Informasi Umum

Understanding Traffic Signs You Must Know

Admin BFI
30 November 2023
Understanding Traffic Signs You Must Know

Traffic signs are a crucial component of the transportation system, playing a primary role in regulating traffic flow, providing information, and ensuring road user safety. Familiarizing yourself with the types of traffic signs is an essential first step for every driver, pedestrian, or road user to understand the rules and signals to follow while on the road. In this article, we will explore various types of traffic signs that you must be aware of to participate safely and efficiently in traffic.


Before discussing the types of traffic signs, let's take a brief look at the origin and evolution of traffic signs. Traffic signs have existed for centuries, but the use of modern signs began in the 20th century. As cars became more common, there was a need to regulate and direct increasingly dense traffic.


In 1903, France became one of the first countries to use modern traffic signs. They installed red and white signs, which remain the international standard to this day. Over time, the traffic sign system developed, and international standards were created to ensure uniformity of signs worldwide.


Traffic signs can be divided into several categories based on their purposes. These include warning signs, regulatory signs, guide signs, and prohibition signs. Let's delve into each category in more detail.



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1. Warning Signs

Warning signs aim to provide drivers with information about upcoming road conditions, risks, or changes that need attention. These warning signs are usually triangular with a red background and black symbols or text. Some examples of warning signs include:


1.1 Danger Warning Signs

Danger warning signs inform drivers about the presence of hazards on the road. This could include sharp turns, slippery roads, animals crossing, or construction work. These signs alert drivers to be more vigilant and prepared for such situations.


1.2 School Zone Warning Signs

School zone warning signs are used to remind drivers that they are approaching a school zone. They indicate the potential presence of children crossing the road. Drivers are expected to reduce speed and exercise extra caution in these areas.


2. Regulatory Signs

Regulatory signs provide instructions to drivers on what they must or must not do. These signs are usually circular with a blue or white background and white symbols or text. Some examples of regulatory signs include:


2.1 Maximum Speed Limit Signs

These signs provide instructions about the maximum speed allowed on a particular road. Drivers are expected to adhere to this speed limit to ensure safety and maintain smooth traffic flow.


2.2 Turn Left or Right Signs

Turn left or right signs inform drivers whether they are allowed to turn left or right at a specific intersection. This is crucial to avoid confusion at intersections and prevent collisions.


3. Guide Signs

Guide signs provide information about specific destinations or locations, as well as the distance to those destinations. They help drivers plan their journey and find the correct direction. Guide signs generally have a rectangular shape with a green or white background and white text. Examples of guide signs include:


3.1 Expressway Guide Signs

These signs provide information about a specific expressway, including the lanes to take to reach a particular destination. Drivers can follow these signs to choose the appropriate lane for their journey.


3.2 Exit Guide Signs

Exit guide signs inform drivers about the distance to various exits or intersections on a highway. This helps drivers plan their exit according to their destination.


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4. Prohibition Signs

Prohibition signs inform drivers about what is prohibited or restricted on a particular road. These signs are usually circular with a red background and black symbols or text. Examples of prohibition signs include:


4.1 No Stopping Signs

These signs prohibit drivers from stopping their vehicles in specific areas. This could be a zone that needs to remain clear, such as a crosswalk or traffic light.


4.2 No Parking Signs

No parking signs indicate areas where parking is not allowed. This could be in areas frequently used by pedestrians or near fire hydrants.


5. Traffic Sign Colors

In addition to shapes and types, colors also play a crucial role in communicating traffic sign information. Here are some commonly used colors in traffic signs:


5.1 Red

The color red is used in warning signs and prohibition signs. It highlights danger or restrictions, instructing drivers to stop, not perform certain actions, or adhere to specific rules.


5.2 Blue

Blue is used in regulatory signs, providing instructions to drivers. These signs indicate actions that drivers must take, such as speed limits or directional instructions.


5.3 Green

Green is used in guide signs, providing information about destinations, distances, and directions. These signs help drivers navigate and plan their routes.


5.4 White

White is commonly used for symbols or text on various types of signs. It contrasts with red, blue, or green backgrounds, making the information easily readable.


6. Traffic Sign Rules

Alongside understanding types and colors of signs, there are some crucial things to know about traffic signs:


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6.1 Compliance with Signs

It is essential to always comply with traffic signs. Ignoring signs or violating the rules indicated in signs can lead to accidents or legal violations.


6.2 Knowledge of Signs

To be a safe driver, it's important to have a good knowledge of traffic signs. This includes learning traffic rules and the meanings of signs before driving.


6.3 Additional Signs

In addition to the discussed signs, there are also additional signs used in special situations, such as temporary traffic or construction warnings. Drivers should always pay attention to these additional signs.


6.4 Changes to Signs

Traffic signs can change over time. Changes may include increased traffic, construction work, or regulatory changes. Drivers should always be alert to these changes and follow the applicable rules.


Understanding the types of traffic signs is a crucial step in maintaining safety and traffic order. By comprehending the various types of signs, the colors used, and the importance of compliance, you can become a better driver and participate more effectively in traffic. Remember that traffic signs are there to protect you and all other road users, so always adhere to and stay vigilant while driving.


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