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Checking correct lane at a roundabout...

Hi ,

If I'm travelling in the left lane on a two lane road and come up to a roundabout and don't take the first exit off the roundabout but go on to the second or third, do I have priority over a car that is traveling in the right lane? What if the car in the right lane wants to come off on the second exit and I'm continuing on to the third while staying in the left lane? What is the position if the car in the right hits me as it seeks to make a turn? Note: I'm not asking which lane I should be in, just what is the position if I stick to the left lane.



Filed under miscellaneous - Asked by Philip Donegan (Ballina) - Sun, 15 Mar 2020 07:48

Shane O' Donoghue Answered by: Shane O' Donoghue - Complete Car Advisor - @Shane_O_D


Hi Philip,

I don't have a full picture of the design of the roundabout you mean, but, the RSA suggests a golden rule that covers most where the roundabout is seen like a clock, with you entering the roundabout at the 6 o'clock position. For any exits between there and 12 o'clock (inclusive) you should be in the left lane. For the exits after that, you should be in the right lane.

Now, there are grey areas; where a roundabout is on a dual carriageway, for example, it's often acceptable for both lanes to be used for straight on (usually the second exit). However, it would be incorrect for the person in the left-hand lane to continue around the roundabout in that scenario, regardless of indicating, to the third or subsequent exits. 

There are loads of exceptions to this golden rule of the RSA's of course, and most unusual roundabouts have some kind of markings to follow.

We actually did a guide on the mad design of the Walkinstown Roundabout in Dublin if you're interested.

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