UDOT works to make highway lines more visible

Nov 2, 2022, 6:50 PM | Updated: Nov 3, 2022, 12:28 pm

Even a bit of that snowy weather can make it hard to see lanes on Utah freeways.

The KSL Investigators took a look into how the Utah Department of Transportation is working to improve that and tonight we have an update.

They’re looking to make the stripes last longer and are finding new technologies to make them more visible.

That may go without saying but as UDOT spokesperson John Gleason explains, those lines need constant maintenance.

UDOT John Gleason

UDOT spokesperson John Gleason. (Mike Anderson/KSL TV)

Lanes have to be constantly re-striped and in the meantime, UDOT is finding new technologies to improve safety.

“It’s important for us to make sure that people can see the stripes and can see the lines on the road,” Gleason said.

Head out on the road, and that incoming storm can change everything. Whether you’re in the north or south, day or at night, visibility is dependent on so many conditions.

“So it’s a commitment that we have to improving the state of our striping, and I think we’re going to see a big improvement over the next year or so,” Gleason said.

All of it is reflective. Reflective beads go into either paint or tape strips that are replaced as needed.

Some of the beads show up even more when they’re wet. But now there is a newer process, using black and white stripes, to make that reflectivity pop even more.

“And it’s a tape that we put down. It’s grooved so that plows won’t shear it off, and it’s over the black contrast striping,” Gleason said.

You may already notice some of that in parts of northern Utah and southern Salt Lake counties. And that contrast striping will be laid down next year across all of the major highways.

UDOT is also experimenting with several types of newer reflective striping in northern Box Elder County and seeing which ones may work better in the future.

But in the meanwhile, drivers should slow down for the conditions.

“This time of year, there’s going to be a lot of days where it doesn’t make a lot of sense to be driving freeway speeds. Slow down and drive for these weather conditions,” he said.

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UDOT works to make highway lines more visible