As Indiana communities add more roundabouts, some drivers are concerned that others on the road don’t know how to use them.
"I do not have a problem with them," said Margo Johnson, a driver who said she had no problem with roundabouts. "I like them."
Johnson has seen her share of people who have no clue.
"People who enter the roundabout and stop midway and flag me into the road," said Johnson. "I see other drivers who are going around and around the roundabout multiple times and not knowing how to get out of the roundabout."
Carmel is well known for its roundabouts—and Indianapolis’ famous Monument Circle is another. Yet, communities in Marion and Boone counties are set to add more traffic circles.
Drivers like Lindsey Spurgeon said getting a refresher course before putting your car in drive might not be such a bad idea.
"I wish that more people knew, officially, how to use a roundabout," said Spurgeon. "Maybe they need a little more instructional training. Some people know exactly what they are doing. Other people are just winging it."
According to the Federal Highway Administration, roundabouts are safer. The agency's figures show roundabouts reduce fatal accidents by 90 percent and result in 76 percent fewer crashes with injuries. Overall, roundabouts reduce the number of crashes by 35 percent.
Are they faster?
Fox59 hit the road to find out. We went two miles on two stretches of road, one with nothing but roundabouts, one with nothing but stop lights. We found roundabouts saved us two minutes getting from point a to point b.
Margo Johnson said drivers need to get on this learning curve because the growth of roundabouts shows no signs of slowing down.
"There are people who are not familiar with them and it does cause traffic jams and back-ups and accidents and so I do not understand why some people get it, and some people do not get it," said Johnson.
Lebanon is joining the ranks when it comes to roundabouts. Two are planned for Indianapolis Avenue, not far from I-65.
"We want to show people that we are keeping up with the times," said Tom Kouns with the City of Lebanon. "I think it is good, it is a good deal."
What has not been good is the way some people drive when they are in a roundabout.
"We saw a lady trying to make a left hand turn at a roundabout," said driver Jim Winner. "That was interesting because the car came to a dead stop and a cop had to come out and get her turned around."
The numbers show roundabouts reduce pollution and traffic congestion, but some drivers, like Lindsey Spurgeon, think some people might need a '”how-to session” before taking the turn.
"I do not know that it would take a ten question quiz on it or anything, but I do think it would be something nice to throw it out there for somebody to learn it if you would like to learn it, and if not, learn it on the road," said Spurgeon.
Driver Jim Winner said the concept is a hard for some, but it’s not that bad once you get the hang of it.
"It is easy to get around, the key is, do not rush," said Winner.