The standard of driving in Cyprus is generally poor.
Some people may use stronger adjectives and sometimes not without cause.
Traffic lights are operated on a timer, not by traffic monitoring equipment, so the wait can appear lengthy. This causes frustration to drivers who may well jump the lights.
Failing to comply with the red light is a common occurrence.
Do not assume that if your light is green it is safe to go. Always treat traffic light controlled junctions with extreme caution.
An inability of drivers to accurately judge speed of approaching vehicles and poor judgment, often manifests itself by vehicles pulling out in front of you from side roads and parking areas at inappropriate times.
Actions that cause you to slow down, swerve or stop are considered normal by many local drivers. Particularly when trying to get out of a junction or when crossing your path.
When exiting from a side road, ensure you can see, and that other drivers can see you. If you can’t, move out slowly to get your view. Vehicles often travel at excessive speeds on narrow roads.
Stop signs are used at many junctions and crossroads in preference to Giveway signs which would be in most cases be more appropriate. Often the sign and the stop line are positioned well before the actual junction affording no view of traffic on the main road. To comply strictly with the law is difficult. Use caution.
No Entry Signs
Are often disregarded, and to escape detection, offenders will travel through at high speed.
You will often find that when drivers negotiate a right hand bend they will cut in to the opposing side of the road on the apex of the bend. We have found it quite difficult to explain that in doing this the driver is making the bend more sever than it need be. In consequence you, as the driver traveling in the opposite direction, are forced to move over to the left.
Cars will often park on the zig zag area and on the crossing itself, even though it is a offence and highly dangerous. It is particularly hazardous for children as often the approaching drivers view is obstructed.
Solid White Lines and Overtaking
As with red traffic lights, stop signs and solid center white lines are widely disregarded. Ensure that you can change course, slow or stop if necessary. It should be noted that a single solid center line is often used and should not be crossed.
The inability to judge speed and the lack of knowledge on the handling and acceleration characteristics of their own vehicle, often lead to inappropriate or dangerous overtaking. If you see someone traveling behind you who you think will overtake, the chances are they will. Use caution.
Overtaking may be preceded by a period of tailgating.
Unfortunately roundabouts are often not used correctly by drivers and the signage on the approach, put up by the Public Works Department, are in many cases incorrect and do not comply with the Cyprus Highway Code. Be very careful!