Know Your Traffic Signs

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The Book

Besides The Highway Code, the Department of Transport have this handy booklet to accompany it. In brief, ‘Know Your Traffic Signs’ shows all the traffic signs in use. These obviously including signs giving orders, warning signs, direction signs, information signs and road works signs. However, please be aware that some older road signs may still be the roads.

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In brief, we bring you this document with kind permission from the Open Government Licence. On the whole, it is best to have your own copy in booklet form. Of course, this is available from booksellers across the UK.

Pupils may also wish to read the Highway Code here at Driving Tester or download it to use at their leisure. By and large, pupils will need to refer to these two essential books in order to pass their tests.

Why Do We Have Traffic Signs?

Of course we have traffic signs to alert us to certain dangers on the roads. But, there are other reasons why road signs exist. For example, there may be legal conditions that apply to a certain stretch of road.

The Different Traffic Signs

Warning Road Signs

In general, warning signs are mostly triangular in shape. They also have a red border displaying the danger within. Also, all red warning triangles are the right way up. However, the exception is the Give Way road sign which is an upside down triangle. This, of course, is useful should snow cover the sign. Of course, the sign to the right means slippery road ahead.

Know Your Traffic Signs - warning of slippery road

Prohibitive Road Signs

In short, road signs with red circles are mainly prohibitive orders. For example, the sign on the right means no motor vehicles must pass this point. Obviously, it has a motorcyclist above a car within it. So, no witty remarks about Evel Knievel please.
Know Your Traffic Signs - no motor vehicles allowed passed this point

Road Signs With Positive Instructions

In brief, road signs that have positive instructions attached to them are usually blue circles. Also, they have the instruction in white. For example, the road sign to the right means the minimum speed limit ahead is 30mph. In this case, obviously it would be illegal to drive at 25mph.
Know Your Traffic Signs - minimum speed limit 30mph

Direction Road Signs

In essence, directional road signs are mostly rectangular in shape. Also, on motorways, these signs are in blue. In contrast, on primary routes in towns are mostly in green. For example, the direction sign to the right is a primary road sign with directions to Leeds, Doncaster and Tadcaster.
Know Your Traffic Signs - directional road signs - Leeds - Doncaster

Information Road Signs

Information signs are mostly rectangular and obviously give you information. For example the informational road sign to the right means ‘ no through road’. In other words, you may use the road for access but you can’t pass through to get to another area.
Know Your Traffic Signs - No through road sign

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