Aug 23, 2019

Stop Signs

Stop signs are the only octagonal (eight-sided) road signs. They are like that because the government wants them to be easily distinguished from other road signs, even when viewed from the back.

The first stop signs appeared in 1915. At the time, they were square with a white background. “STOP” was written in a black font. The sign worked until more cars began to crowd the roads during the 1920s.

The American Association of State Highway Officials came up with a new eight-sided 'STOP' sign that drivers could easily recognize, even if they did not understand or could not see what was written on it.

The old eight-sided stop signs had yellow backgrounds with black lettering and outlines. The background became red with white lettering during 1954. They changed to a red background, because traffic lights were using red to mean 'STOP'.

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