There are at the moment two forms of roundabouts in Hong Kong. We name them standard roundabouts and new spiral roundabouts. Probationary (P-license) drivers are at all times confused by them since every has its personal guidelines for giving alerts and precedence. However passing the driving take a look at doesn’t routinely make you an skilled, as solely the Yau Tong take a look at route has a roundabout.
What’s extra, there isn’t any clear consensus as to methods to use roundabouts. Some drivers are likely to drive alongside the outer lane it doesn’t matter what, inflicting visitors congestion. Some drivers even overtake by altering to the mistaken lane, leading to automotive accidents. These atrocities have left a repute of “black spots” on some roundabouts!
Kwiksure presents the similarities and variations between the traditional roundabouts and spiral roundabouts, in addition to a state of affairs evaluation.
Similarities and variations between the traditional roundabouts and the spiral roundabouts
Earlier than getting into a roundabout, you will note a triangular “roundabout forward” signal about 100 meters prematurely. It’s normally arrange alongside the pedestrian route. At about 50 meters earlier than the roundabout, you will note an enormous blue route signal.
Guidelines of use
Whether or not it’s a standard roundabout or a spiral roundabout, drivers should intently observe the next guidelines
When getting into a roundabout, you need to strategy from the left.
Determine as early as potential which exit you wish to take and swap to the proper lane.
If you happen to miss the exit, maintain circling across the roundabout till you strategy the exit once more, then go away.
Standard roundabouts vs. spiral roundabouts: Driving ideas
The Transport Division launched a guide named “How A lot You Know About Guidelines of Utilizing Roundabouts”, during which we are able to see that the 2 forms of roundabouts will not be too dissimilar with regards to utilization.
If you’re in the end making a left flip (i.e. taking the exit on the left), journey alongside the outer lane and maintain left.
If you’re in the end making a proper flip or taking different exits (i.e. taking the exit on the precise), journey alongside the interior lane and maintain proper.
If you’re in the end going straight forward, both line shall be superb.
Standard roundabouts vs. spiral roundabouts: The “give-way precedence” controversy
If the foundations of use are so clear, why do visitors accidents nonetheless occur every so often? The wrongdoer is the precedence concern on the exits.
Within the standard roundabout, autos on the interior lane ought to give method to autos on the outer lane to go away first. Conversely, within the spiral roundabout, autos on the outer lane ought to give method to autos on the interior lane to go away first. Previous or new, keep in mind this rule of thumb with regards to roundabouts: look proper when getting into and look left when exiting in case any automobile crosses your path from behind on the left. Additionally, be careful for lengthy autos (e.g. container vehicles) as they could additionally cross your path once they enter and exit the roundabout.
The emergence of spiral roundabouts stems from an statement that drivers exiting a standard roundabout would make a number of lane modifications without delay, growing the danger of accidents. Due to this fact, in 2004, the Transport Division rolled out spiral roundabouts on a trial foundation. But out of the 327 roundabouts in Hong Kong, there are solely 23 spiral ones – accounting for a mere 7% of the full. The coexistence of each roundabouts, in addition to the distinction between give-way guidelines, has regularly prompted accidents.
Roundabout black spots
Roundabout black spots the place visitors accidents have occurred embody:
Tsuen Tsing Interchange (Tsuen Wan Street)
Tsuen Kam Interchange (Texaco Street North / Wai Tsuen Street)
Nam Pin Wai Roundabout, Sai Kung (a visitors accident that resulted in 19 deaths and 43 accidents occurred right here)
Tai Wai Roundabout
Hammer Hill Street Standard Roundabout, Diamond Hill
Lung Fu Street Roundabout
Sheung Tak Property Roundabout, Tseung Kwan O