Civilisation on Road

You are guaranteed absolute safety in Norway when you perform scary stun that would definitely drive you to six feet under. Jiann Chyuan discovers.

Not too long ago I mentioned on the punctuality of bus system in Trondheim. I think it is only appropriate if I post a timely update about how Norwegians behave on road. Again, what I’m going to tell is at least applicable in Trondheim.

The introduction, Norwegians are extremely courteous on the road. Take an instance.

Cross a road in Malaysia, regardless of its busy level, you will end up:
1) Horned until you turn deaf
2) Rolled under the tyre and deform to minced meat shape ready to be packed
3) Absorb full impact from the hit and experience flying without wings

Let’s switch the angle and do the same thing in Norway, you will see:
1) Driver slows down his vehicle from far and ready to let you cross the road
2) Driver jams on brake suddenly and let you cross the road when your movement is abrupt
3) Driver crashes himself to the road side if he was unable to put the motor to halt

It is not exaggerating. In fact, pedestrians are the most important characters on road. And of course, this also means that the highest power is in the hands of pedestrians. However, road courtesy and pleasantness are not always equivalent.

My very own personal experience, which nearly got me pressed into a thin sheet of plywood in a bus, was totally shocking. A pedestrian was crossing a road so suddenly that the bus I was in had no choice but to exert a one-ten-millionth second brake when it was speeding downhill.

The result? The pedestrian crossed the road safely without noticing what was happening to her left. Switch to another point of view, I was crashed to the windshield of the bus and was topped by at least ten standing passengers (whom apparently no longer standing on that particular instant). I swear, it was a life threatening incident!

Perfect score for civilisation on road!

This is just one extreme example actually. Norwegians, unlike the road users in Malaysia, are taught to be courteous on road. I heard that giving way to pedestrians is actually a statement in their regulations on road.

Other than respecting pedestrians, the infamous me-fist-la culture in Malaysia is also a scene impossible in Norway. Every morning, no matter how terrible a traffic jam is, (oh yea, Trondheim does suffer traffic jam in the morning) you will never see cars jump queue. They are always so nicely lined up in queue.

Besides, bus lane means bus lane, and only bus lane. No car will cross to bus lane and get an advantage of out of it. Maybe this is also one of the reasons why buses in Trondheim manage to maintain a high level of punctuality.

It has really a lot to say when it comes to road system in Norway, although this country has only limited length of highways (lesser by significant difference if compared with Malaysia). The conclusion is, coincides with the introduction is, Norwegians are courteous on roads. Should I put extremely?

Two random pictures showing the situation on the road in Trondheim.