Dealing with Roundabouts in Malaysia

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Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1646383093914 Navigating Roundabouts Malaysia Putrajaya Featured

(Kredit Photo: rumah-i)

Roundabouts were created with the intention to reduce jams and smoothen traffic flow. However this isn’t always the case here in Malaysia.

Home to the biggest roundabout in the world, you would think that drivers in Malaysia would be experts in navigating them. This might not be the case, with accidents at roundabouts a norm here. One such incident claimed three lives late last year when three vehicles collided at the Sultan Muhammad roundabout.

This goes against various studies that indicate that roundabouts actually reduce the likelihood of a fatal accident by 90%. So what are road users here in Malaysia doing wrong?

Not the Norm

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1646383541311 Roundabouts Are Uncommon Malaysia(Photo Credit: Unsplash)

Well for starters, it’s not common enough for everyone to be accustomed to it. Familiarization is important on the roads; the more familiar you are on the roads you’re driving would mean you’re more comfortable, confident and are more versed in what to look out for.

Navigating uncharted territories can be an anxiety-inducing experience which could be one of the reasons to explain the higher occurrences of incidents.

Rules? What Rules?

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1646383455256 Roundabout Rules Regulations Taught In Driving School(Photo Credit: Unsplash)

Some road users might not even be aware of the rules at a roundabout. Sure, it was taught during driving lessons but when not put into practice often enough, it’s easily forgettable. Here are some guidelines:

  1. You don’t have to come to a complete stop if the road is clear, unless stated otherwise. 
  2. Position your vehicle before entering the roundabout properly; the left lane is for taking the left or straight exits while the right lane is for the third exit. 
  3. In the roundabout, always give way to vehicles on your right.

Bad Road Habits

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1646383721312 Fix Bad Driving Habits(Photo Credit: Pexels)

Another factor that contributes to accidents at these roundabouts are the usual bad habits that are already instilled here. Not using signal lights, tailgating and speeding are dangerous enough on straight roads, what more on a road system designed with lanes that constantly cross paths?

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1646383805208 Ensure Good Habits For Safe Malaysian Roads(Photo Credit: Pexels)

When done right, roundabouts are a great reliever of heavy traffic flow, something very much welcomed for notorious Malaysian roads. However, everyone has to play their part for it to be done right.

Learn the rules in negotiating a roundabout, visualize how you would overcome them and the potential situations you might encounter, and of course, shake off those nasty bad habits. Let’s work towards a safer driving and riding experience for all!

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