How many types of road junctions do you know and can drive perfectly through? Check out the best ways that the Nigeria Highway code recommends you drive!
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A lot of individuals are unaware that to a greater extent, the safety of every road user really depends on how well they understand and adhere to the traffic rules that govern the road itself. To this one of such issues, we have brought to you in this post different types of road junctions and how to drive through them.
If you go through these rules and recommendations, you will accept that truly, if Nigerian drivers can just stick to them, road rage, insensible traffic congestion, and road accidents will be totally minimized.
You need to first understand that the Nigeria Highway Code describes a road junction as a place where more than two roads meet. Then, road junctions are also of different types and below we have highlighted each of them as well as how it is recommended to drive through them;
1. T-Junction & how to handle it
Anywhere two roads meet and form a “T” letter shape is called a “T-junction”.
You will see yourself in 2 situations when approaching a T-junction which includes emerging right or left.
If emerging right, please check mirrors for surrouding pedestrians and vehicles, then position to the right and signal. Slow down and maintain your observation. When you can be rest assured it's safe, go right then.
This is what a “T-junction” typically looks like
Emerging left is more dangerous because you need to cross the road to the other side. As usual, you check mirrors and watch out anyone about to overtake. Give signals while you're positioning left. Slow down then stop to make sure ways are safe to go. Only steer when you have reached the road centre without cutting across the wrong side. Always check your mirrors for unexpected situations and gradually drive on.
Anywhere two roads meet and form a “Y” letter shape is called a “Y-junction”, as in the picture below.
The tips to handle a Y-junction is not as complex as a T-junction. All that you need to remember is pay attention to Stop signs on both roads shortly before you reach the actual junction.
The vehicle which arrives at their respective stop sign earlier will proceed first. Sometimes, the drive on one of the road must come to complete stop and observe carefully all directions before proceeding onto the other road.
A system of several Y-junctions to regulate traffic more smoothly
3. Cross Road explanation & driving guide
Anywhere two roads meet and cross each other is called Crossroad. It could sometimes be a minor road being crossed by a major road, or just two equal classes of the road merely crossing each other directly.
Watch the video to better understand crossroads & how to handle them!
Anywhere two roads meet and form a circle which ensures that all the traffic must just go around it in the same direction is called a “Roundabout”.
4.1. Rules governing the use of Roundabout
Whenever you approach a roundabout like the one in the image above;
First, watch out and pay attention to the existing traffic
Ensure you are looking out for motorcyclist or cyclist at the side or ahead of you
Make sure to give way to the traffic that is on your left except if the road markings in that area indicate you do otherwise (which is rare)
As long as you see that the way is clear, keep moving
A roundabout will become a nightmare if you don't know how to handle it
4.2. How to drive through a Roundabout
Below are the recommended ways of driving through a roundabout;
When you are turning right:
Ensure that you are approaching on the correct righthand lane, stick to that same lane in that roundabout and leave by that same lane. Remember to use the right-turn indicator on your vehicle when approaching and going through the roundabout.
When you are going straight:
Make sure you are approaching on the righthand lane, stick to the lane in that roundabout. Remember to use the right-turn indicator on your vehicle at the exit before leaving the roundabout.
If you realize that the righthand lane is totally blocked, you can approach via the left lane but, stick to that lane throughout.
Also, remember to signal your turn intentions when turning right. And enter with your left signal on.
When you are turning left:
Ensure that you are approaching on the correct left-hand lane, use your vehicle’s left turn indicator as you enter the roundabout and keep this very signal while sticking to that left-hand lane.
Enter a U-turn with the left signal staying on and keep going like that. Before exiting the Uturn, remember to change the turn signal to the right one
When leaving the roundabout:
When turning left or going forward, always remember to leave that roundabout staying in the left-hand lane unless the current conditions dictate that you just have to use the righthand lane instead.
Being unaware of roundabout driving rules may easily cause traffic chaos
Mind the other vehicles:
Whenever you find yourself in a roundabout, try looking out for other cars that are crossing in front of yours to leave the roundabout by the next exit carefully.
Going through an intersection:
Don’t prove stubborn, give room to traffic that is on the major road and then drives through in a safe manner by obeying all available signals like YIELD or STOP.
It doesn’t matter if you are even on the major road, make sure you are always driving through that intersection while keeping in mind that other cars might also be approaching or crossing.
Emergency lights which are Hazard lights or “double trafficators” like they are popularly known, are never meant for signifying that you are crossing an intersection or going straight and should be stopped being used as such. They just meant strictly for emergency purposes! It’s a pity that many Nigerian drivers get it wrong most times.
We hope this really helps clarify many confusions for drivers in Nigeria.
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