Drivers see speed cut as a limit to their freedom

Reducing speed limits on routes nationales from 90kph to 80kph from this July risks being seen as an intrusion into a driver’s personal space, says Herve Marchal, a sociologist at the Université de Bourgogne and author of Un sociologue au volant. The plan was one of 18 road safety measures recently announced by the prime minister

You have said that people see sudden changes in motoring rules such as this 10kph speed reduction as an intrusion. Can you explain?

The car is part of our everyday living space, a place where we develop ways of being, routines.

The body settles down and relaxes. We experience it as an intimate, subjective sphere. The interior of the car is a place where we want to decide what we do – a place where we feel in control – it’s ‘my space’.


The government will take stock of the speed reduction after two years. Perhaps if it is poorly accepted they will go back on it?

I don’t know if ...

To read the remaining 85% of this article, you need to either

Subscribe now to The Connexion and benefit from access to our archived articles since 2006

Freedom Subscription

Pay every three months. Our most flexible subscription.

Automatic renewal, cancel anytime

1 Year Subscription (12 editions)

1 year of great reading in print and online

Automatic renewal, cancel anytime

Digital Subscription (1 Year) (Our best value offer)

1 year of great reading online *no paper*

Automatic renewal, cancel anytime

Digital subscription (freedom - 3 months)

3 months of great reading online *no paper*

Automatic renewal, cancel anytime

More articles from Comment
More articles from Connexion France
Other articles that may interest you

Loading some business profiles...

Loading some classifieds...