Brislington test route trouble spots - St. Phillips Causeway/Avon Meads, double roundabout on the dual carriageway and the next set of lights.
NEW ROAD LAYOUT September 2010
This is one of those places where the rule book is thrown out of the window. The only way to do this correctly is to know what is about to happen, and to have done this a few times successfully. It's on two test routes. If you head straight there from the test centre, it's simple, not worth mentioning. It's when you're on the anti-clockwise test route heading back to the test centre it's a potentail nightmare.
On the test the examiner will give two commands at the same time "At the first roubdabout go straight and at the second turn right" So straight over, second exit on the first, then right, third exit on the second. The key is how you arrive and exit the first roundabout.
Normally for going straight over, you'd be in the left hand lane and then exit in the left hand lane. If you do this, then you have 100 meters to get across 3 lanes of traffic. That's tough. Even for someone with hundreds of hours of experience. So this is what you should do to avoid this.
On approach, the examiner will give you two commands. Straight over for the first roundabout and then right at the second. So forward planning comes into it's own here. The left hand lane is mostly used for shoppers heading into St.Phillips marsh retail park. So pick up the right hand lane and arrive in second gear. No signal on approach. Once you have passed exit 1 (the left turn) mirrors and signal to exit and then come off in the right hand lane. This is the lane nearest the central reservation. The reason for that is the next roundabout, only seconds away, you'll be turning right, and so need to be in the right hand lane.
The middle and right lane both now (Sept 2010) both go right, however, make sure you start and finish in the right hand lane here. This is all now forward planning for the traffic lights around the corner. It will feel like you want to move over into the left hand lane and allow faster cars to overtake you, make sure you stay where you are. There is no information about which lane goes where and once around the corner you'll soon see (or maybe not a as who ever is incharge about signs in Bristol is useless) that the right lane is for following the road ahead, back to the test centre and the left hand lane is for turning left.
Be on the look out here for cars that are used to the old system. For years the left hand lane was for going straight on and it's now catching a lot of people out. I've seen a lot of near misses here where cars in the left lane carry on going straight where the two lanes converge into one. Check your mirrors as you go through the lights to see if anyone is trying to over/undertake here.
Now, the satellite image below looks like I'm telling you to go over some paint work on the floor, this has been taken away and there are two lanes as you exit. Markings have also been put onto the roundabout here to make it easier to stay in your lane. The second image shows you how by statying in that right hand lane after coming off the roundbaout keeps you in the corret place for the lights and the way back ot the test centre.
Watch the video to see how it should be done