Plans to overhaul UK road signs announced

Plans to improve some road signs while removing unnecessary ones have been published by the Government.

They include a new sign warning lorry drivers of unsuitable roads to help prevent truckers slavishly following sat nav systems from getting stuck on the wrong road.

The plans also included allowing councils to use innovative measures such as pedestrian crossing "countdown" timers without needing Government approval.

Other changes include measures to improve cycle journeys by allowing journey times as well as distances to be added to signs on cycle routes.

Announcing the plans, transport minister Norman Baker said: "This is the most far-reaching review of traffic signs in 40 years.

"We are cutting pointless bureaucracy, giving councils more freedoms, and updating our signs for the modern era.

"Sometimes, the jungles of signs and tangles of white, red and yellow lines can leave people more confused than informed.

"This expensive clutter can also leave our roadsides looking unsightly and unwelcoming, so the changes I am announcing today will help councils cut the number of signs they need to use."

He went on: "We will also be allowing councils to use different ways to get information to drivers, encouraging them to question whether some signs are needed at all and publishing new advice for councils to help them reduce clutter on their roads.

"We want to make sure that there is consistency across the country while allowing local authorities greater discretion in how they use signs on their roads rather than demanding they get approval from Whitehall for signs they need to use regularly."