Michigan traffic signs - Stop Signs – The Most Iconic of All Signs

31st of January 2010 0

Stop Signs – The Most Iconic of All Signs

Of all the signs in the world, the stop sign is arguably one of the most recognizable. Originally invented in Michigan in 1915, as a way to prevent collisions at intersections, stop signs quickly grew in popularity and could soon be found posted at traffic junctions around the country. Originally a 24 inch by 24 inch white square with black letters, the sign has undergone significant changes in the last 90 plus years to arrive at its iconic current appearance. The only traffic sign to boast an octagonal shape, its current design allows it to be identified quickly and easily whether you are facing the writing or not.

The first change to the appearance of stop signs came shortly after its origination. In 1922, the American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHO) met to standardize the sign and chose the octagon as the new shape. No other traffic sign used in the United States had even been made in that shape, so the committee felt confident that the sign would be highly recognizable because of its unusual shape. They also felt that even a driver coming from the opposite direction would be able to identify the sign and recognize that the oncoming traffic would be stopping.

The next change that was made to stop signs involved the color. There was a competing organization, the National Conference on Street and Highway Safety (NCSHS) that advocated for a smaller red on yellow sign at the same time. The two groups eventually merged and became the Joint Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices. This is the organization that first designed the stop sign to have black lettering on a yellow background. The stop sign had this design from 1924 to 1954. In 1954 the standard colors for stop signs were changed to the current red with white lettering. It was believed that because stop signals used red as the color to signify “STOP” the stop sign should match.

Traffic signs are of tremendous importance in travel today, with the stop sign being king. With their bold red and white octagonal design, stop signs can now be found not only across North America, but also in Europe and Russia. There are also handheld versions of the stop sign available, which are used by crossing guards and police officers tasked with directing traffic. Whatever your specific stop sign need, Champion America has the best selection of stop signs available. Visit champion-america.com today and find exactly what you need to get traffic moving and stopping at your location.

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