Pavement Marking

Pavement Marking

Pavement Marking

In a report developed by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), it was recommended that the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) establish plans to “better manage” initiatives and efforts related to Connected Automated Vehicles (CAVs). GAO officials state within the report, which was released in November 2017, that their reasoning behind the research efforts are based on the potential promise of CAVs to provide transformative safety and mobility benefits, but these benefits also will come with a set of safety and infrastructure challenges for policymakers.


While it also was noted that other components such as urban versus rural settings and local ownership of roadways will play a hand in infrastructure adaptations, many experts in automation and infrastructure back up the report’s claims, and assert that consistent and proper maintenance of the current roadway system is of the upmost importance for conventional and AV motorists — especially when it comes to pavement markings.


ATSSA has a dedicated group of members on its Pavement Marking Committee (member login required), who are working to assert the proper maintenance of pavement marking and advance technologies being developed to help increase safety benefits and accommodation of CAVs. The committee has developed a list of policies and continues to work toward advancing the collaboration between the roadway safety industry and automakers as America progresses toward an automated future.

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TRB, AASHTO hold joint committee meeting on roadside safety

AASHTO considering converting MASH to performance specifications

The Transportation Research Board (TRB) Roadside Safety Design Committee and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Technical Committee on Roadside Safety met Monday with a focus on implementation and updates for the Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH).

AASHTO announced that it is working on a scoping project intended to determine the effort it needs to invest to convert MASH into a set of performance specifications, said ATSSA Vice President of Member Services Donna Clark.

Clark, Director of Innovation & Technical Services Eric Perry, and Training Program Manager Jessica Scheyder took part in TRB’s virtual summer conference, which covers a broad range of topics and continues through Aug. 13.

The AASHTO MASH project would include determining the tasks needed to complete the conversion of MASH to a specification, additional research needed, the estimated cost, and an estimated timeline to complete the conversion. ATSSA staff asked to be part of the review panel for this effort.

Other key points from Monday’s meeting include the following.

  • Information was presented on the latest research efforts in roadside safety with a focus on potential changes to the vehicle fleet, impact conditions, and encroachment conditions in work zones.
  • Longtime industry expert Nick Artimovich spoke about the potential of testing families of devices rather than testing each configuration as currently stated in the MASH standards. Artimovich laid out benefits of this common-sense approach including cost savings for the industry (both departments of transportation [DOTs] and manufacturers) and reducing time to market for new devices within the “family.” AASHTO staff mentioned it will be releasing additional Q & As in a few weeks with a more detailed Q & A coming out in a few months.
  • Preliminary research was provided showing testing of a Type III Barricade passing both a small car and pickup truck at zero-degree and 90-degree angles.
  • Representatives from six states participated in a panel discussion about the difficulties DOTs are facing when trying to implement MASH. One concern was the lack of consistency from state to state in how devices are approved. Panelists discussed the struggle to implement an in-service performance review because of limited manpower, inexperienced staff, and the overall cost to manage a program. Additionally, one panel member noted there remains a lack of MASH-tested traffic control devices.
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