Traffic signs are the silent speakers on the road. Be it the person behind the wheel or a pedestrian, having a sound knowledge about road safety is absolutely necessary for all before hitting the roads.
Traffic signs give information about the road conditions ahead, provide instructions to be followed at the major crossroads or junctions, warn or guide drivers, and ensure proper functioning of road traffic. Being unaware of road signs is akin to throwing caution to the wind. It can lead to loss of life and property. A person is supposed to be familiar (get through a written or oral test) with the traffic signs and symbols before acquiring a driving license in India.
Road safety signs are primarily of three types:
1. Mandatory Signs: These signs are used to ensure free movement of traffic and make the road users cognizant of certain laws and regulations, restrictions and prohibitions. Violation of these signs is an offence, as per law.
2. Cautionary Signs: These signs make the road users conscious of hazardous conditions on the road beforehand. The drivers, accordingly, take necessary actions to handle the situation.
3. Informatory Signs:These signs guide the road users about destinations, distance, alternative routes, and prominent locations like food joints, public toilets, nearby hospitals, etc.