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Weird Street Signs Part 1

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Presentation on theme: "Weird Street Signs Part 1"— Presentation transcript:

1 Weird Street Signs Part 1

2 Two-headed red/yellow/green left-turn traffic light
The red light on the left turn arrow is mounted on top of a yellow/green combination turn arrow. This is peculiar because generally, when a turn arrow is implemented in combination with a normal ball light, the traditional "dog house" style is new. In other words, usually, the red ball on the right light would represent the red light, where the arrows on the left would be yellow and green for turn protection phases.

3 Engine Brakes Prohibited, 10PM to 6AM, Emergency Only
The color and shape of this sign are that of a warning sign, not a regulatory sign. Additionally, the language of the sign is ambiguous. Is engine braking prohibited during emergency situations?

4 Warning It's unclear how drivers should react to either of these signs -- and to say that illustrates the point that the MUTCD is deficient in its ability to convey possible gunshot and thin ice hazards to motorists.

5 Not a public road, Use at own risk
Not only does this sign fail to meet basic standards for readability and visibility, it would likely fail to insulate the owner of this property from liability in the event someone was injured using the "non public road at their own risk", Interestingly, the trail is hardly a shortcut, as paved roads nearby do a more than adequate job of connecting points of interest in this area.

6 Left-turn signal lights on top of traffic light
The yellow and green left turn arrows are mounted on top of the traffic signal, and are therefore out of place. This was likely done because mounting the lights below the light would have resulted in inadequate clearance below. A better alternative would have been to mount the lights to the left side of the light (as in a typical doghouse configuration).

7 Park disabled cars behind cones
It's unclear how precisely a disabled car ultimately makes it all the way to the cones, but let's assume the disabled vehicle was under its own power enough to get it to the coned area. The non-standard text and meaning of this sign are the first odd thing about it, but to top it off, NJDOT used their standard "Turnpike font" to make things as unreadable as possible.

8 Resume normal speed Despite the fact this sign doesn't appear in the MUTCD, and is non-standard, the real issue here is the definition of "normal speed". This is a case of laziness or under- funding, as the appropriate thing to do would be a combination of "End construction" and another sign posted with that indicating the new speed limit. After all, this sign was on the New Jersey Turnpike, where the normal speed can be miles per hour above the posted speed limit.

9 Deaf area Although probably well intentioned, signs like these are non-standard and are virtually universally ignored by drivers and therefore are unwarranted.

10 Reserved for Clue II This sign appears to be some kind of parking regulation, despite the fact that there is no need to control parking on the quiet street where this is posted. This is sign is difficult to understand the meaning of, aside from that something is reserved for someone.

11 Stop - Dismount; Close clearance
Although intended for trains on a nearby railroad track, this sign's proximity to travel lanes make it especially weird, considering 2/3 of the sign are indecipherable to motorists and are intended only for train conductors.

12 A huge wig-wag flashing left turn arrow
Not a standard use for wig-wag flashers and yellow lights, but effective! This is one of the more creative applications of 9 yellow flashing lights on a massive sign blank that I've seen yet. It is your choice to think whether it is pointing the signs on the right, enforcing them, or if they are just a larger version of the signs on the right.

13 Left turn; 5 m.p.h. advisory speed
Expecting drivers to go 5 miles per hour is absolutely ridiculous under any situation on a public road. I would suspect that not even 1% of drivers actually drive this speed as they safely negotiate the turn at a higher speed.

14 Be alert for bicycles on bridge
Unique and non-standard. This message is better conveyed with the standardized "Share the road" sign featuring a vehicle next to a bicyclist.

15 Notice; It is unlawful to operate unlicensed motor vehicles, mini-bikes, or all terrain vehicles, on private property without the express or prior written consent of the owner This sign is both verbose and unwarranted, as this is obvious. There is no jurisdiction in the United States where there is no law that prohibits trespassing. Even if it was absolutely critical to convey this message, which is likely ineffective anyway, this wording is incredibly verbose.

16 Land of make believe, next right
Although this actually is the name of a cultural attraction located off the next exit, this sign is funny simply because it actually says that the next exit is for the land of make believe.

17 Long 3 minute light; Controls one way traffic; Wait for green
The traffic light mentioned here controls traffic on a one-lane road in a rural area in Pennsylvania. I could see that something would probably need to be posted about the hazard here, since after waiting three minutes, drivers might think the light was broken and go. However, I would consider instead using a pedestrian countdown signal, especially since newer models can be installed without being programmed. There is only one problem with that idea -- if this light is 3 minutes long, then a pedestrian countdown signal would be inadequate since it could only display "99" and not the "180" seconds that the light would take to cycle.

18 Tappan Zee Br; Palisades St Pkwy; Keep right
The only thing wrong with this sign is the use of "St" in "Palisades St Pkwy". "St" of course means "Street" although in this case the signmaker likely intended it as "State". But even if that's the case, the sign is wrong, because the name of the highway is the "Palisades Interstate Parkway". A subtle distinction, yet still this sign is incorrect.

19 Fog area This non-standard warning sign is unwarranted. This is another example of a hazard that drivers can see and react to when necessary without the assistance of a street sign.

20 Use both lanes to merge point
Excellent advice, but obviously non-standard language. Just to point out, this sign actually spells out a portion of the advice on, that is, to avoid queuing behind other cars before it's necessary.

21 Merge here; Take your turn
Although this sign is non-standard, it earns bonus points for actually telling drivers to "take your turn". This surprisingly pragmatic sign was still obviously ignored by some of the more aggressive drivers on the road that day.

22 Anti-icing in progress when flashing
This sign is confusing because drivers may not understand the hazards of anti-icing, and therefore, may not understand how to react to this sign when it's flashing.

23 No guide rail Guide rail makes it sound so friendly and inviting. Anyone who's ever hit a "guide" rail likely knows it does more than "guide" you.

24 Black detour PA DOT has this weird system of pre-posting detour routes for some frequently closed roads. However, the fact that the signs are always exposed is potentially confusing, especially since it is posted on a white sign. Also, the "Orange detour" for example would have an orange arrow, orange text, and an orange border, making other colored detour signs even more strange.

25 Watch your mirrors on both sides
Being printed on a yellow sign blank with black text, it's assumed there is some hazard here, however, none is explicitly stated by this sign.

26 Shoulder zone ahead I still do not know what exactly a "Shoulder zone" is.

27 Fender bender? Drive damaged vehicles to shoulder
The icon of cars impacting each other is priceless, as is the use of the phrase "fender bender" on a white regulatory sign.

28 Low flying aircraft This sign doesn't make much sense until you see how low some of the planes actually get to the roadway.

29 Hotel pick-up drop-off; Valet zone drop off pick up
There are a couple of interesting points here. First is the use of blue-on-white and graphic skyline visual on the "hotel" sign. Next is the "valet zone" which again does not explicitly prohibit parking using the time honored phrase -- "No Parking". Finally, it's interesting that the "drop-off pick-up" and "pick up drop off" phrase is mixed and either does or doesn't use hyphens.

30 New traffic pattern If the traffic pattern changes, it changes. Jurisdictions around the country don't use this sign, so why use it here?

31 No edge lines Frequently, roads are unpainted during construction. However, there is no standard sign to convey such a message. Other more general signs would be appropriate.

32 Watch for traffic backups; Be prepared to stop
This sign should only read "be prepared to stop", the rest of this sign is non-standard language.

33 Injure / kill a worker; $7500, 15 years
What if it's an accident? What if it's the worker's fault entirely? $7500 also isn't very much of a fine for killing someone. Which of course raises the question, are those penalties for injuring or killing a worker? What if you kill the worker outside the work zone? And finally, what if you injured a worker slightly (i.e. caused a small cut or scrape)? Ambiguity in law and signage is dangerous for these reasons.

34 Complete left turn on red when traffic clears
This sign ambiguously implies that it's acceptable to turn left when the light is solid red.

35 Left turn allowed on red after stop
This sign appears at a different intersection than the previous sign, although this is likely to not be commonly found by motorists.

36 Skyway alternate route
This sign is included solely for its use of a "bridge" logo on it's sign blank. The phrase "Skyway" obviously is not usually seen either.

37 Congested area ahead Since there is no way this sign is always accurate, this sign is unwarranted. How is a driver supposed to react to the congested area?

38 60/89 = 0.674 (Fractional State Route)
They couldn't have just called it Route 0.674? These two roads are separate routes of course, despite that they share the same "route" symbol.

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