Monday, 11 March 2013

Follow the signs

 
 

Follow the signs

 

Red triangles for warning, green boards for destinations, blue circles instruct, brown boards direct you to tourist spots and red circles tell you what you're not supposed to do. Yes, you guessed it; I'm talking about road signs. Road signs are a central part of the road design. But they're not there for decoration and certainly don't stand there to look pretty. Neither are they particularly informative when they are cluttered on one side of the road. We've all heard stories of the roads full of signs offering you an abundance of information which serve only to confuse motorists. But road signs will help you to be prepared during your journey and find your way to your destination. Unlike your sat nav they'll inform and warn you of the road in a way that your sat nav simply will not. Here's some advice on tackling the signs.

 

When setting out on the road, try and look well ahead. The more time you give yourself to see the signs, the better. The extra time you have will give you enough time to respond appropriately if you need to. Remember, signs will give information and guidance on hazards, road layouts and directions – so don't ignore them.

 

Be careful where there are temporary signs – they are there for a specific reason. We've all experienced those times when you're driving to work and suddenly it's taking you much longer to reach work because of road works. These works would usually be signalled through signs. They can often affect speed limits and road layouts – so pay attention.

Whilst signs are incredibly helpful, there are some which are just not being looked after. If you notice a sign that is misspelt, is misleading, overcrowded or hidden by dirt and foliage, report it to the council. The message has to be clear so that drivers can act on the information immediately.

Read the road signs to double check your route – don't rely too heavily on your sat-nav in case things have changed. If you have missed the turning for your destination, never make a last minute manoeuvre that could be dangerous. That means no sharp turns, sudden braking or u-turns. It's always better to drive on until you find a safe place to turn around. This way, you're not putting yourself or anyone else in danger and can use signs to redirect your route.

Road signs are often seen as one of those things you only learn for your driving test. While you might not know what each and every sign means, it's always good to brush up and read the Highway Code every once in a while. Understanding signs can make your journey a lot less stressful.

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