Roundabout roulette

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  • Signal left as you’re leaving a roundabout ...

INDICATING: At the State Highway 30 and Keepa Road roundabout, during half an hour, only 134 of 414 drivers signalled correctly as they approached and exited the intersection. Photo Louis Klaassen D5690-16

IT'S a simple rule but one that more than half the drivers entering Whakatane in the morning are either unaware of, confused by, or cannot be bothered complying with.

A recent Beacon survey has backed up police concerns about Eastern Bay motorists’ indication habits.

Eastern Bay road policing manager Ray Wylie is keen to remind drivers of the rules, saying incorrect signalling at the town’s roundabouts is frustrating other drivers by slowing the movement of traffic.

If you are turning left at the first exit of a roundabout, signal left as you approach the intersection.

If you are going straight through a roundabout, signal left as you pass the exit before the one you wish to take.

“I often see drivers approach a roundabout; the driver indicates to turn right but proceeds straight through the roundabout, he said.

“This practice is causing frustration for drivers on the opposite side of the roundabout.”

On Friday from 8.10am to 8.40am, 15 drivers at the State Highway 30-Keepa Road roundabout were seen incorrectly signalling in this way.

They were among 280 drivers who signalled incorrectly, or not at all, when travelling straight through the roundabout.

Only 134 signalled correctly.

Mr Wylie said motorists planning to turn right should signal right as they approached the intersection and then left as they passed the exit before the one they wished to take. It was courteous to give as much indication as possibly.

Another 30-minute survey on Friday morning at the Domain Road-McAlister Street roundabout revealed less of a problem.

Between 8.50am and 9.20am, 121 drivers signalled correctly when driving straight through or turning right. Seventy-three incorrectly signalled or not at all.

Mr Wylie said it was also important drivers stayed within their own lane while negotiating roundabouts.

“Some drivers have been identified on State Highway 30 at the Keepa Road roundabout changing lanes as they proceed through the roundabout. This has almost caused a crash while drivers are exiting the Keepa Road intersection.”

Such unsafe lane changes would not be tolerated, Mr Wylie said, and drivers seen doing this could expect to receive a fine of $150.

Information on correct signalling at roundabouts can be found on the New Zealand Transport Agency website.

haylee.king@whakatanebeacon.co.nz

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