High visibility…new ANSI regs, MUTCD stress active lighting

| February 1, 2010

The new ANSI 107 regulation update is now in effect, and highway workers need to meet new comprehensive regulations on U.S. highway worker high-visibility safety garment requirements.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood on Dec. 16 released a comprehensive update to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). The manual, which has been administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) since 1971, sets the standards for road safety throughout the country.

The new and updated standards were implemented make the nation’s roads and bridges safer for drivers, construction workers and pedestrians alike, LaHood noted in a written statement.

The MUTCD is the national standard for all traffic control devices, including traffic signs, pavement markings, signals and any other devices used to regulate, warn or guide traffic. Ensuring uniformity of traffic control devices across the nation – from their messages and placement to their sizes, shapes and colors – helps to reduce crashes and traffic congestion. This is the first comprehensive update to the manual since 2003.

The MUTCD’s 2009 edition features many new and updated requirements, ranging from changes in highway signs and bike lanes to the color of high-visibility garments worn by road workers. Most changes are a result of extensive research; however, seven changes stem from recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board. This is the largest number of NTSB recommendations adopted by the MUTCD at one time. –by Tina Grady Barbaccia

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