Roundabouts can be tricky to negotiate for some people.
Roundabouts can be tricky to negotiate for some people. NRMA

The 5 risks of roundabouts you need to know

THE NRMA has created a handy video for those of us who haven't quite grasped how to use a roundabout.

The organisation explains on its website that a roundabout sign means drivers should "slow down, prepare to give way and if necessary stop to avoid a collision".

"When approaching a roundabout, you must get into the correct lane, indicate if turning, and give way to traffic already on the roundabout," the NRMA says.

"Enter the roundabout when there is a safe gap in the traffic.

"The rules for using a roundabout are quite simple.

"But, as common as roundabouts are, the number of crashes at intersections with roundabouts suggests that when we approach one, we still aren't quite clear on the rules."

So let's get this straight:

  • Giving way when entering or driving in a roundabout: A driver entering a roundabout must give way to any vehicle in the roundabout
  • The driver must slow down and, if necessary, stop to avoid a collision
  • There is no specific legislation stating one must give way to the other if entering the roundabout at the same time, only that you must give way to any vehicle already in the roundabout
  • A driver must slow down enough to be able to stop to avoid a collision if necessary. Many drivers enter/approach roundabouts too fast and if there was a collision and it was a result of them not slowing to be able to avoid a collision, then they may face penalties from the authorities.

Roundabout risks to watch for:

  • Take extra care whenever you drive in a roundabout
  • Keep an eye out for cars that are leaving the roundabout
  • Be careful if changing lanes in a roundabout, particularly when leaving
  • Look out for vehicles that are making a full turn
  • Watch for bicycles, long vehicles and motorcycles.

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