A common category of signs is school area signs. These include informational, warning and symbolic type signage.
School signs are the most diverse in terms of format and design, but many of them mean essentially the same thing with a few different details. School signs can be in the shape of a square, rectangle, diamond, pentagon, triangle, and octagon.
“School Bus Stop Ahead” is pretty self-explanatory in meaning; this means that the yellow bus holding children will make a stop to either pick them up or drop them off. It also means that vehicles should switch lanes if they don’t want to be stuck behind the bus while students load or unload.
“No Parking Fire Lane” is located at schools, retail stores, commercial parking lots, secondary streets, etc. It warns drivers not to park there because if a fire occurs, the fire engine truck needs easy access to that area to put out a fire and tap into a fire hydrant.
Vehicles that park there regardless of the warning are ticket and towed away. This will happen whether there is a fire or not.
“No Parking Bus Stop” is a similar meaning to “Bus Stop Ahead. The only difference is that “No Parking Bus Stop” specifically says that no vehicle is allowed to park in the area that the bus is stopping at.
“Visitor Parking” is typically placed in the parking lot of a school near the front entrance. It is a consideration for parents or other visitors to have easy access to the building.
“One Hour Parking” typically means that the space is monitored by a meter maid. Vehicles may only park for one hour, and if they exceed that time limit they will be issued a fine.
“Parallel Parking Only” signs are usually in large cities where people park on the street or in narrow street areas in front of an educational facility, and can only do so by parallel parking. Though some people find parallel parking difficult, it allows for more driving space on the street.
“No Parking Bike Lane” indicates that the area next to the sidewalk is for pedestrians, not for parking. Cars parked in that area put pedestrians at risk of being hit by fast moving cars; for that reason parked vehicle will be ticketed and towed.
“No Parking Any Time” tells drivers that all vehicles are prohibited from stopping and leaving their vehicle in this area. Sometimes places only allow parking at certain times of day, but this sign disallows it completely.
“No Parking Loading Zone” is typically put in the back of building, especially near the cafeteria at schools. Cars are not allowed to park there because trucks use that space to deliver food for student lunches.
“20 MPH School Zone Ahead” informs operators of cars to slow down because children will be around and the speed limit will drop to 20 miles per hour. This sign is a large diamond, and later up the road will be speed limit sign indicating exactly where the speed limit changes.
“$ Fine” indicates that cars driving faster than the posted 20 miles per hour speed limit will be ticketed a certain amount. This amount will vary on area and whether or not children were present.
“End School Zone” indicated that cars can speed up to the normal speed limit because they are no longer in a school zone. This sign is usually placed several hundred yards away from the school.
A large yellow diamond with the image of two children on a teeter-totter indicates a playground up ahead. This is placed at parks or elementary schools, and tells drivers to slow down and drive with caution because of the present children.
“Drug Free Alcohol Free Tobacco Free School Zone” signs are usually placed at all public and private educational facilities grades P-12. It informs people that all drugs, tobacco products, and alcoholic beverages are strictly prohibited on the property.
Tom Selwick is a public safety representative for 25 years and has authored hundreds of articles relating to public safety and barricades. He has worked in public safety for years promoting safe transportation practices.