Hitting the road is something we all do pretty much every day. Whether it’s part of your daily commute, taking the kids to school, running errands or even driving to a new part of the country on for a family break. With this in mind, it’s important to know and to recognise the different kinds of road traffic signs you’re going to come across on your journey.
Chances are you’ve probably seen hundreds of different ones, everything from traffic stop signs to construction signs and yellow cautionary ones. But what about the ones you’re not sure of? Hopefully this short guide to road traffic signs will help you recognise the different types of road signs that are out there, giving your more confidence on the road.
Red and white signs
Signs of this colour will be giving you an instruction that you MUST follow. Like a stop sign for example. These signs usually prefix with words such as “do not” and “wrong”. Consider the colour red as a warning with a sense of immediacy.
Signs of a yellow colour are there for cautionary measures. They’re telling you to be cautious as there is something in the immediate vicinity that requires you to slow down and pay close attention. Think of a sign that indicates a school or an area with young children or the elderly. Cautionary signs are yellow with black images and writing on them.
Green signs are used to give information about directions and inform the driver of how close they are to certain places or markers. For example, how close you are to a particular city or landmark. Street name signs are often green as well.
Looking for a gas station? Somewhere to rest for the night? Or some place to eat whilst on the road? Look out for those blue signs. They’ll tell you all you need to know about finding basic commercial services on the road.
Usually reserved for construction sites, the colour orange is used to get your attention and keep you alert. They can warn you to slow down as you pass a construction site or even provide directions as you navigate through or around these areas.
Brown signs are an indication of a public place or recreational activity. Parks, historical landmarks, points of interest etc. If you’re looking for a theme park and getting lost, just follow the brown signs.
Octagon: Used exclusively for STOP signs.
Triangle: Means to slow down and get ready to stop.
Round: Round signs indicate a railroad. You’ll probably see flashing lights too, but if you see a railroad sign, make sure you’re slowing down in preparation.
Diamond: This shape is to grab your attention and to inform you of seasonal changes that might impact the road: icy road/slippery/fog
Vertical rectangular: Give us important rules to follow on the motorway
Horizontal rectangular: Mark the direction of motorways, cities and special information.