A-Class Driving School's Online Driving Tutorials -
Southmead Test Centre -
The large traffic light controlled roundabout (or spiral roundabout) in the Southmead test centre area seems to throw a few people every now and then. You can come onto it in a few ways. It's mostly when turning right that students get lost. Learners all want to stay close to the centre of the roundabout and don't seem to be able to follow/understand the markings on the floor as you get to the 2nd exit. The image below should help clear things up for you. This is coming from Cribbs Causeway back towards the test centre.
This is 100% correct and should be practiced for this roundabout coming in this direction. Getting across to the far outside lane is usually the issue as it feels so wrong.
What can happen is what is shown below.
If you're heading right at this roundabout, you should be in the right hand lane on approach. As you draw along side the roundabout, you'll be in the right hand lane still. As you approach exit 2, you'll notice it seems like you have options. Keep turning right and cross some dashed lines to keep very close to the roundabout (this is very wrong). Stay in the same lane and begin to drift from the roundabout, which all of a sudden is now the middle lane (see below the red arrows for this path). This is technically "OK", however, it could be better. Like the image above with the blue arrows. If you find yourself in the middle lane here make sure it is clear of cars before coming off in the left hand lane. If you catch wind of anything here in one of your mirror checks, come off in the right hand lane (in the same position as the big blue bus). You're allowed to be here, but at some stage, as soon as it's safe to do so, you'll need to come back to the left hand lane.
The other way you can come to it and turn right is as you're heading out from the test centre and I've seen it during the independent drive several times whilst sitting in the back. The trick here is forward planning and getting into the correct lane early, there is little information on approach about where you'll need to be or that there will be 3 lanes available to you by the time you reach the roundabout. The road markings are all but gone these days and in the wet can be very hard to pick out. Again, the movement outwards, the spiral movement, is what gets most people. The markings for this one are actually kinder. See below.
The blue arrows here are your best option. When you have choices, always pick the left of the two. Often students do not like this, what feels like, a large movement outwards. And so they opt for the middle lane, the red arrows here. Again, like when turning right coming from Cribbs Causeway, it's not "wrong", but you're giving yourself more work to do. Especially here as when you leave, this lane quickly ends and you'll need to be aware of cars on your left. You have to merge with the traffic and there is an elevated chance of things going wrong and slowing other vehicles down.