Road signs warning of hedgehogs coming to the UK

PHOTO: The U.K. Department of Transport has released a new road sign featuring a hedgehog to help reduce the number of accidents involving animals in the road. Hedgehog populations in rural areas has halved since 2000.PlayU.K. Department of Transport
WATCH News headlines today: June 18, 2019

New signs are coming to protect drivers, hedgehogs and other small animals in the United Kingdom, the Department for Transport announced Monday, as hedgehog populations in rural areas have halved since 2000.

"The new small mammal warning sign should help to reduce the number of people killed and injured," Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said in a statement, "as well as helping our precious small wild mammal population to flourish."

In 2017, four people were killed and more than 600 were injured in accidents involving an animal in the road, excluding horses, according to the Department for Transport.

There are currently wildlife signs for larger animals, toads and birds, but this new sign will cover the smaller animals.

"We welcome this focus on road safety and protection for all small mammals," Jim Nelson, CEO at People's Trust for Endangered Species, said in the statement.

Grayling is calling on local authorities to place the signs in areas where accidents have been the most common.