A roundabout is an intersection where traffic travels around a central island in a counterclockwise direction. Vehicles entering or exiting the roundabout must yield to vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
Roundabouts can have many advantages over traffic signals when constructed in the right location, including:
  • They provide traffic calming, resulting in reduced speeds.
  • They require less maintenance, have lower yearly operational costs, and have a longer service life.
  • They reduce greenhouse gas emissions by reducing vehicle idling time.
  • The median islands provide refuge for pedestrians, allowing them to cross one direction of traffic at a time.

When you approach a roundabout:

  • Slow down as you approach the intersection.
  • Yield to pedestrians and bicyclists crossing the roadway.
  • Watch for signs and pavement markings that guide you or prohibit certain movements.
  • Enter the roundabout when there is a big enough gap in traffic.
  • Drive in a counterclockwise direction. Do not stop or pass other vehicles.
  • Use your turn signals when you exit the roundabout.
  • If you miss your exit, continue around until you return to your exit.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety How roundabouts work