Could become more important in the future: That means the round, black and white traffic sign on the freeway

In Germany there are around 500 different traffic signs designed to ensure safety on our roads. Including a black and white sign that can be seen on more and more freeways. Read what’s behind it here.

There are over 20 million road traffic signs nationwide, which regulate traffic on motorways, federal highways and towns.

It happens again and again that some drivers either misinterpret the signs, such as the green arrow at a red traffic light, or simply do not know them.

On the A9 Munich-Ingolstadt motorway, drivers can currently find several such signs that only very few people will recognize.

Round traffic sign with black and white color: what is it all about?

There are 13 of these unusual signs on the A9 between Pfaffenhofen and the Holledau motorway triangle.
There are 13 of these unusual signs on the A9 between Pfaffenhofen and the Holledau motorway triangle.

Photo: Matthias Balk/dpa

Unlike most traffic signs, the so-called landmark signs are not intended for people, but for autonomous vehicles. Drivers can therefore simply ignore them.

The signs on the sign enable self-driving cars to determine their exact location using the longitudinal and transverse position. Due to their unusual design, they bear no resemblance to StVO traffic signs, which is why there is hardly any risk of confusion.

In Bavaria, the black and white signs are on the A9 between the Pfaffenhofen junction and the Holledau motorway triangle, as well as on the A93 that exits there in the direction of Regensburg to Wolnzach. There are 13 in total, spaced two and a half kilometers apart.

Part of a pilot project

The landmark signs are part of the pilot project “Digital test field Autobahn” (DTA) of the Federal Ministry for Digital Affairs and Transport (BMDV).

Autonomous vehicles are regularly on the A9, being tested under real conditions and their data being evaluated by analysts. Self-driving vehicles in everyday life are therefore becoming more and more likely.

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