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Public-images-osm logo.svg traffic_sign
UK traffic sign 545.svg
Traffic signs give instructions or provide information to road users. Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: highways
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesmay be used on waysmay be used on areas (and multipolygon relations)should not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Documented values: 45
Useful combination
Status: de factoPage for proposal

The traffic_sign=* tag is used to map traffic signs such as city-limit signs or any other traffic signs.


Traffic signs give instructions or provide information to road users. Some signs are only relevant at the place where they're mounted (like e.g. a stop sign - called point-related signs from now on), while others affect a section of the road (like e.g. a "no overtaking" sign - called section-related signs).

How to map

Traffic signs can be mapped by adding the traffic_sign=* tag to either a single node or a way (or, if applicable, also an area).

Point-related signs can be mapped by tagging a node, while section-related signs can be mapped by tagging a way (or area). You may also map a section-related sign by tagging it as a node if you only know where the section begins or if you just want to explicitly specify its physical location. Keep in mind that additional tagging is necessary to indicate the end of the section in this case.

The implications of a traffic sign should always be tagged on the concerned section of the road itself as well. When mapping a speed limit sign for example: always add a maxspeed=* and a source:maxspeed=sign tag to the road itself.

On nodes

It is possible to use a node which is part of a way, or to create a separate node beside the road. While both methods are used in practice, if you put the node aside the way the direction of the sign usually becomes clear and the position typically is more accurate. If you put it on the highway, information about these properties is lost in both cases[1], but the way it belongs to is explicitly given.

As part of a way

Create a new node within the relevant way next to the sign. This method allows software algorithms which operate on ways (like e.g. routing algorithms) to consider the sign, but makes it impossible to know the exact position of the sign. A renderer can at best assume that the sign is located somewhere next to the road.

To indicate the direction affected by a traffic sign relative to the highway=* way, three different tags are in use. forward means the same direction as the highway=* way and backward the opposite direction.

The oldest of the three tags.
Different from the other two tags, this pair of tags isn't used in addition to traffic_sign=* but in place of it. Thus, a post with different traffic signs for each direction can be mapped on a single node.
The newest of the three tags, introduced by the iD editor in September 2018 because the editor couldn't handle traffic_sign:forward=*/traffic_sign:backward=*. This tag is equivalent to direction=*. (It is unknown why the key direction=*, which was also already in use, wasn't used instead.)

The affected direction can only be specified by using nodes which are part of exactly one way way. Avoid junction nodes and nodes between two ways as well (where they have been split, but are connected by a node). If in doubt, better simply insert a new node into the way instead of using an existing one.

As a separate node

Create a separate node beside the road at the position of the actual sign. This allows to map the exact physical position of the sign, but it is impossible to reliably deduce the affected road or travel direction in this case. Software algorithms which operate on ways will thus generally not be able to consider the traffic sign, but only the tags of the way instead.

You can use the direction=* tag to describe the facing orientation of the sign by using an angle or cardinal direction.

Note that the sign is facing against the direction of travel. So if you encounter a traffic sign when traveling north, then the sign is facing south. So you can add direction=180 or direction=S. Likewise, when traveling west, signs are facing east, so you tag them with direction=90 or direction=E.

On a way or area

When tagged on a way or an area, the traffic_sign=* tag describes the traffic sign(s) that apply to that way or area. The tag is not meant to mark the actual position of the sign in this case, but the affected way or area instead. It should however be assumed that the physical location of the sign is at the beginning and / or the end of the affected section (but note that the affected section may be comprised of multiple ways within OSM).

You may use traffic_sign:forward=* to specify that this particular sign affects vehicles moving in the same direction as the way, or traffic_sign:backward=* to specify that the opposite direction is affected.


It is common to use both human-readable values (like city_limit) as well as national traffic sign IDs (like DE:310) where they exist.

Multiple signs can be tagged by using different separators. Traffic signs which are unrelated to each other (like e.g. speed limit and no parking) are separated by semicolon ;. Related signs (like e.g. no entry plus except buses) are separated by comma ,.

Human-readable values

Tags Element Sign Comment Tags for affected highways
traffic_sign=city_limit +

name=* (name of city/village)

node Vienna Convention road sign E7d-V1.svg City/village sign. By default it is assumed there is an end of city/village sign on the back for drivers in the opposite direction; add city_limit=begin if this is not the case. source:maxspeed=DE:urban if not overridden by other speed limit source (or with other appropriate country code)


traffic_sign=city_limit +

city_limit=end +

name=* (name of city/village)

node Vienna Convention road sign E8c-V1.svg Vienna Convention road sign E8d-V1.svg End of city/village sign. source:maxspeed=DE:rural if not overridden by other speed limit source (or with other appropriate country code)
traffic_sign=maxspeed +

maxspeed=* (the speed limit)

node Vienna Convention road sign C14-V1 (kmh).svg Maximum speed sign. Like all traffic signs these should be tagged as a node. Usually not part of the highway, so the direction can be inferred. maxspeed=* + source:maxspeed=sign
traffic_sign=maxspeed +


node Vienna Convention road sign C17b-V1-2.svg Vienna Convention road sign C17b-V1-1.svg End of maximum speed sign.
traffic_sign=stop node Stop sign. Usually tagged implicitly on a node of the highway with highway=stop instead. highway=stop (on a node)
traffic_sign=give_way node Give way sign. Equivalent to the United States yield sign. Usually just highway=give_way is tagged instead. highway=give_way (on a node)
traffic_sign=variable_message node VMS - 2x12 - Snow Slow Down.svg Electronic Variable Message Sign, also known as Dynamic Message Signs. Remotely programmed to give traffic information such as expected travel times to destinations, temporary speed limits, incident warnings etc. Usually combined with man_made=gantry. (Example photo)
traffic_sign=overtaking +


nodeway Vienna Convention road sign C13ab-V1.svg No overtaking sign. overtaking=no
traffic_sign=overtaking +


node Vienna Convention road sign C17c-V1-2.svg Vienna Convention road sign C17c-V1-1.svg End of no overtaking sign.
traffic_sign=maxwidth nodeway Maximum width sign. maxwidth=*
traffic_sign=maxheight nodeway Maximum height sign. maxheight=*
traffic_sign=maxweight nodeway Maximum weight sign. maxweight=*
traffic_sign=stop_ahead node Vienna Convention road sign Aa-21-T2-1.svg Vienna Convention road sign Ab-21a-V1.svg Stop ahead sign. Can be a standard yield sign plus additional plate containing STOP and distance (as in most of Europe) or a red triangle or yellow diamond with an image of a stop sign elsewhere.
traffic_sign=yield_ahead node Vienna Convention road sign Aa-20-T2-1.svg Yield/give way ahead sign. Can be a standard yield sign plus additional plate with distance (as in most of Europe) or a red triangle or yellow diamond with an image of a yield/give way sign elsewhere.
traffic_sign=signal_ahead node Vienna Convention road sign Aa-17a-V1.svg Vienna Convention road sign Ab-17a.svg Signal ahead sign.
traffic_sign=hazard nodeway Vienna Convention road sign Ab-32-V1.svg A hazard to motorists. Combined with hazard=* to indicate the type of hazard.

Traffic sign IDs

Signs specific to a particular country should be mapped by the country/region prefix followed by a colon and then the traffic sign.

  • The country/region prefix should be the  ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code or  ISO 3166-2 country subdivision code (always uppercase). This prefix is separated by a colon : from the sign. Additional colons can be included within the prefix to create a hierarchy of further custom subdivisions.
  • Traffic signs should be represented by their official ID (if such IDs are assigned).
  • Multiple unrelated signs should be separated with a semicolon ;. If traffic signs are related, the additional sign IDs should be separated from the main sign by comma ,.
  • Where the traffic sign requires a numeric or textual value, you can supply it after the ID using brackets [value]. This can be repeated for signs that require multiple parameters. For numeric parameters, use a dot . as decimal separator and a minus - for negative values (if needed).
  • In case of multiple signs separated by commas or semicolons, the prefix must appear at the beginning of the value, and may or may not appear again before each sign code (this tends to vary by country). If multiple prefixes are used, each prefix must be present before the first sign code of a differing prefix, to avoid ambiguity.


UK traffic sign 956.svg traffic_sign=GB:956
UK traffic sign 616.svgUK traffic sign 954.svg traffic_sign=GB:616,954
UK traffic sign 523.1.svg traffic_sign=GB:523.1[-10]
Belgian road sign F4a.svg traffic_sign=BE:F4a
Zeichen 260.svgZusatzzeichen 1020-30.svgZeichen 265.svg traffic_sign=DE:260,1020-30;265[3.8]
MUTCD-CA SW59.svg traffic_sign=US:CA:SW-59
MUTCD R1-1.svg
MUTCD R1-3P.svg
Merum (Roermond) tweetalig plaatsnaambord cropped.JPGNederlands verkeersbord A1.svg traffic_sign=NL:H01d[Merum][Maerem][Roermond],A0150

Lists of IDs by country

The following table links to resources for looking up sign IDs specific to each country or country subdivision (in some cases where country subdivisions have their own sign standards).

Prefix Country or region OSM Wiki Wikipedia Wikipedia en Wiki Commons External source
AT Austria  available (de)  available available
AL Albania  available (it) (sq)
AD Andorra  available (it) available Reglament dels tipus i significat dels senyals verticals de circulació pdf (ca)
AR Argentina available (es)  available pdf (es) pdf (es)
AM Armenia  available (it) (ar)
AU Australia  available available
AU:QLD Australia: Queensland
AW Aruba (Kingdom of the Netherlands)[2] Bijlage III van de Regeling verkeersaanwijzingen en -borden 2000 (nl)
AZ Azerbaijan  available (it) (az)
BY Belarus  available (be-tarask) available pdf (ru)
BE Belgium available  available (de) (fr) (nl) pdf (nl)
BO Bolivia pdf (es)
BA Bosnia and Herzegovina  available pdf (bs)
BW Botswana  available
BR Brazil available (pt)  available (pt)  available pdf (pt)
BN Brunei  available
BG Bulgaria  available (bg) pdf (bg)
BQ-BO Bonaire (Netherlands)[2] Bijlage 1 van de Wegenverkeersverordening Bonaire 2019 (nl)
BQ-SA Saba (Netherlands)[2] Bijlage van de Wegenverkeersverordening de Bovenwindse Eilanden (Sabaanse editie) (nl)
BQ-SE Sint Eustatius (Netherlands)[2] Bijlage 1 van de Wegenverkeersverordening Sint Eustatius 2022 (nl)
CA Canada Available (en) FR:Canada/Signalisation routière (fr)  available
CA:AB Canada:Alberta
CA:BC Canada:British Columbia available
CA:QC Canada:Quebec available
CA:ON Canada:Ontario available
CL Chile  available (es)  available available pdf (es)
CN China  available available .pdf(zn-ch)
CO Colombia available (es)  available available pdf (es)
HR Croatia  available (hr) pdf (hr)
CW Curacao (Kingdom of the Netherlands)[2] Bijlage I van de Wegenverkeersverordening Curaçao 2000 pdf (nl)
CY Cyprus  available (it) (el)
CZ Czechia available (cs)  available (cs)  available available pdf (cs)

DK Denmark  available (de)  available (da)
EC Ecuador pdf (es)
EE Estonia  available (ee)
FI Finland  available (fi)  available available (fi)
FR France, Monaco available (fr)  available (fr) available pdf (fr)
GE Georgia  available (it) pdf (ka)
DE Germany available (de)  available (de)  available available (de)
GR Greece available (el)  available (el)  available available (el)
HK Hong Kong  available
HU Hungary  available (it)
IS Iceland  available (is)
ID Indonesia  available
IR Iran  available (fa)  available
IE Ireland  available available
IL Israel  available (he)  available pdf (he)
IT Italy, San Marino, Vatican City available (it)  available (it)  available available
 available (fr)
JP Japan  available (ja)  available available (ja) (ja)
KZ Kazakhstan  available (it) (ru)
LT Lithuania  available (it) pdf
LU Luxembourg  available (it) (fr)
LV Latvia (lv)
MK North Macedonia  available
MY Malaysia  available
MT Malta  available (it)
MU Mauritius  available
MX Mexico  available (es)  available (es) (pdf)
MD Moldova available
ME Montenegro
NP Nepal  available available
NL European Netherlands[2] available (nl)  available (nl)  available available Bijlage 1 van het Reglement verkeersregels en verkeerstekens 1990 (nl)
VNVF Bordenboek 2017 (nl)[3]
NVV/NFW Bordenboek 1997 (nl)[4]
CROW Nieuwe nummering tijdelijke verkeersborden (nl)
NZ New Zealand  available available
NO Norway  available available Norway (no)
PK Pakistan  available (sd)  available available Pakistan Highway Code Book archive on GitHub
PE Peru available (es) pdf (es)
PH Philippines available (en)  available (en)
PL Poland available (pl)  available (pl)  available available pdf (pl)
PT Portugal available (pt) pdf (pt)
RO Romania  available (it) (ro)
RU Russia available (ru)  available (ru) available (ru)
RS Serbia  available (en)  available (it) pdf (sr) josm_preset_traffic_signs

SG Singapore  available
SK Slovakia available (sk)  available (sk) available pdf (sk)
SI Slovenia available (si)  available (de) (10-2019) pdf (sl)
ZA South Africa  available (af)  available
KR South Korea available (ko)  available (ko)  available available
ES Spain  available (es)  available available Reglamento General de Circulación (es)
LK Sri Lanka  available
SE Sweden  available (sv)  available available (sv)
SX Sint Maarten (Kingdom of the Netherlands)[2] Bijlage van de Wegenverkeersverordening (nl)
CH Switzerland, Liechtenstein  available (de)  available available pdf (de)
 available (fr)
 available (it) pdf (it)
TH Thailand  available
TR Turkey available (tr)  available (it) pdf (tr)
UG Uganda available pdf
UA Ukraine available (uk)  available (uk)  available (uk), (uk)
GB United Kingdom available  available available pdf
US United States Intro, Chart  available available 2002 chart
2004 standard
2012 supplement
2014 Revision 2 Chart
US:AK United States: Alaska Indices
US:AZ United States: Arizona
US:CA United States: California
US:CO United States: Colorado
US:CT United States: Connecticut
US:DC United States: District of Columbia [1]
US:DE United States: Delaware
US:ID United States: Idaho
US:IL United States: Illinois
US:IN United States: Indiana
US:KY United States: Kentucky
US:MI United States: Michigan
US:MD United States: Maryland
US:MA United States: Massachusetts
US:MN United States: Minnesota
US:MO United States: Missouri
US:MT United States: Montana
US:NE United States: Nebraska
US:NM United States: New Mexico (Wayback Machine)
US:NY United States: New York
US:NV United States: Nevada
US:TX United States: Texas
US:OH United States: Ohio
US:OK United States: Oklahoma
US:OR United States: Oregon
US:PA United States: Pennsylvania
PR United States: Puerto Rico
US:SC United States: South Carolina
US:TN United States: Tennessee
US:UT United States: Utah
US:VA United States: Virginia
US:VT United States: Vermont
US:WA United States: Washington
US:WI United States: Wisconsin
US:WV United States: West Virginia
US:DOD United States Department of Defense Pamphlet
US:NPS United States: National Park Service Catalog
VN Vietnam  available available (vi)
ZW Zimbabwe  available

Editor support

JOSM has an icon for the value city_limit and also renders icons for the keys maxspeed=*, maxweight=*, maxheight=* and some more if tagged together with traffic_sign=*. While for maxspeed the actual value is shown, the other keys use a generic icon, which always shows the same value independent from the actual value specified in the respective tag.

The style Lane and Road Attributes currently renders traffic signs for maxspeed and overtaking. For maxspeed the icon shows the actual value specified in the tag.

The following table list some examples together with the actual rendering result in JOSM.

Tags Description Rendering result in JOSM
Speed limit of 50 km/h JOSM Screenshot Maxspeed 50.png
End of speed limit JOSM Screenshot Maxspeed implicit.png
maxspeed=30 mph
Speed zone with 30 mph

JOSM Screenshot Maxzone 30mph.png

Overtaking forbidden JOSM Screenshot Overtaking no.png
Overtaking allowed JOSM Screenshot Overtaking yes.png
Overtaking forbidden and a speed limit of 70 km/h JOSM Screenshot Overtaking no Maxspeed 70.png
End of speed limit and overtaking is allowed. JOSM Screenshot Maxspeed implicit Overtaking yes.png

Presets, styles, libraries, statistics and maps with traffic signs with IDs per country

The following table links to the presets and styles for JOSM that recognises these signs with IDs specific to each country or country subdivision (in some cases where country subdivisions have their own sign standards). Also you can find maps, statistics at taginfo and renders 3D in Kendzi 3D's JOSM plug-in.

Prefix Country or region Preset JOSM Style JOSM Kendzi's 3d JOSM plug-in libraries Taginfo Maps
AD Andorra available available available available
AR Argentina available available available available
AU Australia available available available available
AT Austria available available available available
BY Belarus available available available available
BE Belgium available available available available
BR Brazil available available available available
CA Canada available available available available
CL Chile available available available available
CN China available available available available
CO Colombia available available available available
CZ Czechia available available available available
DK Denmark available available available available
EE Estonia available available available available
FI Finland available available available available
FR France, Monaco available available available available
DE Germany available available available available
GR Greece available available available available
HU Hungary available available available available
IS Iceland available available available available
ID Indonesia available available available available
IE Ireland available available available available
IL Israel available available available available
IT Italy, San Marino, Vatican City available available available available
JP Japan available available available available
LT Lithuania available available available available
MX Mexico available available available available
NL Netherlands available available available available
NO Norway available available available available
PE Peru available available available available
PL Poland available available available available
PT Portugal available available available available
RU Russia available available available available
RS Serbia available available available available
SK Slovakia available available available available
ZA South Africa available available available available
KR South Korea available available available available
ES Spain available available available available available
SE Sweden available available available available
CH Switzerland available available available available
TR Turkey available available available available
UA Ukraine available available available available
GB United Kingdom available available available available
US United States available available available available

See also

Possible tagging mistakes

If you know places with this tag, verify if it could be tagged with another tag.
Automated edits are strongly discouraged unless you really know what you are doing!


  1. If the road is oneway=yes, information on sign direction is still clear, but position is not accurate
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Codes with ǸL: prefix may also be used in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands if a traffic sign is used for which no island-specific code exists in local legislation.
  3. Not freely available.
  4. Freely available precursor to the current VNVF Bordenboek. Note: some non-RVV traffic signs have been renumbered into new categories since this publication.