What are Road Signs
Road signs are drawings/ markings on board, slate, iron plate, etc., placed on the roads; these drawings has different meanings. The aim of using road signs is to guide drivers on how to use the road safely. It also help warn road users/drivers of impending danger on the road. Road signs could also be referred to as traffic signs; so we can also comfortably say – Traffic signs and symbols.
This article aims to highlight common road signs we see everyday on the road and their meanings.
Poor understanding, negligence or none availability of road signs can result to fatal accident. Therefore road signs are very important; with good understanding, and adequate placement, it will save lives of drivers who understands it, and use it obey it.
Importance of Road Signs
Road signs play a crucial role in ensuring road safety and smooth traffic flow. Lets list some of its importance:
1. Helps foster safety on the road: The primary purpose of road signs is to enhance safety for all road users. They provide critical information about potential hazards, speed limits, and traffic rules, helping drivers make informed decisions while on the road. For example, warning signs alert drivers to upcoming dangers like sharp curves, pedestrian crossings, or construction zones.
2. Aids in traffic control: Road signs help regulate traffic flow. Stop signs, yield signs, and traffic lights control the right of way at intersections, preventing conflicts and ensuring an orderly movement of vehicles. This is essential in minimizing accidents and congestion.
3. It acts as a guide to road users: Road signs provide directions to drivers, helping them navigate and reach their destinations. Route signs, such as highway shields and directional signs, offer clear information about which roads to take and how to get to specific locations. This is especially important for unfamiliar or out-of-town drivers.
4. Helps in speed regulation: Speed limit signs are used to set and enforcing safe driving speeds. They are based on factors like road conditions, traffic density, and potential hazards. Consistently adhering to speed limits can reduce the risk of accidents and save lives.
5. Ensures safety of pedestrian: Road signs also contribute to the safety of pedestrians. Crosswalk signs, school zone signs, and pedestrian crossing signs inform both drivers and pedestrians about the presence of pedestrians and the rules for safe interaction.
6. They help enforce legal restrictions: Road signs help enforce traffic laws. When drivers see regulatory signs like “No Parking” or “No U-Turn,” they are reminded of legal restrictions, and law enforcement agencies can enforce these rules. This helps maintain order on the road.
7. It helps create awareness: Road signs also provide essential information about nearby amenities, services, and facilities. Signs indicating gas stations, rest areas, hospitals, and exits from highways give drivers the opportunity to plan their journeys efficiently and access necessary services.
In summary, road signs serve as a fundamental component of the transportation system, promoting road safety, regulating traffic, and guiding drivers and pedestrians. Their presence and proper understanding are essential for a well-functioning and secure road network.
Road Signs and Their Meanings
It warns the drivers of where not to park.
2. NO ENTRY:
It warns pedestrian of area they are not allowed to enter.
3. NO U-TURN:
The no U-Turn sign tells you that U-Turning is not allowed at that particular point.
4. PEDESTRIAN CROSSING:
This sign tells you that pedestrian are given preference at that point. So when you are approaching a pedestrian crossing, you have to slow down or wait for pedestrians to pass before you move.
5. SPEED LIMIT:
In this scenario, the speed limit is 40km/hr. So anytime you see such sign, understand that you must not exceed the speed limit on that particular area.
6. NO STRAIGHT ROAD AHEAD:
This sign tells you that the straight road you are coming from has ended. So look for alternative route.
7. MEN AT WORK:
This shows you that people are working along the road. So you will need to slow down and be cautious.
8. END OF MOTOR WAY:
This signifies the termination of the motor way. It tells you that your vehicle cannot continue beyond that point.
9. LEFT HAND CURVE:
This shows you that there is a bending to the left ahead. So you will need to slow down to bend safely.
This sign tells you that there is a roundabout ahead. So you stay focus and probably slow down.
11. NARROW ROAD ON THE RIGHT:
This tells you that the right lane is getting narrow ahead. So be careful.
12. NARROW ROAD ON BOTH SIDES:
This shows you that the road ahead is narrow on both sides. So be cautious.
13. PRIORITY SIGN:
This tells you that the vehicle coming has priority over the one going. So you will need to act wisely.
14. CROSS ROAD:
This tells you that there is a road intersection ahead, so be vigilant and slow down where necessary.
15. CHILDREN PLAYING:
This sign tells you that children playing around the area ahead is a possibility. So you will need to be extra careful and possibly reduce your speed.
16. BEGINNING OF DIVIDED HIGHWAY:
Divided highway begins ahead, this is what this sign is telling you.
17. ROAD INTERSECTION BUT NOT CROSS ROAD:
This road intersection tells you that there is an intersection in a manner highlighted above; but not CROSS ROAD.
18. MERGING ROAD:
Here there is an intersection with a minor road ahead. So watch out for traffic from that direction.
19. REVERSE TURN AND REVERSE CURVE:
This shows the road ahead is no more straight, but goes in the pattern of the sign. So you will need to slow down to negotiate the bends successfully.
20. TWO WAY TRAFFIC ON SINGLE LANE:
This tells you that traffic flows on two way ahead on a single lane.
21. ROAD SPLITTING:
This road split sign shows that the road ahead is split into two directions. This will help you plan on your preferred route.
Categories of Road Signs
Regulatory Signs: A regulatory sign is used to indicate or reinforce traffic laws, regulations or requirements which apply either at all times or at specified times or places upon a street or highway, the disregard of which may constitute a violation, or a sign in general that regulates public behavior in places open to the public.
Regulatory traffic signs follow international conventions, usually being:
- White circle or rectangle with red border, with a black pictogram, black text, or both
- Blue circle or rectangle with white border and white pictogram
- Red rectangle with white border and white text
- Red octagon with white border and white text (stop signs only)
Warning Signs: A warning sign is a type of sign which indicates a potential hazard, danger, obstacle, or condition requiring special attention. Some of this signs indicates hazards on roads that may not be readily apparent to a driver.
They are used to alert highway, street or road users to unexpected or dangerous conditions ahead that might call for a reduction of speed, situations that might not be readily apparent, or an action in the interest of safety and efficient traffic operations such as a curve, detour, sideroad, etc.
Information Signs: An information sign is a sign that is used to informs people of the purpose of an object, gives them instruction on the use of something, etc. An example is a traffic sign such as a stop sign.
Information signs are important as communicating tools, they help to indicate various hazards that present in plant site or workplace. At the same time, they warn workers to always keep watching out for those hazards by giving required information and safety instructions.
Feel free to drop your reactions, concerns or contribution to this article in the comment section. Thank you