Portuguese roads: The best and the worst

By Kim Schiffmann, in News · 02-08-2019 01:00:00 · 4 Comments

While one road in Portugal has been voted as the best in Europe for driving, the worst road in Portugal has also been revealed in another study which highlights poor signage and an increase in pedestrian deaths.

Portugal´s EN304 may just be Europe´s greatest driving road. In a series that aims to find “Europe´s Greatest Driving Roads” Portugal´s EN304 scored the highest score so far with 57/60 across six categories, with maximum scores for hospitality, scenery, food and drink and thrill factor.

But while one road is being praised many others are being criticised. The Annual Road Accident Report found that the most dangerous road in Portugal, with nine black spots, was the IC19, which links Sintra with Lisbon, according to ANSR.

The list of black spots includes sections with a maximum length of 200 metres where at least five accidents with victims occurred during a year. In second place on the list is the National road (EN) 10 between Vila Franca de Xira and Setúbal with eight black spots, followed by the A2 (Southern Highway), which has six.

The 2018 Annual Road Accident Report, published on 24 July by The National Road Safety Authority (ANSR), also found that road signs in the country are getting worse and there has been an increase in the number of pedestrians dying on Portuguese roads in 2018 by some 14 percent.

The Portuguese Association of Road Signs and Safety (Afesp) warns that “if nothing is done next year the result will be worse again”. The association mentions for example, damaged metal guards and shock absorbers and the lack of visibility of signage painted on the floor. “It is evident that drivers cannot adjust their driving to the circumstances of the roads and make the right decision in a timely manner that can minimise risks”.

According to the same report 105 pedestrians died as a result of accidents on Portugal´s roads, 14 percent more than in 2017, with about half of the victims aged over 65. Of the 105 total, 37 were on the road, while 13 were getting out of or into a vehicle, 12 were using a marked pedestrian crossing and 11 were crossing at another point.

The 2018 report indicates that last year a total of 34,235 accidents were reported in which someone was killed or injured, with 508 people dying at the scene or on the way to the hospital, 2,141 people seriously injured and 41,356 suffering minor injuries. Hit and run accidents also rose slightly in 2018 to 1,060, 5.7 percent more than in 2017.


@Pedro In all these examples that you gave the fault is clearly on the driver. If he hadn't had the time to react and stop it means he was going too fast over a crossing. Anyway, here is part of the Código da Estrada which you clearly did not read before getting your license... Another reason why our roads are so unsafe.

Do trânsito de peões


Artigo 103.º
Cuidados a observar pelos condutores
1 Ao aproximar-se de uma passagem de peões assinalada, o condutor, mesmo
que a sinalização lhe permita avançar, deve deixar passar os peões que já
tenham iniciado a travessia da faixa de rodagem.
Ministério da Administração Interna
2 Ao mudar de direcção, o condutor, mesmo não existindo passagem assinalada
para a travessia de peões, deve reduzir a sua velocidade e, se necessário,
parar a fim de deixar passar os peões que estejam a atravessar a faixa de
rodagem da via em que vai entrar.
3 Quem infringir o disposto nos números anteriores é sancionado com coima de
120 a 600 euros.


By Raphael from Lisbon on 30-07-2020 01:11

@John Bennet - sadly in case of pedestrians the fault is rarely with the driver. People just walk into the crossing sometimes literally in front of the car, not carrying if he has time to react and stop, or with their faces in phones and headphones on ears. And the problem is that unless you have a camera in the car or a third person witness, as a driver you are f*ed.

By Pedro from Lisbon on 03-08-2019 03:48

The roundabout rule introduced about 3 years ago is the cause of many accidents. No other country in the EC has such a stupid rule which limits the use of available road space. From my balcony in Setubal I see accidents every day on the Allegro roundabout. Also why are the pedestrian signals never switched on and they are far too close to the entry to and exit from the roundabout. Traffic managers and road planners should be sent to the UK to see what road safety is about and take some ideas back to Portugal.

By Geoffrey Ryder from Lisbon on 03-08-2019 11:24

Driving too close, lack of anticipation and road craft are obvious contributions to poor road safety. A major initiative to improve driver awareness and skills is required or many more people will lose their lives unnecessarily.

By John Bennett from UK on 02-08-2019 12:37
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