confusing road signs

John Chan from Singapore writes:

I need your help in answering the following:

  • Push your bicycles across the underpass (i.e. a short tunnel under an expressway).

Does this mean that you push your bicycle through the underpass across the expressway? Why not write it simply this way instead:

  • Push your bicycles through the underpass

Thank you very much.


Roger Woodham replies:

You are quite right, John. Logically it should be: Push, do not ride, your bicycles through the underpass, if the underpass crosses a road beneath the expressway or motorway. I understand that the rationale for this instruction is that it would be too dangerous to pedestrians if cyclists rode their bikes through the underpass.

Road signs can sometimes be confusing, often because they are too concise. Can you work out the intended meaning in the following:


Does this mean:

  • (a) drive carefully because when you go round the next bend, you will see cattle crossing the road in front of you?
  • (b) drive carefully because when you go round the next bend, you will come to the place where cattle sometimes cross the road?


Does this mean?

  • (a) that there are some amusements ahead which will enable you to take a break from driving and take a rest?
  • (b) that the road ahead is blocked and you will have to take an alternative route?

Public Conveniences

100 yds

Does this mean that:

  • (a) you will find all the facilities you need, banks, shops, restaurant etc approximately one hundred metres to you left?
  • (b) there are public toilets approximately one hundred
    metres to your left?




Does this mean:

  • (a) you must do all you can to prevent children crossing the road ahead?
  • (b) you must stop because there are children crossing the road in front of you?


Does this mean that:

  • (a) the road ahead is open and in a good state of repair?
  • (b) repairs are being carried out on the road ahead?


If you want to try some examples look at our in the You, Me and Us part of our website. And scroll down to find the answers to the questions above:







In all cases, the answer is (b)!