Everything in Australia Can Kill You

Before I arrived in Australia I felt slightly anxious- it seemed like such a DANGEROUS place! Crocodiles, sharks, spiders an snakes- did you know that even platypi have poisonous stingers? Basically I’m amazed that anyone in Australia lives to adulthood.

However, I fly out on Sunday so it appears I have successfully survived my two months in Australia (knock on wood). It hasn’t been nearly as treacherous as I imagined- I only saw one snake and I think he was more afraid of me than I was of him anyways.

I have however developed a weird fascination with the warning signs I find plastered all over the beaches and parks of Australia. They all seem to feature the same little man getting brutally maimed by Australia’s many dangers.

Dramatic much? I guess it get’s the point across at least. I’ve spotted this unfortunate little man getting maimed, drowned and crushed all across the country. Guy can’t catch a break, he’s almost bordering on slapstick.  Here’s a compilation of my favorites:

And MY favorite:

Based on these signs it seems like the biggest dangers in Australia are falling down or being tackled by trees!  Thank goodness for the signs, or who knows what kind of danger we might be in.

*I’m currently traveling around Australia in a Chubby Camper Van with the generous help ofTravellers Auto Barn.

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42 Responses to Everything in Australia Can Kill You

  1. Chris - The Aussie Nomad December 27, 2010 at 9:50 AM #

    haha Steph, love the signs. I’ve never really taken much notice to warning signs in australia but those are rather funny.

  2. IsabellesTravel December 27, 2010 at 10:32 AM #

    Funny post! Can`t remember seeing all these signs when I was in Australia, but your post definitely made me laugh.

  3. Michael December 27, 2010 at 10:34 AM #

    “Oh.My.God! Is that water? I would have never noticed that water if it wasn’t for the sign…”

  4. Sally December 27, 2010 at 10:35 AM #

    That guy should really stay at home! (But I imagine the tree would attack him there too… or maybe the bathtub).

    • Steph January 7, 2011 at 10:02 AM #

      cue image of guy slipping on soap.

  5. Dave December 27, 2010 at 11:10 AM #

    Wow I find myself envious of your sign collection! Maybe it was the lack of driving I did in Australia, but I thought the real dangers were from snakes and spiders.

  6. Lindsay aka @_thetraveller_ December 27, 2010 at 11:50 AM #

    HAHAHA… I laughed out loud when I read the title of this post… and the photos are even better! From deadly bugs to sharks it can be quite a scary place for the outdoorsy person.

  7. Matt December 27, 2010 at 11:57 AM #

    Look out for that tree branch!

  8. Amanda December 27, 2010 at 12:30 PM #

    Haha! These are great. I also like the water one, but I think my favorite is the one where and entire tree is falling on the guy.

    When I was at the Wellington Zoo in New Zealand, they had some really hilarious warning signs, too. Like, “If you feed the monkey, it may get sick and die,” accompanied by a cartoon monkey keeling over.

    Maybe it’s just that part of the world?

  9. Phil December 27, 2010 at 1:06 PM #

    Hahaha, so good. When I saw the headline in my reader, I assumed snakes, spiders, box jellyfish – shit like that. Too funny. What exactly is the danger in the third picture from the top????

  10. Andi December 27, 2010 at 2:38 PM #

    Hahaha, these are hysterical!!! I’ve seen some pretty funny signs around the world, but not so many in abundance.

  11. Theodora December 27, 2010 at 3:15 PM #

    You gotta love the Australian concern with health & safety. Good to see that folk in a tropical climate really need reminding that coconuts can fall on their heads…

  12. Heather December 27, 2010 at 7:03 PM #

    I’ve only seen 1 or 2 of these in Oz — now I’m *definitely* going to be on the lookout for the rest. The tree ones crack me up…seriously?!

  13. Genevieve December 27, 2010 at 8:03 PM #

    Ha! About 6 months ago it was made illegal in QLD to skateboard at night.

  14. Alouise December 27, 2010 at 8:13 PM #

    Lol these are fantastic. Although the last one doesn’t seem like a warning to me. Actually it just looks like some guy having fun in the water. Love the falling trees though. Are random falling trees and branches a common occurrence in Australia?

  15. Kirsty December 27, 2010 at 9:53 PM #

    Wow that guy is having a seriously tough time – I didn’t know trees were so dangerous!

  16. Rebecca December 28, 2010 at 1:31 AM #

    Hilarious – I’ve never noticed any of these kinds of signs anywhere in Oz! Need to keep my eyes open for them (and coconuts and falling tree branches…)

  17. @rockytravel December 28, 2010 at 6:37 AM #

    what a nice collection of hilarious warning signs! …I cannot remember noticing any of these signs any in OZ ! will be on the lookout for them when I am on the road again …:-)

  18. Marina Fanti December 28, 2010 at 7:01 AM #

    LOL!!! Poor little man! I wonder if I will survive six months in Australia!! Fingers crossed!

  19. Connie December 28, 2010 at 7:46 AM #

    Funny signs! I especially love the ones involving trees.

  20. Natalie {Miss Social} December 28, 2010 at 3:12 PM #

    This is hysterical! Thanks for sharing!

  21. Brooke, WhyGo Australia December 28, 2010 at 7:13 PM #

    Love this post! It’s so freaking true!

  22. Wally Nes December 28, 2010 at 7:32 PM #

    You may scoff at the tree signs, but last time I went to Australia I did some research (to alleviate some fears in relatives).
    It turns out that more people die due to trees in Australia every year than due to shark, croc, spider and snake attack combined.

    Trees are sneaky buggers, don’t let em get to you.
    Then again, these statistic may have included getting drunk and driving into one/falling out of one

  23. Christine December 28, 2010 at 8:19 PM #

    Haha my mom is super worried about me being killed by crocodiles or kangaroos or snakes while In Australia.

    And it totally reminds me of things not to do in Barcelona:

  24. Jill - Jack and Jill Travel The World December 29, 2010 at 12:52 AM #

    Dang, I’d be more worried of the thing that caused such a big tree to fall on somebody out of nowhere (pic #5). Tornadoes? Flash flood? Tree root eating insects?

  25. Kenan Lucas December 29, 2010 at 11:44 AM #

    Haha I am from Australia and found this post hilarious. As I write this I am in New Zealand and am constantly amazed at the lack of things which can kill you – it is the complete opposite!

    But yeah funny observation in terms of beach/park warning signs. I will keep a lookout for that little man from now on.

  26. lee December 29, 2010 at 5:50 PM #

    I love the ones we have on the beaches here in Victoria – there is usually one big white sign that usually has at least 8 or 10 smaller yellow signs on it with all of this things to worry about, strong currents, rip tides, waves, rocky beaches, jellyfish, sharks, and the European Wasps which always entertains me – there are 10 serious ways to die on the beach and oh yeah look out for the wasps too…

  27. Lauren Fritsky December 29, 2010 at 8:43 PM #

    Brilliant…and true.

  28. Sabina December 31, 2010 at 4:40 AM #

    This is a very clever post! I am lol’ing 🙂

  29. Jaime January 1, 2011 at 12:47 AM #

    I hope that lil guy has travel insurance cus man he is getting beat everywhere!!!

  30. Dad January 1, 2011 at 5:16 PM #

    Awesome Post. There is a whole family in Norwalk, Connecticut rolling on the floor laughing. We may never be able to get grandma back into her chair!!!

  31. Gray January 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM #

    OMG, these signs are hilarious!

  32. lara dunston January 3, 2011 at 5:30 AM #

    That poor little guy! Love those signs – so glad you found them funny! We’re Aussies but have lived in the MidEast for many years and every time we return to Oz to work on a book or something, we’re kind of astonished at the signs (the humour/horror of the images, as much as the abundance of them) – oh, and the rules for everything – goes against all our memories of ‘laidback Australia’. Hey, but at least they kept you alive, right?! 😉

    • Steph January 7, 2011 at 10:19 AM #

      Yeah they are almost as bad as england for the babysitting type warning signs and rules.

  33. Harrison January 9, 2011 at 9:01 PM #

    Omgod, these signs are amazing. At least the Australians “get to the point” with the dangers. Don’t think I’ve ever seen any of these type of signs in the US.

  34. Iran Travel Blog January 11, 2011 at 2:34 AM #

    I think the difference is that in many countries, they don’t warn you and you think everything is alright. Of course, sitting under all coconut trees won’t guarantee a fruit falling down at the same moment, etc. So, you escape and think it’s safe.

    In some other countries, where signs are not there, you find a sign to another road after the junction and even on an overpass. Believe me! I’ve seen them and keep seeing them …

    Rahman Mehraby
    Destination Iran Travel & Tours

    • Steph January 12, 2011 at 9:34 AM #

      Yeah, I come from the US- the land of “Caution, Coffee is Hot!” labels, so I was amused to find australia even more cautious!

  35. Erica at ExOfficio January 12, 2011 at 8:00 PM #

    Hilarious signs. I’m completely sending this to a good friend of mine who’s moving to Australian in a week. She’ll love it.

  36. Nicole January 24, 2011 at 9:22 AM #

    Geez, the poor little guy can’t catch a break from those Aussie trees!

    I’ve grown up in Aus and never seen a poisonous, flesh ripping animal unless it was in a zoo. I have a feeling tourists have been watching to much Steve Irwin before they come downunder.

    My only real piece of advice is to make sure you have hiking boots or at least sneakers on when walking in grassland to avoid snakes; and just be smart in the water – swim between the red and yellow lifeguard flags and don’t go out to deep.

    • Steph January 31, 2011 at 8:00 AM #

      Yeah, I bet rip currents are really much more of a danger than sharks.

  37. Erik April 6, 2013 at 10:39 PM #

    Oh my god, I thought I was the only one who was facinated by all the crazy ‘you might die’ signs in Oz! One of my favorite says “WILDLIFE” and has what appears to be an image of a kangaroo picking up a car. I have quite a collection from Germany and New Zealand, as well. Comedy gold.

  38. Ourjourneytothesea June 6, 2013 at 2:29 AM #

    Haha I guess when you live here you don’t even notice it. We’re all about safety over here 🙂

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