The DfT has announced the formation of a taskforce to tackle the ‘overuse of traffic signs’ while a consultation proposes a range of new measures to address the problem in the longer term.
The taskforce, which will be overseen by Sir Alan Duncan MP, is part of the government’s ‘ongoing work to make roads safer and navigation easier for motorists, scrap unnecessary red tape, and declutter roads’.
Research carried out by the DfT in 2013 to inform the Traffic Signs Policy Review indicated that the number of traffic signs has doubled in the last 20 years.
Patrick McLoughlin, transport secretary, said: “Useless traffic signs blight our landscape and can be a dangerous distraction to drivers.
“We are restoring common sense to Britain’s roads while ensuring drivers have the information they need to get about safely. We have already made much progress but Sir Alan Duncan’s new taskforce is an important step towards striking the right balance.”
The taskforce will make practical suggestions for removing clutter and will also look at ‘what can be done to change the culture within local authorities to consider the factors that lead to sign clutter’.
Sir Alan Duncan said: “The UK has erected thousands of road signs which are completely unnecessary, such as traffic light warning signs when you can see the lights themselves.
“We are going to look at how we might get rid of whole categories of unnecessary signs and improve the look of our roads and streets.”
The consultation will close on 6 October and the taskforce will present its recommendations to government by December 2015.