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Drivers react to changes as construction of new roundabout in Rowan Co. completes

Published: Apr. 26, 2021 at 9:48 PM EDT
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ROWAN COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Over the weekend, a video of traffic at a new roundabout in Rowan County went viral. It’s been viewed and shared thousands of times, but construction officials say there’s a perfectly good explanation behind it.

The video provided by Walker Construction shows cars going the wrong way around a new roundabout design in Rowan County, but if you look closely, you can see flaggers directing traffic that way. The video was concerning for frequent drivers in the area who said the design was never needed, and the old four-way stop worked just fine

“Considering the location right where it’s a big lake and everything and a lot of traffic, it was doing just fine. I’ve seen several first hand accounts that it’s just not going to work out,” said Jason Whisman.

Walker Construction says the video was used to give drivers an idea of what not to do in a roundabout. A new video was posted Monday afternoon that shows the correct way.

“I’ve seen a number of accidents here in the past,” a driver said. “People just don’t pay attention to the stop lights or signs in general. So I think this will do very well, provided people actually read the signs.”

There are signs that show the proper flow—yield to cars coming from your left, enter to the right, and circle until you get to your exit.

The intersection of routes 60 and 801 is also where many campers and boats enter to go to Cave Run Lake. Some have expressed concern that the design will make it hard to get them through. However, it was designed with boats and RVs in mind and a concrete center to make it easier for them to get around.

“It’s going to throw them for a loop. A complete 360. No doubt about it,” Whisman said.

KYTC says the old four-way was replaced with the roundabout because it keeps traffic flowing, and they are proven safer, especially for busy areas that see thousands of cars a day.

“I’m sure that it’s going to take them awhile to get used to it, but once they get used to it, I’m sure it’s going to work very well,” a driver told us.

The roundabout is the first one built in northeastern Kentucky. It opened to regular traffic flow Monday evening.

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