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Can fonts stop car crashes?

February 19, 2013

Image of warning sign

The words “safest” and “font” are usually only combined when discussing digital platforms, standards or devices. So the article “Can fonts stop car crashes?” in the Independent a while ago caught my eye.

Of course, in the best traditions of tabloid media the title is provocatively rhetorical. However, as a Designer who’s worked extensively on making road signs easier to read and understand, I can personally attest to the research and expertise that goes into ensuring UK road signs are among the easiest to practicably observe and assimilate.

Moreover, if local authorities and sign manufacturers took greater care to follow the (admittedly complex) design rules more precisely, we’d have more consistency on our roads. But in attempting to address the question, as with anything that’s designed and engineered, it’s only as safe as its weakest component.

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