Fact Finders: When to yield in dual-lane roundabouts

Do you have to yield to the outside lane?
Published: May. 4, 2022 at 9:45 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - The new roundabout at Republic and Glenstone in southeast Springfield partially opened this week. It will eventually become a dual-lane roundabout. So, one of our viewers wants to know, when leaving a roundabout from the inside lane of a 2-lane roundabout, do you have to yield to the outside lane?

In this example (see video), you’re going straight through the roundabout and you’re in the inside lane. You do yield to all lanes of traffic to enter the roundabout. And, you do maintain your lane. Then, you should yield to any vehicles in the outer lane when leaving the roundabout. On top of that, it’s always a good idea to use your turn signal.

“Use caution when you’re approaching roundabouts and look for traffic in them. And don’t have any distractions. Like your phones. Just focus on the traffic in a roundabout and if there’s somebody in there, just yield, use caution. And once I go by you then enter the roundabout. And if you’re in a roundabout, don’t stop in the middle of it,” explained MoDot Traffic Operations Engineer Mike Bock.

For multi-lane roundabouts do watch for the signs and pavement markings to help you pick the correct lane.

Missouri Highway Patrol Sergeant Michael McClure tells KY3, “vehicles within the roundabout have the right of way to vehicles entering the roundabout.” He added, “if a driver were in the inside lane of a two-lane roundabout, no lane changes should be made unless there is room to safely do so. Each driver who wishes to make a lane change within the roundabout is required to yield to the vehicle that is currently in that lane. If a driver is wishing to change lanes within the roundabout, signaling the intention is required by law just like driving on any straight road with two or more lanes in the same direction.”

That brings us back to the viewer’s question; When leaving a roundabout from the inside lane of a 2-lane roundabout, do you have to yield to the outside lane? Don’t assume the driver in the outside lane is making a right turn. They may be continuing in the roundabout. So, yes. You should yield to avoid a collision.

If you have something you want us to investigate, email us at factfinders@ky3-dot-com.

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