We have been living in France for two years this month and one of the things that really annoys me about living here is the appalling level of driving. We are in the Charente at the moment and the standard of driving is very poor. Few of the locals appear to give any regard to speed limits through hamlets and villages and speeding and tailgating on the roads is widespread. So it seems is dangerous overtaking, where drivers are putting other drivers lives at risk!!
We had an incident last week when driving to Limoges airport to pick up a visiting friend. We were driving on that horrible section of the N145 after Romazieres but before the dual carriageway section. I was driving up to the brow of a hill and as I came over the top there was a woman hurtling towards us on our side of the road blindly overtaking several lorries in one go!! If I had not braked hard she would have hit us before pulling back into her lane. I was incensed and if we had not been heading for the airport I would have turned the car round and followed her and when she stopped, given her an expletive laden piece of my mind!
What I want to know is why this sort of behaviour so widely tolerated by the authorities in France? I have never seen a Police patrol car on a French road or indeed a motorway (what do they do in rural areas???)? Fixed speed cameras are few and far between and even drink drivers are still allowed to drive after conviction (insane)???
If the roads here were as crowded as the UK it would be absolute carnage!! It really riles me that nothing is being done and I am sick to death of French motorists tailgating me because I slow to 50KPH in a 50KPH zone. The French government are missing a trick. They could raise a fortune by introducing nationwide (hidden) speed cameras. Do they even have road safety campaigns?
I’m sorry for my rant but it is truly shocking that so little is being done. One final thought! In a country where everything progresses at the speed of a retreating glacier, why do so many French drivers think they are Alain Prost?