A small Western Australian company has invented a road sign post which could save transport agencies thousands of dollars a year in maintenance.
Catesby Holdings' device, the yielding post, collapses when it is knocked by a motor vehicle 15 degrees or more past the vertical.
Small Business Minister Gordon Hill launched the device at Midland today.
He said production of the sign post would require the company to employ more people.
"Because the yielding post collapses, it ends up much less damaged when it is knocked than the traditional ones," Mr Hill said.
"The post can then be repositioned by one person in a few seconds with the aid of a spanner.
"When the present road signs are damaged, a team of people is called to the site to dig a new hole, pour more concrete and put in a new sign and post.
"That takes considerably more time - to say nothing of the cost of the actual post."
Mr Hill said the Main Roads Department was trialling the post and had bought 400 units.
The company had received almost 40 expressions of interest from interstate and the post had huge potential for the export market.
"As well as lowering the need to replace signs as often - and the resultant reduction in maintenance costs - there is also extra safety for road users and pedestrians," Mr Hill said.