Teaching Roundabouts on Driving Lessons

Signals by indicator are often overlooked even by experienced drivers. Making your driving plan clear to other motorists is a basic element of driver safety. Always follow the mirrors signal manoeuvre procedure. Always indicate right on approach if turning right, indicate left if turning left. Do not indicate if following the road ahead, simply give a left signal to show that you are leaving so others may emerge onto the roundabout. Omitting a signal causes indecision among other drivers which can lead to accidents. Motorists may become annoyed at a missed opportunity to make progress.

Preparation begins early by looking ahead and actively scanning for information signs. The first sign will give a diagram of the layout with exits labelled with route numbers. Check which exit you want and make a note of the number. The second sign will show which lane you need to be in. Don’t leave changing lanes until the last second as waiting traffic will block you in the wrong lane. Move into the lane you need early whilst traffic is still flowing. Late instructions during driving lessons are a major problem when approaching roundabouts so give directions well in advance.

When on the roundabout learners tend to focus on the road. This is a mistake which needs to be put right early on in the training. It is impossible to follow lane lines unless looking well ahead in the direction of travel. Secondary signs posted at the exits will be missed and these are important as some roundabouts will require a lane change when driving through. Also be aware that cyclists and horse riders will stay to the left whichever way they are going and large vehicles will tend to swing wide straddling lanes. Aim the eyes high and get your information in good time.

Those taking driving lessons will need to look for pedestrians when leaving a roundabout. Many zebra crossings are placed within metres of the junction. This could be said to be dangerous but it is often the point where people want to…

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