city and its environs are riddled with crater sized ones. I nearly wrote my car off last year, it was very frightening.

This country is falling apart at the seams.

Mollygo Mon 12-Feb-24 22:39:49

The best/worst frighteningly accurate joke about potholes displayed a road with a sign saying crazy golf course

Callistemon21 Mon 12-Feb-24 22:46:03

There are roads around here with potholes which have been spraypainted for months, well some could be years.
I thought the reason for spray painting was to mark those which are to be filled in.

Obviously now it's to warn motorists to avoid them.
However the paint is wearing off many of them, it's been on there so long.

Joseann Tue 13-Feb-24 01:00:09

I agree, although interestingly France has double the number of fatalities on the road as the UK. Mainly on their smaller roads.

NotSpaghetti Tue 13-Feb-24 01:23:57

I was in the wrong lane recently as there was nothing visible of the road markings comingupto a roundabout. I wasn't even far from home - but it was raining.
Lots like this.
What a mess we are in here in the UK.

biglouis Tue 13-Feb-24 01:47:57

There are holes in the pavements and tarmac paths around here. No wonder people are busy putting in claims against the LA having tripped up in one.

Last year someone put a note through my door explaining that they had tripped on the pavement outside and asking me to check my cctv to see if I had any "footage" of the incident. Fortunately (or unfortunately depending upon your perspective) there is a large tree in the way which obscured the view of the street in that direction. People come along and ask you to search for for "footage" of incidents. However they make no attempt to supply the media on which to store it (data stick, memory card etc.) and look blank when you request it.

Juliet27 Tue 13-Feb-24 03:03:09

Apart from the state of the roads, it’s also the rubbish on the verges that’s depressing.

Witzend Tue 13-Feb-24 10:04:27

Yes, their roads are certainly better but France has far more toll roads than the UK - they must get a really good income from those. IIRC it costs us around €100 in tolls to drive to and from a BiL’s place - about 5 hours from Calais if we don’t stop.

Our road signs are better though! Much bigger and clearer.

henetha Tue 13-Feb-24 10:05:47

I parked in a car park in the rain recently and it was impossible to make out the spaces. The lines between urgently need re-painting.

Jaxjacky Tue 13-Feb-24 10:16:50

Our capital spend has dropped in comparison to other countries, not surprisingly.

M0nica Tue 13-Feb-24 10:17:25

My concern is the white road and lane markings, those saying which is a turning lane. or which lane at big urban roundabouts should be used for different destinations. often if you get into the wrong lan you get funneled onto a road you do not need to be on.

As I said, on home territory, I know which lane to go into. On one local roundabout there are 4 lanes approaching it and if you go into the wrong one, you are skewered. When it was fist complete even locals were swerving across lanes to work out which was the right one.

I was certainly doing it this last weekend in an unfamiliar historic city with a lot od tourists, so lots of people who are not familiar with the road system and need those, on road directions.

I made several sudden lane changes because thw white signs were so worn, sometimes virtually removed and in the dark and the wet. i could neither see them nor read them.

SeaWoozle Tue 13-Feb-24 14:14:58

Funnily enough I was watching a gang of workers yesterday write new words on the road near where we live. It's fascinating to watch and they do it so effortlessly. I wonder how long it takes them to train?! But agree mostly that at the moment potholes are shocking. Doesn't help living in the borders where they take ages to decide who's going to do what 🙄

MaizieD Tue 13-Feb-24 14:23:08

Driving 20 miles and back to a nearby town on a foggy Saturday night all I can say is 'God bless cats eyes'. None on the road for my outward journey, just faded white lines, and it was horrific. I chose another route to come home by and the cats eyes on that road were brilliant.

As for potholes 🙄

Callistemon21 Tue 13-Feb-24 14:26:42

Some of the cats eyes round here need replacing too.

In a few areas the white lines have been repainted and it does makes a difference.

Kim19 Tue 13-Feb-24 14:37:31

I always remember my driving instructor saying to me that, when visibility was poor or someone was headlight blinding you, focus completely on the solid white line on the nearside verge. These are pretty much non existent nowadays. I so miss them. Yes our roads are in a very down at heel state as well as many other aspects. So sad......and very dangerous.

Georgesgran Tue 13-Feb-24 14:45:58

DD2’s estate is accessed via a mini roundabout, at the top of a rise and the markings are almost nonexistent. Despite having right of way, I’m extremely careful and wary of oncoming traffic that often fails to stop - I’ve even been honked at for making a right turn in front of them and have had a number of close shaves since she moved there.

Mollygo Wed 14-Feb-24 00:26:50

Some of the cats eyes need replacing near us. I never realised how much I relied on cats eyes till I was driving back from Puy du Fou at midnight along main roads without any except at exits.

M0nica Wed 14-Feb-24 06:32:34

I know exactly what you mean about French roads, Mollygro
Compared with British roads, French motorways are corridors of stygian gloom. No cats eyes, no street lighting at junctions, no lights on signs, many of the signs are non-reflective. Junction indicators that are not clear.

Since DH and I started to find our night sight is not as good as it used to be, in the winter months when all our ferry journeys to France start or end in darkness, we have started staying over night in a hotel at the port. The British side of the journey is never a problem because of the far, far better lighting on British motorways.

MayBee70 Wed 14-Feb-24 09:06:11

We were only saying yesterday, after narrowly avoiding yet another pot hole, what on earth do foreign visitors think of the state of our roads. And then there’s the litter everywhere. And dog poo on pavements…

Joseann Wed 14-Feb-24 09:24:03

Now here's a bit of useless information from my bank of stories. Did you know cats' eyes were designed in the 1930s by a man driving along in the fog who couldn't see the metal tramlines he usually followed in the dark, because they had been removed or something? Along came a stray cat, and the car's headlamps picked up the cats' eyes shiny eyes instead. Et voilà he had the brainwave to invent a similar thing for the roads in the way we know the lights today. Cats' eyes served greatly during the blackouts of World War 2.
Now, IF you're still listening, this is where it gets even more interesting. The actual design of the way these lights worked was invented by a Frenchman! (I can't remember all the names, I'd need to look them up). Anyway, the name given to the light is a retroreflector or retroflector, otherwise poshly called a cataphote. Get it? So, cats' eyes and cataphotes. But the silly French people didn't follow this through to installing les yeux de chat on their roads.
Thank you for listening!! That's the History/French/Science lesson ticked for today at school. 😻 😻

Joseann Wed 14-Feb-24 09:28:31

And dog poo on pavements
Now, the award for that definitely goes to France, though I was surprised to see it a lot in Amsterdam last month.

Mollygo Wed 14-Feb-24 09:51:54

And an even more useless bit of information is that John cat’s eyes Cunningham has nothing to do with road markings!

Joseann Wed 14-Feb-24 09:56:57

I feel a challenge to Horrible Histories WW2 coming on here! We could make a term's work out of useless bits of information l!

Callistemon21 Wed 14-Feb-24 10:01:59

The white lines can be painted in photo-luminescent paint .

I'm not sure who invented it and I have to go out now.

Perhaps someone might like to do some research 😁