posted 3 years ago

Government Plans Crackdown On Unnecessary Road Signs

Number of unnecessary road signs that “blight our landscape” could be slashed thanks to new government taskforce.

Taskforce Proposes Cutting Number Of UK Road Signs

A government taskforce has been set-up to cut the number of road signs that “blight our landscape” and distract motorists, the Department for Transport confirmed.

The Department estimates that there are now twice as many signs as twenty years ago. It said overuse of such tools “dilutes” important safety messages.

The taskforce – which is overseen by Sir Alan Duncan MP - is part of an effort to: “Make roads safer and navigation easier for motorists, scrap unnecessary red tape and de-clutter”. It has a wide range of proposals on which drivers can comment via a consultation document.

Highlights relate to the removal of temporary signs such as “New Roundabout Ahead”. The consultation document explains: “We propose that this sign has a remove by date on the back of it, so that the date by which a sign ought to have been removed is clear."

"This change might, for instance, lead to members of the public letting the local highway authority know if it is not taken down within the time limit”.

Suggestions also include: “Stopping temporary message signs from being cluttered with adverts and distracting logos”. The consultation document says: “It has become common to see the space on the back and supports of portable and temporary variable message signs being used to display information relating to the supplier of the signs or slogans."

"While some contact information is useful - for example to aid reporting of faulty equipment - these spaces should not be used for advertising. As with permanent signs, supports and backing for variable message signs should be free of distracting information.” 

Road Sign

Unnecessary Road Signs Blight Landscape

The Transport Secretary Patrick Mcloughlin explained: “Useless traffic signs blight our landscape, waste taxpayers’ cash and can be a dangerous distraction to drivers. We are restoring common sense to Britain’s roads while ensuring drivers have the information they need to get about safely.”

Mr Mcloughlin added: “We have already made much progress but Sir Alan Duncan’s new taskforce is an important step towards striking the right balance.”

Sir Alan Duncan said: “I have been campaigning on this issue for twenty years (and) I am delighted to lead this initiative. The UK has erected thousands of road signs which are completely unnecessary, such as traffic light warning signs when you can see the lights themselves.

"We are going to look at how we might get rid of whole categories of unnecessary signs and improve the look of our roads and streets.”

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