Driving tips for Ireland 02
USEFUL TIPS (cont.)
- Trams in Dublin: there are several locations with street running for trams but they are well indicated. Don't try and dice with trams since (a) they are deceptively fast and (b) bigger than you (unless you are a coach or articulated lorry).
- There are an increasing number of mobile speed camera units operating in the Republic; I don't know how they deal with drivers speeding in hired cars. They usually operate from the back of vans. Don't think that driving a hired car exempts you from speeding charges. While you won't get penalty points if you have a non-Irish driving licence, the hire car will bill you for the speeding fine. There are an increasing number of fixed and mobile cameras in Ireland; many are concealed and not necessarily visible on approach.
- Sign posting is variable in Ireland; if youre staying in a particular area, its well worth buying a decent map of the area. The Ordnance Survey maps are very good value and will save you a lot of your precious touring time.
- When you're driving on minor roads (or even major) roads outside Dublin and the main cities, it is customary to acknowledge oncoming drivers. This is usually done by lifting your forefinger (cool way) or you can also wave and smile.
- Beware of cows and sheep when driving on minor roads. We have often been blocked by livestock moving around the roads, so just chill out and watch the farming dogs work (nowadays the guys driving the quad bikes!). You sometimes get blocked on 'N' roads [national or main trunk roads] - the farm can't help it if it's located on a main road!).
- Never leave anything visible in your car when leaving it in an Irish city - take valuables and tuck non-valuables under seat, in boot, sorry, trunk, or wherever. Car crime is quite high in Dublin but violent crime very low in comparison to other countries. However, don't give criminals any excuse to break into your car.
- Unsignalled pedestrian crossings, known in Ireland as Zebra crossings give the pedestrian right-of-way over all traffic on the road. These crossings are distinctive because they have white horizontal stripes across the road surface, and are accompanied by an continuous amber flashing light on each side of the road. Once it is clear that a person wishes the cross (they may place a foot on the road to indicate this), then you must stop and yield to them. This is not optional, like some European countries, but is compulsory. Should you be unfortunate enough to hit a pedestrian on such a crossing, then you would be liable, so care is required at such places.
- In the UK such crossings are sometimes called Pelican or Toucan crossings.
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