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Rumble strips in Wyoming - an update(1 post)

Rumble strips in Wyoming - an updatemoneyman
Jul 3, 2001 3:17 PM
About 6 weeks ago, I asked for your help in an advocacy issue regarding milling of rumble strips on Wyoming Highways. Specifically, we believed that rumble strips would endanger the lives of cyclists who would be forced to travel in the traffic lanes if aggressive, deep and wide rumble strips would be constructed on our highways. Many of you responded with letters to the Director of the Wyoming Department of Transportation, Mr. Sleeter Dover. Here are the results of our action.

I received the following message from Amber Travsky, reporter for the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, former mayor of Laramie, and a cyclist. Amber and I visited with Sleeter in his office to personally express our concerns regarding rumble strips. She received the message from Jay Meyer, Bicycle Coordinator for the Wyoming Department of Transportation.

WYDOT updates rumble strip policy to accommodate bicyclist concerns
July 3, 2001

Policy which guides the installation of shoulder rumble strips along Wyoming highways has been updated to accommodate bicycle use of those highways, according to WYDOT Director Sleeter C. Dover.
Rumble strips are grooves set into the pavement transverse to the direction of travel. When a vehicle's tires run over them, both the vibration and sound serve to alert the driver that the vehicle is straying from the roadway.
Although rumble strips are a proven method for increasing highway safety by reducing the number of run-off-the-road crashes, they present a problem for bicyclists using the same roadway. Concerns expressed by a number of bicyclists resulted in a review of the rumble strip policy by a team of WYDOT personnel.
"Our personnel recently traveled to Colorado to take a first-hand look at some experimental rumble strip designs and returned with the recommendation that WYDOT's policy could be improved to better accommodate bicycle travel while still meeting our statutory mandate of providing the safest and most efficient transportation system that we can," Dover said.
Updates to WYDOT's rumble strip policy include:
* On two-lane roadways, rumble strips will be milled into the pavement in an intermittent pattern -- 48 feet of strips followed by 12 feet without strips, as opposed to milling the strips in a continuous pattern as was the case before. The intermittent pattern will give bicyclists a better opportunity to cross from the shoulder to the travel lane without riding over the rumble strip.
* The strips will be made less "aggressive" (and therefore less hazardous to bicyclists) on most two-lane roadways by reducing their depth from the previous standard of between one-half and five-eighths of an inch to the new standard of between three-eighths and one-half of an inch.
* Rumble strips will no longer be automatically placed on two-lane routes which have shoulder widths of six feet or greater, but instead, only after being deemed appropriate by the agency, based on crash statistics, bicycle use, pavement condition and future pending surface work.
* When rumble strips are milled into road shoulders which measure six feet or less, they will be installed so that a minimum of four feet of clear space between the strip and the edge of shoulder pavement is available for bicyclists.
* On routes with shoulder widths of less than six feet, an alternative rumble strip design may be used to balance the needs of motorists and bicyclists.

Conclusion - a very good compromise between all parties. Also, renewed faith in the respect for the constituency shown by appointed and elected officials. We approached Mr. Dover with a reasonable argument, and he responded.

Thanks very much to those of you who took the time to write. Your work is appreciated.