IDOT brings halt to Hanover Park stop sign humor

The Illinois Department of Transportation has put a stop to Hanover Park's plan to use humorous signs to catch drivers' attention and remind them to stop at a village intersection.

The rectangular signs, installed at the three-way intersection of Walnut Avenue and Longmeadow Lane, were 24 by 30 inches and the same shade of red as the regular stop signs. The signs' white lettering read, "This is a stop sign," and an arrow pointed up to the actual stop sign.

Shortly after the village installed the signs, state officials told Hanover Park the signs didn't comply with federal guidelines, IDOT spokesman Guy Tridgell said in an email.

Hanover Park Deputy Chief of Police Andrew Johnson says the signs were effective while they lasted.

"We did remove them based on an IDOT request," Johnson said. "Our response overall from residents was very positive."

IDOT found the signs to be in violation of the federal Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices. Traffic signs, Tridgell said, must be uniform to help ensure safe and efficient travel, regardless of where a person is driving. If the village had decided to leave the signs up, they could have lost funding from the Federal Highway Administration.

"The village agreed to take them down voluntarily," Tridgell said. "We certainly appreciate the desire to improve public safety on Illinois roads and share in the community's commitment to doing so."

Johnson says Hanover Park still has the signs, which were removed Sept. 15, and may use them on the village municipal campus at some point.

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