I wanna know: Why are there double signs? - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

I wanna know: Why are there double signs?

Why would the state highway department put up the same sign twice, right next to each other?

Those who notice the signs are curious.

"I wanna know why we're seeing double with these road signs that they're putting up. They look the exact same," said Todd Taylor, a concerned citizen.

Taylor isn't the only one who noticed twin green highway signs in various spots along interstate or state highway and wondered if money is being wasted. 

"From a taxpayer standpoint, I want to know the reasoning why these signs are new and improved compared to the old, what was wrong with the old signs," said Taylor.

Steve Jiles with the state highway department said when you "see double," it's a new sign put up to replace an old sign that doesn't reflect as well.

"Reflectivity standards have changed over the years and course the old signs have degraded. The reflectivity they had when they were first installed is no longer present. A lot of them even had letters off of them," said Jiles.

Along Highway 165 at I-10, there's a new sign with the old sign face down. Jiles said old signs could scratch up new signs in the contractor's truck.

"So, generally the contractor only has one trailer, so generally he will unload his trailer completely of new signs before he begins picking up old signs," said Jiles.

If the information on two signs conflicted, say different speed limits, Jiles said they would remove the old one immediately for safety. 

Also, the signs are designed to break away if a car hits them because it's safer for the people in the car. Jiles said even old signs that look okay could be rusty and corroded and fail to break away.

"If you look at the size of these I beams that support these things, and can imagine that I beam going directly into concrete, it would be like a huge oak tree sitting there as far as the forgivingness of being struck. Generally the side mounted guide signs would ordinarily shear at ground level and roll over the vehicle, probably not even damage the windshield," said Jiles.

Jiles said good, visible signs are especially important for visitors unfamiliar with the area,  especially at night. State officials said there are several different sign projects underway in our area.

If you have something you want to know call 337-437-7570 or send an e-mail to tschmidt@kplctv.com or message Theresa Schmidt Kplc on Facebook.

Copyright 2013 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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