You know those lit-up highway signs that typically tell you the estimated length of time it will take to travel on that highway or a bland reminder to keep your seatbelt buckled? Do you actually pay attention to what those highway signs are saying? Don't worry--I don't either unless I need to figure out how long it will take to get to work or something catches my eye. Many departments of transportation realize this, and spiced up some local road signs with eye-catching phrases that will *hopefully* encourage drivers to drive safely and follow our traffic laws. 1 ACT Driving Schools ranked our top 10 favorite highway signs and created this list so that you could enjoy them too!
#10: Blinkers are Cool
Humans have a seemingly inherent desire to be liked and be accepted into society, typically wanting to be considered "cool" by the in-group. This city tries to appeal to this desire, letting drivers know that it would be "cool" if they used their blinkers. Maybe the innocent high school freshman within us will remember to use their blinker so that the "popular" drivers think they're cool!
#9: Driving High
Before you can understand this highway sign, you need to understand its context. This sign is in Colorado, which (a) is the "Mile High" state because of its high altitude and (b) has legal marijuana, making the state even higher (bad joke, I know...but no one pays me to write jokes!) This sign in the mile-high, weed-high state tells people in a catchy slant rhyme to "plan a ride before you're high" as the driver goes higher up into the mountains to remind marijuana users to find a designated driver so as not to drive under the influence of marijuana. Hopefully, people are drawn in by the catchy rhyme tied to the word "high" and avoid driving while high!
#8: Laying on the Compliments
It's typically ALWAYS easy to convince someone to do something by attaching the task with a compliment--people tend to be more willing to do things for people who shower them with compliments. This highway sign compliments the driver by saying their seatbelt looks good on them, ideally making the driver want to keep wearing their seatbelt to continue looking good! Looking good is one of the most important things in life, a close second to safety. Might as well lump safety and good looks together to achieve results!
# 7: What's holding you back?
Like #8, this highway sign addresses wearing your seatbelt, but this one takes a different tactic. This one uses both an existential question AND a play on words to cleverly trick the driver into wearing their seatbelt (if all goes well). First, it asks the driver why they are not buckled, suggesting that there is some unknown factor holding them back from not using their seatbelt. Second, it uses a play on words--the question "what's holding you back?" not only asks some deep question, but refers to the seatbelt that the driver *should* be wearing to literally hold them back. The hope behind this sign is that the driver will chuckle, then buckle up because they realize that, both figuratively and literally, nothing is holding them back.
#6: Accentuating Safety
This Boston highway sign incorporates the stereotypical Boston accent with the stereotypical Boston attitude and directly tells drivers to use their blinkers. Rather than using a clever saying, it aims to create a sense of familiarity with the driver by using the beloved accent the Boston driver knows and loves and demands that the driver uses their blinker. Of course, a sign like this might be shocking to the Southern driver who is not used to road signs telling them what to do. As a Southerner myself, I can tell you that I found this sign to be quite hilarious, and would laugh and change lanes using my blinker the second I saw this sign.
#5: Accentuating the Weather
You're allowed to take points on me for using the same play-on-words two times in a row, don't worry. I just did it to accentuate the theme between highway signs #5 and 6 (okay, it appears that I have lost all sense of creativity, so just go with it). In the south, our highway signs tell us to stay off of the roads when the weather gets rough, but this sign from Boston again uses the familiar Boston accent to *hilariously* inform drivers that a storm is on the way. Maybe drivers are supposed to use this as a warning to stay off the roads--who knows? It seems like this sign's only purpose is to keep drivers informed, then let the drivers make their own decisions. Either way, this particular sign would cause me to stay off of the highway, simply because I could not stop laughing at the alleged size of the storm headed my way.
#4: Where the Sun Don't Shine
This Utah highway sign caused quite a stir with it's particular play-on-words, as some found it to be offensive. The sign demands that drivers stay out of their phone by saying that they should "get [their] heads out of [their] apps," a clever play on the phrase "get your head out of your *insert place where the sun don't shine*". Of course, many were offended by this sign, but I think it was hilarious and serves its purpose in ordering drivers to stay off of their phones!
#3: Dating Advice
Looking for some dating advice? Look no further than your Arizona highway signs! This helpful highway sign informs drivers they should pick designated drivers as their dates. Why? So they don't have to worry about how they're getting home after a night of drinking! The best dates are the ones that want to keep you safe and make sure you make good decisions. This is generally good life advice, reiterated by this highway sign to ensure that local drivers avoid driving under the influence. Instead, we should surround ourselves with people who don't drink and drive, and who will help us get home when we drink so we can avoid getting behind the wheel of our cars!
#2: Food for Thought
The great state of Arizona, back at it again with the hilarious highway signs! This sign compares drinking and driving to an edible combination: peas and guacamole. The only issue here is that peas and guacamole are a DISGUSTING combination...just like drinking and driving! This sign intends to point out how awful drinking and driving actually is. We should handle drinking and driving the same way we handle eating peas and guacamole--we avoid it AT ALL COSTS!
#1: Cats Don't Wear Seat Belts
Have you ever wondered why cats don't wear seat belts when they ride in cars? Well, the main reason is that cats aren't often in cars. The other reason is that they have nine lives, so it'll be okay if they die in a car crash or two (note: I know this is NOT true, but just go with it). Humans are not so lucky--if we die in a car crash, we don't get a do-over. The number one highway sign that we found is from Kentucky, and points this out to drivers everywhere. Unlike cats, we don't have nine lives and should buckle our seat belts to preserve that life. Not only is this funny, it also illustrates a very important point about our safety, and we should make sure to stay buckled up any time we are in a car to preserve the single life that we humans are granted.
If you feel like your city is lacking in the highway sign department after reading this list, contact your local department of transportation. But really, maybe all of our cities would benefit from these eye-catching, entertaining signs. Humans respond well to things we like, so maybe we'll be more likely to follow traffic laws and drive safely when these signs remind us in a funny way!
Either way, here's your friendly driving school reminder to ALWAYS follow traffic laws and drive safely and defensively for the safety of yourself and the drivers around you. Don't worry though--if you broke a traffic law by mistake (and we all do), we're here to help you with that ticket. If you have a traffic ticket, points on your license, or simply want a refresher on your Georgia driving laws (and an insurance reduction!), give us a call at (770) 274-4223, shoot us a text at (678) 541-8538, or go to our website here for more information. We're always more than happy to assist you with anything.