An Open Letter To Drivers Using Roundabouts In Colorado
I've lived in Colorado for almost a year now and let me start off by saying how happy and grateful I am for calling this state home. The people have been outstanding to me and my family and have welcomed us with open arms and kindness. The scenery and sunsets have been second to none and I've been on some of the best hiking adventures in my life.
NOW...for the not-so-good part, driving here and I'm not going to dive into the traffic issues (I can save that for later) I want to narrow it down and simply talk about roundabouts and the proper etiquette for using one.
I am absolutely floored every day at the number of people who have no clue how to use a roundabout...and it's just not old people, young people, or any particular group. This lack of common knowledge on roundabouts seems to stretch throughout all types of people and age groups and I'm here to help and clear things up a bit.
While they are still relatively new to the United States in the grand scheme of things, they've been around in other countries especially throughout Europe for MANY years, the first roundabout in the United States was constructed in Nevada back in 1990.
I like roundabouts, for the most part, they do their job for the most part IF people are using them correctly, otherwise, it just turns into a big ol' cluster. Which has been happening a lot lately, at least at the ones that I've been around. (Especially the one in Windsor on 257 near HWY 392)
When I see drivers stop in the middle of a roundabout and the person behind them having to slam on their brakes to avoid a collision and the person behind THEM doing the same thing, I cringe. (and I may mutter a few choice words to myself as well but I digress)
Here are the 3 basic rules of driving in a roundabout...
- Slow down. Obey traffic signs.
- Yield to pedestrians and bicyclists.
- Yield to traffic on your left already in the roundabout.
I'm not claiming to be a perfect driver, far from it but I'd like to put this out there because it's been driving me bonkers since I've moved here as I see it so much.
So instead of me just only spouting off about the problem, I'd like to address the problem head-on and do something about it by helping others understand the CORRECT way to use a roundabout to not only give myself some peace of mind and sanity but to hopefully avoid some accidents.
So let's all take a couple of minutes and at the very least, get a little refresher on how to properly use a roundabout.