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"visually open space"

Maybe it has to do with the fact that when there are no objects near you it's hard to judge your speed. Like when flying in a plane, you don't realize how fast you're going because the ground is so far away it seems that you are moving slowly relative to it.

Also, the Lane Cove Tunnel isn't level (as with most tunnels) it has quite a long and unassuming descent. Being underground its hard to judge that without reference points, but I find myself coasting down there with my foot on the brake just to keep under 80.

Driving in a tunnel can be disorienting. While driving through St Gotthard Tunnel in Switzerland (17kms long) we didn't notice that our speed had dropped to half the speed limit until the driver behind us was happy to inform us of our lapse. He was a lot more patient than I would have been!

Whenever I travel tunnels it's a constant job monitoring and maintaining speed, so yes, disorientation is pronounced.

this makes perfect sense to me!

i definitely drive faster on wider or bigger roads.. perhaps what they refer to as "visually open space"? and especially if it's quiet on the roads.. i'm much more prone to speeding if there's nothing ahead to slow me down!

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