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Public-images-osm logo.svg railway:signal:main
Bahnhof Borken (Westf) 10 Ausfahrsignal H.JPG
main signal Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: railways
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesshould not be used on waysshould not be used on areasshould not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Useful combination

railway=signal, railway:signal:direction=*, railway:signal:position=*

Status: in use

Objects having a tag railway:signal:main=* are main signals. Signals are placed on the track. The value should begin with a country-operator-prefix, e.g. DE-ESO: or AT-V2.

Additional keys

  • mandatory: railway:signal:direction=forward/backward/both – direction which the signal is valid for
  • railway:signal:position=left/right/overhead/bridge – position relative to the track (direction of OSM way) where the signal is located

There are a lot of additional tags which describe the signal in higher level of detail because every country (or even railway company) has its own signalling system.

  • mandatory: railway:signal:main:form=sign/light/semaphore – type of signal (sign, light signal, semaphore signal)
  • only light and semaphore signals railway:signal:main:states=* – displayable signal aspects (e.g. stop, proceed, proceed at low speed, …). The value should begin with a country-operator-prefix, e.g. DE-ESO: or AT-V2.
  • railway:signal:main:substitute_signal=* – signal which is mounted at the main signal and used if the signal does not work
  • railway:signal:main:function=entry/exit/intermediate/block – function which the signal serves (e.g. entry signal of a station)


Please go to the country-specific signal tagging pages for tagging/mapping railway signals.