Inventor Of ‘Yield’ Sign Dies At 86

SUNDAY, MAY 25, 1997

Clinton E. Riggs, a police officer credited with creating the “Yield” traffic sign, has died at age 86.

The first sign, reading “Yield Right-Of-Way,” was installed at a Tulsa intersection in 1950. An early version of the sign is on display at the Smithsonian Institution.

Riggs, who died Thursday, also was a state trooper with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, where he apparently thought of creating a sign that would control traffic at an intersection as well as assign liability in a collision.

He developed the sign while attending Northwestern Traffic Institute in 1939.

One of the first keystone-shaped, yellow and black signs reduced the ranking of Tulsa’s most dangerous intersection to the seventh most dangerous in one year. Requests soon came in from around the nation.

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