RSS Feed

Financial Fitness Blog

Tips for driving in a roundabout

(Insurance) Permanent link   All Posts

Mark DannehlCommunities in Wisconsin and throughout the United States are relying more and more on traffic circles and roundabouts as an effective way to slow and keep traffic moving through an intersection. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, studies have found reductions in injury crashes of 72-80 percent and reductions in all crashes of 35-47 percent in intersections converted from traditional traffic signals or stop signs to roundabouts. Statistics show roundabouts decrease the likelihood of fatal accidents, though minor fender-benders can arise when drivers don’t know the proper way of negotiating a roundabout. Here are a few rules of the road you should consider:

Before you enter:

  • Always check for pedestrians or bicycle traffic before entering the roundabout.
  • Look left, merge right. Look left before you enter and always remember to yield to cars already in the circle. In the U.S. traffic inside a roundabout always flows counter-clockwise.
  • Follow the signs. Choose a lane and note the speed limit before entering the roundabout.
  • Be sure to yield to both lanes of traffic when approaching a multi-lane roundabout. No cars? No need to yield.

The inner circle:

  • Once inside the roundabout, do not stop.
  • Be aware of over-sized vehicles and trucks in a multi-lane roundabout. In order to compensate for their wide-turn radius, they may use both lanes.
  • Slow down and pay attention to the speed limit.

 Making an exit:

  • Use your turn signal to change lanes or exit the roundabout. Other drivers need to know you’re exiting the roundabout so they can yield or make their entrance.
  • Never exit from the inside lane.
  • Miss your turn? No problem. Continue driving around the traffic circle until you approach your intended exit.

 For some, roundabouts can be intimidating. But, they don’t have to be. Just remember the guidelines above and slow down.

Mark Dannehl, Personal Insurance Consultant