Roundabout Issue - Which Movement is Correct?

Hi guys, I've got my P1 test soon and came across this issue when practising over the weekend, hoping the OZB experts could provide some clarification. Location is the Sphinx Ave / Gibson Ave / Watson Rd roundabout near Padstow

Aerial sketch
Streetview sketch

I'm approaching the roundabout from the SE along Sphinx Avenue, and my partner says "at the roundabout, take the first exit", so I undertake the movement path shown in blue in the above pictures. Afterwards, she says the movement was unsafe/illegal and would've failed me in my test. The correct movement was to take the Watson Road exit. If I wanted to turn left into Gibson Ave, I should've done the movement shown in red.

Her reasoning - The red path is like a slip lane. What I did was akin to approaching at intersection with a left slip, but instead of using the slip I turned left at the actual intersection. Even though there's no signage saying you can't do that, it's just wrong.

My reasoning - I think blue path is okay since the instruction was "take the first exit". There's also no signage to say that movement is illegal.

No hard feelings either way who's right or wrong, just want to get it right the since I'm taking my test at Revesby and it's quite close to this place.


  • No right turn.,151.0288375,3a,37.5y,55.24h,89.17t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sDBlKOgESSuPJ78v_AkFZNw!2e0!7i16384!8i8192

    • +3

      I believe thats for the slip so you dont turn into the roundabout's exit lane. You can definitely turn into the roundabout from Sphinx Road, I did a few loops and saw other cars doing that turn.

      • -1

        You may have seen other drivers turn right, but if you did that on the day of the test then I would fail you.

        • +4

          Then you would be wrong and OP should thank god that you are not the driving assessor.

          It is a legal turn from Sphinx into Cahors as the “no right turn” sign is for the intersection of Sphinx and Gibson.

          • @pegaxs: You probably right.

            Op, just do the right turn into the roundabout and then the first exit to Gibson Ave. You'll either pass and get your licence or do the test again in seven days.

            • @whooah1979: No, you see, now you're mincing it and moving the goal posts. This is not what you originally said. You said "no right turn" and that is wrong. You then went on to say that if OP turned right and you were the assessor, you would fail them, again, you are wrong.

              What you are saying now is with reference to the whole maneuver OP outlined in their post.

              Technically, what OP did wasn't illegal, as there is no stipulation in the road rules that they must use a slip lane at a roundabout if it is available. (if it was an intersection, traffic lights or a multi-lane road, the rules are different.) Stupid, perhaps. Pointless, sure, illegal… I'm not convinced. More to the point, is it even a slip lane?? or the termination of Sphinx Ave?

              Happy for you to prove me wrong. Start with Part 9 Roundabouts, Road Rule 109 and go from there…

        • And you would be wrong.

          It's after the first intersection and halfway along the next section of road. If it was no right turn at the first intersection there would be a sign mounted under the give way sign right before the intersection.

          The only time I have seen a no right/left turn after an intersection is when a road ends at a T intersection and the sign blocks your path or a second sign at a traffic light.

      • Your manoeuvre was fine, this is just a dispute about the directions given. You simply turned left onto Gibson Ave in a more roundabout way.

    • Your link is broken, but the only “no right turn” sign I can see is on the far pole that would be for where Sphinx Ave. joins onto Gibson Ave (as Gibson has a median strip and that lane is the exit from the round about) and does not refer to the right turn from Sphinx into Cahors Road.

      • The link works for me. It could be your browser.

        • Safari on iPad. It only shows about 1/2 the URL… and it isn’t clickable.

          For those that can’t click, here it is

      • Gibson Ave has a road divider. It doesn't need a no right turn sign.,151.0292326,3a,75y,43.85h,73.37t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s3vjrulPAkKjWaXN4ggoY4A!2e0!7i16384!8i8192

        • It does need a no right turn sign, obviously because idiots turn the wrong way into Gibson. The no right turn sign is to let people know that if they right turn into Gibson, it’s one way. The no right turn sign is not for turning into Cahors.

    • +1

      Nah, that's in the slip lane at the round about.

  • +4

    Use the slip lane. That is why it is there.

    And correct. If there is a slip lane to turn left, just use it. (At multi-lane roads traffic lights or intersections, if there is a slip lane, you must use the slip lane, not stop at the lights and then turn left from the lights/intersection).

    Edit: I cant find anything in regards to slip lanes at roundabouts and technically, this is not a slip lane, it is an extension of Sphinx Ave. Shitty intersection made even shittier by a badly placed roundabout.

    • +1

      The partner said to use the roundabout. The OP used the roundabout. No fail.

      If the partner didn't want the OP to use the roundabout, why did the partner even mention it? The partner could have just said at the end of the road, turn left.

      • Yep, I agree. OP did what they were told to do. Go to the roundabout and take the first exit. Even made mention below about how his driving instructor issued misleading instructions and needed to refresh her road rule knowledge.

  • Seem like you went the more indirect way, but I believe both paths to be legal - The way you took puts you onto Cahors Rd first, so you should have indicated right and then left after completing that turn as you approach the roundabout.

    Good luck on your test. :)

  • +6

    my partner says "at the roundabout, take the first exit"

    Is your partner Google maps?..

    • I'm practising for the P1 test so she's trying to feed me instructions as the tester would.

      • +1

        Then she is giving you bad instructions and incorrect road rule information. Hire an instructor and go for a dummy test. Not someone who obviously doesn't know the roads or the road rules herself.

  • +3

    Slip lane for left turn, but give way to vehicles exiting the round about.

    The other lane is for turning right into watsons road /cahors road.

  • +2

    Watson road is the second exit anyway you look at it.

    I know it sucks spending money, but your GF is teaching you bad habits. Hire a driving instructor and use them in conjunction with other teachers.

    • never take driving advice from a woman - ron jeremy

  • The correct way to travel from Sphinx to Gibson is the red path, however if the instruction was “first exit” when you’re sitting on Spinx it’s unclear whether you’re being asked to travel onto Gibson or Watson. If that occurred during the driving test you’d probably have to clarify which street they wanted you to head towards. I’m not sure that the examiners would say “first exit” (particularly when you’re still on Sphinx), rather “continue straight and take the first exit onto Gibson street” or “turn right onto cahors road and then exit the round about onto Watson. But it’s been 20years since I did a driving test.

    I hope you don’t get this intersection on your test. Good luck!

  • +1

    Should have taken the slip lane. Doesn't seem to be anything illegal about entering the round about first but it reeks of amateurish driving and wouldn't help your chances in a driving test.

  • i wonder how google will direct it.

  • Stupid design IMO. I don’t see why they didn’t direct all traffic to the roundabout.

    Either would appear to be correct, it depends a bit on the instructions provided in a test situation.

    • Stupid design IMO. I don’t see why they didn’t direct all traffic to the roundabout.

      Imagine a bus attempting to navigate that red line vs just driving straight ahead into the slip lane.

      • I’m sure the could work out how a bus could get around the corner with a proper redesign. Of course, a full rebuild costs a lot more than a token roundabout installation.

        • I’m sure the could work out how a bus could get around the corner with a proper redesign.

          O.o they already have…

          • @Ughhh: No. They put in a stop gap measure for busses that increases the risk due to the proximity of the slip lane to the roundabout by adding an additional, unnecessary junction.

  • When I was younger I rear-ended a car who didn't use the slip lane, and proceeded to also queue across the intersection (traffic lights). Since I assumed the car was going straight I didn't slow down until it was too late. Insurer eventually said we both were at fault and paid 50% each.

  • +1

    Pay for a driving instructor to at least take you for a practice test. Worth it to not have to pay for another test when you fail the first one plus waiting several weeks to rebook.

  • As someone who uses that road quite frequently , the red line is the only correct line. To say take the first exit would be an inaccurate direction. Ideally , you would be given the direction of where you need to go before you leave sphinx avenue. If you enter the roundabout and the instructor says turn into gibson avenue , then you should go around the roundabout and then enter gibson avenue.

  • -1

    "Think of how stupid the average person is, and realise half of them are stupider than that."
    - George Carlin

    • "Everyone's stupid except you and me, and I'm not so sure about you"
      - pjetson

  • There is no arrow/s showing you "must" go straight or right at the round about entry from Cahors.
    It would be better to turn from the slip lane but you followed instruction 100% as you took the first exit lane on the round about.

  • +1

    I undertake the movement path shown in blue in the above pictures.

    a cop won't pull you over for that, but it's a dick move. Like if the slip lane is backed up, and you turn left via the blue lane to overtake the queue.

  • One of my biggest driving pet peeves is when you're stopped at an intersection and wanting to turn left, and to the right of you is either a massive vehicle and/or has pulled out too far and has obstructed your view of oncoming traffic, so you basically have to wait for them to cross before you can -.-

  • +3

    Fun fact: the big building right next to this roundabout in question used to be the Padstow Motor Registry. So thousands of driving test students would have rolled through this intersection over the years.

  • This is poor road design in the first place, the slip lane shouldn't exist.

  • In WA it would be perfectly legal to turn left from the roundabout. No directional signs or linemarkings at the roundabout.

    Lot of sliplanes are built nowadays. The roundabout is unbalanced and there are more cars turning left than going straight.


    The linemarkings at the roundabout still allow left turn movement.
    No linemarking, no special sign means it is a normal roundalbout with full movements (inluding turning left).

    Are the rules diffrent in NSW??

    Just ask the local road authority. Mainroads. + ask them to linemark this old roundabout, so there are no questions.

    However since almost everybody turning left would use the slip lane, turning from the roundabout is a little bit risky as drivers on the slip lane wont expect you.

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