Roundabout priorities could lead to a tragedy
I Am left bewildered by the decisions made by the Highways Agency to effectively allow drivers on our roads to legally run other drivers off the road.
I’d like to know why it is, that drivers heading north towards the Thomas Cook roundabout on the Nene Parkway and on to the Soke Parkway are allowed to get into the left hand lane and then take priority away from the driver in the right hand lane as they have been taught and told to do in the Highway Code?
This scene I have noted has already become an all too familiar one over the last few years with more and more vehicles (and in particular lorries) using this bad practice on other roundabouts around the city, cutting up other drivers just to save time on their journey by just a few minutes! This they then get away with because of their size and the fact that it goes without being challenged by the police.
This crazy idea I am assuming had probably been introduced by the agency to keep traffic moving during peak times, but, in my opinion, could prove fatal if you don’t have the driving experience and knowledge of the area to get out of a difficult situation.
Last week while driving to work during the afternoon, had it not been for my experience, I might not have made my destination. I was in the right hand lane intending to go around the roundabout and on to the Soke Parkway; unfortunately, there was a 40 foot m&S lorry next to me in the left hand lane having the same idea. Approaching the lights on the roundabout, they changed from red to green and the lorry driver decided to put his foot down and ‘went for it’. Knowing the roads in the area very well, I instinctively knew that I would have problems trying to get on to the Soke Parkway slip road now because the size of the lorry would block my access. It is also not helped by the fact that when you approach the slip road on the right hand side of the road, and are unable to get into the left hand lane you literally run out of road.
The road markings don’t help and in fact direct you to go back round the roundabout taking priority away from the drivers who had proceeded as directed by the Highway Code, thus giving priority to drivers who get into the left hand lane!
Fortunately, this time I had enough experience to handle the situation and get past the lorry and carry on my journey.
This problem is also repeated when heading south on the Nene Parkway towards the roundabout at Hampton, where traffic is allowed to get into the middle lane on the roundabout to turn right and, again, drivers following the correct rules by getting into the right hand lane, quite literally run out of road.
The point I am trying to make, is that the rule makers should stick to the rules of the Highway Code as taught to everyone when learning to drive and not to condone poor driving practices by allowing that these ‘new’ unofficial rules. Helen Donohue
Paynels orton Goldhay,