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How to navigate a roundabout

Mar 4, 2020

While driving in Sage Creek, you may have noticed more roundabouts in this community than used in older neighbourhoods. This is because roundabouts are much safer in high traffic areas than traditional stop signs. When used properly, roundabouts have proven to reduce collisions and the severity of them by promoting continuous traffic flow, lower speeds and one-way travel.

Here’s how to use a roundabout in a vehicle:

Roundabout-vehicles

Slow down

When approaching a roundabout, drivers must slow down and yield to pedestrians, cyclists and oncoming traffic.

Be alert

Watch for signs, signals and pavement markings. Once there is a sufficient gap in oncoming traffic from the left, enter the roundabout. If you and another vehicle approach the roundabout at the same time, yield to the vehicle on your right.

Stick to the right

While entering the roundabout, drive to your right in a counter-clockwise direction. The common speed when driving in a roundabout is 30 km/h. Once in the roundabout you have the right-of-way over vehicles that are entering.

Signal

Before you reach the desired exit, use your turning signal to notify other drivers of your intent.

Exit

Upon exiting, keep an eye out for pedestrians and yield when needed. If you miss your exit, continue around until you return to safely signal and exit.

Emergency vehicles

If you are in a roundabout when an emergency vehicle approaches, use the nearest exit and pull over to the right. If you are outside of the roundabout, pull directly over to the right and enter the roundabout once the emergency vehicle has passed.

Large vehicles

When driving a large vehicle such as a school bus or commercial truck, you may need to use the full width of the roundabout including the mountable concrete apron, which is in the centre of the roundabout. Be mindful of your surroundings and proceed.

Here’s how to use a roundabout as a pedestrian or cyclist:

Roundabout-pedestrians

Crosswalks

Do not cross the street towards the central island. Use the marked crosswalks where pedestrians have the right-of-way.

Look and listen

Although pedestrians have the right-of-way, be alert and be sure that vehicles are aware of your presence before crossing. If there is a splitter island between oncoming and outgoing traffic, use it as a place to stand while accessing the next crossing.

Cyclists

As a cyclist, you have the option of dismounting off of your bike and walking across as a pedestrian, or traveling in the roundabouts using the same principles as a vehicle.

Take a look at this video to see how roundabouts are used:

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