Traffic Signs

Will more traffic signs help?
 

Traffic signs are an important part of the driver information system on streets and highways. Signs provide drivers with the information which makes the driving tasks easier and safer. This fact leads some people to believe that whenever more signs are put up, the streets are safer.

Traffic Engineers are frequently asked to place signs which confirm rules of the road or warn drivers of the obvious. This potential for the increase in unnecessary traffic signs has led to the establishment of nationwide standardized traffic signs and criteria for the installation of signs. Some of the most requested traffic signs are discussed below.

   
Speed Limit Signs: Alleys And Residential Streets
  All drivers are expected to know the basic speed limits of 15 miles per hour in alleys and 30 miles per hour on residential streets in Amarillo. Drivers realize when they are entering these areas and should adjust their speed accordingly. Studies have shown that posting speed limit signs as "reminders" does not deter speeding drivers.
   
"Children At Play" Signs
 

Children playing is a condition drivers should reasonably expect to encounter in any residential neighborhood. Since children live on nearly every residential block, there would have to be signs on each street. Blocks with no signs might imply that children won’t be playing there, so caution is unnecessary.

Federal standards reject Children at Play sighs because they are a direct and open suggestion that playing in the street is acceptable behavior. Worst of all, the signs mislead parents and children to believe they have an added measure of protection which the signs cannot provide.

   
"No Parking" Signs
 

"No Parking" signs are placed most often for traffic safety or movement. They alert drivers to areas where parking a vehicle may be hazardous or impede traffic flow.

"No Parking" signs are not ordinarily installed at crosswalks, intersections, moving traffic lanes, or fire hydrants. All drivers should know that parking in these areas is prohibited.

When considering traffic sign placement, traffic engineers must determine which signs are necessary based upon roadway conditions. The placement of too many signs or signs which are unnecessary teaches drivers to ignore all traffic control devices. Traffic signs uniformly and consistently placed fulfill a vital role in traffic safety.

If you have any questions about traffic sign placement, please call the Traffic Engineering Department at (806)378-6294 or email us. You may also visit the department office in Room 204 of City Hall at 509 E. 7th Ave. You may also write us at P.O. Box 1971, Amarillo, Texas, 79105-1971.