01 December 2014

The importance of specifying units (and getting them right)


I came across theet of sign, which, although completely metric, bothered me ever so slightly. 


Firstly, the use of 'T' rather than 't' for tonnes. Something that needs to be corrected on UK weight limit signs in general. 

The lower sign, however, gives a figure of 4425, which we can only reasonable assume to be millimetres. (You can't be sure because the units aren't specified. Maybe it's just a random number?)

Such signs give an impression that metric units are complicated when, in fact,  they are much simpler than the alternative. 

But the use of the appropriate scale is paramount. 4.4 m would be a much more appropriate for this sign.

1 comment:

John said...

Metric signage should be simple. There is only one metric unit used, which is the metre. The others are actually multiples of other metric units.
The kilometre, which is a multiple of the metre.
The tonne, which is actually the megagram, a multiple of the kilogram.
The hour an unofficial multiple of the second.

My understanding, is that the axle weight sign is now defunct, withdrawn in 1981.
It should be 10.2 t. One decimal place.

The height restriction should be 4.4 m. Also one decimal place.