Round­about pri­or­i­ties could lead to a tragedy

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Your Cartoon - by John El­son

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,


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