Drivers encouraged to report obscured road signs

Drivers should be reporting any road signs that are hidden or obscured, a leading road safety association has stated.

GEM Motoring Assist has said that hidden road signs can be a nuisance for drivers, while also potentially being misleading and dangerous at times.

The call arrives at the time of year when roadside vegetation is at its thickest and has the potential to obscure or entirely cover road signs.

Neil Worth, GEM chief executive, said: “Road signs provide vital information for drivers, who will plan their speeds and actions based either wholly or in part on what the signs tell them.

“If you can’t see a sign, then your ability to make safe decisions is compromised, especially if you’re on unfamiliar roads. Nourished by recent rain, vegetation at this time of year tends to be at its most prolific, meaning more and more signs risk being partially or completely covered. It’s a growing menace that puts road users at risk.

“We can help highways authorities and local councils to know where the problems are by using the reporting facilities they provide. It is vital for road safety that trees, bushes and branches are not allowed to obscure important information, and that everyone using the roads has a clear view of speed limit and other signs.”

A survey conducted last year by Transport Focus found that nearly a third of drivers had missed a motorway exit, either because of a concealed or badly located sign.

The association is encouraging drivers to report any covered signs to the appropriate local authority and to remember that a speed limit of 30mph usually applied to all traffic on all roads with street lighting.

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