World’s Most Dangerous Roads
Driving is designed to be many things. You’re supposed to feel free and exhilarated behind a wheel. Driving around the globe, you’re supposed to want to shout about your experiences and gather stories and memories to boast about for years to come. You’re not supposed to fear for your life. However, there are a plethora of roads on every corner of the planet that will have even the most seasoned drivers developing what thrill seekers call ‘white knuckles’. From sheer drops to congested chaos, here are five roads worth tackling with extreme caution, should you ever get the chance.
The North Yungas Road (aka ‘Death Road’), Bolivia - Where better to begin a list detailing the most dangerous highways you can travel than one with a name that suggests it shouldn’t be a road at all. It is said that memorials adorn this 40 mile stretch in the Andes, pointing out the areas where travellers have plummeted down over 2,000ft of jagged rocks. Some say you can even see the remains of totalled cars at the bottom. Landslides, bad visibility and vehicles that are frankly too big for the narrow single track make it a death trap, but that doesn’t stop an incredible 25,000 bike enthusiasts who can’t resist the views.
The Russian Federal Highway, Russia - Connecting Russia’s gem, Moscow to Yakutsk, known as the coldest place that isn’t Antarctica, this is the very last highway you would want to break down on. The winter in this place can last a colossal 10 months with snowy and icy conditions the norm. The summer’s no better; no ice, but summer downpours and no real road mean mud and sludge create crashes, jams and many an argument along the way. If you find yourself on this highway, make sure you have your thermals, a shovel and a lot of patience.
Commonwealth Avenue (aka ‘Killer Highway), Manilla - It’s not just nature - with its deadly drops and wacky weather - that poses a threat to drivers these days; drivers themselves can be the danger. With the global population increasing all the time, the number of vehicles on the inner-city roads is staggering. The Killer Highway, another example of an aptly named stretch, isn’t windy, icy, rocky or narrow. Instead it lacks any common traffic law. This means the numbers of accidents and deaths that motorists and pedestrians are involved in every day is huge, making it a dangerous place to even visit on foot.
Bruce Highway, Australia - Think Australia and you’re likely to think gorgeous coastal roads and open cross-country highways. People are known to travel to Australia just to complete the 2,500 mile journey through seasons and stunning scenery, and Bruce Highway is no exception. However due to the number of accidents and - in a way, its sheer length - it still makes the dangerous list. Bruce shoots down the East coast and is known for dangerous illegal overtaking and sometimes severe flooding.
Taroko Gorge Road, Taiwan - There was a day when mountains were scaled by intrepid explorers and goats. Now, even lethal weather-beaten traps like Taiwan’s beautiful Taroko National Park can be explored on four wheels - and are, by thousands each year. It’s narrow, the drops are severe and in places the road crumbles away. Not far off 100,000 people a year die on Taiwanese roads and, with storms and seismic activities aplenty, the Taroko Gorge Road is a real culprit for this figure.
published: 20/02/2015 09:56:31