Transport and infrastructure in FranceOur listing of the primary kinds of transport compares the infrastructure of France with the average of all countries in Europe. Overall, the traffic routes are above average and in good condition.
In terms of the length of its rail network, France ranks 38th in the world with 0.44 meters per inhabitant. In total, the rail network is 29,640 kilometers long. Freight traffic on the rails most recently totaled 31.83 billion tons and kilometers traveled. Passenger traffic reached 107.92 billion passenger-kilometers in 2018.
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Back to overview: France
Road trafficThe network of roads and highways has a total length of 1.05 million km. For each of the country's 67.38 million inhabitants, this corresponds to 15.63 meters. This puts France in 34th place in the global ranking. However, the country's size and population density of around 123 inhabitants per km² must also be taken into account. Countries with fewer inhabitants on the same or even larger area naturally achieve quite different values here and have to connect remote areas to the transport network despite a smaller population.
With an average of 3616 traffic fatalities per year (2012 - 2019), road traffic in France is considered relatively safe. This corresponds to around 4.3 accident fatalities per 5.4 inhabitants per year. By comparison, this figure is 5.9 in the European Union as a whole and 17.1 worldwide.
In France, traffic drives on the right-hand side of the road, i.e. people drive in the right-hand lane and overtake on the left. Oncoming traffic comes toward you on the left side. This rule was introduced at the end of the 18th century during the Napoleonic Wars. Here you can also find an overview of all countries with left-hand traffic.
|total||per 1 mio|
|Roadways||1,053,200 km||15,630.99 km||1,918.12 m|
|Railroads||29,600 km||439.89 km||53.98 m|
|Waterways||0 km||0.00 km||0.00 m|
|total||per 1 mio|
|Roadways||6,708,300 km||11,142.23 km||1,111.61 m|
|Railroads||258,600 km||429.54 km||42.85 m|
|Waterways||53,100 km||88.26 km||8.81 m|
Data sources used• Global Health Observatory Data Repository (World Health Organization)
• Internation Union of Railways (UIC)
• CIA Factbook
• OECD Statistics
• Wikipedia (german)