Determining a strategy for efficiently managing sign retroreflectivity in New Hampshire.
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Determining a strategy for efficiently managing sign retroreflectivity in New Hampshire.

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  • Abstract:
    The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) has developed minimum retroreflectivity requirements for sign sheeting that will

    become a federal mandate for roadside signs in 2015 and for overhead signs in 2018. In 2012, the New Hampshire Department of

    Transportation (NHDOT) was required by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to have a plan in place for meeting these requirements.

    The MUTCD has identified five acceptable methods that fall into two categories for determining if signs meet the requirements. In the

    Assessment category, the methods listed are Visual Nighttime Inspection and Measured Sign Retroreflectivity. In the Management category, the

    methods listed are Expected Sign Life, Blanket Replacement, and Control Signs.

    This project focused on determining a method that was most suited to the needs of the NHDOT. Each method has advantages and

    disadvantages that were considered during the selection of an appropriate plan.

    Once all the methods were assessed, it was determined that Visual Nighttime Inspection would be the most economical due to the quickness that

    the review can be accomplished and the minimal resources required to conduct the inspection. Another major factor for selecting the visual

    night inspection was that a statewide sign inventory is currently not available. If a current inventory was available, other methods may prove to

    be more efficient.

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