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Thread: Right of way - Mini Roundabouts

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    1

    Default Right of way - Mini Roundabouts

    Hi There,

    I'm looking for some advice. We have a mini roundabout just up the road from our office. Originally, it was a cross roads, but with the traffic build up, the mini roundabout was put in.

    There are 4 exits (north, south, east and west). If I am travelling from the south to turn left (west) and someone is travelling from the north to turn west (their right) who has the right of way?

    There is another exit between them and me (their left, my right - the east exit). They have to cross my path to get to their exit.

    Anyone know the official word?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    North of Watford Gap
    Posts
    964

    Default Mini roundabouts

    Quote Originally Posted by Aimsbury View Post
    Hi There,

    I'm looking for some advice. We have a mini roundabout just up the road from our office. Originally, it was a cross roads, but with the traffic build up, the mini roundabout was put in.

    There are 4 exits (north, south, east and west). If I am travelling from the south to turn left (west) and someone is travelling from the north to turn west (their right) who has the right of way?

    There is another exit between them and me (their left, my right - the east exit). They have to cross my path to get to their exit.

    Anyone know the official word?

    Thanks in advance
    I hate these things with a vengence! As far as I can tell there is only me and my mate Nick who understand these dangerous montrosities!

    The "official" rule is in the Highway Code - GIVE WAY to traffic already on the roundabout, or approaching from the right, UNLESS road markings/signs indicate otherwise. It's nothing to do with "crossing paths".

    For some reason that I (and Nick) cannot understand, there has been a common misperception that this means you have right of way if you are turning right - you DO NOT!

    If you look at the entrances I can practically guarantee that ONE of them will have double broken white lines and a Give Way sign - this is the one one the "right turn brigade" usually come steaming though - and it is almost always on what used to be regarded as the "main road"! If you think about it, if one entrance wasn't made Give Way, it would be possible for two vehicles to approach at the same time and as each would be on the right of the other neither would have right of way and they would have to sit there for eternity!

    Like I said, I hate these things with a vengence, there is no better way to make the roads more dangerous than to confuse drivers!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    8,358

    Default

    I don't have a problem in dealing with a straightforward mini-roundabout. My main gripes are, (a) The twin mini-roundabouts, where you have to be quick to clear the first one, and ready to brake if a vehicle approaches from your right on the second one.
    (b) I hate the ones where the kerb contours have been shaped so that it seems that a vehicle heading straight on in your opposite direction is made to appear as if it is going to turn right as it comes off the roundabout. Very disconcerting, with the regular habit of drivers failing to give signals if they do intend to turn.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    80

    Default Re Right of Way - Mini Roundabouts

    I think the rule should be the same as if it was a normal crossroad ie the person turning right would normally give way to the person turning left.

    Confusion will arise if the person turning right at the roundabout considers he has entered the roundabout first and will assume the other car will give way.

    Some mini roundabouts are large enough for you to judge that even if the oncoming vehicle is about to enter the roundabout and travelling slowly enough, you will have time to turn left without causing him to slow down or stop.

    Otherwise I would just act cautiously and give way if there is any doubt (defensive driving?) and if you reach a stalemate give a clear handsignal for him to proceed.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Scotland
    Posts
    8,512

    Default

    Welcome to the site Aimsbury, that is an interesting first post you have put up there.

    One thing I have noticed with mini roundabouts is, that there is not enough time to indicate which way you are going, as if you indicate before you get on it, the column cancels it as you steer.

    Then, you are still steering as you are leaving it? Mind you, a lot of drivers don't even bother to use indicators even when they are on larger roundabouts

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    6,379

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Watcher View Post
    I hate these things with a vengence! As far as I can tell there is only me and my mate Nick who understand these dangerous montrosities!

    The "official" rule is in the Highway Code - GIVE WAY to traffic already on the roundabout, or approaching from the right, UNLESS road markings/signs indicate otherwise. It's nothing to do with "crossing paths".

    For some reason that I (and Nick) cannot understand, there has been a common misperception that this means you have right of way if you are turning right - you DO NOT!

    If you look at the entrances I can practically guarantee that ONE of them will have double broken white lines and a Give Way sign - this is the one one the "right turn brigade" usually come steaming though - and it is almost always on what used to be regarded as the "main road"! If you think about it, if one entrance wasn't made Give Way, it would be possible for two vehicles to approach at the same time and as each would be on the right of the other neither would have right of way and they would have to sit there for eternity!

    Like I said, I hate these things with a vengence, there is no better way to make the roads more dangerous than to confuse drivers!
    Here here on all counts.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    108

    Default ...and another thing

    ...and another thing...

    You're SUPPOSED to drive around the silly white blob painted on the road according to the Highway Code, but how often is that possible with a normal sized car? Certainly around here on 3 or 4 mini-roundabouts, you'd end up on the pavement if you tried - one even has the paint blob offset from the centre of the road space available so as to make it impossible. Is this planning, poor marking out, or just a silly rule? After all, unless there's a physical central island of some sort, who actually tries to drive around them rather than taking the more natural line over the paint?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    1,112

    Post

    a mini roundabout has to treated the same as a normal roundabout, you should give way to traffic to your right, unless road markings or road signs tell you other wise, that means the the traffic that is coming towards you too, but its all down to manners too, if drivers dont indicate, how is anyone else supposed to know where they want to go, but dont assume that because you have right of way, that other drivers will give way

    tommy
    Last edited by tommytwotanks; 26-09-09 at 11:13.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    2,351

    Default

    Well, Aimsbury (and welcome), you got us all well stirred with your first post!

    I've always treated mini-roundabouts with extreme caution and follow the rules of their bigger brothers (or sisters - don't want to be sexist ) unless there are clear signs saying something different.

    (BTW never heard about this priority if you're turning right malarky!)

    Agree with Davey_g - no way can you delicately avoid the white blob - and with Snowball about double minis - do you steer or do you indicate or do you crawl round at 3mph attempting to do both, whilst at the same time trying not to go over the blob? Family down south have just moved and you would laugh (or cry) at their instructions for the final approach to the development!

    MR (short for mini-roundabout) go straight on 300 yds
    Double MR, turn right on first one (3rd exit); turn right on second one (3rd exit) 300 yds left turn - house at end where turning circle. WARNING! Satnav has it wrong!

    This is a new development, squeezed in between older ones - says it all!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    6,379

    Default

    I am not sure about signalling at mini roundabouts, most of the time, around here, it just adds to the confusion. I just work on the cars speed, position and eye contact if possible with a side serving of common sense.
    Last edited by wagolynn; 26-09-09 at 20:17.

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