Drivers in Gladstone have expressed their frustration about people not using roundabouts the correct way. (File photo)
Drivers in Gladstone have expressed their frustration about people not using roundabouts the correct way. (File photo) Warren Lynam

What local drivers hate most: incorrect use of roundabouts

WHAT'S your pet peeve when driving in Gladstone?

If comments on The Observer's Facebook page are anything to go by, it could include people not knowing how to use roundabouts, impatient drivers, not using indicators, using a mobile phone while driving and P-platers.

People who get frustrated by other drivers not knowing the correct way to use roundabouts are not alone.

The RACQ regularly receives complaints about incorrect use of roundabouts and has warned drivers to brush up on the rules for using them or cop a fine.

Failing to correctly indicate on a roundabout can cost a driver a $66 fine and two demerit points.

Driving school owner Sue Sewell said the biggest mistake motorists made on roundabouts was failing to indicate properly.

"When you leave a roundabout, you turn on your left indicator to indicate that you intend to leave," Mrs Sewell said.

"A lot of people, when they are going straight ahead through the roundabout, put their right indicator on and they leave it on until they leave the roundabout and it flicks off," she said.

Mrs Sewell said the problem with roundabout use stemmed from an old road rule that once required drivers to indicate right if they intended to go straight through or right round a roundabout.

She said incorrect indicating was dangerous and interrupted the flow of traffic that roundabouts were designed to maintain.

"It makes for bad-tempered driving and it can cause accidents because the person sitting at the roundabout is thinking, 'I don't know where that person's going', and someone drives into the back of them while they're waiting," she said.

"An examiner told me that nose-to-tail accidents at roundabouts where people don't know what other motorists are doing are very, very common."

Complaints about roundabout misdemeanours prompted the RACQ's senior road safety adviser Joel Tucker to remind motorists how to use roundabouts.

"A vehicle approaching a roundabout must give way to all vehicles already on the roundabout," Mr Tucker said

"Drivers should also pay attention to signs to help plan well in advance which exit they wish to take and obey any road markings, such as arrows, regarding the use of designated lanes."

Mr Tucker suggested motorists think of a roundabout as a clockface, and indicate left if leaving before 12 o'clock, right upon entering if exiting after 12 o'clock, and not at all upon entering if travelling straight ahead, and always left upon leaving.

Mrs Sewell said the best way to remember how to indicate when approaching a roundabout was to pretend that it was not there - indicate left for left, right for right, and none for straight ahead, but always indicate left to leave.

For an update on Queensland road rules, including how to use roundabouts, click here.

Comments from our Facebook page answering the question, 'What's your pet peeve when driving in Gladstone?' To visit The Observer's Facebook page, click here

Robyn Baker: All the people who cruise on through the Stop sign outside Coles. It's annoying but it's there to stay, so for pities sake STOP. But my biggest peeve is P Platers. They are largely idiots that seem intent on breaking every road rule there is. 

Rhiannon Kirwan: Roundabouts. Most people touched base on this topic. There needs to be nationwide education. It's just as bad in WA. And the rushing... leave home on time people. Even with all the roadworks around the place I still manage to get to work with a few minutes spare.

Nicholas Aldridge: People not knowing how to use roundabouts.

Louise Hazzard: Impatience! Everyone is always in such a hurry. How about leaving a few minutes earlier and slowing down!

Danielle Conn Botica: Drivers who think if you wear lycra and ride a bike you deserve to be abused, punished or worse. I know there are annoying bike riders just as there are annoying truck and car drivers, but if you swerve at a bike rider he or she might just die. Traffic is hardly a problem in Gladstone so how about we all exercise a bit more tolerance. 

Kersten Foster: Cyclists going through roundabouts at the same time as a car goes through. They expect to be treated with respect on the roads, but then do stupid things like that. If they want to ride on the road they should follow the road rules.

Tash Wallis: Pure arrogance from other drivers, that simply don't use the basic road rules (give-way to the right, give-way to pedestrians, parking in disable park and not displaying the sticker).

What do you hate most about driving in Gladstone?

This poll ended on 28 December 2012.

Current Results

People not using roundabouts the correct way.

20%

Drivers not using their indicators.

8%

Impatient drivers.

4%

People using their mobile phones while driving.

4%

Aaaargh, all of the above!

62%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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