Call it the second British invasion of the US, after the Beatles and Stones. Or third, if you count the original one several hundred years ago by redcoats. I’ll blame the Brits on this, even though these circles of death exist everywhere in the world. I’ll blame the Brits because I can. And beause one sits on my dashboard.
I’m talking roundabouts, those circular merry-go-rounds for automobiles and trucks that are popping up all over cites and even in rural areas. Their stated goal for being engineered on perfectly straight roads is that they keep traffic flowing. Huh?
My trip took me from Appleton, Wisconsin to Sheyboygan, Wisconsin. a distance of about sixty miles. Both cities are north of Milwuakee, by just a about half- a -piece of stringcheese on a paper map.
This being the 21st Century, I was using my GPS, and she — she with a British accent, so-named “Layla”– took me on a roundabout tour or rural Wisconsin due to US 10 being closed for…for…something — the orange “detour” signs never tell you the why of a road closure.
So, one roundabout. Then another. Then still another and another and another. And me having to circle around them, with no traffic present, unless you consider the dairly cows on the hilly pastures walking to an fro, chewing cud..
I can amost understand roundabouts in cities. Almost. Okay, not really. I hate them. You yield to vehicles circling around from the left, and then you enter the mini race track and try your luck at getting out on right street. Often, cars and, worse, big trucks, will be in the race track and have their signals on to turn right. You never know if it’s at your current street or the one before or the one after or maybe their turn signal is stuck on. Who knows? You still have to sit there and wait to see the outcome, so how this speeds traffic along vs a regular, all-American, ninety-degree intersection I am not sure, especially when the only other traffic is a confused cow.
I finally made it to Sheyboygan, after roundabouting my way there. Talk about going in circles.
Each roundabout should have a accident or death count pole in its center, so the motorist going round and round and round on these things would know that one wrong entry or lane swing can mean serious consequences.
In Sheyboygan one visit told me that she had lost her mother in a roundabout. No, not that way. Her poor mother in her eighties just couldn’t get to a street to exit. She spent days going in circles.