Top purchases for 2014

A survey by online magazine, Signlink.co.uk, has revealed the items at the top of wish lists for sign makers in 2014. One of the most surprising results was that none of the respondents was considering buying a computer this year.

At the top of the list was a digital printer: 42% of those surveyed indicated that they were likely to purchase one this year. This desire to move into digital printing coincides with the fact that more sign makers are now expanding their portfolios, to offer a wider range of services. Advances in technology have made it more cost effective for them to carry out work such as vehicle wrapping, window graphics and point of sale.

Second on the wish list was a router, with 33%. This was followed by 16% who were looking to purchase a new car or van to use for delivering materials or as an additional marketing tool.

The survey was conducted online between Christmas 2013 and January 2014. It asked readers of the magazine what items they were hoping to buy for their business over the course of 2014.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company we are constantly evaluating our business to ensure we have the right tools to carry out our work to the highest quality.

New concept in LED Lighting

Wandlite have launched a new LED light model, which has the ability to offer 360 degree tube lighting. The product is waterproof, durable and long lasting.

In the past, there has been a tendency for LED manufacturers to focus on the capabilities of the light, rather than the design elements. However, with the new Wandlite, it remains visually attractive as well as practical. The LED tape has been spiral wound along the tube to better direct the light.

This new LED light is extremely energy efficient. It uses 12v or power, but only takes up 1.2 amps of energy per metre. It can be used where there is no direct electrical supply, including outdoor and temporary settings. In these cases, the light can be used with a rechargeable battery, solar panel, car battery or cigarette lighter.

The Wandlite is available in a range of lengths, from 800mm to 2000mm. They can be used to independently or a number of tubes can be connected together to create a longer length. It can also be produced in a range of colours to meet customer needs.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company we can offer a range of illuminated signs to suit the requirements of our customers.

Chinese Signs Cause Consternation in Canada

Fears are growing among English and French-speaking residents in Richmond, British Columbia, that the city will soon become one very large Chinatown. Canadians have called on the local government to prevent the city from losing its cultural identity, by ensuring that the spread of Chinese signs is brought to an end.

Fifty five-year-old Kerry Starchuk, a lifelong resident of Richmond, said: “Three years ago I started to see the signs [literally]. I went to Dairy Queen and outside there was a parking sign that had absolutely no English on it. I had no idea what it was trying to tell me.”

Ms Starchuk added that many Chinese-only street signs had been erected throughout the city. English and French signs, it seems, are on the decline in the city, whose official languages are English and French.

More Chinese signs appearing in Richmond should not surprise anyone. A recent census found that 50.2 per cent of the city’s population are ethnic Chinese. Business leaders in Richmond, however, are drumming up support for a new policy aimed at preserving the English and French languages in the city.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we feel that signage should appeal to everyone. In Richmond, that could mean the introduction of trilingual road and shop signs.

Road signs not understood by British motorists

Do motorists in Britain know when to stop? Do they know when to give way? When to look left? According to Confused.com, many British drivers do not know their left from their right when it comes to signage.

The research is shocking. Sixty one per cent of surveyed drivers had no idea what the sign for ‘no motor vehicles permitted’ meant. Fifty one per cent of respondents could not decipher the sign for getting into the correct lane on approach to a junction. Sixty seven per cent were baffled by ‘no waiting’ signs. Eighty three per cent perplexed by clearway signs and 93% bamboozled by ‘bicycles only’ signs.

Perhaps more worrying, 76 per cent of respondents were adamant that road signs could be dangerous, not because they constitute a collision risk, but because they are distracting. Remarkably, 43 per cent of motorists admitted to having been distracted by road signage while behind the wheel.

Defending confused motorists, Confused.com’s Gareth Kloet, said: “Our research suggests that many accidents are actually caused by redundant or perplexing road signs.”

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we agree that some road signs can be difficult to understand. But this is a problem that can be resolved by educating drivers, not removing important or useful signage

Fewer Road Signs – Tavistock Says Yes!

Following a public consultation, Devon County Council has agreed to reduce the number of road signs in Tavistock. The county council is expected to remove more than 50 road signs in the area.

The decision was made after a proposal to remove ‘repetitive’ road signs was endorsed by members of the public in Tavistock.

Councillor Debo Sellis, said: “We want to make the most of the town’s World Heritage Site status and this will start with the removal of signs to de-clutter the town centre.”

Ms Sellis noted that many signs in Tavistock were redundant. Citing one example, the councillor described how five signs spaced 180 metres apart indicated the presence of a roundabout.

According to Devon County Council, the response from the public consultation was definitive: 94 per cent of respondents were in favour of plans to remove unnecessary road signs from the streets of Tavistock.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we believe that less can be more. Excessive use of signage can be counter-productive, as motorists, pedestrians and shoppers tend to ignore repetitive signs. We make signs that stand out. Signs that convey a clear, concise message in a way that is easy to understand and notice at the first attempt”.

Bus Lane Signage To Cost Council Almost £500,000

According to the Liberal Democrat Group, Labour councillors in Sheffield have agreed to spend almost half a million pounds on changing bus lane signs in the city. Details of a Freedom of Information request reveal that Sheffield City Council wants to increase bus lane restrictions by a total of one hour a day.

Councillor Shaffaq Mohammed, who heads the Liberal Democrat Group in Sheffield, commented: “This latest news is yet more proof that Labour can’t be trusted with our money.

“It is absurd to spend nearly half a million pounds on changing bus lane signs whilst threatening to close community facilities like libraries and leisure centres.”

Councillor Mohammed added: “At a time when money is tight, the last thing Sheffield needs is Labour councillors in the Town Hall wasting our money on these kinds of ludicrous projects.”

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we prefer not to comment on political issues, but spending almost £500,000 on bus lane signs does seem excessive in the circumstances. We produce all kinds of signs for commercial and non-commercial customers, providing high-quality products that are designed to last in all conditions. We also aim to keep costs as low as possible for customers

Israeli Road Signs Warn of ‘Arabs with Firebombs’

A series of eye-catching road signs in Israel have succeeded in attracting the attention of passing motorists.

The striking red-and-yellow road signs depict a hooded individual who appears to be throwing some kind of incendiary device from an elevated position. Text below the red warning triangle reads, “Warning, drive quickly, Arabs throw firebombs in this area.” The throwing of rocks is also thought to be a problem.

Two peculiarities should immediately become clear to readers: the first is that the local council apparently thought it necessary to warn drivers of routine or habitual firebombing in the area and the second is that the official advice for motorists is to drive faster. How many road signs in the world explicitly encourage drivers to increase their speed? Firebombs or no firebombs, road safety campaigners ought to be outraged.

The signs have been installed on Road 55 between Ma’ale Shomron and Alfe Menashe in Samaria.

A spokesperson for Samaria Residents Council commented: “If the IDF cannot or will not deal with this, we have no option but to warn drivers of the situation via these signs.”

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we applaud Samaria Residents Council for conveying a serious message in such an attention-grabbing way. Some road signs simply cannot be ignored.

Motorists Confused by Basic Road Signage

The survey challenged 2,000 motorists to name or describe road signs. Twenty per cent of respondents failed to recognise the sign for the national speed limit, while 36 per cent could not identify the sign for no stopping.

Forty per cent of surveyed motorists did not know the sign for no motor vehicles (34 per cent assumed it excludes everything except motor vehicles).

The Co-operative’s Amy Kilmartin, said: “Most people think they drive better than other motorists, despite admitting to getting distracted behind the wheel, as well as not knowing what some of the most common road signs mean.”

Of course, not all signs are easy to understand. In Stoney Stanton, Leicestershire, motorists were no doubt alarmed by the appearance of a double-humped camel, or at least a depiction thereof, on a “Humps for 700 yards” sign. Similar changes have been made to road signs in other parts of the country and across Europe, but those responsible should not expect drivers to take much notice.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we always aim to produce signage that is easy to read and simple to recognise.

The Cost of Removing ‘Unnecessary’ Road Signs

Reports claim a council in England has reserved £40,000 to spend on removing superfluous road signs.

Derbyshire County Council intends to follow the government’s advice by liberating Derby from signage clutter. Unfortunately, the cost of achieving this goal in the Dales alone has been estimated at £40,000.

Last year, the British Government advised local authorities to remove unnecessary signs from the roadside. According to ministers, excessive road signs cause all manner of problems in the UK. Aside from distracting or confusing motorists, they challenge the character and aesthetic appeal of cities, towns and villages. The government won public favour when it pledged to remove signage clutter, but does such a step correlate with the cost-saving mindset of the Coalition?

Across the whole of Derbyshire, £70,000 has been set aside to remove unnecessary road signs. Labour has argued that local authorities ought to be spending their limited funds more wisely, perhaps by fixing potholes in the area.

Simon Spencer, deputy leader of Derbyshire County Council and cabinet member for highways and transport, argued that the real waste comes in testing and maintaining unnecessary signs.

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we support the removal of truly unnecessary signs, but only if the expense can be justified.

Road Signs Concealed in London Colney

A councilor in London Colney has expressed his concern after road signs in the area were covered with black bin bags.

Councillor Jacob Quagliozzi was notified of the incident by residents. On checking the signs himself, the councilor reported the problem to Hertfordshire County Council. After being informed that the bin bags had been removed from the signs, Councillor Quagliozzi inspected the area for a second time and found that bin liners were still covering up important road signs.

The councilor said: “The signs are there to be abided by it makes a mockery of having road signs if people just cover up ones that are inconvenient to them.”

The concealed signage warned drivers of lorries and other heavy goods vehicles from entering the village for any other purpose than loading.

St Albans Councillor, Chris White, added that a no entry sign required replacement. He said: “It is performing no useful function at all unless you know it is a ‘no entry’ sign.”

A spokesperson for Hertfordshire County Council insisted the sign was “perfectly visible and serviceable.”

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we recognise the importance of positioning and maintaining signage. A sign that is covered or left in a state of disrepair is as good as no sign at all.