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Studies done in the U.S., Europe, and Australia have found that roundabouts have better safety performance over types of intersections. Surveys have also shown that the damage incurred in roundabout crashes was significantly reduced. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety published A Study of Crash Reductions Following Installation of Roundabouts in the United States, in May 2000, illustrating the reductions of crashes after the introduction of a roundabout.

The increased safety levels in roundabouts can be attributed to:

  • Yield-at-entry operation
  • Fewer conflict points. Standard four-way intersections have 32 conflict points versus 8 in a roundabout
  • Central and splitter islands reduce the number of conflict points
  • Lower absolute speeds. Allowing more time for drivers to react while reducing crash severity
  • Pedestrians only have to cross one direction of traffic at a time
  • One-way operation. Vehicles travel in the same direction virtually eliminating the possibility right angle or head-on collision
  • Parking isn’t permitted within the roundabout