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Great Barrington police chief issues rules for navigating the new roundabout

GREAT BARRINGTON — The new and unfinished Main Street roundabout is the star of community Facebook chatter as well as lighthearted ribbing of those who express fear of it.

Now, Police Chief Paul Storti is weighing in with rules of the road. Storti has released instructions from the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles for navigating rotaries and roundabouts.

It explains that the rules for moving through roundabouts are the same as for rotaries, which are larger.  

  • Always yield the right-of-way to vehicles already in the rotary (unless told differently by signs or police officers) and to pedestrians;
  • Use your turn signals in the same way as any other intersection;
  • Travel through the rotary and, when you are ready to exit, use your right turn signal.
  • Roundabouts are used on busy streets and their small size requires vehicles to reduce speed to 25 miles per hour or less. Roundabouts reduce the need to change lanes. Look for signs as you get near a roundabout to determine which lane you should be in.
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GB Chief Paul Storti (copy)

Great Barrington Police Chief Paul Storti.

"The key safety element to remember is that the vehicle within the rotary/roundabout has the right of way and the vehicle entering must yield to vehicles within the rotary/roundabout," the instructions say.

The state Department of Transportation proposed the roughly $2 million project in 2018 after identifying safety and traffic flow problems at the junction of Route 7 and routes 23 and 41.

Officials say it will be completed by next June.

Heather Bellow can be reached at hbellow@berkshireeagle.com or 413-329-6871. 

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