STUDIES OF THE ROAD MARKING CODE

The studies described in this report are concerned with the driver's reactions to road markings. The first study investigated the driver's understanding of the various white and colored markings on the road and his approval of different road marking applications. It was found that the driver favors markings which show the path of travel under adverse conditions, or which guide him in performing difficult maneuvers. Troublesome markings are those which attempt to communicate meanings which the driver may find difficult to interpret or which he may consider unnecessary. Respondents did not show a satisfactory understanding of the road marking code. More than a quarter of the explanations were wrong of the single solid white, single wide white, double broken yellow, single broken yellow and single broken white markings. The second study concerned the development of an "ideal" coding system. Respondents chose "the most logical and understandable" markings to fit a variety of common highway situations. It was found that a broken line has a natural association (population stereotype) with permission to cross. Yellow markings are associated with hazard. It was concluded that the driver requires instructions on poorly understood markings. It was also recommended that yellow markings not be used to indicate counter-flow traffic. Yellow markings should be used where a real hazard exists, such as on railroad crossings, bus stops, lift turn channelizations, dangerous curves and highway repair areas. /FHWA/

  • Corporate Authors:

    Federal Highway Administration

    Office of Research and Development, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Authors:
    • Gordon, D A
  • Publication Date: 1976-4

Media Info

  • Pagination: 77 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00179471
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Federal Highway Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA-RD-76- 59 Final Rpt., FCP 21L3-062
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Aug 27 1988 12:00AM