Augusta Free Press

Rumble strips to reduce run-off-road crashes

This fall, VDOT will install rumble strips along eight primary highways as a safety countermeasure to drivers straying from their lane.

So far in 2017, 21 of the VDOT Culpeper District’s 40 highway fatalities have resulted from a vehicle running off the road and striking a fixed object, such as a tree or fence. When driven over, rumble strips create noise and vibration to alert drivers to correct their course, and according to the Federal Highway Administration, can reduce related crashes by 30 to 60 percent. Studies show they are most effective with crashes caused by distracted or drowsy driving, reporting a 40 to 80 percent reduction in those crash types.

In late August, rumble strips were installed on the shoulders along Route 29 from Ruckersville north to the Prince William County line. Beginning Oct. 11 and over the next several months, rural portions of these routes will be addressed:

Where these routes are two lanes wide, rumble strips will be installed along the road’s centerline to mitigate head-on collisions and over-correcting. On four-lane routes, installation will be on the shoulders. Use caution and expect minor delays during this work.

Culpeper District’s goal is to add rumble strips on all primary highways over the next several years, as funding and paving schedules allow. The district serves nine counties: Albemarle, Culpeper, Fauquier, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, Madison, Orange and Rappahannock.