Housing Complex

Hazard of Roundabouts

A bus-car altercation about half an hour ago in Dupont Circle. Slate thinks they're great, but I still think roundabouts are death traps.

Crunch! (Lydia DePillis)

Crunch! (Lydia DePillis)

  • http://rickmangus@aol.com Rick Mangus

    Now you all know that I am one of the biggest critics of Metro and it's employees, but bring fair it looks like the dumb ass in the car tried to rush pass this bus.

  • Dave

    You can't engineer out stupid. All you can do is make it less likely that the stupid will kill someone. Better the bus hit the car while at an angle than a t-bone, which is the better from a safety standpoint than the 90-degree angle situation at every standard intersection.

  • Ed

    You might want to read the articles you link to. It specifically differentiates traffic circles (big, higher speeds, lights to control entry and flow) and roundabouts (smaller, so lower speeds, generally no traffic lights). Oh yeah, then there's this (also from the article):

    "The fact that roundabouts may "feel" more dangerous to the average driver is a good thing: It increases vigilance."

    You may think roundabouts are death traps (and traffic circles often are), but the data does not support that.

  • Ed

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1446639/

    (linked in the Slate article)

    RESULTS: There were highly significant reductions of 38% for all crash severities combined and of 76% for all injury crashes. Reductions in the numbers of fatal and incapacitating injury crashes were estimated at about 90%. CONCLUSIONS: Results are consistent with numerous international studies and suggest that roundabout installation should be strongly promoted as an effective safety treatment.

  • crin

    The fewer traffic lights the better.

  • Mrs. D

    I live near the new roundabout on Brentwood Rd., and it's great. People are finally starting to get the hang of the fact that cars in the circle have the right of way. I can now get out of my side street in just a few moments, instead of waiting, and waiting, and waiting, only to make a treacherous dash out into Brentwood (both when driving and walking). Now, if both the cars and the pedestrians could get the pedestrian crossing thing down (pedestrians need to cross IN the crosswalks, which are set back from the intersection on the side streets to allow cars to exit the circle and THEN wait for them, preventing traffic tie-ups, and drivers need to yield for pedestrians crossing the main road (Brentwood) - though I think part of that problem is the bus stop there, as it's hard to tell who's waiting to cross and who's waiting for the bus).

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