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New Lien Rd Roundabout

What are the things that puzzle, enrage, delight and tickle you as you go about your life in Madison?

Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby snoqueen » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:18 am

Ha. Guess I'm not the only person who thinks those things are tricky.

I've done the roundabout in question more than a few times since this thread started, and I've come to think the problem is people trying to take it too fast. Nobody gets the lane thing at all, they just kinda slide through taking the shortest possible route between their entrance and exit. And they do the "slides" as fast as they can without losing control of their cars, so they're basically smoothing out the curves as much as possible.

No one seems to get lane thing where you need to make two deliberate lane changes -- preferably using turn signals -- to complete the roundabout. It's just not an American way of driving. Are we teachable? Apparently not yet, looking at the accident summary.

Perhaps people in urban Europe drive more slowly so roundabouts work better for them. I would like to know if they do.

I have pretty much quit going to the East Towne area at all because of the roundabouts. When I do go, it's on E. Wash (another accident alley). I'm not sorry I quit going out there -- it saves a bunch of money -- but don't the merchants have an opinion on this?

I wonder if the city will finally decide to put lights at each of the entrances to the roundabout so people are forced to wait for other cars instead of just smashing into them.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby fisticuffs » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:23 am

I wonder if the city will finally decide to put lights at each of the entrances to the roundabout so people are forced to wait for other cars instead of just smashing into them.
.

That would kind of defeat the purpose.
Here's the thing about driving in roundabouts: Yield to your left.

That's it.

Drives me crazy when every octogenarian visit the shops downtown Mt. Horeb on a weekend comes to a full stop with nothing but a driver to their right, or worse no driver anywhere near the roundabout. We all learned how to use a yield sign in drivers ed even if they didn't spend much time on roundabouts. The problem isn't the roundabout, it's the driver.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby lukpac » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:27 am

snoqueen wrote:No one seems to get lane thing where you need to make two deliberate lane changes -- preferably using turn signals -- to complete the roundabout.


What are you referring to? There should be no need for lane changes, nor signals. Changing lanes in a roundabout isn't necessary and should probably be avoided.

snoqueen wrote:I wonder if the city will finally decide to put lights at each of the entrances to the roundabout so people are forced to wait for other cars instead of just smashing into them.


Like ramp meters on the Beltline? I doubt that would work, as there's not enough room or time to determine where people are going. It also defeats the purpose.

fisticuffs wrote:Here's the thing about driving in roundabouts: Yield to your left.

That's it.


This.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby fisticuffs » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:29 am

Changing lanes in a roundabout isn't necessary and should probably be avoided.


Would you change lanes in the middle of any other intersection? Then you shouldn't in a roundabout. Is it even legal to? Walter?
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby lukpac » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:47 am

fisticuffs wrote:Would you change lanes in the middle of any other intersection? Then you shouldn't in a roundabout. Is it even legal to? Walter?


I don't see mention of legality, but the DOT says "Stay in your lane" under ever scenario.

http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/safety/mot ... ochure.pdf

Driving a roundabout with two or more lanes >>>
Choose the proper lane before entering: As you get closer to the roundabout entrance, it is very important to observe the signs and arrows to determine which lane to use before entering a roundabout. Black and white signs on the side of the road and white arrows on the road will show the correct lane to use. In general, if you want to make a left turn, you should be in the left lane or other lanes that are signed and marked as left turn lanes. If you want to make a right turn, you should be in the right lane or other lanes that are signed and marked as right turn lanes. If you want to go straight, observe the signs and arrows to see what lane is correct.

Left turns/u-turns:
use left lane

»»When approaching the roundabout, use the left lane, or other lanes that are signed and marked as a left turn lane.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk.
»»Yield to all traffic on your left before entering the roundabout.
»»Enter the roundabout when there is a safe gap in traffic.
»»Stay in your lane. [emphasis mine]
»»Use your right turn signal to exit the roundabout.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk at the exit.

Going straight:
use right lane
or left lane

»»When approaching the roundabout, choose the correct lane for your desired exit.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk.
»»Yield to all traffic on your left before entering the roundabout.
»»Enter the roundabout when there is a safe gap in traffic.
»»Stay in your lane. [emphasis mine]
»»Use your right turn signal to exit the roundabout.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk at the exit.

Right turns:
use right lane

»»When approaching the roundabout, use the right lane, or other lanes that are signed and marked as a right turn lane.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk.
»»Yield to all traffic on your left before entering the roundabout.
»»Enter the roundabout when there is a safe gap in traffic.
»»Stay in your lane. [emphasis mine]
»»Use your right turn signal to exit the roundabout.
»»Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk at the exit.


It does indicate to signal when exiting, which seems odd. Regardless, that's only one signal.

Also:

http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/safety/mot ... -works.htm
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby lukpac » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:54 am

http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/safety/mot ... script.htm

"By entering the roundabout using the correct lane, you avoid changing lanes, which is not permitted.

Also, when entering a multi-lane roundabout, make sure to yield to both lanes of traffic within the roundabout."
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby TheBookPolice » Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:12 am

I mansplained. Sorry.
Last edited by TheBookPolice on Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby rabble » Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:01 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:Minor fender benders are preferable to fatalities cause by a driver blowing through a stop sign. Or so the supporters of roundabouts say.

Yeah, I expected that one. But that intersection isn't mentioned once in the 2010 crash report. How many fatalities does it take?
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby snoqueen » Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:59 pm

OK, only one signal. I was thinking the drivers were to signal when they entered the roundabout (in the case of going straight through where you can use either lane) in order to get to the interior lane (there are only two lanes) so they could go around and then signal again as they fight to get to the exterior lane in time to exit, while nobody's yielding-on-the-left to let them in. I think that's where the accidents happen -- the people on the right don't yield to their left when someone needs to exit. They only look at the lane they are entering or in, not the interior lane. I added an extra signal -- sorry. But how are people supposed to know what you're trying to do if you don't tell them?

I wish they had a breakdown of how the roundabout accidents at Lien happen, so they could engineer a solution. I bet it's sideswipes from people trying to get to the left (exterior) lane and leave, and people on their right not letting them (or being in their blind spot).

On Lien, most people pay no attention to the lanes at all. They just make the shortest beeline they can and careen through at about 35 mph. Me, I just try to go the same speed as everybody else on the theory flow is better than obstruction.

God I hate those things. Let's not rehash this, I don't have anything more to say but ICK and "I'm not surprised how many wrecks there are on the roundabouts."

Maybe they did phase them in too fast, but how else are you going to phase something in?
Last edited by snoqueen on Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby lukpac » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:13 pm

snoqueen wrote:OK, only one signal. I was thinking the drivers were to signal when they entered the roundabout (in the case of going straight through where you can use either lane) hoping to get to the interior lane so they could go around and then signal again as they fight to get to an exterior lane in time to exit, while nobody's yielding-on-the-left to let them in.


I'm still not sure what you mean. There is never a need to change lanes, period. If you go in on the interior lane, you go out on the interior lane. If you go in on the exterior lane, you go out on the exterior lane. Yielding on the left?

snoqueen wrote:On the Lien Rd one, most people pay no attention to the lanes at all. They just make the shortest beeline they can.


Not to say it hasn't happened, but I have never seen somebody use the wrong lane there. That is, go right from the inside lane or go left from the outside lane.

snoqueen wrote:God I hate those things. Let's not rehash this, I don't have anything more to say but ICK.


I guess there's no changing your mind, but I couldn't disagree more. I used to live near Thompson/30, and all 3 intersections along Thompson that have been converted to roundabouts flow *far* more smoothly than they ever did before. Left turns at all three were often a nightmare. At Thompson/T, traffic backed up for a block at times (4 way stop), and people often failed miserably at proceeding in an orderly fashion, especially when turns were involved.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby snoqueen » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:16 pm

I re-worded some of what I wrote to make it clearer while you were replying with quotes, but either wording was supposed to mean the same thing. Sorry.

http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/safety/roundabouts/

Guy represented with green line has to cross traffic on his right when going straight, making left turn, or doing a U-turn. I know that traffic is supposed to yield to traffic its left, but it doesn't. That's where I bet the sideswipe crashes happen.

Damn, I did not want to go over this again but here it is.

They aren't going to take that Thompson roundabout out, so we have to make peace with it. No fatalities is good, fewer backups are good too. Could improvements be engineered to make it safer? That's DOT's job.
Last edited by snoqueen on Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby fisticuffs » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:19 pm

Guy represented with green line has to cross traffic on his right when going straight, making left turn, or doing a U-turn. I know that traffic is supposed to yield to traffic its left, but it doesn't. That's where I bet the sideswipe crashes happen.


There shouldn't be anyone in the way when he needs to cross that lane. ALL Lanes should have yielded to the left. Anyone who entered with green guy on his right would have already left the roundabout
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby snoqueen » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:21 pm

But all lanes don't yield the way they should, resulting in the wrecks shown by the data. I would like to see the breakdown of types of crashes, but I bet I'm describing it correctly.

How else are they crashing? It's not like people try to go around clockwise or something.

Anyone who entered with green guy on his right would have already left the roundabout


But green guy is never on anybody's right, he's always on their left. Look at the diagram -- when is he on someone's right?
Last edited by snoqueen on Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby jman111 » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:23 pm

lukpac wrote:Not to say it hasn't happened, but I have never seen somebody use the wrong lane there. That is, go right from the inside lane or go left from the outside lane.

That is the biggest problem I've seen with Madison's roundabouts, but I think the problem is not specific to the roundabouts. Some drivers just don't feel the need to maintain a single lane or use the proper lane. In roundabouts this is often demonstrated by "straightening the curve" (outside lane entry, cut through inside lane, exit via outside lane), a phenomenon that is prevalent when more than one left turn lane exists at non-roundabout intersections.
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Re: New Lien Rd Roundabout

Postby fisticuffs » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:25 pm

But green guy is never on anybody's right, he's always on their left. Look at the diagram -- when is he on someone's right?


if there were another driver who entered to green guy's right. That driver can't go left or do a u-turn. Their options are straight and right turn.

Stay in your lane. Yield to your left. It's infallible. Uneducated drivers screwing it up are the problem.
But all lanes don't yield the way they should, resulting in the wrecks shown by the data.


Drivers not obeying traffic laws results in wrecks. This is not unique to roundabouts.
Last edited by fisticuffs on Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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