Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Crash course

Italian drivers speed along on the right hand side of the road, but trains run on the left. With both road and rail present on the Messina Bridge there has been concern about the potential consequences of a 'cross-modal' crash. The combined speed of a train and car travelling in opposite directions could be 200km/h or more.

To reduce the hazard, the design team has switched traffic flows from right to left. As a result, slow vehicles will occupy the lanes closest to the rail track and run in the same direction as trains. Drivers travelling at speed will be in the outside lanes where they pose least danger.

Brown notes the right-left switch also suits the tracking and suspension of Italian cars, which are set up for the camber found on Continental highways. On Messina, the road lanes slope towards the bridge's centre line - a reverse camber.

There were fears that without crossing carriageways cars would have a tendency to veer towards the rail line.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.