Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices
Research Results for Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB) Flash Patterns
Federally-funded research was conducted by the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) regarding the effectiveness of various flash patterns for RRFBs. The initial experimentation with RRFBs that led to the eventual interim approval for this device only tested one relatively complex flash pattern. Before proposing to add this new device to the MUTCD, the FHWA was interested in finding out if a simpler flash pattern that included more dark time would be equally or more effective at getting motorists to stop for pedestrians at uncontrolled crossings. The TTI research showed that two different simpler flash patterns were just as effective as the currently-approved pattern. An overview of the study and an executive summary that provides the detailed results are available on the TTI web site.
Standard Highway Signs and Markings
The 2009 MUTCD sign layouts are available. The Federal Highway Administration has developed the design details of the new signs added in the 2009 Edition of the MUTCD and signs whose designs have been modified in the 2009 MUTCD. The new and modified designs are provided in the form of a 2012 Supplement to the 2004 Edition of Standard Highway Signs.
The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, or MUTCD defines the standards used by road managers nationwide to install and maintain traffic control devices on all public streets, highways, bikeways, and private roads open to public traffic. The MUTCD is published by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) under 23 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 655, Subpart F.
The MUTCD, which has been administered by the FHWA since 1971, is a compilation of national standards for all traffic control devices, including road markings, highway signs, and traffic signals. It is updated periodically to accommodate the nation's changing transportation needs and address new safety technologies, traffic control tools and traffic management techniques.
On December 16, 2009 a final rule adopting the 2009 Edition of the MUTCD was published in the Federal Register with an effective date of January 15, 2010. States must adopt the 2009 National MUTCD as their legal State standard for traffic control devices within two years from the effective date. The Federal Register notice, which provides detailed discussion of the FHWA's decisions on major changes from the 2003 edition, can be viewed at http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/pdf/E9-28322.pdf (PDF, 716KB).
FHWA does not print copies of the MUTCD. National organizations have partnered and printed hard copies of the MUTCD. These hard copies are available for sale. Go to ATSSA, ITE, AASHTO, or IMSA to get sales information.
On May 14, 2012 final rules adopting Revisions 1 and 2 of the 2009, MUTCD were published in the Federal Register with an effective date of June 13, 2012. The Federal Register notices, which provide detailed discussions of the FHWA's decisions can be viewed at:
The PDF version of the 2009 MUTCD with Revision Numbers 1 and 2 incorporated, dated May 2012 of the MUTCD is the most current edition of the official FHWA publication.
PDF files can be viewed with the Acrobat® Reader®
United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration