NC Road Signs and Helpful Information
The eight-sided (or octagonal) sign is the stop sign. The word “STOP” is printed in white on a red background. The
octagonal shape is used for stop signs only. The stop sign is usually posted six to 50 feet from the intersection.
When you approach this sign, the law requires you to come to a FULL stop. Do not proceed to move again until you
are sure the way is clear. When a stop sign, stoplight, flashing light, or other traffic-control device requires a vehicle
to stop at an intersection, the driver must stop at the appropriately marked stop line. If there is no stop line or
marked crosswalk, the driver must stop before entering the intersection where he/she has a view of the intersecting
Rectangular and square–shaped signs, which are normally black and white or red and white, are also used to show
speed limits and other regulations. These signs will also have messages such as "NO U-TURN" or "KEEP RIGHT
EXCEPT TO PASS." Failure to obey these signs is unsafe as well as a violation of the traffic laws.
The handicapped parking sign indicates that a space is reserved for persons who qualify for a handicapped license
plate or a dashboard placard.
Warning and Caution Signs
The pennant–shaped yellow warning sign emphasizes, rather than replaces, the rectangular regulatory "DO NOT
PASS" sign. The pennant is located on the left side of the road and points to the beginning of the no-passing zone
(solid yellow line in your lane). Diamond–shaped signs are also caution or warning signs. They are normally black
on yellow, but when they are black on orange, they warn of conditions for construction or maintenance areas. When
you see one of these signs, drive with extra care. One of the most important caution signs is the "STOP AHEAD"
sign. It is placed far ahead of a stop sign when the driver’s view of the stop sign is blocked by a curve or other
Diamond–shaped caution or warning signs that are orange with black messages warn about construction or
A circular sign, with a black cross and the black letters "RR" on a yellow background, gives advance warning of a
railroad crossing. When you see this sign, slow down. Stop if necessary to be sure you can safely clear the
The five-sided (or pentagon) sign warns of a school zone or a school crossing. You should be especially watchful
for children in these areas. In many school zones, the speed limit is reduced during certain school hours.
Guide and Informational Signs
Guide/informational signs give directions, routes, distances and indicate services.
Interstate, U.S. and N.C. highways are numbered and marked.
Odd-numbered highways generally run north and south, and even-numbered highways generally run east and west.
NC Road Signs
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