The Hazelwick Roundabout, near the big Tesco, gives many nightmares, but knowing a few basic rules for it can help you to master it!
These rules also apply to all large roundabouts (including Tushmore in Crawley) I have come across when driving in other towns.
Firstly here is the video I will refer to: Hazelwick Roundabout Video
- Ensure you look into the roundabout, BEFORE merging, and when you merge stay in the lane you approached in, so if you approach in the left aim for the left, if you approached in the middle aim for the middle. This is vitally important on turns such as 0:04 & 1:12, if this rule is not applied there is a high risk of a collision as shown: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toHWp-cqiqI and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntwt0WH6Ymc
- Look for the road markings! Especially for the left lane. Many believe the left lane is left only, which is wrong. If the road markings do not say the lane is left only then it is NOT left only.
- When you merge make sure you pull out with a bit of speed (as it is a fast moving roundabout and don’t want to slow traffic down), but once on it, ease off you gas slightly so you can have time to count your exits and get the correct timing of signal, mirrors and to ensure you take the exit you want.
- When on the roundabout do not drive directly next to another car, either be in front or behind them, you may get your position correct but they may get it wrong and switch lanes without checking.
Lane Discipline Rules:
- If 3 lanes on approach then use the left lane for the 1st and 2nd exit and middle lane for the 3rd exit (Even if 3rd exit is ahead or to the right), use the right lane for the 4th exit) – Examples – 0:04, 1:12, 6:11, 7:33 (You may notice this logic is exactly the same as Tushmore).
- Rule above is broken if left lane is left only, although not applicable to Hazelwick and Tushmore, as left lane is alwyas left or straight on these two roundabouts, as confirmed by road markings, but this does apply to the Ifield Roundabout
- If 2 lanes on approach then normal rules apply, left lane on approach for left or ahead “at or before 12 o’clock”, and right lane for any exits to the right “past 12 o’clock” - Examples - 11:04 & 13:00
- If turning right, you will need to position to the left early for certain turns, this is only if your lane widens (examples 9:12 & 13:00), if the lane does NOT widen and stays narrow and restricted then following the normal rules of counting exits and change your position after the exit before your one (Example 2:44)
These are the rules that I follow for this roundabout and I have never had a issue with it, never a near miss or moment of doubt.
I am confident that if you also get these rules in your head, and follow these rules, you will be much more confident and will pass your test if you come across this roundabout on test day.