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Roundabouts Tutorial

Roundabouts allow traffic to merge smoothly together and in doing so keep the overall traffic stream flowing smoothly.

Approaching A Roundabout

As you approach a roundabout look well ahead for the advance warning sign (image top right).

This will tell you the layout of the roundabout and show you which route direction you need to take and therefore which lane to get into.

You should then:

You shouldn't:

Once on the roundabout, build up and maintain a reasonable speed. Failing to do this, especially when you are in the right-hand lane, may result in other drivers passing on your nearside, who may then come to block your exit route.

Always check for vehicles on your left before leaving a roundabout. If the left-hand lane of the exit road is blocked or if there are vehicles in the lane to your nearside, you should leave in the right-hand lane.

Roundabout Advance Warning Sign

Roundabout Information Sign

Roundabout Road Sign

Roundabout Ahead

Mini Roundabout Road Sign

Mini Roundabout

Roundabout road markings

Roundabout Road Markings

Priority At Roundabouts

At most roundabouts traffic already on the roundabout has priority, so you must give way to traffic approaching from your right.

There are a few roundabouts where traffic on the roundabout has to give way to traffic entering. These will be signed by Give Way signs and road markings.

Increasingly, large roundabouts are being controlled by traffic lights. On such roundabouts it is the traffic lights that determine priority, so simply get into the correct lane and follow the lights

Look Out For Vehicles

Turning Left

Going Straight Ahead

Turning Right


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Which Lane To Take

Three Lane Approach

Sometimes the layout of a roundabout may make it difficult to judge which lane to take when approaching the roundabout. As a guide, imagine the roundabout as a clock face, with you approaching from the six o'clock position. If your exit road is past 12 o'clock and there are no other road markings to guide you, approach in the right-hand lane.

If there are three lanes on the approach to the roundabout, use

Other Types of Road User

Cyclists, horse riders and long vehicles can all take unusual courses at roundabouts. For example, cyclists and horse riders may stay in the left-hand lane even when turning right.

Long vehicles may need to use more than one lane in order to negotiate the roundabout.

Mini-Roundabouts

Approach these as you would a normal roundabout. You must pass round the centre markings, but remember there is less space,

At double mini-roundabouts (see image right) and multiple roundabouts, follow the normal rules of priority and treat each roundabout separately.

Double Mini-roundabout

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