Many different traffic signs are to be seen on the roads. They give advance information about road conditions ahead.

Road markings also give orders, warning or guidance to drivers or riders.

Learn the meaning of these signs and markings and look out for them when on the road. You will not then be surprised by a bend, a one-way street or a junction ahead. Good drivers and riders are prepared.

Most of the traffic signs and road markings are illustrated in this chapter.

Circular Road Sign
Circular signs give orders
Triangular Road Sign
Triangular signs give warnings
Rectangular Road Sign
Some rectangular signs give directions or information
Road Sign of other shapes
There are a few exceptions to the shape and colour rules. These give prominence to certain signs, for example, the octagonal 'Stop' sign and the inverted triangular 'Give way' sign.

Signs that give orders

Traffic signs that give orders are called 'Regulatory signs'. They include all signs which give notice of requirements, prohibitions or restrictions. They may be either mandatory or prohibitory.

Regulatory signs are usually circular in shape and may be supplemented by plates beneath them augmenting the message given by the sign.

Red Border Road Sign A prohibitory sign means that something must not be done. It usually has a red border.
Blue Road Sign A mandatory sign means that something must be done. It is usually blue in colour.

Signs that give warning

Warning Road Sign These signs give warning of hazards ahead. Most of them are triangular, with the apex at the top. They are sometimes supplemented by rectangular plates giving additional information as may be necessary.
Warning Road Sign A warning sign with supplementary plate

Signs that give information

Information Road Sign

These signs normally give road users information or guidance about the route and about places and facilities of particular value or interest. Most informatory signs are rectangular but signs giving route directions at a junction usually have one end pointed.

Advanced direction signs and direction signs normally have a blue background but on expressways these signs are gradually being replaced by green. When the route is temporary, they have a yellow background.

Road markings

Road Marking illustrationRoad markings are a special type of traffic signs which are marked on the surface of the road. Like traffic signs they can give orders, warning or information. Sometimes they are used with traffic signs.