Common Sign Shapes and What They Mean

We all pass traffic signs so often that we barely even register they’re there, other than to stop or yield almost unconsciously. Part of the reason why we can drive without thinking too deeply about what signs say is that the actual shapes of the signs hold meanings that are consistent throughout the entire United States. Each of the shapes creates a particular emotion in us, because we are so used to the meanings behind the shape. This can help drivers because it makes it easier for them to understand the sign’s message before they actually comprehend what the sign says in words.

If you want to learn more about the meanings behind some of the most common signs in Vermont, read on to see what each sign shape indicates. We think you’ll probably find some of the unconscious messaging surprising!

  • Octagon: This is probably the most important shape for signs because all of us know very well that it means “stop!” The classic stop sign is what comes to mind immediately, with its eye-catching red background and white letters. However, you can also use this shape to post security notices, telling unwanted visitors again to “stop” and get out of the area because it’s under surveillance, for example.
  • Triangle: The most common triangular sign is the yield sign, and the larger message of this shape is a warning that there is danger ahead and you should be aware while driving. Another popular sign might have something as simple as an exclamation point on a yellow background. Again, this is a less specific warning that drivers should be aware of their surroundings.
  • Circle/oval: These softer shapes are generally more informational than signs meant to direct traffic or alert drivers. The lack of sharp edges makes them easy on the eyes, and the messages are usually related to community, security or any friendly notices for viewers. Some might note a neighborhood watch association, or ask that you pick up after your dog, for instance.
  • Square/rectangle: These are a popular and classic sign shape, and because of this the type of messaging on them is more flexible. Though they can include many messages, they are often designated for regulatory or guide signs. They might delineate parking restrictions or entry areas, among other basic notices.

Now, when you’re gazing at signs in Vermont as you travel the highways and byways, you’ll have a better understanding of what they mean. And if you’re in the market for traffic signs for your construction site, highway or commercial area, you’ll need an excellent company to produce them for you. Worksafe Traffic Control Industries knows signs better than anyone in the state of Vermont. We can help you with any of your traffic control needs, from making signs to developing more advanced technological systems to control traffic. For over 25 years, Worksafe Traffic Control Industries has offered exceptional customer service and state-of-the-art technology throughout Vermont. Call today to find out more about what we can do for you!

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