Roundabouts have proven so popular as a means of controlling traffic flow that there are now over two dozen located around Grand Cayman, including a couple of three-lane roundabouts. If you are unfamiliar with how roundabouts work, and want to avoid an accident, then please learn the following rules. You can also find a video demonstration on the National Roads Authority's website.
- Always travel around a roundabout in a clockwise direction. Never turn right onto a roundabout or you will turn into the oncoming, one-way traffic!
- All traffic approaching a roundabout must yield to the traffic that is already on it that is coming from your right. All vehicles already on the roundabout have right of way and you must wait for space to get onto it.
- Use your indicators when approaching or exiting a roundabout. When turning left, stay in the left lane. When going straight across or turning right, you should indicate right as you approach the roundabout and then as you near your exit indicate left. Make sure not to overtake while on the roundabout. If a car is to your right and they want to turn left, they have the right of way and you may be in their blind spot.
- When using mini single-lane roundabouts, merge left when space is available and keep left of the painted circle until you reach your exit. All other cars must yield to the vehicle on the roundabout.
- When using multi-lane roundabouts. Keep in the left-hand lane if taking the first or second exit. Keep in the right-hand lane if taking a subsequent exit and maintain your position in the centre lane until the exit prior to the one you will be taking. When moving from the centre lane to the outer lane prior to exiting, check you mirrors to ensure someone is not overtaking you on the outside. Use your indicators! See diagram on previous page for guidance.
- When using the three-lane roundabout, it is important to use caution when driving on a three-lane roundabout for the first time. Know your intended exit as you approach and ensure you are in the correct lane. When driving on this roundabout: a) Keep in the left-hand lane if taking the first exit and indicate left, b) Keep in the middle lane if driving straight ahead and follow the lane marked with a straight-through arrow. Indicate left just before you exit, c) If taking a subsequent exit, use the right-hand lane and indicate right, switching to your left indicator just before reaching your exit. When moving from the inner lane to outer lane prior to exiting, check your mirrors to ensure that no one is overtaking you on the outside.
See the picture below for a visual aid on how to negotiate roundabouts.
There is also a very useful video on YouTube which the Cayman Islands Department of Transport produced. It explains very clearly which lane to be in, how to use your indicators and how to move across and around the roundabout: Road Code Roundabout PSA.