MnDOT: Roundabouts Reduce Serious Injuries and Save Lives
ST. CLOUD -- The St. Cloud metro area is no stranger to building roundabouts into its road designs and now the benefits and setbacks are starting to show.
The state has nearly 200 roundabouts the Minnesota Department of Transportation says they are reducing serious injuries and saving lives. MnDOT recently did a study to find out on how safe and effective roundabouts are in Minnesota.
Derek Leuer is a traffic safety engineer. He says roundabouts overall they are performing well.
"In most cases, modern roundabouts compare favorably in safety and operational performance to conventional intersections with stop control or signalized operation."
In the study, intersections with single-lane roundabouts saw a large reduction of crash rates including a 69 percent decrease in right-angle crash rates, 83 percent decrease in left-turn crash rates and a 61 percent in injury crash rates.
For all types of roundabouts, MnDOT says there was a 42 percent reduction in injury crash rates.
Although MnDOT has seen an 86 percent reduction in fatal crashes in intersections where roundabouts were installed, here in St. Cloud we recently had a deadly crash in a busy roundabout.
Last Tuesday, 71-year-old Adow Abdi of St. Cloud was walking across the street in the University Drive roundabout when he was struck by a car. Abdi was taken to the hospital where he later died. The crash is still under investigation.
Minnesota built its first roundabout in 1995 in Brooklyn Park.