Friday, 7 September 2012

Car crash Salta and Argentine Highway code

Every Argentine town is built in a grid formation and there are hundreds of junctions on each block around every 100 metres.  Most don’t have traffic lights and often when they do the red light doesn’t work.  This makes for some interesting driving and I have seen loads of accidents in several cities.  Ask an Argentine what is the rule and they just laugh and say there isn’t one.  Salta is the best yet as here cars from all four directions just edge forward a foot at a time until one person is brave enough to hammer the accelerator down and move across.  From then on the cars behind follow giving that direction the right of way until someone from another direction edges forward enough to take the right of way back.

When you add in motorbikes, buses and pedestrians it gets pretty hairy and that is how today we caused an accident, well Fletch mainly.  We were walking up to the motorbike shops and at one junction I saw one of the cars edging forward to turn left into the line of traffic.  The driver was looking to the right and as I waited for him Fletch took one step onto the road and stopped when he saw the car.  The driver stopped for Fletch but not in time for the car behind, which then rammed into the back of the first car.  There was a bit of damage to the cars but no one was hurt.  Everyone around stopped what they were doing and for an awkward second Fletch and I made eye contact with the drivers, we then looked at each other and without saying anything we crossed the road and carried on walking up the street hoping they wouldn’t chase after us.  Got to love the road rules here.
The cars out this way are not customised in anyway at all

Some shaky pictures of the main square by night. 

Some very Argentine inspired graffiti

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