Hard shoulder

Hard shoulder

Although hard shoulders are part of the highway, they are not part of the main carriageway, cf. OLG Bamberg (decision of 16.01.2008 – 2 Ss OWi 1687/07):

"Based on these findings, the district court rightly found the person concerned guilty in objective terms of violating the prohibition to reverse on the highway (§ 18 para. 7 StVO) found guilty, since to the highway not only the continuous lanes, but also the entrances and exits, whose beginning and end are marked with the traffic signs 330 or. 334 are marked, as well as the hard shoulders and side lanes belong to (BayObLGSt 1979, 166/167; OLG Düsseldorf VRS 71, 459; cf. Also Hentschel Road Traffic Law 39. Aufl. Stvo § 18 Rn. 14, 14b).

… That reversing on the hard shoulder as well as the acceleration lane of the entrance resp. Of the deceleration lane of the exit constitutes the administrative offense of §§ 18 para. 7, 48 para. 1 no. 18 StVO i.V.M. § 24 StVG undoubtedly fulfilled, has already been explained. Here from to distinguish however the legal consequence assessment, which is from the fine catalog after § 1 exp. 1 sentence 1 BKatV, and which in turn presupposes a constituent traffic offense (Göhler OWiG § 17 marginal no. 28).

C) Point 83 of the catalog of fines results in the following graduation of penalties: Reversing in an entrance and exit of a highway is fined according to item 83.1 of the catalog of fines with a regular fine of 50 €, on the side lane or the hard shoulder according to number 83.2 with a fine of 100 €, and on the through lanes according to paragraph 83.3 with a regular fine of 150 € and a regular driving ban of one month.

According to the findings of the district court, the person concerned did not reverse on the main lane (= through lane), but "only" on the hard shoulder and the acceleration lane of the entrance and the deceleration lane of the exit. The acceleration lane and the deceleration lane are part of the highway, but not part of the directional lane (BayObLG DAR 1970, 276; OLG Hamm order of 10.01.1978, Az. 1 Ss OWi 1986, 77 available online at juris.De; cf. Also Hentschel StVO § 2 Rn. 2a m.W.N.). They are therefore to be regarded as secondary lanes. But also federal highways can be – paved. Multiple purposes – have hard shoulders. On them traffic must be reckoned with, see in this connection the case example OLG Hamm (decision of 28.02.2018 – 11 U 108/17).


Keywords on the subject of freeways

Broken down vehicles

Acceleration lanes – deceleration lanes – shoulder lanes – auxiliary lanes

Stopping and parking on the hard shoulder

OLG Frankfurt am Main v. 14.02.2001: § 12 Abs. 1 number 3 StVO prohibits stopping on acceleration and deceleration lanes. § 18 para. 8 StVO, which serves the safety and ease of traffic on highways, prohibits stopping on highways. This no-stopping rule also extends to the interchanges. So that also on the here concerned area of a turn-in lane. Stopping is to be understood as any deliberate interruption of the journey on the carriageway not caused by the traffic situation or an order. If someone stops in these areas in order to orientate himself with regard to the onward journey, he is 40 % jointly liable in the event of a rear-end collision caused thereby.

OLG Zweibrücken v. 01.03.2001: Anyone who has come to a standstill in the overtaking lane after a traffic accident on the freeway must, in principle, remove his vehicle immediately and park it on the right-hand hard shoulder or, if necessary, on the central reservation. Stvo § 34 Abs 1 S 1 Nr 2 does not allow in such a case to secure first only the accident scene and wait for the police accident recording.

OLG Celle v. 22.02.2002: The mere onset of a heavy rainstorm is not even for a motorcyclist is a compelling emergency, which, in derogation of § 18 para. 8 StVO justifies stopping on the hard shoulder of a freeway.

OLG Celle v. 12.12.2007: "Stalled" means is a vehicle which, for whatever reason, can no longer move away from the traffic area under its own power, d. H. Either cannot be moved against the will of the driver or the driver is forced to stop his vehicle due to (primarily vehicle-related) circumstances. In terms of its essence, "remaining stationary" is so that an involuntary stop.

OLG Düsseldorf v. 03.06.2008: a vehicle driver not only violates §§ 18 para. 8 StVO, but also against § 23 Abs. 1a StVO, if he stops his vehicle with the engine running on the hard shoulder of a highway or freeway and makes a call on a cell phone while stationary.

AG Schmallenberg v. 15.07.2011: A hard shoulder is an area that lies on the side of a roadway or, better, a traffic lane for a longer period of time. They are therefore not part of the carriageway. Green areas are not stripes therefore also not verges. Green stripes, on the other hand, can be side stripes or better green stripes at the same time, if they are passable. If a parking ban is extended to the hard shoulder by means of an additional sign, then parking is not permitted on a drivable green strip.

OLG Nuremberg v. 16.07.2014: It remains open whether, in the case of omitted safety measures according to § 15 StVO, prima facie evidence of the causality of the omitted measures also applies if the broken-down vehicle is completely on the hard shoulder. If the other vehicle involved in the accident stops for no apparent reason in a width of approx. 0.7 – 0.95 m drives on the hard shoulder, the prima facie evidence is in any case shaken. In this case, the causal share of the other driver involved in the accident may be so predominant that the liability of the driver of the vehicle that has broken down is completely subordinate.

OLG Frankfurt am Main v. 14.03.2016: If an emergency vehicle of the police, which has been called to a traffic accident on a federal freeway, uses the hard shoulder, the use of the hard shoulder is covered by the special right of § 35 para. 1 StVO, without it being important whether rescue lanes have already formed in the meantime. – If a passenger car that moves from the middle lane to the right lane of a freeway over the boundary line onto the hard shoulder collides with a police emergency vehicle traveling there at only moderate speed (here: 45-50 km/h) and with blue lights, the passenger car changing lanes is solely liable for the accident.

OLG Hamm v. 28.02.2018: Half compensation for damage – also between the liability insurers – if a regular bus driver stops 200 m from the stop without hazard warning lights on the left of a paved multipurpose hard shoulder running on the right because of a carnival traffic jam in order to let passengers get off at their request, and an accident occurs as a result that a passenger getting off on the hard shoulder is hit and injured by a motor vehicle that has changed there.

Unpaved hard shoulder:

Road law – public use – special use – dedication restrictions

OVG Lüneburg v. 22.09. Unpaved hard shoulders are not part of the roadway. Are not intended to be driven on. – A dedication restriction limiting the use of the road to vehicles with a certain axle load is not suitable for the protection of the unpaved shoulder, as these are generally not intended for driving on.

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