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12- Roundabouts

Drivers Icon Teaching Your Teen to Drive

Goal: Teach your teen to maneuver safely in and out of roundabouts.
Location: Start with a single lane roundabout and move onto multi-lane roundabouts when appropriate.

Roundabouts are becoming more common in the United States because they provide safer and more efficient traffic flow than standard intersections. Statistics for roundabouts have found reductions in injury crashes of 72–80 percent and reductions in all crashes of 35–47 percent when compared to other types of intersections.

When driving a roundabout, the same general rules apply as for maneuvering through any other type of intersection.

Yield the right-of-way

As a rule of thumb, when entering or driving a roundabout, always yield to traffic on your left.

Lesson one – driving a roundabout

  • Slow down. Obey traffic signs and pavement markings.
  • Yield to pedestrians and bicyclists.
  • Yield to traffic in all lanes on your left already in the roundabout.
  • Enter the roundabout when there is a safe gap in traffic.
  • Keep your speed low within the roundabout.
  • As you approach your exit, turn on your right turn signal.
  • Yield to pedestrians and bicyclists as you exit.

Lesson two – yield to emergency vehicles

This example shows the traffic movement patterns through a one-lane roundabout. The one-lane roundabout is known as one of the safest and most efficient intersections.

  • Always yield to emergency vehicles.
  • If you have not entered the roundabout, pull over and allow emergency vehicles to pass.
  • If you have entered the roundabout, continue to your exit, then pull over and allow emergency vehicles to pass.
  • Avoid stopping in the roundabout.

Lesson three – two or more lane roundabouts

  • Choose the proper lane before entering: As you get closer to the roundabout entrance, it is very important to observe the signs and arrows to determine which lane to use before entering a roundabout. Black and white signs on the side of the road and white arrows on the road will show the correct lane to use. In general, if you want to make a left turn, you should be in the left lane or other lanes that are signed and marked as left turn lanes. If you want to make a right turn, you should be in the right lane or other lanes that are signed and marked as right turn lanes. If you want to go straight, observe the signs and arrows to see which lane is correct.