Reflectorized Markers

Funding Source: MassDOT and Federal Highway Administration

Title: Improved Highway Lane Reflectorized Markers


Status: Completed

Summary: In 2008, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) began using recessed reflectorized pavement markings to help road users delineate highway lanes at night. While these markers addressed some of the concerns over previously used snowplow-able raised pavement markers, there continue to be numerous issues with their performance. The recessed pavement markers require grooving of the pavement surface and are affixed to the pavement using an epoxy adhesive. This causes the pavement depth of the surface course to be reduced at the location of the slotted pavement markers and allows for the build-up of debris within the pavement grooves. Some slotted pavement markers may lose their bond with the pavement surface due to roadway use, freeze-thaw conditions, drainage issues, roadway salt intrusion, improper installation, etc. The effort of replacing missing markers can lead to considerable maintenance costs. Moreover, there is a safety concern with missing reflectors, as well as with certain types of unattached pavement markers having the potential of becoming projectiles with possible attendant damage to vehicles and injuries to motorists. MassDOT is interested in maximizing performance and length of service while minimizing lifecycle costs. The purpose of this synthesis project is to investigate alternatives and best practices in reflectorized pavement markers.