NCBI ROFL: Depiction of elderly and disabled people on road traffic signs: international comparison.

By ncbi rofl | February 15, 2010 7:00 pm

332651213_a0ca6caa80“The traffic sign for elderly or disabled people crossing the road was introduced in the United Kingdom in 1981 after a children’s competition.  It portrays a silhouette of a man with a flexed posture using a cane and leading a kyphotic woman… The same sign is also used for frail, disabled, or blind people, even though many of these people are not old. The sign implies that osteopaenic vertebral collapse and the need for mobility aids are to be expected with physical disability as well as with advancing age. Elderly people should not be stigmatised as being impaired or inevitably disabled. We had observed that some countries did not depict these groups in this way and wondered how road signs worldwide illustrate elderly people, as well as people with physical disabilities…We received 119 replies from British missions abroad and seven replies from British embassies, and we found five countries with signs by using an internet search… many countries (for example, Argentina, Brunei, and Macedonia) informed us that their country did not have a road sign warning of elderly, disabled, blind, or deaf people. Of the 118 countries for which we obtained information, 35 (30%) had a road traffic sign featuring one or more of the elderly, blind, deaf, or disabled categories.”

Read the full article here.


Image: flickr/Daniel Hughes

Related content:
Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: BMJ week.

  • V

    Yep, I write from Macedonia, and we don’t have such signs on the streets. Taken the fact that we have a rise in the numbers of elder population introducing such signs in areas specific to this group would improve the traffic issues resulting from this. No comment about signs for people with disabilities, nobody seems to pay enough attention.

  • Kirkland Adult Family Home

    Exactly what’s the difference between a nursing home and an assisted living center? Or are the terms interchangeable?


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