Traffic Signs Exclusive to Australia

By Omid

While a lot of traffic signs in Australia are internationally adopted, there are a few which are specific only to Australia that you should know. You could see these signs while driving in the city or out of the city and into the outback. For example, some signs that you may not see in other countries are kangaroo and koala signs. Here are other signs that could be unfamiliar to you.

1. School zone speed limit sign.

A school zone sign marks the beginning of a school zone. It lets you know that you need to slow down as children are crossing the road. It includes information on the required speed limit and the times and days of operation. In other countries, you could only see a children's crossing sign.


2. Keep left sign.

 On Australian roads, drivers must drive on the left side of the road. This can be confusing for foreign drivers as they are used to driving on the right side. So you should keep this in mind if you are an overseas driver. You can only use the right lane if you are trying to overtake another car or you're making a turn to the right.

3. No U-turn sign.

As we've mentioned, Australians drive on the left side of the road. So even though it's quite the same as other country's sign at first look, it's not. If you look closely, it's flipped in the other direction. Remember to only make a U-turn if it is permitted and safe to do so. ALWAYS obey the road rules.

4. Uneven surface. 

This sign helps road users know that they are approaching a road where the surface is uneven. It could either be a change from concrete road to asphalt, or unpaved road. This change in road conditions could be dangerous if you're going at high speed. So be alert and slow down when needed to avoid accidents. 

5. Slippery sign. 

Aside from the standard slippery sign, you might have seen signs such as: when frosty, when wet, under snow, boggy when wet, and on bridge. These signs are used together with the 'slippery' sign as an added warning to drivers. It is helpful so drivers can prepare according to the possible road condition. 

6. Wrong way-go back. 

In most countries, you could only see a sign saying 'Wrong Way' or 'Do Not Enter-Wrong Way'. But in Australia, drivers are allowed to go back when they mistakenly took the wrong route. You should only reverse back if it's safe to do so.

7. Parking areas for electric-powered cars. 

We have this sign specific for electric-powered cars. And since there are only a few electric-powered cars in Australia, it is also expected to have a small number of charging areas. You may only park an electric-powered vehicle in this area. And as a note, it should be plugged into an external source of electricity. 

We've added a few below for the most common signs you'll see when driving on the outback.

Animal crossing sign. Driving through the outback is a completely different experience compared to the city. Tourists wanted to take a drive to the outback for a chance to see animals up close. And it is to be expected for animals to cross, or be on, the roads. 

You could see a lot of animal crossing signs in Australia. For example, kangaroos, emus, wombats, koalas, brumbies (wild horses), and camels. Some of these signs include how far the areas are which are known for animals crossing the roads. So always be alert when driving in the outback.

These traffic signs are intended to guide and warn road users of different traffic conditions. And this list is only a few of the many traffic signs you'll get to see when driving in Australia. Learn and follow these signs for safer driving.

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