Ghost drivers, and how to prevent such accidents - Germany

People driving the wrong way on the Autobahn

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RedReitenHood
I tried Keydecking this topic, and was surprised that it hadn't really been discussed before.

After hearing about the big accident on the A96, it did get me thinking - isn't there a way to prevent a "Geister Fahrer" (ghost driver), or lessen the number of occurances?

I remember last summer being shocked at the frequency of which a ghost driver was reported on the radio. If I remember correctly, I think it was at least one every couple of weeks. Are they all suicides? Or just old peoplewho can't see which way they're going? Or are people really not paying attention?

I never heard of such a thing in Canada. Is is common in other countries, too?

This is a subject that has bothered me for some time. Mainly because I don't want to be in the wrong autobahn at the wrong time!
Allershausen
It does seem to happen a massive amount of times here, in Britain it would still make the news but it hardly gets a mention here. I do think the design of exit and entrance is to blame. Because both exit and entrance use the same road often with several different islands dividing them up at the end, it's too easy to get confused and go down the wrong one. In Britain there are usually 4 separate roads leading to and from the mororway, so it's more difficult to get it wrong. The German system uses up less land and is cheaper, but much more prone to errors, I believe.
MadAxeMurderer
No way of stopping it. Even if you put one way spikes on the autobahn ramps, you could still do a Uturn on the autobahn.

I'd imagine they're laregly thrillseekers. Hard to go mistakingly the wrong way onto the autobahn
sarabyrd
It happens much more frequently than every couple weeks, I should be surprised if even one day passed without one (Germany-wide). My Ma managed to enter down an exit but realized it right away - she wasn't old at the time either, about my present age.
Sometimes it's deranged old biddies or crones but generally it's
alcohol
misleading signposts
illegible signs due to inclement weather
just plain not watching out
turning around after missing the correct exit
suicide
dare
(from Falschfahrer )
Putting up spikes or barriers has been discussed but discarded for various reasons, such as what if there is an emergency and an ambulance has to take an exit to enter the Autobahn, or what if there is a traffic jam on an exit on an incline and someone rolls backwards, etc.
I strongly advise having your car radio adjusted to the interruption option so you will always get the freshest traffic news, and sensitize your hearing for Geisterfahrer or Falschfahrer. Always know the number of the Autobahn you are on as well.
666
just watch ghostrider videos.
osmachar
maybe they think everyone else is going the wrong way ;-)
PeterC
As a senior citizen was driving down the freeway, his car phone rang. Answering, he heard his wife’s voice urgently warning him, “Herman, I just heard on the news that there’s a car going the wrong way on Interstate 77. Please be careful!? He said, “It’s not just one, it’s hundreds of them!?

(I couldn't resist.)
Pirulero
They need those big old signs like in Oz

Attached image
Gen
I've always thought it must be because the side lines and the center lines are both white. In the US the center line is yellow, but the side lines are white. If you've got a yellow line on your right, you're going the wrong way. I never paid attention to the line colors in other countries though.
Katrina
Attached imageAttached image
Austria goes as far as having two types of warning signs. ÖMATC info
Of course the old one on the right is better - it can be seen on the rear side of slip road exit direction signs, so helps to stop someone becoming an accidental Geisterfahrer.
The one on the left is new and is being introduced on the A12 now on the main carriageway, usually on overhead signs - it is to warn people already driving the right way that someone else might not be so wise.
MadAxeMurderer
I had no idea what the new one meant until Katarina explained it.
JOB
Is it too early for the blonde joke?

Guy calls his wife to tell her.

"There is some nutter driving down the wrong the side of the motorway."

her reply.

"Is the f*ck there's loads of them!"

I'll get may coat!
sarabyrd
As a senior citizen was driving down the freeway, his car phone rang. Answering, he heard his wife’s voice urgently warning him, “Herman, I just heard on the news that there’s a car going the wrong way on Interstate 77. Please be careful!? He said, “It’s not just one, it’s hundreds of them!?

(I couldn't resist.)
Read the above first.
EDIT: Geisterfahrer sind die freundlichsten Autofahrer - sie sind so entgegenkommend.
*joins JOB getting coat*
JOB
Really should read it all before diving head first right in there

That's me told!
johnnyd
It happens a lot in France. I always make a point of driving on the right hand side on dual-carriageway roads and on more than one occassion a car has flashed by me on the left. Needless to say even at low speeds the combined speeds head-on collion would be leathal.
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