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Attention Fellow Americans: Roundabouts Just Aren't That Hard To Use!

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posted on Jun, 27 2007 @ 10:21 PM
About two years ago, they put a roundabout in, just down the street from my daughter's school. Six streets run into each other at weird angles on a hillside. The stop signs were out of control there.

It's a nice little roundabout, as roundabouts go. I spent extensive time in Europe. I'm familiar with them. They actually make a lot of sense.

But somehow, it's taken a really long time to get through to the locals how it works. Nobody knows the etiquette. They are confused by it.

Every morning, I approach the roundabout with trepidation. I've seen some stupid maneuvers.

There are the people who don't get that it's basically the same as stop sign rules, whoever gets to the stop sign first goes first. If there's a tie, the guy on the right goes first. Once you're going -- GO!

Some of the people enter the roundabout before me, signalling left, so I sit and wait for them. But they stop when they see me sitting at the stop sign. I'm looking at them, they're looking at me, and I'm thinking you have the right of way, take it already. But half the time I have to motion for them to go on and go.

Meanwhile the guy behind him is getting impatient, so when the first car finally goes, the second car tears through and almost clips a pedestrian in the crosswalk.

Then there are the ones that must assume I'm the guy that stops during a turn, because he sees I'm signaling left, knows I have the right of way, and still peels out just as I'm approaching him, endangering everyone, but mostly me and my kids because it's inevitably a large SUV that pulls this trick, and my smaller American sedan will get the worst end of that particular stick.

On one memorable occasion I saw a taxi cut across the short end of the circle instead of going around in the proper direction, because he was in too much of a hurry. It's not a huge roundabout, it's not even that large. But he couldn't drive the extra fifty feet or so. Hello, taxi driver? Did you not see the roundabout sign

right there at eye level in plain sight? And you drive for a living? FSM preserve us.

Roundabouts just aren't that hard. Use your common sense, people! It's like a crossroads only round. Use the four way stop rules already. :bnghd:

[edit to make pic link visible]

[edit on 27-6-2007 by MajorMalfunction]

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 09:20 AM
Not really a surprise that no one took a bite at this one!

I always wondered why there were no roundabouts in the states! *Grinning like an idiot*

Mind you I did go round one the wrong way in France once! That caused a bit of a stink with the locals.

I could imagine seeing one for the first time.

W T F !!

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 09:26 AM

Originally posted by ChiKeyMonKey

I could imagine seeing one for the first time.

W T F !!

I think that's it in a nutshell. Operative word, "nut." :shk:

What frightens me is that these people are so obviously on autopilot they can't take in a new event on the road. What happens if a cow falls out of the sky into their path, then?

right back at ya

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 10:49 AM
In cities where there are a lot of traffic circles (aka roundabouts :cheers
local drivers are good with them but I agree that the average driver has NO clue what to do if they are not used to the etiquette. It's common sense but sadly, not all drivers know what that means!

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 07:06 PM
MM cracks me up...

people seem to have trouble understanding the simplest things.

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 07:28 PM

Originally posted by The Phantom
MM cracks me up...

people seem to have trouble understanding the simplest things.

thanks, TP.

I watched Idiocracy last night and the sad thing is, I can see it happening right now.

Are folks really that mentally numbed out from consumer culture they can't think anymore? :shk:

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 08:14 PM
Just looking at that sign makes my brain short out.

And I don't even drive yet.

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 01:52 AM
We have one of those by my house... I was scared to death when i first moved there and found myself on it. Now I, can drive it like a pro... yay me! lol.

As things go, people are afraid of change... probably why they keep there head in the sand when it comes to your round about.

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 03:36 AM
Gees roundabouts aren't tricky at all you just apply the Give Way rule which here in NZ means you give way to the right rather then the left like in other parts of the globe. Problems really only arise when drivers fail to indicate the direction they are going and inpatient drivers who don't like to weight at busy roundabouts.

Hell there is even a roundabout at the intersection that leads to Christchurch although there really should be traffic lights there now but that wont happen.

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 05:45 AM
Funny how some people just don't get the concept of roundabouts.

The laws for roundabouts has changed over the years in different countries.

In France all of them have signs leading up to them saying "you do not have right of way". So...if someone is coming from the left, you let them pass before proceeding and if YOU are on it, they must let you pass.

There are still some close calls!

Used to be "size has right of way" in some countries for years, this got tricky when they changed the rules.

The island of Malta was the worst place I've driven. Seems there is only one rule there..."drive in the shade".

The thing that REALLY bugs me though is the use of the lanes on a large roundabout and the use of indication signals by drivers. The French have a lot to learn here.

The rule in the U.K. is simple..stay left unless you are turning right.

Only signal AFTER you have passed the previous exit to avoid confusion to others.

I'm surprised there are not more roundabouts in America, they keep a steady flow of traffic and most of them here in France are turned into 'themed" gardens. The local "commune" showing off their creativity. Lots of statues and sculptures, fountains and topiary. They're great and provide useful landmarks for navigation........"at the roundabout with the giant cognac barrel, turn right" etc.

Much better than traffic lights that encourage "drag racing" and "jumping" which can cause some nasy smashes! Better to dent a fender at a roundabout than get a full-on "sideswipe".

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 02:00 PM
Damm straight everyone drives in the shade!

That's so they can see all the beautiful sights of Malta as they drive around.

Yes you have found the hidden Knight of Malta!

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 08:41 PM

I just saw another confused driver pull a stupid stunt on the roundabout!

I was coming down the hill from school, and this white SUV in front of me cut across the roundabout to the left, making a very sharp 30 degree turn.

I honked at him, but he was on his cell phone. :shk:

Luckily the law here banning talking on cell phones while driving (unless using hands free) goes into effect Sunday.

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 03:33 AM
yea i heard about that law

also if someone doesnt have their seatbelt on the driver and the person without the seatbelt get a ticket

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 07:27 AM
Hey if you guys ever need a crash course in roundabouts (and I mean crash) come to my town. Our municipal Government is roundabout mad. Everywhere that they don't want to spend money on traffic lights... Anywhere that people ignore stop signs... Wham bam... Another round about.

I never realised USA doesn't have them ?

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 08:13 AM
We do have them, but they are not exactly common. When I was learning to drive there were none.

What gets me about our particular problematic one is that for some reason the road crew planted a garden of really big plants and a tree in the middle of it, so you can't see across it to the other side. It's really adding to the fun.

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 08:23 AM
I think there was a roundabout in Washington DC when I went there a while back...I think it was DC...don't remember

But they confuse the hell outa me.

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 08:44 AM
How could you be confused by a roundabout ?
Check your road code but in this part of the world the standard give way rule apply. :shk:

[edit on 30-6-2007 by xpert11]


posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 06:57 PM
Think your confused by a simple roundabout? Try a round about with 3 lanes, traffic lights, stop signs and a road going through the middle of it.

Thats when it gets a little tricky.

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 07:29 PM
Ha ha ... good one Edn. Who needs terrorists when city planners are intent on building roundabouts ?

What gets me about our particular problematic one is that for some reason the road crew planted a garden of really big plants and a tree in the middle of it, so you can't see across it to the other side. It's really adding to the fun.

Ha ha, had that problem too. Our city planners decided to build gardens with boulder banks, flax bushes and trees on two roundabouts on a busy route from the airport to town.

Well the obstructions themselves impeded one from seeing vehicles which one need to give way to. Then because the gardens offered shelter for Rabbits a colony of feral rabbits established themselves on the roundabouts.

Cars slowed to observe the rabbits and some cars screeched to a halt at times to avoid hitting them on the road. It was so funny.

posted on Jun, 30 2007 @ 07:33 PM
City planners not getting the point of their job description, eh?

There's this big grass plant near one really busy intersection up the street from my house. They put it right next to where your window is when you stop at the stop sign, so you can't see the traffic barrelling up to you on the main drag before you turn.


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