Each year, there are thousands of traffic accidents on Washington roadways. In 2017, there were approximately 121,000. These traffic accidents resulted in millions of dollars in property damage, medical care, and legal settlements. Leading accident causes are poor roadway conditions, inclement weather, and driver error. By performing regular maintenance on our highways and byways, we make safer roadway conditions something we can control.
Welcome to Stripe Rite! We’ve created this blog post to showcase several roadway safety improvements that can help make the roadways of Washington safer for vehicles and pedestrians alike.
Curbs and Wheel Stops
Curbs and wheel stops play an essential role in keeping our roadways safe. They can be found anywhere from parking lots, to side streets, to major interstate highways.
Stripe Rite recently completed an extruded curb project at the Vashon Ferry Terminal. This project adds to existing safety enhancements by allowing water to channel and flow instead of ponding during heavy rainstorms. Ponding is a term used to describe water that collects on a road’s surface or shoulder. When driving on the open road, water ponding can initiate hydroplaning, a very dangerous situation that makes a vehicle almost impossible to control. Hydroplaning can occur with only an inch of water on the roadway, at speeds as low as 35 mph.
Washington receives an incredible amount of annual rainfall, particularly in the Seattle area, with an average of 38” per year. When a roadway has cracks in the asphalt, water can seep in and significantly decrease its lifespan.
When crack sealing is paired with asphalt seal coating, it helps prevent premature wear-and- tear by covering up microscopic cracks in the roadway’s surface. If left untreated, these cracks allow rainwater to penetrate the roadway, causing potholes to form.
If your roadway has cracks that need filling, now is the best time to schedule the work. In the Pacific Northwest, the optimal time of year to perform crack sealing and asphalt seal coating is March through November. Be sure to schedule quickly, as these months are our busiest!
Other Safety Improvements
In addition to crack sealing, asphalt seal coating, and extruded curbs, the following roadway safety improvements can help make our highways safer for both pedestrians and vehicle traffic.
Grooved and Recessed Pavement Markings – Grooved pavement markings help preserve the life and durability of the road material. At Stripe Rite, we grind a groove into the pavement’s surface and insert a durable plastic material, allowing it to last much longer than one installed on the surface of the pavement.
Rumble Strip Cuts – These cuts in the pavement cause the tires of a car to make an audible noise and shaking motion when the driver of a vehicle starts to veer into oncoming traffic or off to the side of the road. This safety feature alerts drivers to correct their course before an accident can occur.
Pavement Markings – Over time, original pavement markings can fade and chip away. This is especially dangerous in the wintertime and during rainstorms, making the roadway markings very difficult to see.
Road Safety Improvements for Washington
At Stripe Rite, we’ve been helping Washington motorists stay safe for 35 years. If your highways, byways, or side streets are in need of repair or could use a little maintenance, give us a call at 1.800.427.0484 and learn how we can help keep your roadways safe!