Strange Octagonal Road Signs Vex Hamptons Motorists

Stop sign confusion in the Hamptons
Stop sign confusion in the Hamptons, Photo: Sandra Cunningham, Sebnem Ragiboglu/123RF

The Hamptons Police reported this week that they received a rash of anxious phone calls from motorists expressing confusion and uncertainty over the meaning of certain road signs that appear on local roads.

“We began getting calls toward the beginning of the summer season,” Hamptons Police spokesman Larry Hirsch says. “As the season has proceeded and the number of drivers has increased, the calls have become more frequent.”

According to Hirsch, the callers are uniformly perplexed about one particular sign.

“It’s a fairly distinctive red, octagonal sign. Across the front of the sign is the word ‘STOP’ in capital letters. We get a lot of calls about that one! Even our guys down at headquarters sometimes forget what that sign is supposed to mean.”

Hirsch notes that officers can tell how confused some motorists are by this particular type of sign—which often appears at street intersections—when they see the motorists slow down slightly as they approach such signs, clearly bewildered as to what the sign is instructing them to do.

“Some of them even slow down to about 15 miles per hour before proceeding past these signs. They must be really fogged by them!”

When asked how the police have responded to the widespread confusion, Hirsch pointed out the challenges facing officers in trying to educate the driving public.

“Look, are you suggesting we pull each and every uninformed driver over and explain all of the road signs to them? Do you know how long that would take?”

Hirsch says that the Hamptons Police will continue to monitor the situation with the red, octagonal signs, and he promised that the police would “take all appropriate actions when we see fit to do so.”

Read more tales from the Hamptons Police Blotter

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