Nervous newbie with round about question.

adamknox

Standard Member
Hi guys,
I passed my test two months back, yet I'm still very nervous on the roads. Its got to the point where I'm actually worried to go out in the daytime. The two main reasons are 1: Getting worried im not going fast enough/getting in everyones way (i get beeped for slowing down approaching junctions -_-) and 2: lanes approaching roundabouts. I was taught by my instructor, that when approaching the round about to look at roundabout sign approaching it. (to make it easier imagine the roundabout as a clock) If there are roads exiting the roundabout at 10, 12 and 2 and you want to exit at 2. take up the right lane automatically as its the 'right' turn. Anything after 12 is counted as a right turn and you should get in the right lane. For straight on and left, its the left lane. (unless there's three lanes ofc)
if your approaching a roundabout that has 2 exits. the first at 10 and the second at 2. You get into the right lane to exit at 2 (as its after 12).


However ever since passing my test i've noticed ALOT of roundabouts arnt like this at all. Some have straight ahead and 'right turn' in the right lane. I normally slow down (and get beeped or over taken -_-) and check where the arrow placement is on the road. However by the time i see the arrows its WAY to late to change lane in time. Here is an E.g




Am i missing a trick? Is there any way to tell in advance which lane to get into?

This is a screenshoot from google street view.



As you can see there is four exits (9,12,3) Say if i wanted to go ahead i would take up the left lane (as there is a right turn). However going by the markings its the right lane. There are no other arrows approaching the roundabout. So by the time i see them it would be WELL to late to move over to the right safetly.
 
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TRL

Banned
Don't worry too much about the road markings being too late, especially when covered by traffic. It's a gripe of mine, and I was an instructor in a former life.
If there are no signs indicating lane usage, there's not much more you can do about these roundabouts. Try and be positive though, and don't dawdle while trying to see these markings. Make good progress and try and predict which lane you need (usually the one with the longest queue!). Then, if you find yourself in the wrong lane, mirrors, indicate, change lane if safe.
Another option you have is to take some advanced lessons. Just an hour or two from a top instructor will do it, and your nervousness at junctions in general should be covered.

Tony
 

NewBeetle

Distinguished Member
I would say just try and drive more, go out just for the sake of it and drive around your area again and again. There is no substitute for experience.
 

Ian J

Banned
Are you wearing the green P Plates as that signifies to others that you are a newly qualified driver
 

njdbaxter

Well-known Member
Are you wearing the green P Plates as that signifies to others that you are a newly qualified driver


green P? in Northern ireland you have to display a red R plate on front and back for the 1st year. some people say the R stands for r****d
 

njdbaxter

Well-known Member
to the OP

There should be a sign post well before the lane markings showing you what the lane markings are
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
There should be a sign post well before the lane markings showing you what the lane markings are

Yup, there should be advance warning of what the lanes will be.
But even experienced drivers ignore signs.
Very few seem to be able to read clear bus-lane open/close times where I live, for example.
 

lmccauley

Well-known Member
The biggest thing is going with the flow, if you're unsure, don't proceed at 5mph, as you'll make those around you impatient. The most important thing is usually not to crash - as long as you're not being dangerous, sometimes you just have to get on with it!
Yeah, people make mistakes, miss signs, find themselves in the wrong lane all the time.

Don't panic!

Indicate to get into the correct lane, and proceed safely. Also, thank people when they let you in with a quick wave :hiya:
 

F-Stop

Well-known Member
Your mirrors and your indicators are crucial here. If you use both when approaching a junction and roundabout and continue to check your mirrors (it will only take a glance which will come as second nature once you are more experienced) and clearly indicate your intentions/proposed route then you will already be one up on the vast majority of road users i'm sad to say.

If you find yourself in the wrong lane for your desired exit then simply 'mirror, signal and then change lanes...as long as it is safe to do so. If it isn't then just continue around the roundabout and position yourself in the correct lane for your desired exit the second time around. The roundabout at the bottom of the junction of the motorway on my journey home from work has a dedicated left turn only lane with the right hand lane being for traffic continuing straight over the roundabout or turning right (the same as in your example photos). I need to turn left but the lane for doing so often has a queue of stationary traffic about a quarter of a mile long in it but the straight on/right turn lane often has no more than two or three cars in it...so i just whizz past all the stationary traffic in the lane on my left and just turn right on the roundabout and go right around it and then take the left hand exit without delay as all the traffic exiting the motorway must give way to traffic on their right that is already on the roundabout (i.e. me ;)).

Just take it easy and remember you are on a public road not a racetrack...so there are no time limits to meet :thumbsup:

With time comes experience and soon you should, hopefully, come to enjoy driving rather than feel worried about it.

Good luck :laugh:

HTH's

Andy :smashing: :lesson:
 

Desmo

Distinguished Member
As others have said, I think you need to maybe worry a little less about the lane usage and just make a bit more "positive" progress. Don't dawdle or be indecisive too much as this is more confusing for other cars around you than if you make a good solid and positive move.

Not sure if this is good advice or not so maybe others could comment either way, but why not start taking the right hand lane on each roundabout to get a feel for using them better and more positively and then even if you need to turn off earlier you could complete one lap of the roundabout and then turn off. It's not good to do this all of the time but it may help you to get started so that as you're approaching you know you'll be in the right hand lane regardless. Once your confidence builds and you start to know the roundabouts you can remember back that you should have used the left hand lane last time and then make a positive move for that lane this time around.

The worst thing you can do is NOT go out or just go out at night. You need to tackle this head on :)
 

Inked

Distinguished Member
I'd just be happy if you don't do what one guy did while driving in front of me the other day.

We were both travelling along a two lane single carriageway between two roundabouts in the left hand lane, he decided half way between the roundabouts to move into the right hand lane.
Then as we came up to the second roundabout, he indicated left again (I thought to move back into the lane I was in) and cut straight across the front of me to go into a petrol station. Idiot!
 

lmccauley

Well-known Member
The worst thing you can do is NOT go out or just go out at night. You need to tackle this head on :)
Also, as someone else pointed out, you will get used to the local roundabouts, where you do most of your driving, and you will get practice at dealing with the awkward ones. Honestly, it becomes much less scary once you have done it a few times.

And another thing... your observation skills should develop as you drive more, and you will spot lane markings and signs earlier, and have more time to get into the right lane.
 
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FZR400RRSP

Banned
Remember lane discipline on roundabouts too.
Either deliberately or accidentally straying into another lane isn't a good thing to do.
The amount of near-accidents I see when people 'straight line' roundabouts is amazing.
It's usually just the actions of the innocent party in the right-hand lane that stops a collision.
I saw one middle-aged woman in a CRV last week.
It's a three lane roundabout.
Lanes 1+2 are to go straight ahead.
Lane 3 is for right turn only.
She started off in lane 1, then just went straight across 2+3 to go straight on.
Quite incredible.
I wanted someone to hit her so I could have been a witness.
 
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lmccauley

Well-known Member
Remember lane discipline on roundabouts too.
Either deliberately or accidentally straying into another lane isn't a good thing to do.
Definitely - MSM every time you change lane, and only manouevre if it's safe to do so.

They changed the lane markings on a roundabout near me, and people get caught out. Which is understandable, and I'm happy to make space for cars that have obviously done that, realised their mistake, and indicated to change lane. But, what happens 75+% of the time is that they simply straight line from lane one into lane two, either oblivious to, or completely ignoring, the car that is already there. I'm amazed I haven't witnessed a crash there yet.
 
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FZR400RRSP

Banned
But, what happens 75+% of the time is that they simply straight line from lane one into lane two, either oblivious to, or completely ignoring, the car that is already there. I'm amazed I haven't witnessed a crash there yet.

I think people in the 'inside' lane have almost come to expect the person in the left-hand lane to cut across.
Which saves accidents, but is a sad reflection of driving standards.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Remember lane discipline on roundabouts too.
Either deliberately or accidentally straying into another lane isn't a good thing to do.
The amount of near-accidents I see when people 'straight line' roundabouts is amazing.
It's usually just the actions of the innocent party in the right-hand lane that stops a collision.
I saw one middle-aged woman in a CRV last week.
It's a three lane roundabout.
Lanes 1+2 are to go straight ahead.
Lane 3 is for right turn only.
She started off in lane 1, then just went straight across 2+3 to go straight on.
Quite incredible.
I wanted someone to hit her so I could have been a witness.

Amen to that one.:lesson:

To the OP, if as you say you are really nervous perhaps an advanced driving lesson or two would put you at ease. But like everything else in life it's a learning process we hopefully get better the longer we do it. You sound very sensible not the 'head off, cabbage on' brigade.

One bit of advice on roundabouts if you are alongside a HGV on a narrow or two lane one. Let them go so as to give the wagon room, the driver will certainly appreciate it.
Happy driving.:hiya:
 

Desmo

Distinguished Member
I think people in the 'inside' lane have almost come to expect the person in the left-hand lane to cut across.
Which saves accidents, but is a sad reflection of driving standards.
Definitely. I always try to allow for somebody to cut a roundabout.
 

mjn

Distinguished Member
I still **** my pants using the "Magic Roundabout" in Hemel Hempstead!
 

KCooperman

Novice Member
Unless you are going to take the first exit on a roundabout just stay in the right lane, you will be fine. Just make sure you indicate when exiting the roundabout ;)

When I first past my test I got up early on a Sunday morning and drove round for a few hours whilst it was quiet to familiarise myself with the car and local roads. Worked for me, might be worth giving it a try :thumbsup:
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
Desmo said:
Definitely. I always try to allow for somebody to cut a roundabout.

I tend to stuff my car up the inside so they have absolutely no chance of cutting into my lane.
It's not like I'm doing anything wrong, I'm just holding my space and denying them the chance to be lazy.
Some will criticise and say 'let them go', but on balance.........no...!
 

Desmo

Distinguished Member
Depends on where they are in relation to me I guess. If I'm sitting just behind them then I'll hang back but if I'm overlapping by any amount them I'm more like to push forward so they know I'm there.
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
KCooperman said:
Unless you are going to take the first exit on a roundabout just stay in the right lane, you will be fine. Just make sure you indicate when exiting the roundabout :

This is far too simplistic.
Loads of roundabouts near me are two lanes approaching.
One exit left, one (single lane) exit straight on, one exit right.
Unless signed otherwise, you CAN go straight in on the right hand lane, but it is NOT the preferred lane in this scenario.
The preferred lane is the left lane, with anyone in the right lane giving way to them and filtering in.
Despite this, aggressive twits always try and cut the nose off people using the left lane.
 
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jasonf01

Active Member
Unless you are going to take the first exit on a roundabout just stay in the right lane, you will be fine. Just make sure you indicate when exiting the roundabout ;)

This is good advice, I use it a lot if im going to someplace new and dont know the road layout.

Basically, look at the first exit on the roundabout sign, if its yours then left lane and go left. Otherwise, right lane and expect to go all the way round the roundabout. Spot your exit and plan your exit for the next time round. Nobody ever said you had to get off the roundabout before going all the way round. The bigger the roundabout the better this works though...try this on a mini roundabout and it will confuse people (though you shouldnt have to lol).

Another thing to think of is taking the wrong turn. Say youve commited to a lane and youre unable to change, just take the wrong exit. It tends to be better than forcing your way to the right exit. Once youve taken the wrong exit, just find a place to turn around...till youre more up to speed on roads, dont try and "wing it" for now, turning around and returning to your familiar roads would be the best option. Nobody ever said you had to get it right the first time...well, except my missus! :p

If youre going someplace that you have no real knowledge of, take a look at it on Google Earths street view first-especially the junctions. Look for landmarks etc. Preparation helps a lot. Granted, youre not always going to get the chance to, but it does help.

And finally, for those times where you do take the wrong exit/turn/etc, if you find yourself on a busy road, turn right down a quieter residential road, this will give you the ability to turn around in a quiet place and easily rejoin the traffic flow by turning left onto the busy road. Loads of people tend to turn left off the road, only to find an ages long wait for both directions to be clear again.

Im not an instructor, but I have helped two young people with lots of test fails to pass their tests. Many instructors will give up on these people; not wanting to harm their pass rates, so I gave them a helping hand. Theyre both driving for a couple of years now, with no accidents (woo!).

Hope this helps,
Jas.
 

sniffer66

Distinguished Member
Remember lane discipline on roundabouts too.
Either deliberately or accidentally straying into another lane isn't a good thing to do.
The amount of near-accidents I see when people 'straight line' roundabouts is amazing.
It's usually just the actions of the innocent party in the right-hand lane that stops a collision.
I saw one middle-aged woman in a CRV last week.
It's a three lane roundabout.
Lanes 1+2 are to go straight ahead.
Lane 3 is for right turn only.
She started off in lane 1, then just went straight across 2+3 to go straight on.
Quite incredible.
I wanted someone to hit her so I could have been a witness.


Does my head in as well - see it all the time.

Always good practice to maintain lane discipline even when you believe there is nothing else around you - bikes etc can come from nowhere fast

And dont get me started on motorway lane discipline
 

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