Online poll: Drivers irritated by roundabout use

The improper use of roundabouts is the driving practice that most irritates Cayman Islands drivers, according to the results of a online poll. 

The poll results were among the closest of any poll run by the Compass. Talking and texting on a handheld mobile phone while driving and the lack of use of turn signals both came within 2 percentage points of the top response. 

Of the 500 total respondents, the largest segment – 142 people or 28.4 percent – said improper roundabout use was the driving practice that irritated them the most. 

“It is amazing how many residents have no clue how to use a roundabout,” said one person. “They wait when it is their right of way, and charge through when they should be yielding.” 

“The roundabout where the bypass extension begins (or rejoins West Bay Road) is a series of accidents waiting to happen,” said someone else. “I am nearly side-swiped on it every day. Apparently the effort required to turn one’s steering wheel enough to remain in your lane is too great for most drivers. Perhaps those physically incapable of driving safely should have their licenses revoked.” 

“Because someone who was improperly using a roundabout hit my car,” commented another person. 

Another 137 respondents – 27.4 percent – are most irritated by the practice of talking or texting on a handheld mobile telephone while driving. 

“Drivers exercise a lack of proper control for their vehicles as if they are sitting at home on the phone,” said one person. “They just fail to pay attention in many instances to what is going on around them. Of course, they know the police will pretty much ignore them.” 

“It causes the most accidents for no good reason,” noted someone else. 

“All of those things annoy me, but nothing more than people – usually women – not paying attention to what they’re doing while driving because they’re too busy yapping on a hand-held phone or texting while driving,” said another person. “As for roundabouts, they should put signs near them all saying, ‘Enter at your own risk.’” 

Following closely behind the top two responses was the lack of use of turn signals, which was the driving practice that most irritated 132 people – or 26.4 percent. 

“There are so many drivers who fail to use their indicators/turn signals,” said one respondent. “It is most disgusting as it holds up traffic.” 

“If you don’t know what the vehicle in front of you is about to do, it is dangerous,” said another. “That includes courtesy stops.” 

“Improper roundabout usage also irritates me, but this usually involves people not using their indicator also,” said someone else. “Indicators are a simple stick on the side of the steering column that moves up or down depending on what direction you want to turn. I don’t see any reason why people should not use them.” 

“To signal is to communicate,” commented on person. “Be courteous. Show respect. Avoid confusion and collision.” 

Twenty-five respondents – 5 percent – were irritated most by motorcycles passing on the left, and 17 people – 3.4 percent – were irritated most by illegal parking. 

Another 47 people – 9.4 percent – responded “other” to the question, with many saying “All of the above.” 

“People stopping to chat and blocking traffic,” said one person. 

“Illegal tint on windows and covered license plates,” said someone else. 

“Tailgating,” said another person. “I can’t believe that this incredibly dangerous practice wasn’t on the list of choices. Another irritation is when someone pulls out right in front of you, then proceeds to drive down the road at about 15 mph. Also cyclists who ride on the wrong side of the road, often at night, on a bicycle with no lights or reflectors.” 

“Hard to choose one, really,” said another person. “I’ve never seen such bad drivers.” 

“The thing that really makes my blood boil the most are all of these people that have taken their cars (usually pieces of junk) and motorcycles and modified them to make them insanely irritatingly loud, and then drive them around the island like they have no sense at all,” commented one respondent.  

Next week’s poll question  

What does the Ash Wednesday public holiday most mean to you? [Explain why in comments]  

  1. The Agriculture Show 
  2. The first day of Lent 
  3. A trip off the island 
  4. Just another day off 
  5. Just another workday 
  6. Other 

To participate in this poll, visit starting Feb. 9.