Friday, January 25, 2008

Of all things red...

Was wondering why is it that all mail boxes in the UK are painted red? The same for the telephone boxes as well... and buses too. To drive the point in, they're all of the same shade of red too.

We all know that red is normally used to depict prominant objects that requires a person's attention. Red traffic lights, stop signs and various danger signs are all in... well, red. Due to its wavelength (oh god...), it's the colour that can be most easily captured by the human eye over long distances. Imagine having a green stop light... you'll probably drove past it without noticing it in time.

Hmm... then why aren't the taxis red then?

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JesieBlogJourney said...

Singapore and Malaysia used to have the mail boxes and fire hydrants red too. Fire trucks seem to remain red. Now the fire hydrant is yellow, I think.
The school bus in Msia and US are yellow. I'm not sure about S'pore. I think yellow is also striking. Must be interesting to read into the history of those color code.
I think red doesn't appeal to a business vehicle like a taxi. Sounds like an emergency vehicle (like fire truck) to have a taxi red. The light on the roof of the taxi is good enough to catch one's attention.

xiaocangshu said...

There were red fire hydrants in SG about 10 years ago. I think they still should be red. Haven't noticed any red hydrants lately, but haven't noticed any non-red hydrants lately either. ;)

@JesieBlogJourney: SG school buses don't have a standard colour. Some have a school name printed, and even specially painted in tertiary school colours, but the same bus can be used to ferry students from different schools, or even non-students.

xiaocangshu said...

Speaking of yellow Malaysian school buses, there used to be one with a picture of Mickey Mouse stopping at my primary school in the late 90s to ferry teachers and students commuting to Malaysia.