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Inspecting for Retroreflectivity


Traffic signs provide an important means of communicating information to road users. They need to be visible to be effective. The nighttime environment presents many sign visibility challenges. Since drivers cannot see as many visual cues as they can during the day, this places greater reliance on signs and other traffic control devices. To provide nighttime sign visibility, most signs are made from retroreflective sheeting. Retroreflectivity is the property of a material that re-directs light back to the originating source.

During this class, participants will be walked through the assessment techniques available for conducting sign maintenance with respect to retroreflectivity.


Upon completion of the class, attendees should be able to:

Understand the new MUTCD (Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices) requirements

  • Understand sign inspection methods that can be used to evaluate sign retroreflectivity in compliance with the new requirements

  • Lean traffic sign inspection techniques that can assess sign retroreflectivity


This class should be of interest to roadway personnel who install and maintain signs and who want to learn more about the assessment methods that can be used to comply with MUTCD requirements.

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