Should the traffic lights go haywire and a traffic police officer takes over the directing of vehicles, would you know how to respond?
Traffic police officers are guardians of the roads. They control, regulate and enhance the safety of road users. They set the training standards of driving schools and administer the theory and practical tests before issuing driving licences to members of the public.
Before the introduction of automated traffic lights, the role of the Traffic Police was to manually control the traffic at road intersections.
When there is traffic congestion or obstruction, accidents or diversions on the roads, or when the traffic light signals are faulty, traffic police officers may direct traffic manually so that motorists are not confused.
All motorists are expected to know the hand signals given by a traffic cop, which you may remember studying from your Basic Theory of Driving handbook, in accordance with the Road Traffic Act Highway Code. Directions given by these officers take precedence over those conveyed by road signs, traffic light signals, road markings, and traffic regulations.How many of these hand signals do you recognise? If you don’t know any, it’s time to start studying again!