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#1 14-07-15 09:46:00

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Speed on approach to roundabout

I'd like to ask the community their views on correct driving at roundabouts.

My understanding is that when approaching a roundabout the driver should slow to a sensible speed, and then see if there
are any vehicles already on the roundabout to the right that he should give way to. If there are none, then he should continue onto
the roundabout.

The problem with this is that at least 30% of drivers don't slow down at all, or even speed up, if they think they can see the right hand side of the roundabout as they approach. They then enter the roundabout at high speed, and seem to expect drivers further round the roundabout
to the left to anticipate this. Therefore in order to avoid a collision I then have to look down the road on the exit to the right of mine
and try and judge the speed of the approaching vehicle. I don't think its meant to be like this at all.

This seems to be a particular problem with delivery van drivers at small roundabouts, and absolutely infuriates me.

What do people think?

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14-07-15 09:46:00

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Re: Speed on approach to roundabout



#2 14-07-15 13:40:12

ralge
Verified Member
From: Sheffield
Registered: 10-01-07
Posts: 320

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

"Correct driving" can be given any number of shades and interpretations.
The approach speed of other drivers (van drivers, BMW, taxi drivers, Scoobie drivers or any other not-so-favourite subgroup) is something we have to live and deal with.
Believe me the only page reference I can give from the Highway Code is Page 34 on which it is made perfectly clear that there is no such thing as a "right of way" and that we should give way if it prevents an incident.
Our own approach speed, therefore, should be determined by how much we can see and what we can see whilst bearing in mind that we need to be able to take in new information e.g. the daft approach speed of a van, BMW etc

But this is no different to any other meeting, crossing, parking or overtaking/undertaking situation.  We have to think and drive for ourselves and everyone else.


DSA Fleet Trainer, RoSPA Dip, PTLLS, Safed for Vans, NDAC/Speed Awareness on-road trainer, RoSPA RoAD Test Examiner.

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#3 14-07-15 15:44:41

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

ok, thanks ralge. Let me put it another way:

Let's say Fred enters a roundabout when its clear, and another vehicle driven by Bill then hits Fred from the right. Bill claims its Fred's fault, because he should give way to vehicles approaching from the right. Fred says its Bill's fault because the roundabout itself was clear at the time he entered it, and Bill was driving too fast as he approached. So what would a judge say? After criticising Fred for not taking avoiding action, he finds Bill at fault due to reckless driving. This would depend on Fred being able to prove that he entered the roundabout first.

Last edited by MrDodge (14-07-15 15:45:28)

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#4 14-07-15 17:10:34

Roadmaster
Verified Member
Registered: 04-03-04
Posts: 5,670

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

It's either clear to move onto the roundabout or it isn't.   If in doubt,  be prepared to give way.   

If it's clear when Fred entered the roundabout, providing he didn't slow down or stop, Bill couldn't be anywhere near him.

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#5 14-07-15 17:18:54

pegasus
Verified Member
From: north west
Registered: 25-02-05
Posts: 3,299

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Hi

HC Rule 185
When reaching the roundabout you should

give priority to traffic approaching from your right, unless directed otherwise by signs, road markings or traffic lights
check whether road markings allow you to enter the roundabout without giving way. If so, proceed, but still look to the right before joining
watch out for all other road users already on the roundabout; be aware they may not be signalling correctly or at all
look forward before moving off to make sure traffic in front has moved off.

It does not say ONLY give way to vehicles on the roundabout.

I know of r/bts which are so large you have time to enter even when there are already vehicles on it approaching, and I know of others, usually smaller ones, where you have to give way to vehicles still approaching because you can see that there is nothing to which they have to give way.

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#6 14-07-15 17:55:36

daz6215
Verified Member
Registered: 07-06-08
Posts: 449

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Plan to stop, look to go, keep slowing down until you know! It even rhymes  smile  smile  smile

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#7 15-07-15 00:00:40

RobC
Verified Member
From: Nr Ormskirk Lancs
Registered: 28-01-09
Posts: 765
Website

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

To me the problem of emerging from roundabouts is that approaching drivers do not always position or signal correctly, particularly not signalling left to come off roundabouts.
Since we must give priority to vehicles coming from the right, as we approach if other vehicles could get to or on the roundabout before you, you should slow down so that those vehicles clear or so at least we can be sure that they are committed to turning off before the exit we are emerging from.
Since we cannot rely on the signals and position of other drivers, approach at a speed which allows lots of observations and allows you to stop in the distance you can see clear, (looking to go planning to stop) and look for vehicles tyres turning left to come off before you to confirm position and any indications given.
Inexperienced or poor driver often approach roundabouts too fast and fail to plan or anticipate and inexperienced drivers are often hesitant because they are waiting for other drivers to signal or expect them to position correctly and as most of us are aware from experience, we cannot rely on this.

Last edited by RobC (15-07-15 10:07:13)


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#8 15-07-15 07:20:56

Evan
Administrator
Registered: 27-12-09
Posts: 2,058

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

"Since we cannot rely on the signals and position of other drivers, approach at a speed which allows lots of observations and allows you to stop in the distance you can see clear, (looking to go planning to stop) and look for vehicles tyres turning left to come off before you to confirm position and any indications given."

Isn't that pathetic and sad though, we can't rely on the position and "signals" of other drivers. The ones who can't signal but can use a mobile phone when they are driving.
I sometimes wonder why we bother at all trying to teach good habits to novice drivers, because it seems most other road users have no idea of the rules and regulations or just ignore them.
Rant over!

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#9 15-07-15 07:33:57

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Roadmaster wrote:

It's either clear to move onto the roundabout or it isn't.   If in doubt,  be prepared to give way.   

If it's clear when Fred entered the roundabout, providing he didn't slow down or stop, Bill couldn't be anywhere near him.

Looks like I need to re-phrase again...

Let's say Fred enters a roundabout when there are no other vehicles already on it, and another vehicle driven by Bill then hits Fred from the right. Bill claims its Fred's fault, because he should give way to vehicles approaching from the right. Fred says its Bill's fault because the roundabout itself was clear at the time he entered it, and Bill was driving too fast as he approached. Who's at fault

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#10 15-07-15 07:45:59

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

pegasus wrote:

Hi

HC Rule 185
When reaching the roundabout you should

give priority to traffic approaching from your right, unless directed otherwise by signs, road markings or traffic lights
check whether road markings allow you to enter the roundabout without giving way. If so, proceed, but still look to the right before joining
watch out for all other road users already on the roundabout; be aware they may not be signalling correctly or at all
look forward before moving off to make sure traffic in front has moved off.

It does not say ONLY give way to vehicles on the roundabout.

I know of r/bts which are so large you have time to enter even when there are already vehicles on it approaching, and I know of others, usually smaller ones, where you have to give way to vehicles still approaching because you can see that there is nothing to which they have to give way.

This is exactly the point I want to talk about Pegasus. Unfortunately the highway code has been badly and vaguely written. Although unclear, it seems to suggest that you should give way to vehicles still approaching, even though this means that Fred is then somehow expected to look along the previous exit road and assess the speed of approaching vehicles. It also means that Bill doesn't have to bother even slowing down, which would obviously be the sensible thing to do, as the rules
put all the responsibility on Fred. Oh well, at least I'm clear how the rules work, even if they defy common sense.

thanks guys.

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#11 15-07-15 08:30:44

pegasus
Verified Member
From: north west
Registered: 25-02-05
Posts: 3,299

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Hi Dodgy
I see nothing vague or imprecise about that.

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#12 15-07-15 08:51:39

Lady-Hynarc
Verified Member
Registered: 09-04-12
Posts: 649

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Evan wrote:

Isn't that pathetic and sad though, we can't rely on the position and "signals" of other drivers. The ones who can't signal but can use a mobile phone when they are driving.
I sometimes wonder why we bother at all trying to teach good habits to novice drivers, because it seems most other road users have no idea of the rules and regulations or just ignore them.
Rant over!

Evan, you hit the nail on the head so often the only conclusion I can come to is that you must have an enormous hammer and lots of practice  wink

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#13 15-07-15 08:58:55

Lady-Hynarc
Verified Member
Registered: 09-04-12
Posts: 649

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

MrDodge wrote:

This is exactly the point I want to talk about Pegasus. Unfortunately the highway code has been badly and vaguely written. Although unclear, it seems to suggest that you should give way to vehicles still approaching, even though this means that Fred is then somehow expected to look along the previous exit road and assess the speed of approaching vehicles. It also means that Bill doesn't have to bother even slowing down, which would obviously be the sensible thing to do, as the rules
put all the responsibility on Fred. Oh well, at least I'm clear how the rules work, even if they defy common sense.

thanks guys.

I don't think it is only the HC which may be at fault.  Roundabouts themselves are often badly designed, allowing one party to have a vastly superior view than another and no mechanism for forcing speed reduction.  One of the reasons that roundabout approach roads are curved is to attempt to control approach speeds but this requires good lane discipline - something else that modern drivers lack.  I find mini roundabouts to be the worst because people drive over them (or sometimes the other side completely) allowing them to maintain a higher speed than they should.

One of the things I tell my pupils is a story of 'uneven views' so that they understand the danger when they have the poorest view and their responsibility when they have the best...

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#14 15-07-15 09:58:54

Coasting Mart
Verified Member
Registered: 11-06-09
Posts: 967

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

I think I understand what you mean MrD.

"When I was looking and setting off, you weren't even in view!! You came so fast onto the RAB that YOU crashed into ME; it wasn't that I didn't give way to you - you weren't there when I moved."

If that's correct, then hopefully the cops will be able to do some crash investigation and from the way your car has been shifted 30 feet sideways, and the length of the skid marks from the other car, and the helpful witness(!) they will be clear that the idiot was driving at 75 onto the RAB giving you no chance.

Probably not a scenario which happens often though.
As others have said, in normal driving we need to allow for others approaching at a fairly quick pace, and it's all about what we can see.  "Slowing until we're knowing!"

It is a scenario which sometimes applies to bikes, especially at junctions where cars pull out in front of the bike.  "Why'd you pull out in front of me you b******d!?"  "Cos when I was looking carefully, you weren't in view! If you come round that corner 200 yds away at 100mph you'll hit me whether I look or not!"

So, 'normal' driving does involve allowing for the numpties and the late locals.  It is hard to allow for the exceptional idiots who are doing crazy speeds.
cool


"I swear I found the key to the universe in the engine of an old parked car"

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#15 15-07-15 10:05:03

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

pegasus wrote:

Hi Dodgy
I see nothing vague or imprecise about that.

I do.

The rule states:

HC Rule 185
When reaching the roundabout you should give priority to traffic approaching from your right

I think this could be interpreted as only including traffic already on the roundabout, and not traffic
on nearby approach roads.

How the rule should have been written (if this is the intention of the rule)

HC Rule 185
When reaching the roundabout you should give priority to traffic approaching from your right including both vehicles already on the roundabout itself, and those on nearby exits.

that would be precise. I think that such a rule is daft, and I have no doubt that it has been a cause of countless accidents, but then that's another issue.

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#16 15-07-15 10:21:31

Lewinpeter1
Verified Member
From: Morpeth,Northumberland
Registered: 17-01-09
Posts: 803
Website

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Hi
IMO,a classic case of allowing the minutae of the highway code to get in the way of common sense!
Plan your approach, use your eyes to judge what to do next,select the gear and do it.
Peter


Dont press that,oh @@##!

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#17 15-07-15 10:23:05

RobC
Verified Member
From: Nr Ormskirk Lancs
Registered: 28-01-09
Posts: 765
Website

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Evan wrote:

"Since we cannot rely on the signals and position of other drivers, approach at a speed which allows lots of observations and allows you to stop in the distance you can see clear, (looking to go planning to stop) and look for vehicles tyres turning left to come off before you to confirm position and any indications given."

Isn't that pathetic and sad though, we can't rely on the position and "signals" of other drivers. The ones who can't signal but can use a mobile phone when they are driving.
I sometimes wonder why we bother at all trying to teach good habits to novice drivers, because it seems most other road users have no idea of the rules and regulations or just ignore them.
Rant over!

Agree, Many FLHs don't know how to position and signal at roundabouts, I see this all the time in fleet driver assessments.

I also don't agree with 'advanced' drivers straightlining roundabouts. Straightlining may be Ok for Police response driving for stability at speed but straightlining is one of the reasons why drivers are able to approach roundabouts too fast.


www.midasbustraining.webs.com
Midas Minibus Driver Assessor Trainer & Passenger Assistant Trainer
DVSA Fleet Registered Trainer

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#18 15-07-15 16:44:44

MrDodge
Member
Registered: 14-07-15
Posts: 6

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Lewinpeter1 wrote:

Hi
IMO,a classic case of allowing the minutae of the highway code to get in the way of common sense!
Plan your approach, use your eyes to judge what to do next,select the gear and do it.
Peter

Unfortunately its those annoying minutiae that determine who's at fault in an accident...

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#19 15-07-15 17:48:39

Lewinpeter1
Verified Member
From: Morpeth,Northumberland
Registered: 17-01-09
Posts: 803
Website

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

Hi
Have you had an accident because of this?
I have been driving for 43 years and teaching for 14 and have never had an accident entering or leaving a r/about.
I havn't got time to read or remember the HC  whilst negotiating busy r/abouts.
I have a plan,I use my eyes,I usually have a plan b and rarely have an issue.
Peter


Dont press that,oh @@##!

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#20 16-07-15 06:29:46

Evan
Administrator
Registered: 27-12-09
Posts: 2,058

Re: Speed on approach to roundabout

"Evan, you hit the nail on the head so often the only conclusion I can come to is that you must have an enormous hammer and lots of practice  wink"

big_smile  big_smile  let's be fair there is plenty of scope!

On a serious note, I can't understand complacency when it comes to driving a vehicle, whilst I am aware that a liberal attitude to everything abounds now, surely when the safety of self and others are at risk it is sensible to follow the rules.
One other point, these drivers who cause problems for others at roundabouts etc, must suffer the same fate from others when they are trying to negotiate a roundabout, waiting to see where others are going, can't they see the problems they cause?

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