The Shoals will be receiving its very first traffic roundabout later this year. The Alabama Transportation and Rehabilitation Program (ATRIP), along with the city of Florence will be funding the new roundabout, which will be located at the intersection of South Royal Avenue and Huntsville Road. While drivers are wary of having to learn new traffic patterns, many city officials believe roundabouts in Huntsville will begin popping up more frequently in the near future.
While roundabouts may offer a safer driving route, they are not exempt from accidents. If you or a loved one has been injured in a roundabout accident in Huntsville, call the car accident lawyers of Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. today at (256) 513-6848 to schedule a free and confidential case consultation.
Judd Young, a county transportation engineer with Alabama’s Department of Transportation, thinks drivers should be able to adjust to the new traffic circle without any difficulty. The main draw is the safety factor. Young says issues like accidents and overwhelming traffic will be greatly reduced.
Many drivers complain about learning to navigate them, but roundabouts have proved to be a cost-effective method to efficiently move traffic. Below are some reasons that people champion for roundabouts:
Speeding, turning on red, and ignoring the right of way are all bad habits that cause accidents at many high-traffic intersections. A roundabout forces people to travel at more sedate speeds. Drivers won’t be racing through a four-way intersection to beat a light, nor will they be turning against the light in front of a line of other cars. You will only need to be conscious of incoming traffic, and when you exit you’ll have to be aware of what the cars to your right are doing.
Intersections can be difficult to navigate if they aren’t marked very clearly. Depending on the road signs or conditions, drivers may not be sure who has the right of way, what lanes they can turn from, or what oncoming traffic is doing. A roundabout takes away all of this uncertainty by providing a continuous, one-way traffic flow.
Roundabouts save fuel by cutting down on starting and stopping. They also have no stoplights, so cars aren’t forced to burn gas while idling at a red light. In fact, research done by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) showed that roundabouts could cut fuel consumption by 23-24 percent. As an added bonus, they reduce harmful gas emissions such as carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, and hydrocarbon.
While drivers have to yield to traffic already in the circle, the traffic pattern still moves at a steadier pace than an intersection where people have to wait at stop signs or traffic lights.
The roundabouts in Huntsville may be deemed safer, they aren’t completely accident-proof. If you were hurt by another driver’s careless actions, you are entitled to seek compensation. Let the car accident lawyers at Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. help you build a case. We can assist you with collecting damages for your medical bills, lost pay for time spent off work, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. For a free consultation, contact us at (256) 513-6848.