Ulster Unionist MLA Roy Beggs has welcomed the decision by Danny Kennedy, Minister for Regional Development, not to introduce bi-lingual traffic sign onto NI Roads.
The East Antrim MLA, who previously worked as the production Manager for Simms and Young Ltd, who made many of the signs on the NI Road Network – said:
“I welcome the common sense decision of the Ulster Unionist Regional Development Minster, Danny Kennedy, not to introduce bi-lingual signs onto NI roads.”
“14 years ago I managed the manufacture of aluminium roads signs using highly reflective specialised 3M HI material. At that time the signs were costing £100 per square metre. Doubling the amount of text on a road sign would almost double the size of the sign itself and more than doubling the cost of the supporting structure.
This week the Quarry Products Association reminded us all that last year’s 4 year NI Budget that was approved, it allocated only half the funds that are required to maintain our roads during 2012/13. It would therefore have been totally irrational to inflict more potholes on our roads to have the “pleasure” of bi-lingual signs.”
Working in the sign industry for 5 years, Roy Beggs also learnt of the characteristics of a good sign.
The Ulster Unionist MLA said, “Good directional signage should be clear and uncluttered. Given the short time available to view a road sign as you drive by, it is particularly important that information is presented as simply as possible. I believe that bi-lingual signs would also have contributed to increase risks on our roads.
It is one thing to add a line or two to departmental letterheads. It is an entirely different to start to introduce bi-lingual or even tri-lingual signs at the cost of additional potholes and increased road accidents.”