Signs #20 – Croc? OR CROCK!!

Swimming sign at Elsey National Park, Northern Territory “Hey guys! The swimming hole’s open – but I’ll go in first and check for crocodiles,” said no one ever after reading this sign in the Northern Territory’s Elsey National Park. Looks inviting, doesn’t it?!  BUT … It’s a relief to learn that despite other signs in the park indicating crocodiles ARE

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Signs #19 – Where’s the Ocean? Eromanga, Queensland

Eromanga Distance Sign, Queensland

There’s only one town in Australia furthest from the sea – in EVERY direction! Surprisingly, to me at least, it’s NOT in Central Australia! Australia’s weird continental shape means the geographic centre is relatively close to the Great Australian Bight to the south, and the Gulf of Carpentaria to the north. No, the title of furthest from the sea currently

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Signs #18 – Historical? – OR Hysterical?!

Historic Sign, Wentworth, New South Wales At what point is an object, action, document or place deemed ‘historic’ – and therefore worthy of recognition and/or preservation? Sometimes we realise the significance too late and tangible symbols of our heritage are lost forever. Australia’s relatively short record of non-indigenous exploration doesn’t make us immune from failing to recognise the importance, or

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Signs #15 – BYO Waterproof Matches …

Maybe South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula is riddled with pyromaniacs.  Or maybe a fire-bug convention is headed for town.  Just maybe the local school hasn’t got to the bit about fire and water yet.  Perhaps it’s a popular site for shipwreck survivor re-enactments.  Then again, maybe fisherfolk can’t wait to cook up the catch of the day.  Maybe there’s an overabundance of

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Signs #13 – ‘Droughts and Flooding Rains …’*

The Mid Murray Council ‘s having one of those years.  Years of drought (and arguably a bit of un-Australian upstream behaviour!) has seen the Murray River, lifeblood to South Australia’s fruit bowl the Riverland, fall to the lowest levels in decades.  So low, in fact, that parts of the river banks are seeing the light of day and they don’t like it!  Without

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Signs #12 – Bull***t!*

The perils littering the Australian coastal fringe are legendary – braving the threat of crocodiles, sharks, marine stingers, stonefish, blue-ringed octopi, sea snakes or stingrays in our waterways isn’t for the fainthearted! Even the rainforest or coastal scrub can be risky – stinging trees, death adders, king browns and other more deadly snakes, spiders, various stinging ants, mosquitoes, scorpions or

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Signs #11 – What’s the Problem?

What do overseas visitors make of Australia’s more esoteric pictorial instructions? Space constraints mean non-English wording is often limited – or non-existent! So the sign designer is stuck with conveying important, but sometimes obscure facts and instructions with stick figures. Their success necessarily relies on reader ability to immediately interpret the pictures correctly and heed their warnings and messages without

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