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Tag: Fine

Driving in Sicily – How to survive

One golden rule about Sicily is Law says one thing – Reality is something else.

Sicily is filled with cars and the situation is not getting any better. Generally if a family has four family members, there are four cars, perhaps also two vespas and a motorbike. Now when I think of it also I have one car and two vespas. If you look into the sicilian cars you often see just one person in it, they do not plan to go together.

The traffic situation changes very much dependning on where you are in Sicily. In Ragusa area you find calmer traffic, order, people using seat belts, children in car seats, people using helmets and so on… Ragusa has always been the Germany in Sicily. Then you start to move towards Catania and Palermo and there you find vepsas on the right and left, a car for five people may have eight sitting inside, a whole family on a vespa with no helmets and cars parked all over. In Messina five cars ignored the red light in 20 minutes.

For guests renting a car in Sicily I always advice the following “You have to drive like only you exist in the world. No one will give you priority and if you follow north european rules, you will never reach your destination. In road crossings if turning left, you have to sneak out slowly, stopping the cars on the left field and continue slowly forward stopping the cars from right side. This way you cross a road in Sicily. If parking confuses you, check how other cars has parked in the area. If they have a paid ticket in the window, then pay. If not, just park there. You can also ask the closest shop or bar for advice. Or park on the side of the road checking that you do not block the traffic.” In Sicily many times fast parking means parking on the sidewalk and put emergemcy lights on.?Double and triple parking is more standard than exception. I recommend not to do this.

The city of Catania got tired of double- and tripple parking in central city that stopped even the public transport, so the municipality put some cameras in the streets and sent the fines home. In one month they collected over 80,000 fines.

For safety: always drive with locked doors especially in Catania and Palermo. No one will point a gun on you, but open doors means e.g that someone can steal you bag on the seat. Bags always keep on the floor. Never leave anything in the car if you are not there; put shoppingbags in the trunk and papers ecc under the seat. In Taormina area I drive more safe, but when I got to Catania I lock the steering wheel with a chain that goes under seat if I leave the car for longer hours. Your items in the car may be stolen or the car itself, but you do not have to worry about someone treathening you. Same with Vespas, lock the rear wheel with a chain.

In the sicilian traffic you will notice sicilians anger and frustrations; lots of shouting, hand gestures and using the car horn. Do not stress! It is always the same.

If you have an accident, never move the car, leave the scene as it is even if you block the traffic, as it is the police who will report what may have happened. Never listen to the counterpart what to do, wait for the police. Insurance frauds are alarmingly high in Italy and an accident is a perfect occasion to milk extra money from you. In small accidents the sicilian custom is to solve the issue there by giving some cash to the other party to solve the damages without dragging in the insurance companies.

If you rent a car many companies offers full insurance, it means that for a small amount you have full cover and can return with just one wheel not paying anything at all, they call it Full Kasko. And if you get a parking ticket, or a fine, pay it. Paying it within five days gives you up to 30% discount. If you do not pay it will get more expensive as they will deduct the money from your card and often add an extra fine of 50 euro.

Good luck out there laughing well, you’ll see things to remember for life!

LivingInSicilyBlog

In Catania red light is only a suggestionI Catania ?r r?tt ljus bara ett f?rslag

 

Svenska

En gyllene regel om Sicilien ?r Lagen s?ger en sak – Verkligheten ?r n?got annat.

Sicilien ?r fylld med bilar och situationen blir inte b?ttre. Generellt om en familj har fyra familjemedlemmar finns det fyra bilar, kanske ocks? tv? vespor och en motorcykel. Nu n?r jag t?nker p? det har jag ocks? en bil och tv? vespor. Om du tittar p? de sicilianska bilarna ser du ofta bara en person i den, de planerar inte att ?ka tillsammans.

Trafiksituationen f?r?ndras v?ldigt mycket beroende av var du befinner dig p? Sicilien. I Ragusa-omr?det finner du lugnare trafik, ordning, personer som anv?nder bilb?lten, barn i bilstolar, personer som anv?nder hj?lmar och s? vidare … Ragusa har alltid varit Tyskland p? Sicilien. Sedan b?rjar du flytta mot Catania och Palermo och d?r har du vepsor till h?ger och v?nster. En bil f?r fem personer kan ha ?tta sittande inuti, en hel familj p? en vespa utan hj?lmar och bilar parkerade ?verallt. I Messina ignorerade fem bilar det r?da ljuset p? 20 minuter.

F?r g?ster som hyr en bil p? Sicilien, rekommenderar jag alltid f?ljande: “Du m?ste k?ra som om bara du existerar i v?rlden. Ingen kommer att prioritera dig och om du f?ljer nordeuropeiska regler kommer du aldrig att n? din destination. I v?nstersv?ng m?ste du smyga l?ngsamt ut, stoppa bilarna p? v?nster fil och forts?tt l?ngsamt fram?t och stoppa bilarna fr?n h?ger sida. P? s? s?tt korsar du en v?g p? Sicilien. Om parkeringsplatsen f?rvirrar dig, kolla hur andra bilar har parkerat. Om de har en betald biljett i f?nstret, betalar du det. Om inte, bara parkera d?r. Du kan ocks? fr?ga n?rmaste aff?r eller bar f?r r?d. Eller parkera p? sidan av v?gen och kontrollera att du inte blockerar trafiken.” P? Sicilien inneb?r m?nga g?nger snabb parkering parkering p? trottoaren och s?tta p? n?dblinkers. Dubbel- och trippelparkering ?r mer regel ?n undantag. Jag rekommenderar att du inte g?r det h?r.

Staden Catania blev tr?tt p? dubbel- och trippelparkering i centrala staden som stoppade ?ven kollektivtrafiken, s? kommunen satte upp n?gra kameror p? gatorna och skickade b?terna hem. P? en m?nad samlade de in ?ver 80 000 b?ter.

F?r s?kerhet: k?r alltid med l?sta d?rrar, s?rskilt i Catania och Palermo. Ingen kommer att peka med en pistol p? dig, men ?ppna d?rrar betyder till exempel att n?gon kan stj?la v?skan p? s?tet. V?skor har man alltid p? bilgolvet. L?mna aldrig n?gonting i bilen om du inte ?r d?r. L?gg shoppingkassar i bagaget och papper ecc under s?tet. I Taormina-omr?det k?r jag s?kert, men n?r jag ?ker till Catania l?ser jag ratten med en kedja som g?r under s?tet om jag l?mnar bilen l?ngre tid. Dina saker i bilen kan bli stulna eller bilen sj?lv, men du beh?ver inte oroa dig f?r n?gon som skulle hota dig. Samma med Vespor, l?s bakhjulet med en kedja.

I den sicilianska trafiken kommer du att m?rka sicilianarnas ilska och frustrationer; massor av skrik, handgester och tutande. Stressa inte! Det ?r alltid s?h?r.

Om du har en olycka, flytta aldrig bilen, l?mna scenen som den ?r ?ven om du blockerar trafiken, eftersom det ?r polisen som kommer att rapportera vad som kan ha h?nt. Lyssna aldrig p? motparten vad man ska g?ra, v?nta p? polisen. F?rs?kringsbedr?gerier ?r orov?ckande h?ga i Italien och en olycka ?r ett perfekt tillf?lle att mj?lka extra pengar fr?n dig. Vid sm?olyckor ?r sicilianska stilen att l?sa problemet p? plats genom att ge n?gra pengar till den andra parten f?r att l?sa mindre skador utan att dra in f?rs?kringsbolagen.

Om du hyr en bil erbjuder m?nga f?retag full f?rs?kring, det inneb?r att du f?r en liten summa har full t?ckning och kan ?terv?nda med bara ett hjul utan att beh?va betala n?got, det kallas Full Kasko. Och om du f?r parkeringsb?ter, eller annan b?ter, betala den. Betalar du inom fem dagar ges upp till 30% rabatt. Om du inte betalar blir det dyrare eftersom de kommer att dra av pengarna fr?n ditt kort och ofta l?gger till en extra b?ter p? 50 euro.

Lycka till d?r ute och skratta gott, du kommer se saker att minnas f?r livet!

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80,000 for some order in town

Catania has a terrible traffic. Not only double parking, but also trippel parking. The municipality had enough because the traffic gets worse every year and more cars around each year that passes. So recently Catania municipality has put som cameras around the city to film cars that parks wrong and blocks the traffic. People does not even know they will receive a fine home because these cameras controls the traffic. The fine is 47 euro. The first month the city collected over 80,000 fines. That shows how big the traffic problem is.

Svenska

Catania har en fruktansv?rd trafik. Inte bara dubbelparkering, men ?ven trippelparkering. Kommunen fick nog eftersom trafiken blir v?rre f?r varje ?r och fler bilar k?r runt varje ?r som g?r. S? nyligen har Catania kommun lagt kameror runt staden f?r att filma bilar som parkerar fel och blockerar trafiken. Folk vet inte ens de kommer att f? b?ter hemskickat eftersom dessa kameror styr trafiken. B?tern ?r p? 47 euro. Den f?rsta m?naden har staden samlat in ?ver 80,000 b?ter. Det visar hur stort trafikproblemet ?r.

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And then what?

Vad h?nde sen?

B?tern jag fick p? motorinon hann jag aldrig ?verklaga, haft viktigare saker att g?ra. Men fick veta att det g?r. Som ljuv h?mnd hann en av katterna l?gga en liten piss p? b?tern dagen innan jag skulle g? och betala. S? jag anser att trafikpolisen och jag ?r kvitt.

Mitt f?rlorade bagage har ?nnu inte dykt upp. De hade skickat v?skan till Trapani, Sicilien. Men n?tterna d?r hade skickat den tillbaka till Milano. Nu ringde de fr?n Milano och sa vilket flyg v?skan kommer p?. S? jag ringde till Trapani och sa att de m?ste skicka hit den. S? den kommer med bud senast tisdag. V?skan ?r mer globetrotter ?n jag.
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Eng: Then what happened?

The fine I got on the motorinon I didn’t appeal, had other things to do. But I know that it’s possible. As a sweet revenge one of the cats added a little pee on the fine the day before I would pay. So I think that the traffic police and I are even.

My lost luggage has yet to appear. They have sent the bag to Trapani, Sicily. But the nuts had sent it back to Milan. Now they called from Milan, said in which flight the bag comes. So I called to Trapani and said they must send it here. So it comes with taxi latest on Tuesday. The bag is more globetrotter than I am.

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