Can States Meet Compliance Dates for 2009 MUTCD Requirements?

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, "We want to be sure these safety requirements are reasonable, fair, and cost-effective."

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood on Monday called for additional public input about compliance dates set in the 2009 Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices for a number of federal traffic control regulations. They range from road sign reflectivity to crosswalk timing.

"Given the difficult economic conditions states currently face, asking for additional input on compliance dates is the right thing to do," LaHood said. "We want to be sure these safety requirements are reasonable, fair and cost-effective."

The public has until Jan. 14 to submit comments to the Federal Register. Comments should be directed to

The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) is a compilation of national standards for all traffic control devices, including road markings, highway signs, and traffic signals. It is updated periodically to accommodate changing transportation needs and address new safety technologies, traffic control tools, and traffic management techniques.

In the comment request, FHWA cited seven compliance dates that it said may be the most challenging for state highway departments to meet. Among them are a requirement for increased retroreflectivity of highway signs and another requirement, with a 2019 deadline, to install one-way signs on the near-right and far-left corners of each intersection with the directional roadways of a divided highway having a median 30 feet wide or wider. This was only a recommendation in the 2003 MUTCD.

"Safety is our priority, but so is good government," said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. "Listening to the public helps to ensure both."

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