Traffic signs are a common sight on roads all around us. They are categorized as warning signs, priority signs, restrictive signs, mandatory signs, directions etc. In most nations across the globe, traffic signs are typically shaped like an equilateral triangle with a thick red border.
The space enclosed within the triangle is usually white and has the particular symbol pertaining to a particular warning. Some countries opt for a diamond shaped sign with a thick black border and white or yellow coloured background. Most European nations follow the Vienna Convention on Road Signs and Signals of 1978 regarding the most common traffic hazard signs.
Here’s a list of the ten most common signs
Correct identification of traffic signs can greatly improve road safety. As an astute driver, you should be aware of the different traffic hazard signs displayed on roads and learn to identify them correctly.
An exclamation mark enclosed within the regular triangular signage is typically used to convey a particular condition, obstacle or hazard on the road. There is some text matter in local language on an additional sign placed beneath the triangle that explains the kind of danger that the driver can expect to negotiate immediately.
These are diamond shaped signage placed to indicate the presence of dividers, curbs or other obstacles on the road. Diagonal stripes are used to indicate the bridges, barricades, utility poles or any other natural obstacle that you are likely to face ahead.
Animals Crossing Warning
These warn to exercise extreme caution while driving through areas that are frequented by wild or domesticated animals. Usually, the symbol of the animal, like moose; deer; reindeer; kangaroo; duck; horses; sheep etc are included within the sign.
Roadside construction sites are one of the most accident-prone zones and suitable signs are placed to warn drivers of potential danger ahead. Such signs usually have a pictogram of a person doing some construction work like shovelling.
Corners and Curves
Unexpected bend or dangerous curves are one of the prime causes of road accidents. The direction of the curve, indication of hair-pin bends, sharp bends, blind curves, junctions, double-bends, etc are indicated through such signage with the help of suitable black lines.
Tunnels can appear on the road suddenly and you must be prepared in advance to deal with the change in visibility and road surface. The usual triangle signage with a pictogram of a tunnel is used to warn drivers of the presence of a tunnel on the road in front.
Bridges are another impediment on the road which you should be aware of. Hazard signs for bridges warn about the presence of unsafe bridge, narrow bridge, floating bridge, drawbridge etc and usually include the pictogram of the suitable bridge within the triangle.
Warning for Traffic Lights
Sometimes, it is difficult to spot a traffic light and you may be in the danger of crashing if you do not slow down appropriately. Triangles with traffic light symbol are commonly placed well ahead of the actual lights to forewarn drivers and give them adequate time.
Crossings and Intersections
Crossings are chaotic and traffic hazard signs typically help drivers to be on alert while approaching them. Intersections, railway crossings, roundabouts, crossroads etc are indicated with suitable pictograms placed inside triangles.