Some drivers still seem confused by traffic circles

Talk about going around in circles… We’ve been hearing from a number of readers that traffic circles and roundabouts in the community are causing a bit of a problem, not because of the traffic circles themselves, which are designed to improve the flow of traffic and reduce accidents, but simply because many drivers still don’t understand the proper way to navigate them. Going about it the wrong way can cause problems, and in some cases, even accidents. From what we hear, some drivers are not slowing down as they approach the circles, are trying to treat them as if they were a four-way stop (which is wrong) and in some cases, once they are on the circle they are stopping at each intersecting street to yield to other drivers who are waiting to enter the circle (which is totally wrong).

It’s really not that hard. The Florida Driver’s Handbook, published by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, states: “Drivers entering the roundabout must yield to traffic already in the circle … For multilane roundabouts, stay in the left lane to turn left and the right lane to turn right, and all lanes to go through, unless otherwise directed by signs or pavement markings.”

According to the DMV and DOT, you should slow to 25 mph as you reach a traffic circle and you should yield to drivers approaching from the left, then bear right around the circle. If you want to make a left turn, you must go around the circle until you get to the street you want. Once you’re on the circle you’ve got the right of way, so you are not supposed to stop at each corner, as that just fouls things up.The town of Cutler Bay has a flyer about traffic circles posted on their website:

Chili, not chilly weather… The 5th Annual Chili Day in Cutler Bay is on Saturday January 4 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Cutler Ridge Park, located at 10100 SW 200th Street. This yearly event is always a lot of fun and besides the competition for those participating, everyone who attends gets to taste-test the various chili recipes and other items. It’s brought to you by the town’s Parks and Recreation Department and Mercedes- Benz of Cutler Bay, and besides the food the organizers promise that there’s plenty of entertainment for the whole family throughout the day. In addition to the chili cook-off, prizes will also be awarded for the best salsa and the best corn bread in Cutler Bay.

There’s not much time left to register as a chef and to reserve your booth space, so if you want to compete please contact Fred Bobson in the Parks and Recreation Department at 305-238-4166 right away.

Say what? We received word from some of those involved, and a copy of the court document, that one of the South Miami City Commissioners is now suing one of the other commissioners and the vice-mayor, claiming they slandered him in remarks they made during a recent commission meeting. Whether the evidence will support their view or his remains to be seen, but either way, perhaps those who sit on the dais in other municipalities should think about choosing their words carefully, especially since what’s said at such meetings is always a matter of public record and can be seen and heard by many potential “witnesses.”

How alarming! We hear that time is running out for folks in Palmetto Bay who have burglar alarm systems, which must be registered or renewed by the Jan. 1, 2014 deadline. The annual alarm registration renewal letters have been mailed out to all Village residents by the Alarm Renewal Unit of the Village’s Finance Department. It specifies the various ways by which residents may apply, whether online, by fax, by email or by regular US Mail. More info can be found at options.

And the next Palmetto Bay Regular Council Meeting, by the way, is scheduled for January 6, 2014 at 7 p.m. in Village Hall, 9705 E. Hibiscus Street. Contact the Village Hall at 305-259-1234 for information and a copy of the Agenda.

The next Cutler Bay Town Council meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. at the Town of Cutler Bay Council Chambers, 10720 Caribbean Boulevard. For info call 305-234-4262.

Thought for the Day:

Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

—Andy Rooney

Gary Alan Ruse contributed to this column.

Got any tips? Contact me at 305-669- 7355, ext. 249, or send emails to

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About the Author

Michael Miller
Michael co-owns Community Newspapers with his brother Grant and serves as Executive Editor of the group of newspapers. He enjoys writing about local politics and area businesses. Michael can be reached at

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