Traffic Signs (Amendment No. 2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996

Link to law: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/nisr/1996/392/made/data.htm?wrap=true
Published: 1996-08-27

Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland
1996 No. 392

ROAD TRAFFIC AND VEHICLES
Traffic Signs (Amendment No. 2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996

Made
27th August 1996

Coming into operation
13th October 1996

The Department of the Environment, in exercise of the powers conferred on it by Article 27 of the Road Traffic (Northern Ireland) Order 1981(1) and of every other power enabling it in that behalf, makes the following regulations:

Citation and commencement

1.  These regulations may be cited as the Traffic Signs (Amendment No. 2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996 and shall come into operation on 13th October 1996.

Amendments

2.  The Traffic Signs Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1979(2) shall be amended as follows—

(1) In regulation 4(1) (interpretation) insert—

(a)immediately after the definition of “Department” the following definition—

““dual carriageway road” means a road part of which consists of a central reservation to separate a carriageway to be used by vehicles proceeding in one direction from a carriageway to be used by vehicles proceeding in the opposite direction;”

(b)immediately after the definition of “major road” the following definition—

““motorway” means a road designated as a special road under Article 15 of the Roads (Northern Ireland) Order 1993(3) or under any statutory provision repealed by that Order and includes trunk roads to which Part III of that Order applies by virtue of paragraph 4 of Schedule 9 to that Order;”

(2) For paragraph (3) of regulation 13 substitute the following paragraphs—

“(3) Light signals used to control vehicular traffic entering or proceeding along a motorway or dual carriageway road shall be—

(a)of the size, colour and type shown in diagram 6032.1 when placed beside the carriageway or in diagram 6031.1 when mounted on a gantry or other structure over the carriageway; and

(b)operated as prescribed in paragraph (3A).

(3A) The operating requirements for the light signals prescribed in paragraph (3) are that—

(a)each lamp shall show an intermittent red light at a rate of flashing of not less than 60 nor more than 90 flashes per minute, and in such a manner that the lights of one vertical pair are always shown when the lights of the other vertical pair are not shown; and

(b)the red cross or the white symbol shown in diagram 6031.1 or 6032.1 shall be illuminated by a steady light when the red lights are flashing.”.

(3) For regulation 19 substitute the following regulation—

“Warning signals for motorways and dual carriageway roads

19.—(1) A traffic sign for conveying the warning specified in paragraph (2) to vehicular traffic on a motorway or a dual carriageway road shall be a light signal of the size, colour and type shown in diagram 6023.

(2) The warning conveyed by the light signal shall be that—

(a)there is a hazard ahead on the motorway or dual carriageway road; and

(b)drivers should drive at a speed which does not exceed 30 miles per hour until they are certain that the hazard has been passed or removed.

(3) When the light signal specified in this regulation is operated, each lamp shall show an intermittent amber light at a rate of flashing of not less than 60 nor more than 90 flashes per minute and in such a manner that one light is always shown when the other light is not shown.”.

(4) For regulation 20 substitute the following regulation—

“Matrix signs for motorways and dual carriageway roads

20.—(1) In this regulation “matrix sign” means a sign shown in a diagram in head A of Part VII of Schedule 1 for conveying to traffic on motorways and dual carriageway roads information or a warning, requirement, restriction, prohibition or speed limit—

(a)relating to or arising out of temporary hazardous conditions on or near the motorway or dual carriageway road; and

(b)specified under a diagram contained in head A of Part VII of that Schedule.

(2) A matrix sign shall be a light signal and shall be of the size, colour and type specified in this regulation and shown in a diagram in head A of Part VII of Schedule 1.

(3) Where a matrix sign is placed beside the carriageway of a road the warning, requirement, restriction, prohibition or speed limit conveyed by the sign shall apply to all vehicular traffic facing that sign and proceeding along the carriageway beside which the sign is placed.

(4) For the purposes of this regulation a sign which is mounted on a post situated beside the carriageway but is projected over it or part of it shall be treated as a sign placed beside the carriageway of that road.

(5) Where a matrix sign mounted on a gantry or other structure is so placed that a traffic lane of the carriageway passes directly beneath it, the warning, requirement, restriction, prohibition or speed limit conveyed by the sign shall apply only to vehicular traffic facing that sign and proceeding along the traffic lane passing directly beneath it.

(6) The legend or symbol in a matrix sign shall be displayed by means of white or off-white light and except in the case of the sign shown in diagram 6012 shall be accompanied by the four lamps specified in paragraphs (7) or (8).

(7) In the case of the sign shown in diagrams 6006.2, 6008.1 and 6009.3 the four lamps mentioned in paragraph (6) shall be of the size, colour and type shown in diagrams 6031.1 and 6032.2 (referred to in regulation 13(3)) and operated in accordance with the requirements of regulation 13(3A).

(8) In the case of the sign shown in diagrams 6001, 6002, 6003, 6006, 6006.1, 6008, 6009, 6009.1, 6009.2 and 6011 the four lamps mentioned in paragraph (6)—

(a)shall be of the size, colour and type shown in diagram 6022 when placed beside the carriageway or in diagram 6021 when mounted on a gantry or other structure over the carriageway; and

(b)each lamp shall show an intermittent amber light at a rate of flashing of not less than 60 nor more than 90 flashes per minute and in such a manner that one horizontal pair of lights is always shown when the lights of the other horizontal pair of lights are not shown.”.

(5) After regulation 21 insert the following regulations—

“Flashing beacons

22.—(1) Beacons showing an intermittent light may be used for conveying the warning that drivers of vehicles should take special care and shall be of the size, colour and type described in paragraph (2).

(2) (i) The colour of the light shown by the said beacon shall be blue.
(ii)The height of the centre of the lenses of each such beacon from the surface of the carriageway in the immediate vicinity shall be not less than 800 nor more than 1500 millimetres.

(iii)The rate of flashing shall be not less than 120 nor more than 150 flashes per minute and the period between flashes shall not exceed ¼ of a second.

Variable message signs

23.  The variable message signs referred to in regulation 24 may be used and shall have effect for the purpose of the control of traffic both vehicular and pedestrian and with respect of the use of vehicles on roads.

24.—(1) A device may display at different times—

(a)a sign shown in a diagram in Parts I, II, IIA, VI or VII of Schedule 1;

(b)a legend of a type shown in Part IX of Schedule 1 in accordance with the provisions of that Schedule; or

(c)a blank grey or a blank black face;

and in these regulations such a device is referred to as a “variable message sign”.

(2) A variable message sign shall be of a size appropriate to display the messages referred to in sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) of paragraph (1), having regard to the normal speed of the traffic on the road on or near which the sign is situated.

(3) If the construction or method of operation of a variable message sign prevents the sign from being displayed in the colours shown for it in the appropriate diagram referred to in sub-paragraph (a) of paragraph (1), a black legend or symbol on a white or yellow background may be displayed as a white, off-white or yellow legend or symbol on a dark background, provided that any red triangle or red circle forming part of the sign is retained.

(4) When a variable message sign displays the sign shown in diagram 670, any sign shown in a diagram in Part VII of Schedule 1 other than diagram 6012, or a legend of the type shown in Part IX of Schedule 1, it may also display four lamps of the size, colour and type specified in paragraph (7) of regulation 20, save that the rate of flashing shall be not less than 60 nor more than 150 flashes per minute and the distance between the lamps shall be varied to accord with the overall size of the variable message sign.

(5) The display of a blank black or grey face on a variable message sign accompanied by four flashing lamps of the kind mentioned in paragraph (4) shall indicate to drivers that they should take special care.”.

(6) In Part IIA of Schedule 1—

(i)renumber diagram 812.5 as diagram 812.7;

(ii)after diagram 812.4 insert the following diagram and the words specified in or under it—

“With-flow cycle lane ahead.812.5


(iii)after diagram 828.2 insert the following diagram and the words specified in or under it—

“831.1


(iv)after diagram 858.2 insert the following diagrams and the words specified in or under them—

“Start of temporary diversion route.Permitted variants: The direction of the arrow may be reversed or it may be replaced by the word “ends” or a distance in yards, up to 400 yards, to the nearest 10 yards.858.3

Direction of temporary diversion route from junction ahead.Permitted variants: The arrow may be reversed and the position of the arrow and legend altered to accord with the circumstances.858.4

Direction of temporary diversion route.Permitted variant: The direction in which the sign points may be reversed.858.5

Temporary plates for use with direction signs to show route(s) for diverted traffic.Permitted variant: The plates may be coloured black when affixed to a yellow background.858.6

Junction ahead leading to a temporary diversion route, the direction along which is indicated by a symbol shown in diagram 858.6.Permitted variants: The words “M1 North” may be varied to accord with the circumstances. The diversion symbol may be varied to any of those shown in diagram 858.6 or to a route number or numbers in which case the legend may be on an extra line. “follow” may be omitted when route numbers are shown.858.7


(7) In Part VII of Schedule 1—

(i)for head A substitute the following head—

“A Size, colour and type of matrix signs for motorways and dual carriageway roads

Temporary maximum speed advised.Permitted variants: The numerals may be varied.6001

Vehicular traffic must move to the next lane on the right. Permitted variant: The arrow may point downwards to the left.6002

Vehicular traffic must leave at next junction. Permitted variant: The symbol may be reversed.6003

Closure of one lane of a three lane carriageway ahead.Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lanes are open or closed to traffic may be varied.6006

Closure of two lanes of a three lane carriageway ahead. Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lanes are open or closed to traffic may be varied.6006.1

Closure of all lanes of a three lane carriageway ahead.6006.2

Closure of right hand lane of a two lane carriageway ahead. Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lane is open or closed to traffic may be varied.6008

Closure of both lanes of a two lane carriageway ahead.6008.1

Closure of one lane of a four lane carriageway ahead. Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lanes are open or closed to traffic may be varied.6009

Closure of two lanes of a four lane carriageway ahead. Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lanes are open or closed to traffic may be varied.6009.1

Closure of three lanes of a four lane carriageway ahead. Permitted variant: The symbols indicating which lanes are open or closed to traffic may be varied.6009.2

Closure of all lanes of a four lane carriageway ahead.6009.3

Risk of fog ahead.6011

End of temporary restrictions indicated by previous signs.6012

Gantry mounted signal with flashing amber lamps for displaying the signs shown in diagrams 6001, 6002, 6003 or 6011.Permitted variants: “50” may be varied to any of the symbols or legends shown in the diagrams mentioned above.6021

Post mounted signal with flashing amber lamps for displaying the signs shown in diagrams 6001, 6003, 6006, 6006.1, 6008, 6009, 6009.1, 6009.2 or 6011.Permitted variants: “50” may be varied to any of the symbols or legends shown in the diagrams mentioned above.6022


(ii)for head B substitute the following head—

“B Diagrams showing light signals for motorways and dual carriageway roads

Light signal conveying the warning prescribed in regulation 19(2).6023

Light signals for conveying the requirements prescribed in regulation 16(4).Permitted variants: A sign shown in diagram 6002.2, 6008.1 or 6009.3 may be substituted for the red cross symbol.6031.1

Light signals for conveying the requirements prescribed in regulation 16(4).Permitted variants: The diagram 6008.1 symbol may be varied to the symbol shown in diagram 6006.2 or 6009.3.6032.1


(iii)delete head D.

(8) After Part VIII in Schedule 1 insert the following part—

“PART IX — Legends for use on variable message signs

ASigns automatically activated by vehicular traffic

1.  One of the following legends may be displayed on a sign which is activated automatically by a particular type of vehicle approaching the equipment which controls the sign—

(a)“OVERHEIGHT VEHICLE DIVERT” with—

(i)an arrow;

(ii)“USE” and a route number; or

(iii)“FOLLOW” and a plate shown in diagram 858.6.

(b)“OVERHEIGHT VEHICLE TURN BACK”;

(c)“HIGH VEHICLE USE MIDDLE OF ROAD”; or

(d)“ONCOMING VEHICLE IN MIDDLE OF ROAD”.

B Legends giving warnings of temporary hazards and other information

2.  A legend shown in an item in column (2) of the Table may be used in conjunction with one of the legends shown in any item in column (3). In addition one of the legends shown in any item in column (4) may also be displayed. The information indicated in square brackets may be omitted. The number of a motorway junction should be shown on the sign in the format of the letter “J” followed by the number of the junction.

TABLE

Item
Basic Message
Location (optional — for use with any item in column (2))
Additional information (optional — for use with any appropriate combinations of items in columns (2) and (3))

(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)

1.
“ACCIDENT”
“INNER LANE[S]”, “LANE[S]” and a lane number or numbers, “ON SLIP ROAD” or “OUTER LANE[S]”
“USE HARD SHOULDER”, “CAUTION” or “WAIT”

2.
“AIRPORT CLOSED”

3.
“[STRAY] ANIMALS”

4.
“BRIDGE CLOSED”

5.
“CARS ONLY”

6.
“CONGESTION”
“AT NEXT JCT”, “FOR” and a number “MILES” or a junction number “TO” and a junction number
“STAY IN LANE”

7.
“CONTRA FLOW”

“NARROW LANES”

8.
“DEBRIS”
“[ON] MOTORWAY”

9.
“[LONG] DELAYS”
“AT BRIDGE”, “ON” and a route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate or a route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate and “AHEAD”

10.
“EXIT CLOSED”

11.
“NO EXIT” and a junction number

12.
“FLOODS”
A number and “MILES AHEAD”

[“CARS”, “HGV'S”, “CARAVANS” or “M' CYCLES”] “FOLLOW” and a plate shown in diagram 858.6 or a place name

13.
“[SLOW—] FOG [PATCHES]”
“AFTER” and a place name, the name of a bridge or tunnel, or a junction name or number
[“CARS”, “HGV'S”, “CARAVANS” or “M'CYCLES”] “USE” and a route number or numbers, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate

14.
[“SLOW—”] “ICE” or “RAIN”

“USE LIGHTS”

15.
“DO NOT USE HARD SHOULDER”

16.
“INCIDENT”

17.
“LANE[S]” and a lane number or numbers and “CLOSED”

18.
“[OUTER] LANE[S] CLOSED [AHEAD]”

19.
“LANE CLOSURE”

20.
“STAY IN LANE”

“SORRY FOR ANY DELAY”

21.
“LARGE LOAD”

22.
“SHED LOAD”

“CHEMICALS”, “OIL SPILL” or “SKID RISK”

23.
“WIDE LOAD”

24.
“MOTORWAY” or a route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate and “CLOSED”

25.
“OBSTRUCTION”

26.
“PEDESTRIANS”

“SLOW DOWN”

27.
“NO PHONES”

“AWAIT POLICE”

28.
“[SPRAY—] POOR VISIBILITY”
“ON BRIDGE”

29. 30.
“QUEUE” “REJOIN MAIN CARRIAGEWAY”
“AHEAD”
[“CARS”, “HGV'S”, “CARAVANS” or “M'CYCLES”] and “LEAVE AT NEXT JCT” or “LEAVE AT” and a junction name or number

31.
“[SETTING OUT OF] ROAD WORKS”

“KEEP LEFT” or “KEEP RIGHT”

32.
“SKID RISK”

33.
“[SLOW—] SNOW”
“AT” and a place name, the name of a bridge or tunnel, or a junction name or number
A number and “HR DELAYS”

34.
“[BROKEN DOWN] VEHICLE [ON FIRE]”

35.
“STRANDED VEHICLE”

36.
“WEIGHT CHECK”

37.
“STRONG WINDS”
A route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate
“[LONG] DELAYS”

C Information on diversion routes

3.  One of the legends shown in any item in column (3) of the Table may be used in conjunction with a legend shown in any item in column (2). The information indicated in square brackets may be omitted. The number of a motorway junction should be shown on the sign in the format of the letter “J” followed by the number of the junction.

TABLE

Item
Basic Message
Alternative route information (optional — for use with any item in column (2))

(1)
(2)
(3)

1.
A route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate, or a junction name or number or a road name or street name and the word “CLOSED”
“[ALTERNATIVE ROUTE] USE” and a route number or numbers, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate

2.
“CLOSED” “ROAD CLOSED”
“[ALTERNATIVE ROUTE] FOLLOW” and a plate shown in diagram 858.6 or a place name

3.
[Name] “BRIDGE CLOSED”
“FOR” and a place name “USE” and a route number or numbers, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate

4.
[Name] “TUNNEL CLOSED”
“FOR” and a place name “FOLLOW” and a plate shown in diagram 858.6 or another place name

5.
“ROAD WORKS”
“LEAVE AT NEXT JCT” or “LEAVE AT” and a junction name or number

6.
“ALL TRAFFIC”
“LEAVE” and a route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate, “USE” and a route number, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate, “USE LANE[S]” and a lane number or numbers

7.
“DIVERSION [AHEAD]”
“AT” and a junction name or number, “AT NEXT JCT” or “LEAVE MOTORWAY”

8.
“HGV'S”
“DIVERSION VIA” and a route number or numbers, including abbreviated compass point directions where appropriate

9.
“DOCKS” and an abbreviated compass point direction where appropriate

10.
“DIVERTED TRAFFIC [, ALL ROUTES]”

D Other legends

4.  The following legends may also be displayed on a variable message sign—

(a)“SIGNAL UNDER TEST”

(b)“SIGN UNDER TEST”

In either case the message may be used with a pattern displayed which has no particular meaning but which is designed to test the functioning of the sign or signal.”.

Sealed with the Official Seal of the Department of the Environment on 27th August 1996.

L.S.
J. Carlisle
Assistant Secretary

Explanatory Note

(This note is not part of the Regulations.)

These regulations further amend the Traffic Signs Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1979 by—
(a)inserting definitions for dual carriageway road and motorway (regulation 2(i));
(b)substituting new diagrams for the light signals used to control vehicular traffic entering or proceeding along a motorway or dual carriageway road (regulation 2(2) and (7)(ii));
(c)extending the use of the flashing amber warning signal to vehicular traffic on dual carriageway roads (regulation 2(3) and (7)(ii));
(d)providing for the use of matrix signs for conveying to traffic on motorways and dual carriageway roads information or a warning, requirement, restriction, prohibition or speed limit relating to or arising out of temporary hazardous conditions on or near the motorway or road (regulation 2(4) and (7)(i));
(e)permitting the use of blue flashing beacons to warn drivers of vehicles to take special care (regulation 2(5));
(f)specifying the requirements for a wide range of variable message signs. Variable message signs are devices capable of displaying different signs or legends or a blank face at different times and may be used for the control of traffic both vehicular and pedestrian and with respect to the use of vehicles on roads (regulation 2(5) and (8)); and
(g)prescribing new signs and plates for indicating the existence of a speed check area manned by police, for indicating diversionary routes, and for indicating the imminent commencement of a cycle lane (regulation 2(6)).


(1)
S.I. 1981/154 (N.I. 1); see Article 2(2) for the definition of “Department”

(2)
S.R. 1979 No. 386; relevant amending rules are S.R. 1982 No. 389, S.R. 1984 No. 58, S.R. 1985 No. 24, S.R. 1986 No. 173, S.R. 1990 No. 122, S.R. 1991 No. 480, S.R. 1992 No. 133, S.R. 1994 No. 201, S.R. 1994 No. 454 and S.R. 1995 No. 232

(3)
S.I. 1993/3160 (N.I. 15)
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