19 Mar All but essential traffic was banned from the roads
A ‘thrilling’ mission to get the Swedish to change overnight
is the word repeatedly used by Jan Ramqvist to describe how he felt about participating in a nationwide mission to get all Swedish motorists and moncler outlet store cyclists to change the habits discount moncler jackets of a lifetime and begin driving on the right hand side of the road for the first time.
was talking about it, but cheap moncler coats mens we really didn know how it would work out, explains the 77 year old, who was just 26 and a newly qualified traffic engineer working in the city of Malm when the potentially catastrophic changeover took place on 3 September 1967.
The day was officially known as H (right hand traffic diversion) or simply Dagen H (H Day). Its mission was to put Sweden on the same path as the rest of its continental European neighbours, most of which had long followed the global trend to drive cars on the right.
View moncler sale online image of (Credit: Jan Sndergaard)
As well as hoping to boost the country international reputation, the Swedish government had grown increasingly concerned about moncler outlet sale safety, with the number of registered vehicles on the roads shooting up from 862,992 a decade earlier to a figure of 1,976,248 recorded by Statistics Sweden at the time of H Day. Sweden population was around 7.8 million.
You would be sitting on the opposite side to moncler outlet online what made sense and you were looking down into the ditch! Lars Magnusson
Despite driving on the left, many Swedes already owned cars with the steering wheel on the left hand side of the vehicle, since many bought from abroad and major Swedish car manufacturers such as cheap moncler jackets Volvo had chosen to follow the trend. However, there were concerns that this was a factor in rising numbers of fatal road traffic accidents, up from 595 in 1950 to 1,313 in 1966, alongside an increased frequency of collisions around Sweden borders with Denmark, Norway and Finland.
market for cars moncler sale outlet in Sweden was not so big and so we moncler outlet tended to buy left driven cars, explains Lars Magnusson, a moncler uk outlet professor in click over here https://www.cheapmoncler.com cheap moncler economic history at Uppsala University. that meant that you moncler outlet woodbury would be sitting on the opposite side to what made sense and you moncler sale were looking down into the ditch! hard the run up to H Day, each local municipality had to deal with issues ranging from repainting road markings to relocating bus stops and traffic lights, and redesigning intersections, bicycle lanes and one way streets.
Several cities including Stockholm, Malm and Helsingborg also used the change to cheap moncler jackets mens implement more wide ranging transport changes, such as closing tram lines to allow for more bus routes. Hundreds of new buses were purchased by municipalities around the country, and around 8,000 older buses were reconfigured to provide doors on both sides. The total cost of amending public transportation came in at 301,457,972 Swedish kronor.
View image of (Credit: Jan Sndergaard)
Some 360,000 street signs had to be switched nationwide, which largely took place on a single day before the move to right hand driving, with moncler usa council workers joined by the military and working late into the night to ensure the task got done before H Day formally revved into gear on Sunday morning. All but essential traffic was banned from the roads.
The most challenging thing was the shortage of time, no vacation at all, too many hours a day for months Arthur Olin
worked incredibly hard on the night itself, remembers Ramqvist, who shared the responsibility for ensuring around 3,000 signs in Malm were moved correctly.
boss was very proud because we were one of the first (municipalities) to ring Stockholm and tell moncler womens jackets the head of the commission that we were finished, he says, recalling a charged and celebratory cheap moncler sale atmosphere. found ourselves eating cake and drinking coffee in the middle of the night! remember the stress of the project more vividly.
most challenging thing was the shortage of time, no vacation at all, too many hours a day for months, I almost killed myself, says Arthur Olin, now 82, who was working as a traffic consultant in the city of Helsingborg and says he spent a full year knee deep in logistical planning.
The stress caused him to the wall a year later. Swedes began cautiously driving on the right hand side of roads around the country at precisely 5am on 3 September 1967, following a radio countdown.
Olof moncler outlet prices Palme, the Swedish Minister of Communication (who later became Prime Minister), went on air to say that the move represented very large change in our daily existence, our everyday life dare say that never before has a country invested so much personal labour, and money, to achieve uniform international traffic rules, he announced.
Never before has a country invested so much personal labour, and money, to achieve uniform international traffic moncler online store rules Olof Palme
In total, the project cost 628 million kronor, best moncler jackets just 5% cheap moncler jackets womens over the government estimated budget two years earlier, uk moncler outlet and the equivalent of around 2.6 billion kronor ($316m) today.
But economic historian Lars Magnusson argues that this figure is actually relatively small, given the scale of the plan, which was the biggest infrastructure project Sweden had ever seen.
As a point of uk moncler sale comparison, he refers to the total 2017 budget given to the Swedish Transport Administration (the government agency responsible for transport planning) for roads and railways some 25 billion kronor ($2.97bn).
H] was a fairly cheap transfer in a sense it was not a very big sum even at that time, he explains.
This, he says, was partly due Swedish officials living up to their global reputation for efficiency and careful planning, alongside the logistics of the era.
road system was not so developed as it is today and so the costs in infrastructure were not extremely high and it was also because we already had the left hand drive cars.