After several years at the wheel, it is common to forget some road signs, especially if you always follow the same route. What is less normal is that there are traffic signs that are not even studied in driving schools, since they are not part of the agenda because they are not official.
Specifically, on Spanish roads this number rises to 125 traffic signs. And it is that they are not recognized by any official guide and therefore are unknown by practically all drivers.
As reported by the association in defense of road safety and mobility (Afasemetra), the signs that appear in the General Traffic Regulations, approved by the Ministry of the Presidency of the Government of Spain through Royal Decree 1423/2003 (specifically in the Section 4 Of the vertical traffic signs of Chapter VI and its Annex I) and those of the Official Catalog of Vertical Signs “are not the same”, as stated by the president of the association, Francisco Cano.
This Regulation sets out the shapes, dimensions and colors of vertical signage, and cites two fundamental documents for manufacturers such as the Highway Standard 8.1-IC Vertical signage (revised in 2014), and the Catalog of vertical traffic signs at volumes. I and II.
The latter dates from 1992 and “although it has been revised in different years, it has not been published, since it implies the change of the General Traffic Regulations”, adds Cano.
Signals that are not published in the Official Catalog
In this way, this situation affects 125 new signs and posters and another 20 canceled signs. The Official Catalog has about 400 vertical signs and posters. All this causes insecurity for all the agents involved.
Mainly for drivers who, depending on the municipality in which they are, can see different signs for the same purpose, generating confusion, a decrease in the credibility of the signage and, in general, a very dangerous situation with respect to Safety. Vial
It also happens that there are signals that appear in drafts of the Catalog that Fomento has been updating in 2015 and 2018, the use of which “may finally be an error, because the signal can be modified from one draft to another, and from them to the version that in a future is published, “says Cano.
For road sign manufacturers, it is essential to have clear and unambiguous guidelines for what the signs should look like when manufacturing. “18 years have passed since the last modification of the regulation, in which we have been manufacturing new models of signals that are not covered by any national legislation, as would be desirable,” says the president of Afasemetra.
In addition, the manufacturers also complain that they are not informed of new signs “of which we still do not know the code number, but that can already be seen on the roads”, such as the low emission zone, dangerous section or the Highway 2 + 1 (OC 1/2021).
Signs that do not appear in the Regulations or in the Official Catalog
This problem affects those responsible for signaling the roads, whether municipal, provincial, regional or state since “when there is no official sign, they are forced to devise a new one and collect it in their own regulations in order to give it legality , or they use signals collected in drafts of the catalog “, explains the president of the association.
From Afasemetra they reiterate that it is “essential” to have clear and unequivocal guidelines on how the signs should be when manufacturing, urging the Administration to expedite the publication of the new Official Catalog of vertical traffic signs so that all sectors involved can use it.