Roundabouts Don't Have To Be Confusing To Navigate
A Growing Trend We Need To Master
by Guelph Now! Local News
Sep 28, 2011
Roundabouts Are Growing In Numbers
Over the past couple weeks the County of Wellington OPP have received a couple complaints and inquiries about roundabouts and how to use them safely.
A roundabout has been erected in the village of Elora, in Centre Wellington, and surrounding cities such as Kitchener, Waterloo and Cambridge have embraced them on a large scale. It's perhaps time to remind motorists what they are, and provide some safety tips on how to navigate them with little or no fuss.
What is a roundabout?
A roundabout is an intersection where traffic flows in a counter clockwise direction around a centre island.
They have been used in the U.K. since the automobile became the preferred mode of transportation. They really boil down to giving way to the traffic on your left. If you take this information into every roundabout, you'll ace them. If it's on the left and they are going in the direction you desire to go in, they have the right of way.
Pedestrians have the right of way as always. This is not just about you getting to where you're going. Pedestrians also need to get where they're going. In the absence of full stop traffic lights, motorized vehicles must yield to the needs of pedestrians. But pedestrians must also take responsibility for their own safety.
How to Use a Roundabout
* Reduce your speed.
* Watch for signs that may help you find your exit.
* Watch for people using the crosswalk, and be ready to stop.
* Before you enter, yield to traffic already in the roundabout that may be coming from your left.
* Enter the roundabout to your right (a counter clockwise direction) when there is a gap in traffic and you feel it is safe to do so.
* Always enter at a reduced speed
* Continue until you reach your exit.
* Never come to a full stop in a roundabout unless traffic conditions require it.
* Use your right turn signal to let other road users know which road you plan to exit.
* Exit at slow speeds.
* As you exit, watch for people using the crosswalk, and be ready to stop.
* If you miss your exit, keep going and continue around the roundabout until you reach your exit again.
Roundabouts were created to improve the flow of traffic, and reduce traffic tie-ups’ at congested intersections. Be cautious and courteous in your driving and you should have little difficulties.
- give other vehicles plenty of space
- the red area around the centre island, known as a "truck apron" is for large trucks to use when turning
- cross only at designated crossing areas
- watch for oncoming traffic before entering the crossing area. Wait for a safe gap and cross
- Never cross to the centre of a roundabout
- always be aware of vehicles
|When Emergency Vehicles Approach
- if you have not entered the roundabout, pull over to let the emergency vehicle pass
- if you are already inside the roundabout, do not stop. Continue to your exit, then pull over to allow the emergency vehicle to pass
- have the option of dismounting at the sidewalk ramp, and walking bicycle across the pedestrian crossing area, or
- experienced cyclists may choose to travel through the roundabout using the same general rules as any other vehicle;
merge into traffic before entering the roundabout;
once inside the roundabout, ride in the middle of the lane so cars don't pass you