Adequately maintained pavement markings improve highway safety and prevent roadway
departure crashes by bouncing light from vehicle headlights back toward the vehicle
and the driver's eyes, making the pavement markings appear brighter and easier to
see and read. Because the retroreflective properties of traffic control devices
deteriorate over time, highway agencies need to actively manage the maintenance
of pavement markings in order to ensure that they are clearly visible at night.
Regulations / Standards
On April 22, 2010, a standard for maintaining minimum retroreflectivity of
longitudinal pavement markings was published as a notice of proposed rulemaking
in the federal register. Comment period closed August 20, 2010.
MUTCD Notice of Proposed Amendment – Federal
Register Notice [
Proposal for a standard for maintaining minimum retroreflectivity of longitudinal
pavement markings published in the Federal Register on April 22, 2010. This
document, developed as part of the rulemaking process, provides the background
and detail explaining the proposal.
MUTCD Language – Maintaining Pavement Marking Retroreflectivity:
This link shows the proposed pavement marking retroreflectivity MUTCD Text.
Note that this proposal was named Revision 1 to the 2009 MUTCD at the time
this NPA was published. In 2011 FHWA published two additional Notices of
Proposed Amendments. The amendments will actually be numbered in the order
that the final rules become effective.
Summary of Proposed MUTCD Retroreflectivity Pavement Marking Standard:
This brief summarizes the technical details of the 2010 Notice of Proposed
Rulemakings. [Publication No. FHWA-SA-10-015]
Revised Assessment of Economic Impacts of Pavement Marking Retroreflectivity:
Final Report: Revised Assessment of Economic Impacts of Implementing Minimum
Levels of Pavement Marking Retroreflectivity. This updated report estimates
increased costs of 3.2 percent of the current costs to implement the improved
retroreflectivity of longitudinal markings in the proposed rulemaking. [Publication
For hard copies of documents with publication numbers, please send a request
and include the publication number and title, along with the number of copies
and your mailing address and phone number. Requests will be filled based on
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