We published a blog post last year asking what the brackets mean on Tasmanian road signs.
Here’s the link … https://www.enjoytasmania.com/2018/01/14/brackets-on-tasmanian-road-signs/
This post proved surprisingly popular. Other people were asking the same question.
This week we finally got around to asking the Transport Department why the brackets are there. Their prompt reply follows …
“Just over 30 years ago the State Government, in consultation with local councils, Tourism Tasmania and other interested parties such as the Royal Automobile Club of Tasmania, introduced the alphanumeric route code direction signing system on a large number of roads throughout Tasmania.
“The system adopted was based on a successful direction signing system existing in the United Kingdom since the early 1960s.
“Whilst it was always intended that the route code system would be used by motorists in association with suitable maps and/or other literature, in recent times the development of readily available inexpensive navigation devices has reduced the reliance of maps and other literature by a large number of motorists.
“Nevertheless, the route codes and destinations displayed on direction signs are invaluable to those motorists not navigating their journeys using GPS type devices and invariably provide reassurance that the driver is driving on their chosen route.
“With regards to your query regarding the brackets shown on some signs. When the signing system was first introduced destinations that were not on the particular route being travelled were shown in brackets together with the route code on which the destination was located.
“For example, if (Cradle Mountain C312) appeared on the sign it would mean that the driver would need to leave the route they are currently on and travel on a different coded route (C312) to reach Cradle Mountain.
“In the last 20 or so years the requirement to include the route code alongside the destination in brackets was considered unnecessary.
“The Reassurance sign shown on the left image below indicates that motorists are driving on Route 1 and that Deloraine, Westbury, Hagley and Carrick are ahead BUT are located off Route 1 along another route or uncoded road. The image on the right indicates the route being driven is the B54 and all the destinations shown are located on the route.”
So there you go. And you probably read it first on Enjoy Tasmania.