Traffic circles are gaining popularity in America because they are safer and more efficient than intersections. They are safer because the most deadly type of crash is the right-angle crash. In a traffic circle, this is nearly impossible. And they are more efficient because traffic is meant to slow but never stop. However, many Americans are still hesitant about entering them. Make sure that you do not have any distractions. In addition, read signs carefully on the road and on the side of the road. Never assume that other drivers know when to yield. And finally, go slowly, but never stop while inside a traffic circle. Hopefully, with these tips, you’ll be able to enter them confidently and avoid any mishaps in traffic circles.
Tips for Navigating Traffic Circles Safely: Calm and Slowly
One important safety tip for entering into traffic circles is to never have distractions. A traffic circle or roundabout involves a lot of moving parts. It’s important that you are able to give the road your fullest attention. This is also a good tip for driving in general. But it is especially important in traffic circles. Put away the phone or put a phone call on hold for a few moments. Avoid fiddling with your radio or eating while in a traffic circle. Just focus on what you need to do to navigate it safely.
Read Signs Carefully
Traffic circles can involve a lot of signage which is what makes some drivers nervous. Often there are signs when you enter the circle, signs on the sides of the circle, and signs at each exit. In addition, there are often directions painted on the road as well. Try to remember that if you are taking one of the first exits you’ll want to stay in an outer lane. If you’re traveling further around the circle, you should move to an interior lane. Try to read the signs of having a passenger help you figure out which exit to take. Stay alert.
Don’t Assume Other Drivers are Being Safe
Another important piece of safety advice for traffic circles is to never assume that other drivers know what they’re supposed to be doing. Part of being a good defensive driver is preparing for the mistakes of others around you on the road. This is the same in traffic circles. Traffic entering the circle is always supposed to yield to traffic already in the circle. However, if you are traveling in a circle, keep an eye on the oncoming lanes. A driver may surprise you and pull out right in front of you if they aren’t paying attention or don’t really understand when to yield. Always keep an eye on traffic all around you.
Go Slow But Don’t Stop
Finally, one last piece of safety advice for navigating traffic circles is to always go slowly, but never stop. It’s fine to stop while waiting to enter the circle if there isn’t a gap in traffic. However, once you’ve entered it, traffic should continue moving. If you are feeling nervous and don’t know which exit is yours, just remember that you can take another lap around the circle. Take things slow as other drivers may not know when to yield or might make mistakes.
Traffic circles have been gaining popularity because studies show that they are safer and more efficient than traditional four-way stops. However, it’s important to remember that they require concentration and focus. Never enter a traffic circle if you are distracted by your phone or passengers. Try to read the signage so you’ll know which lane to be in. You can ask a passenger to help you read signs. In addition, always assume that other drivers will not know when to yield. This will make you a better defensive driver. And finally, go slowly but don’t stop once you’ve entered the circle. As America increases its use of traffic circles, hopefully, crashes at intersections will decrease and traffic flow patterns will improve.