Junctions: Roundabouts

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Roundabouts are one-way systems and you travel round them in a clockwise manner. You give way to vehicles on your right. Keep an eye on the other exits too as traffic joining from one of the other exits will cause the traffic on your right to stop, which will allow you to join.

Approaching a roundabout to turn left

To turn left at a roundabout safely and under control you need to use the MSPSL routine.

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Approaching a roundabout

Mirrors Check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal Give a left signal using the direction indicator
Position Position the car into the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left
Speed Reduce the speed down to 10mph and change the gear down to 2nd gear on approach. If you can see a vehicle coming round the roundabout then stop at the give way line and change to 1st gear
Look Look right and left several times to check it is safe to enter on to the roundabout.

On the roundabout

On the roundabout keep in the left hand lane. 

Exiting the roundabout

Mirrors Check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal Give a left signal using the direction indicator
Position Exit the roundabout from the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left
Speed On exiting start to make progress and increase speed to a normal, safe driving speed
Look Look into mirrors to assess situation in the new road.

Once you have turned then check your mirrors once more to assess the situation in the new road and ensure that your signal has been cancelled.

Approaching a roundabout to go straight on

To go straight ahead at a roundabout safely and under control you need to use the MSPSL routine.

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Approaching a roundabout 

Mirrors Check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal No signal
Position Position the car into the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left
Speed Reduce the speed down to 10mph and change the gear down to 2nd gear on approach. If you can see a vehicle coming round the roundabout then stop at the give way line and change to 1st gear
Look Look right and left several times to check it is safe to enter on to the roundabout.



On the roundabout 
On the roundabout keep in the left hand lane. 

Exiting the roundabout 

Mirrors Check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal Once you have passed the exit before the one you are wishing to take, give a left signal using the direction indicator
Position Exit the roundabout from the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left.
Speed On exiting start to make progress and increase speed to a normal, safe driving speed
Look Look into mirrors to assess situation in the new road.

Once you have turned then check your mirrors once more to assess the situation in the new road and ensure that your signal has been cancelled.

Approaching a roundabout to turn right

To turn right at a roundabout safely and under control you need to use the MSPSL routine.

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Approaching a roundabout 

Mirrors Check the centre and the right wing mirror
Signal Give a right signal using the direction indicator
Position Position the car into the right hand lane in good time or if it´s a single lane roundabout position just left of the centre line
Speed Reduce the speed down to 10mph and change the gear down to 2nd gear on approach. If you can see a vehicle coming round the roundabout then stop at the give way line and change to 1st gear
Look Look right and left several times to check it is safe to enter on to the roundabout.



On the roundabout 
On the roundabout head for the inside lane. 

Exiting the roundabout 

Mirrors Once you have passed the exit before the one you are wishing to take, check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal Give a left signal using the direction indicator
Position Move over to the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left.
Speed On exiting start to make progress and increase speed to a normal, safe driving speed
Look Look into mirrors to assess situation in the new road.
Exception 1
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On approach to the roundabout the first thing you need to take note of are the lane markings. Sometimes the left hand lane is for turning left only and to go straight ahead you need to be in the right hand lane. The routine would be as follows: 

Approaching a roundabout 

Mirrors Check the centre and the right wing mirror
Signal No signal
Position Position the car into the right hand lane in good time or if it´s a single lane roundabout position just left of the centre line
Speed Reduce the speed down to 10mph and change the gear down to 2nd gear on approach. If you can see a vehicle coming round the roundabout then stop at the give way line and change to 1st gear
Look Look right and left several times to check it is safe to enter on to the roundabout. In particular keep an eye on any vehicle in the left hand lane that might be incorrectly positioned itself. If the vehicle on your left goes AHEAD in the left hand lane you could be on a collision course with it as you are both heading for the same space! If the car on your left does continue ahead, then you may have to come off in the right-hand lane (if that is an option) or go around the roundabout again.



On the roundabout 
On the roundabout head for the inside lane. 

Exiting the roundabout 

Mirrors Once you have passed the exit before the one you are wishing to take, check the centre and the left wing mirror
Signal Give a left signal using the direction indicator
Position Move over to the left hand lane or if it´s a single lane roundabout keep left.
Speed On exiting start to make progress and increase speed to a normal, safe driving speed
Look Look into mirrors to assess situation in the new road.
Exception 2
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If you imagine that the roundabout is like a clock face, where 12 o´clock is ahead, 9 o´clock is to your left and so on then if our straight ahead exit is positioned between 12 o´clock and 3 o´clock over to our right then logically it makes sense that we approach the roundabout as if we were turning right. See above for details on how to turn right at a roundabout.

Mini roundabouts

Mini roundabouts work in exactly the same way as standard roundabouts. Whilst you must signal on approach to a mini roundabout to turn left or right, it is not necessary to signal off a mini roundabout.

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Spiral roundabouts
Spiral roundabouts are easy if you prepare well and a nightmare if you don´t! Read the road sign first and get in the correct lane early on approach. Follow your lane on to the roundabout and simply stay in your lane as it goes round, as the name suggests, the spiral shape of the roundabout guides you off to your exit… hopefully! 

Spiral Roundabout
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