Letter: Roundabouts: Love them or leave them

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Editor,

I find the discussion regarding the use of turn signals in roundabouts very concerning for several reasons. Recently, I had the job every parent dreads: helping teach their child how to drive. This task is stressful on streets that have the traditional four-way stop lights, but when you incorporate 100 roundabouts into the equation, well, let’s just say I have a few more gray hairs.

It wouldn’t be so bad if these roundabouts were the same or similar, but no, Carmel has to have at least 80 different configurations, which resulted in many white knuckle moments.

So, let’s add a turn signal requirement into this equation. You are entering the roundabout at 116th and Keystone, two lanes with the choice in both lanes of going straight or turn, cars are flying around the circle, cars are coming into the circle from the Keystone exit and your child has frozen. You coax him to move when there is a gap, secretly fearing for your life,  and then you remember – the turn signal! So, in the midst of cars coming at you, your child inching through the circle, you calmly say, “Don’t forget your turn signal.” Seriously! Don’t you think there is enough confusion in the 80 different roundabout configurations than to worry if you have used your turn signal?

I have a better idea. Why doesn’t the City of Carmel spend money on repainting all of the exit lanes? You can hardly see the white paint arrows on a sunny day. Try finding them on a dark rainy night. And why doesn’t the City of Carmel invest in larger directional signage? I exited off Keystone today going toward 116th and literally had to search out the directional sign, which is very small and located on the left of the exit lanes.

If you spend a lot of time going through roundabouts, it’s a take-a-deep-breath, I-hope-I-don’t-get-hit moment. You have to be extremely defensive as you enter the 80 or so different configurations trying to decipher which lane to be in that adding a turn signal requirement will only cause more accidents, not prevent them.

Mary Ellen Boerner, Carmel

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