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July 8, 2006 12:03 AM

Broken: Truck sign

TruckTyler Walles points out:

If you are going to name a company "Yellow" then the sign should be yellow as well, not orange.


Founder's probably colorblind :-). FIRST BABY!

Posted by: Donkeykong at July 8, 2006 12:14 AM

Maybe thats the joke. Or maybe they're just retarded.

Posted by: yofosho at July 8, 2006 12:21 AM

Not broken once you hear the reason ( Location: How to Ship > Orange Trucks


If you've seen a Yellow Transportation tractor going down the highway, you've probably wondered why the color of the tractor is orange when our name is Yellow. The reason is's safety. Back in the early years, A.J. Harrell, our founder, was interested in safety, and the image we presented to the public.

Harrell commissioned the E.I. Dupont Co. to determine the shade of color most visible from the greatest distance. The result of Dupont's research was a color called "swamp holly orange". From then on, Yellow trucks were painted the safest color on the road.

Posted by: Mike at July 8, 2006 12:39 AM

Fun killer.

Posted by: Donkeykong at July 8, 2006 12:41 AM

Well, the name of the founder was Mr. Yellow. The Orange logo is used now that Yellow Freight has merged with Roadway Trucking (which always had orange trucks). So the name and color are 2 different things. Like the blue colored pen with black ink, remember thaat one? 'Stuff' happens. Perhaps you might propose that tis company be renamed to 'Orange Freight'? Ah Dunno! whantever.

Posted by: Coach Martin at July 8, 2006 01:48 AM

Actually, it was started by Mr. Hertz...

Posted by: Ed at July 8, 2006 01:52 AM

Not "Mr. Yellow" or "Mr. Hertz".


YRC Worldwide traces its origins to 1924 when A.J. Harrell, an Oklahoma City entrepreneur, founded a bus and taxi company and named it Yellow Cab Transit Co. In 1926, he shortened the name to Yellow Transit Co.

In 1929, AJ was concerned about road safety, so he commissioned the E.I. DuPont Co. to determine the color that would be most visible on the tractors from the greatest distance on the nation's highways. DuPont's research found the color Swamp Holly Orange. We still use this color on Yellow trucks today.

In April 1952, an ownership group led by George E. Powell, Sr., bought the company. The group included George E. Powell, Jr., and Roy Freuhauf, owner of the Freuhauf Trailer Co. Yellow helped pioneer the concept of consolidating small freight shipments into trailerloads for interstate transport, deconsolidation, and distribution. In 1968, the company name changed from Yellow Transit Freight Lines to Yellow Freight System.

During the 1980s, after interstate trucking deregulation, Yellow embarked on a growth plan that focused on constructing new service centers and large distribution centers in an all-new design. In late 1992, Yellow Corp., the parent company, was formed with Yellow Transportation as its largest operating subsidiary. In 2003, Yellow acquired Roadway Corp. to become Yellow Roadway Corp. In 2005, Yellow expanded its regional capabilities by acquiring USF, which has been renamed YRC Regional Transportation. In 2006, the company changed its name to YRC Worldwide to reflect the expanding, global nature of the business.

Read more about Yellow history.

Today, YRCW is a thriving, multibillion dollar corporation in a fast-paced, competitive market. We strive to achieve state-of-the-art technology and lead the industry in providing a host of transportation offerings.

Posted by: T-1000 at July 8, 2006 02:01 AM

I don't see how this is a broken experience at all for the viewer. How do you know "yellow" actually denotes the color yellow? It's up to the company to create its own logo. And if you're going to say "fun killer", Donkeykong, then maybe this should have been in "Just for Fun".

Posted by: Fuzzy at July 8, 2006 02:08 AM

congratulations Donkeykong for your newborn

Posted by: yingjai at July 8, 2006 03:08 AM

Not really broken. Interesting history lesson though. BTW what is swamp holly? I'm guessing that it's the colour of the berries on a variety of holly that grows in or near swamps.

Posted by: lefty-chef at July 8, 2006 03:10 AM

"BTW what is swamp holly? I'm guessing that it's the colour of the berries on a variety of holly that grows in or near swamps."

Indeed, if you Google image "swamp holly", you will find quite a few references that show you what colour swamp holly is...

notably, the colour of the trucks of a company called "Yellow"! :D

Posted by: DaveC426913 at July 8, 2006 10:53 AM

This is the reason I thought yellow was orange and vice versa when I was a little kid -- because I learned to read before I learned colors, and could read the sides of the yellow cabs that were in service in our city -- the same company.

This history is nice and all, but IMHO, it's definitely broken. For one thing, I don't know that orange is any more visible than yellow on the roadways, and there's no compelling reason to keep the name of the company as yellow if they were really married to the orange for their logo. Cognitive dissonance = broken, to me.

Posted by: Steph Mineart at July 8, 2006 11:36 AM

There is a Ford dealership in my area owned by a family with the surname "Orange". The name of the dealership, naturally enough, is "Orange Ford".

Their slogan?

"What color Orange Ford do you want?"

Posted by: Glenn Lasher at July 8, 2006 12:11 PM

Not broken.

Posted by: big_wang at July 8, 2006 12:11 PM

LOL @ "what color orange ford"

I'll take a green orange, and wait for it to ripen, ford.

Posted by: any mouse at July 8, 2006 12:40 PM

I agree with Fuzzy. And, to all you people who think it is broken I have a little question for you. It started out as a bus and taxi company with yellow buses and taxis, right? Then they decided to do a study to see which color was visible from the farthest distance away, and it turned out to be swamp holly orange, so they changed the color of their trucks to orange. My question is, Why would they change the name or color of a multimillion dollar business because of some petty thing like that?

Posted by: joe at July 8, 2006 01:09 PM

_@_v - o.k. so 'swamp-holly orange' is most visible colour. so, why not paint the truck body 'swamp holly orange' and keep the logo yellow? you still get visible trucks and you get to have a company name that makes sense...

Posted by: she-snailie_@_v at July 8, 2006 01:53 PM

Your reading it wrong. With the cost of fuel today, its what you will do when you receive your freight bill. Yell Ow.

Posted by: Paul at July 8, 2006 04:30 PM

I always thought it was funny that the Yellow trucks were orange too. Now that I know why, well I kinda wish I didn't because now I can't yell "it's ORANGE!" when a truck passes by. Thanks a lot! ;)

Posted by: nicole at July 8, 2006 05:49 PM

Am I missing something, the trailer looks white to me with an orange logo? The tractor looks kind of yellow.

Also it is amazing that this post could arouse so much discussion. I think that we need to get a life!

Posted by: tommy at July 8, 2006 08:48 PM


Anyone that works constuction knows that ORANGE is the safety color. The ORANGE street cones we all love so much, also the Safety vests of our workers are ORANGE! Please remember that so our workers stay as safe as they can.

Posted by: Barb at July 8, 2006 10:10 PM

School bus yellow is actually safer than orange. There are enough red-green colorblind drivers out there that can see yellow much better than they can see swamp-holly orange. Construction safety equipment and such are starting to be made screaming yellow instead of orange for this reason.

Posted by: Davey G at July 9, 2006 01:33 AM

I really don't get how this is broken at all. If you see the logo, can you identify the company? Are you confused as to whether its name is `Yellow' or `Orange'? I appreciate the designers for not going with the most I-thought-zero-seconds obvious approach, and I don't see why a logo designer has to constrain him/herself to a logo that matches what the average novice would do.

Posted by: b at July 9, 2006 02:08 AM

I'm pretty sure the founder can't tell orange from yellow, LOL!


Posted by: Another guy named Alex B at July 9, 2006 02:09 PM

Nope. This is not broken. Does it impair anything? No. Does anybody care? HELL NO!

Come on! There's got to be better broken stuff than this!

Posted by: AnyKey at July 9, 2006 03:15 PM

another guy named Alex B - please read the other comments before you post. come on, we went over WHY it was orange! and

ioe- you think road safety is petty? what world are you living in? thousands of people, maybe more, die in car accidents every year. get that? PEOPLE DIE!!!! and this is petty, why?

Posted by: ruth-dawg at July 9, 2006 04:12 PM

The orange is a faded yellow color, gosh!

Posted by: wiggleworm at July 9, 2006 05:52 PM

FYI: School buses aren't yellow. The technical name for the color is

International School Bus Chomium or ISBC for short.

Posted by: Trivial Timm at July 9, 2006 10:58 PM

Chromium not Chomium.

Posted by: Trivial Timm at July 9, 2006 11:03 PM

I was sitting outside during lunch with a coworker a few weeks ago when one of these trucks went by and wondered the same thing. Even if it is for safety, it's still stupid.

Posted by: Michael at July 10, 2006 11:37 AM

I work for a small design agency and Roadway (a subsidiary of Yellow) is one of our biggest clients. The strangest part about this is, the in house branding team is well aware the mark is orange. Now that they've purchased Roadway, they're forcing Roadway to rebrand from blue and orange to blue and light blue, which is a multimillion dollar enterprise when one takes into account all the trucks that must be repainted. Very strange.

Posted by: beth at July 10, 2006 03:24 PM

I have seen those trucks drive here all the time. I myself have been wondering the same thing.

Posted by: Joshua at July 11, 2006 01:12 AM

A dupe on thisisbroken!!!???

this has beem on here before

Posted by: compwiz at July 11, 2006 12:15 PM

how many accidents does that color really prevent every year? 0.2? come on now. more are probably caused by drivers distracted by the incongruity.

Posted by: gmangw at July 11, 2006 03:18 PM

Orange is the new yellow.

Posted by: karma_police at July 11, 2006 04:14 PM

Maybe the logo is intentional so that people will remember it. Plus, it gives the company free publicity on This is Broken.

Posted by: Nini at July 11, 2006 06:05 PM

In Australia one of the big taxi companies is called yellow cabs. No prize for guessing what colour they actually paint them.

Posted by: Shep at July 13, 2006 10:11 PM

I never really thought about the Yellow Trucks being actually orange. That's a good one. I could be color blind.

Posted by: Manny at July 15, 2006 08:26 PM

I think it also works very well to get the name into everyone's minds. Because you see the name is different from the colour, and you think about it. And then you remember it.

Posted by: John Russell at July 17, 2006 02:00 AM

I'm not colorblind, but when I first saw one of the trucks, I thought they orange was their variation of yellow that could be more readable.

Posted by: Sean at August 9, 2006 09:13 AM

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