[Federal Register: November 20, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 224)]
[Rules and Regulations]               
[Page 65495-65583]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr20no03-12]                         


[[Page 65495]]

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Part II





Department of Transportation





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Federal Highway Administration



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23 CFR Part 655



National Standards for Traffic Control Devices: Manual on Uniform 
Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways; Revision; Final Rule


[[Page 65496]]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Highway Administration

23 CFR Part 655

[FHWA Docket No. FHWA-2001-11159]
RIN 2125-AE93

 
National Standards for Traffic Control Devices: Manual on Uniform 
Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways; Revision

AGENCY: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) is 
incorporated by reference in 23 CFR part 655, subpart F, approved by 
the Federal Highway Administration, and recognized as the national 
standard for traffic control devices used on all public roads. The 
purpose of this final rule is to revise standards, guidance, options, 
and supporting information relating to the traffic control devices in 
all parts of the MUTCD, to expedite traffic, promote uniformity, 
improve safety, and incorporate technology advances in traffic control 
device application. The MUTCD, with these changes incorporated, is 
being designated as the 2003 edition of the MUTCD.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This final rule is effective December 22, 2003. The 
incorporation by reference of the publication listed in this regulation 
is approved by the Director of the Office of the Federal Register as of 
December 22, 2003.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Ernest Huckaby, Office of 
Transportation Operations, Room 3408, (202) 366-9064, or Mr. Raymond 
Cuprill, Office of the Chief Counsel, Room 4230, (202) 366-0791, U.S. 
Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, 400 
Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590. Office hours are from 7:45 
a.m. to 4:15 p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Electronic Access

    This document, the notice of proposed amendments (NPA), and all 
comments received may be viewed online through the Document Management 
System (DMS) at http://dms.dot.gov. The DMS is available 24 hours each 
day, 365 days each year. Electronic submission and retrieval help and 
guidelines are available under the help section of the Web site.
    An electronic copy of this document may also be downloaded by using 
a computer, modem and suitable communications software from the 
Government Printing Office's Electronic Bulletin Board Service at (202) 
512-1661. Internet users may also reach the Office of the Federal 
Register's home page at: http://www.archives.gov and the Government Printing Office's Web page at: http://www.gpo.gov.


Background

    On May 21, 2002, at 67 FR 35850, the FHWA published a notice of 
proposed amendments (NPA) proposing revisions to the Manual on Uniform 
Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). Those changes were proposed to be 
designated as Revision No. 2 of the Millennium (2000) edition of the 
MUTCD. Interested persons were invited to submit comments to FHWA 
Docket No. FHWA-2001-11159. Based on the comments received and its own 
experience, the FHWA is issuing a final rule and is designating the 
MUTCD, with these changes incorporated, as the 2003 Edition of the 
MUTCD. The FHWA believes that the title ``2003 Edition'' would be 
easier for readers to follow rather than the title ``Revision No. 2 of 
the Millennium (2000) edition.''
    A list of all of the items in this final rule and the text of the 
2003 edition of the MUTCD, with these final rule changes incorporated, 
are available for inspection and copying, as prescribed in 49 CFR part 
7, at the FHWA Office of Transportation Operations, Room 3408, 400 
Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590. Furthermore, the list of all 
items in this final rule and the text of the 2003 edition of the MUTCD, 
with these final rule changes incorporated, are available on the FHWA's 
MUTCD Internet site http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov. The previous version of 
the MUTCD, the 2000 MUTCD with Revision 1 text incorporated is also 
available on this Internet site. The 2003 edition supersedes all 
previous editions and revisions of the MUTCD.

Summary of Comments

    The FHWA received 293 letters submitted to the docket, containing 
over 5,000 individual comments on the MUTCD in general or on one or 
more parts, chapters, sections, or paragraphs contained in the MUTCD. 
Comments were received from the National Committee on Uniform Traffic 
Control Devices (NCUTCD), State Departments of Transportation (DOTs), 
city and county government agencies, Federal government agencies, 
consulting firms, private industry, associations, other organizations, 
and individual private citizens. The FHWA has reviewed and analyzed all 
the comments received. The significant comments and summaries of the 
FHWA's analyses and determinations are discussed below. General 
comments and significant global changes throughout the MUTCD are 
discussed first, followed by discussion of significant comments and 
adopted changes in each of the individual Parts of the MUTCD.

Discussion of Adopted General and Global Changes Throughout the MUTCD

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed designating the changes to the MUTCD 
as Revision No. 2 of the Millennium (2000) edition of the MUTCD. 
Comments were received from the American Association of State Highway 
Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the American Traffic Safety Services 
Association (ATSSA) and the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) 
(the three associations who publish the MUTCD in hard-copy book format) 
and from other individuals opposing this proposed designation as 
Revision No. 2. The commenters expressed the opinion that the number 
and extent of changes are too great in scope to be considered a mere 
revision of the 2000 edition and that the MUTCD, with the changes 
incorporated, should be designated as a complete new edition of the 
MUTCD, to minimize user confusion. The commenters also stated that a 
new graphical design for the cover and title pages of each part of the 
MUTCD are needed to make the new edition clearly distinguishable by 
users from earlier editions. The FHWA agrees with these comments and 
designates the MUTCD, with the adopted final rule changes incorporated, 
as the 2003 Edition of the MUTCD and also adopts new graphical designs 
for the cover and title pages of each part of the 2003 MUTCD. The FHWA 
revises Table I-1 and all page headers to reflect this designation.
    Additionally, the FHWA received comments from ITE, ATSSA, traffic 
engineering consultants and private citizens that the proposed 
continuation of the 2000 MUTCD's page layout format and graphics 
formats is inappropriate and that these elements need improvement to 
adequately serve users. Suggestions included reducing the amount of 
``white space'' on text pages to reduce the total number of pages in 
the MUTCD, using accurate fonts and letter spacing on illustrations of 
signs, using more accurate proportioning of lanes and pavement markings 
on figures, and various other adjustments to graphics to aid in user 
understanding and to make the figures more accurately reflect the 
standards,

[[Page 65497]]

guidance, and options contained in the text of the MUTCD. The FHWA 
agrees that the page layout and graphics formatting of the 2000 MUTCD 
needs to be improved in the 2003 edition to make the document more 
usable by the public. Accordingly, in this final rule the FHWA revises 
the text page layouts to reduce white space and thereby reduce the 
number of text pages by about one-third, while still maintaining good 
layout for readability both online and in printed book format. The FHWA 
also revises many of the figures in the MUTCD to make sign 
illustrations pattern-accurate and illustrations of pavement markings 
and other devices more understandable and to accurately reflect 
provisions in the MUTCD text.
    The FHWA also received many comments about the lack of consistency 
between some of the signs and pavement markings illustrated in various 
figures in the MUTCD and the illustrations in the ``Standard Highway 
Signs'' (SHS) book.\1\ The FHWA agrees that these inconsistencies cause 
inordinate confusion to users, and in this final rule the FHWA revises 
many of the MUTCD figures to illustrate or refer to all SHS signs that 
are consistent with this 2003 MUTCD. This will better serve users by 
greatly improving the consistency of the MUTCD with the SHS.
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    \1\ ``Standard Highway Signs,'' FHWA, 2002 Edition is available 
for purchase from the U.S. Government Printing Office Bookstore, 
Superintendent of Documents, Room 118, Federal Building, 1000 
Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Internet Web site at http://bookstore.gpo.gov.
 It is also available on the FHWA's Web site at 
http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov and is available for inspection and 
copying at the FHWA Washington Headquarters and all FHWA Division 
Offices prescribed at 49 CFR part 7.
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    Additionally, in the NPA, the FHWA proposed minor grammatical or 
style changes to the MUTCD text to improve consistency with related 
text or figures, to improve clarity, or to correct minor errors. Where 
the FHWA proposed to add new sections within a chapter of the MUTCD, 
the FHWA proposed to renumber the sections that followed accordingly. 
The FHWA proposed to revise all Tables of Contents, Lists of Figures, 
Lists of Tables, and page headers and footers as appropriate to reflect 
the proposed changes. The FHWA received many comments, both in general 
and on many specific sections throughout the MUTCD, agreeing with these 
minor editorial changes. Some commenters opposed the proposed use of 
some specific words or phrases and recommended substitute words or 
phrases and/or additional minor editorial revisions to correct errors, 
improve grammar, clarity, consistency, and accuracy. Where appropriate, 
the FHWA incorporates minor editorial revisions and corrections in this 
final rule.
    The FHWA also received comments on the fact that many of the new 
sections proposed in the NPA were to be added at the end of the chapter 
in various parts of the MUTCD. Several commenters, particularly State 
DOTs, suggested that the new material would be more logically located 
near other similar subjects within the chapter rather than at the end. 
The FHWA agrees with many of the comments of this nature and makes 
editorial changes in the text and figures as appropriate in this final 
rule. The FHWA also relocates and renumbers some of the new sections to 
appropriate locations within the chapters to enhance user 
understanding, and renumbers subsequent sections accordingly.
    In the discussions below, the section numbers and titles refer to 
those in this final rule, with parenthetical reference to the section 
numbers and titles in the NPA and/or the 2000 Edition if different, as 
appropriate.
    The FHWA also received comments from traffic engineering 
consultants and others about inconsistency and errors in the 2000 MUTCD 
and in the NPA regarding conversions of English units to metric units. 
Accordingly, the FHWA made a comprehensive review of all dimensions and 
units of measure in the MUTCD and identified a variety of errors in 
conversions of English units to metric units that had occurred during 
the process of preparing the 2000 edition of the MUTCD and that had 
been perpetuated or inaccurately corrected in the NPA. The FHWA 
corrects these metric conversions in this final rule.
    In the NPA, to facilitate easy reference, the FHWA also proposed 
giving figure numbers and titles to all pages that did not have a 
figure number for images of traffic control devices in the 2000 MUTCD. 
The FHWA also proposed changing the titles of a number of figures to 
clarify a figure as either ``typical'' or ``example(s) of.'' In 
general, the FHWA proposed using the word ``typical'' in the title if 
the figure portrays preferred or recommended practice, and the words 
``example(s) of'' in the title if the figure portrays one or several of 
a variety of things that would be acceptable practice with no 
recommended preference. Also, the FHWA proposed modifying figures, 
where appropriate, to reflect proposed changes in the text. Most of the 
commenters agreed with these proposed changes. In a few cases, the FHWA 
received comments opposing a proposed change of a specific figure's 
title from ``example(s) of'' to ``typical,'' citing reasons why the 
figure or figures in question were inaccurately named based on the 
FHWA's stated criteria. The FHWA adopts the proposed addition of or 
changes to figure numbers and titles with revisions to address comments 
as appropriate.
    The FHWA also received several comments from the U.S. Access Board 
and from organizations representing the blind, visually impaired, and 
people with other disabilities, requesting that the MUTCD be changed 
throughout to make it fully consistent with the Draft Guidelines for 
Accessible Public Rights-of-Way that were published by the Access Board 
on June 17, 2002, on its Web site (http://www.access-board.gov). The 
FHWA disagrees because the draft guidelines published by the Access 
Board are only a preliminary draft for initial public comments, and 
they have not been finalized. The Access Board is currently reviewing 
the large number of initial public comments received on the draft and 
plans to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) with a revised 
proposal for Guidelines for Accessible Public Rights-of-Way in 2004. 
After the Access Board completes its rulemaking on this matter and 
issues a final rule, the FHWA plans to propose changes to the MUTCD to 
make it consistent with the Access Board's guidelines. However, in 
recognition of and support for the importance of accessibility issues 
related to traffic control devices, in the NPA the FHWA proposed a 
variety of changes to the MUTCD to assure consistency with existing 
requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. 
12101 et seq., and other regulatory requirements concerning 
accessibility as they pertain to traffic control devices. In this final 
rule, the FHWA adopts most of those proposed changes. Further 
discussion of accessibility issues may be found elsewhere in this 
preamble to this final rule, especially under the discussion of adopted 
revisions to Part 6 of the MUTCD, Temporary Traffic Controls.
    The FHWA is aware that section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, 29 
U.S.C. 794 (2001), requires that certain electronic and information 
technology (EIT) be accessible to individuals with disabilities. By 
regulation, 36 CFR 1194.4 (2001), EIT includes information contained on 
world wide Web sites. Because the FHWA distributes the MUTCD via the 
Internet site (http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov), it is aware that it must 
comply with section 508, and it has done so by providing, in addition 
to the PDF file format, an alternative

[[Page 65498]]

format (hypertext markup language--HTML), that is accessible to 
individuals with disabilities. Included within those HTML files are 
accessible narrative descriptions of all of the illustrations (figures) 
that are contained in the MUTCD. The FHWA notes that, while every 
effort has been made to assure complete consistency between the PDF and 
HTML file formats, the PDF version is the official version of the MUTCD 
and takes precedence over any potentially conflicting text in that may 
occur in the HTML version.
    A summary of the significant changes for each of the parts of the 
MUTCD is included in the following discussion.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to the Introduction

    1. On Page i the FHWA adds addresses for four additional 
organizations whose publications are referenced in the various parts of 
the MUTCD. There were no comments on these additions and the FHWA 
adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA, with further revisions to 
add Web site addresses for each of the organizations listed, to assist 
users of the MUTCD with contacting each of the organizations.
    2. In the Introduction, the FHWA revises the second paragraph of 
the first STANDARD statement to correct an incorrect reference in the 
2000 MUTCD and to accurately reflect the referenced text of the Code of 
Federal Regulations and with Section 1A.07 Responsibility for Traffic 
Control Devices. There were no comments on these changes. The FHWA 
adopts the changes.
    In the second SUPPORT statement, the FHWA makes a minor editorial 
change to correct the section reference to the Uniform Vehicle Code \2\ 
in the fourth sentence of the first paragraph to Section 15-116 of the 
UVC. The 2000 MUTCD and the NPA incorrectly referenced Section 15-117 
of the UVC regarding traffic control devices on private property used 
by the public.
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    \2\ The ``Uniform Vehicle Code and Model Traffic Ordinance,'' 
2000 edition, is published by the National Committee on Uniform 
Traffic Laws and Ordinances, 107 S. West Street, 110, 
Alexandria, Virginia 22314. It is available for inspection as 
prescribed at 49 CFR part 7. Purchase information is available on 
the Web site for the National Committee at http://www.ncutlo.org.
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    The FHWA also adds a second paragraph to the GUIDANCE statement to 
clarify that, except when a specific numeral is required by the MUTCD 
text, numerals shown in sign images in the figures that specify times, 
distances, speed limits, and weights should be regarded as examples 
only, and that the numerals installed on actual signs should be 
appropriately altered to fit the specific signing situation. This 
clarification is necessary to address comments about some of the sign 
images throughout the MUTCD in the NPA.
    The FHWA also adds a fourth SUPPORT statement to clarify the 
organization of the MUTCD and explain how one could reference portions 
of the MUTCD. There were no comments on this SUPPORT statement and the 
FHWA adopts it as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA also adds a new STANDARD that lists special phase-in 
target compliance dates for various portions of the MUTCD. The purpose 
of this list is to provide a convenient reference guide to the user of 
phase-in target compliance dates for various portions of the MUTCD. The 
FHWA received comments from the City of Plano, Texas, and the 
Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals supporting the 
presence of this new text. Some commenters also questioned the use of 
the word ``issuance'' in the STANDARD stating that States or other 
Federal agencies shall adopt changes to the MUTCD within two years of 
issuance. ``Issuance'' in this usage refers to the date that the FHWA 
Administrator signs the final rule, which occurs prior to the 
publication date and effective date of the final rule. This language is 
as proposed in 23 CFR 655.603(b)(1) and cannot be changed in the MUTCD 
Introduction until the Code of Federal Regulations is changed. Such a 
change may be considered in a future rulemaking.
    The National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (NCUTCD), 
including members of the Railroad-Light Rail Transit Technical 
Committee of the NCUTCD opposed the wording in the first paragraph of 
the proposed new STANDARD that would require replacement of damaged 
devices upon adoption of the MUTCD by the State or other Federal 
agency. The commenters stated that replacement of damaged devices is 
normal maintenance that should not be covered by this STANDARD. While 
it is usually desirable to replace damaged devices with ones that 
conform to the current MUTCD, there are times that doing so may not be 
practical, or may cause the replacement device to be inconsistent with 
other portions of the Manual or other devices in a series, and thereby 
cause a potential safety issue for road users. The FHWA agrees and 
revises the statement by deleting replacement of damaged devices from 
the STANDARD statement and, in conjunction with this, at the end of the 
MUTCD Introduction the FHWA adds new OPTION and SUPPORT statements 
regarding the replacement of damaged, non-compliant devices as part of 
maintenance activities following a crash or other event. The FHWA also 
modifies the new STANDARD statement to accurately reflect existing 
provisions of the Code of Federal Regulations in regard to different 
requirements that apply on Federal-aid projects, and to clarify the 
FHWA's authority to establish phase-in target compliance dates for 
particular changes to the MUTCD.
    The NCUTCD, State and local DOTs, and private citizens suggested 
changes to some specific proposed special phase-in target compliance 
dates. The FHWA deletes the word ``proposed'' from each of the phase-in 
target compliance dates which appeared in the NPA, and changes the 
phase-in target compliance dates (from what was proposed in the NPA) 
for the following: Section 2B.28 Preferential Only Lane Sign Placement 
and Application (numbered 2B.50 in the NPA), Section 2B.52 Hazardous 
Material Signs (R14-2, R14-3) (numbered 2B.46 in the NPA), Section 
2C.30 Speed Reduction Signs (W3-5, W3-5a) (numbered 2C.51 in the NPA), 
Section 2D.38 Street Name Sign (D3-1), Section 2D.39 Advance Street 
Name Signs (D3-2), Section 2E.28 Interchange Exit Numbering, Section 
2I.03 EVACUATION ROUTE Sign (EM-1), Section 4D.12 Flashing Operation of 
Traffic Control Signals, Section 4E.07 Countdown Pedestrian Signals, 
Section 6D.03 Worker Safety Considerations (numbered 6D.02 in the NPA), 
Section 6E.02 High-Visibility Safety Apparel, Section 6F.58 
Channelizing Devices (numbered 6F.55 in the NPA), Section 6F.63 Type I, 
II, or III Barricades (numbered 6F.60 in the NPA), and Part 10 (Traffic 
Controls for Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossings).
    The FHWA also adds phase-in target compliance dates for the 
following: Section 2A.19 Lateral Offset, Section 2B.06 STOP Sign 
Placement, Section 2B.09 YIELD Sign Applications, Section 2B.10 YIELD 
Sign Placement, Section 2B.13 Speed Limit Sign (numbered 2B.11 in the 
NPA), Section 2C.16 NARROW BRIDGE Sign (W5-2) (numbered 2C.14 in the 
NPA), Section 2B.26 Preferential Only Lane Signs (R3-10 through R3-15) 
(numbered 2B.48 in the NPA), Section 2C.34 Two-Way Traffic Sign (W6-3) 
(numbered 2C.31 in the NPA), Section 2E.54 Reference Location Signs, 
Section 2E.59 Preferential Only Lane Signs, Section 3B.03 Other Yellow 
Longitudinal Pavement Markings, Section 3B.17 Crosswalk Markings, 
Section 3B.19 Pavement Word and Symbol Markings, Section 5C.05 NARROW 
BRIDGE Sign,

[[Page 65499]]

Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, Section 6F.03 Sign 
Placement, 6F.66 Longitudinal Channelizing Barricades (numbered 6F.53 
in the NPA), Section 6F.82 Crash Cushions (numbered 6F.78 in the NPA), 
and Section 7B.12 Reduced Speed School Zone Ahead Sign (S4-5, S4-5a).
    The FHWA is not including in this final rule the following phase-in 
target compliance dates that had been proposed in the NPA: Section 
3B.14 Raised Pavement Markers Substituting for Pavement Markings, 
Section 4E.04 Size, Design, and Illumination of Pedestrian Signal Head 
Indications, Sections 4F.04 and 4L.03 (these sections are removed from 
this final rule), Section 6F.69 Temporary Raised Islands (numbered 
6F.63 in the NPA), and for Section 8B.02 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing 
(Crossbuck) Sign (R15-1) and Number of Tracks Sign (R15-2). Discussion 
of these changes, additions, and removals of phase-in target compliance 
dates may be found under the discussions of the individual sections.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to the Table of Contents

    3. The FHWA condenses the Table of Contents to include only the 
list of Parts and Chapters. Each Part continues to begin with a ``table 
of contents'' that contains the page number of every section, figure, 
and table. This change simplifies the search for an item by those with 
visual disabilities by enabling them to advance to the appropriate Part 
and then page more quickly and easily. There were no comments on the 
Table of Contents and the FHWA adopts the changes.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 1--General

    4. In Section 1A.05 Maintenance of Traffic Control Devices, in the 
second paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA revises the text 
to eliminate redundancy. The FHWA received one editorial comment from a 
traffic engineering consultant, and adopts the suggested editorial 
changes with minor revision.
    5. In Section 1A.07 Responsibility for Traffic Control Devices, the 
FHWA makes a minor editorial change to correct the section reference to 
the Uniform Vehicle Code (UVC) in the first sentence of the second 
paragraph of the SUPPORT statement to Section 15-116 of the UVC. The 
2000 MUTCD and the NPA incorrectly referenced Section 15-117 of the UVC 
regarding traffic control devices on private property used by the 
public.
    6. In Section 1A.10 Interpretations, Experimentations, Changes and 
Interim Approvals, titled ``Interpretations, Experimentations, and 
Changes'' in the NPA, the FHWA changes the first GUIDANCE statement to 
a STANDARD statement to require that requests for interpretations, 
permission to experiment, interim approval, or changes to the MUTCD 
must be submitted to the FHWA's Office of Transportation Operations. 
There were no comments on this change.
    The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD and the Minnesota 
and Ohio DOTS regarding item E of the second GUIDANCE statement and 
item D of the fourth GUIDANCE statement, both of which pertain to 
patented or copyrighted traffic control devices. The commenters 
suggested that certifying that a ``concept'' for a traffic control 
device is not protected by a patent or copyright is vague and difficult 
to interpret. The FHWA agrees and inserts an example of a traffic 
control device concept in both items to clarify the intent.
    Additionally, following the fourth GUIDANCE statement the FHWA adds 
SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, OPTION, and STANDARD statements describing the 
``interim approval'' process for the FHWA to approve or allow the use 
of new traffic control devices. Seven commenters representing industry 
and local governments were all in general support of the new interim 
approval process.
    The NPA included an additional new STANDARD statement between the 
new SUPPORT and GUIDANCE statements. In response to comments from the 
NCUTCD and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), the 
FHWA removes as incorrect the proposed STANDARD statement to the effect 
that interim approvals will be considered only when submitted by the 
public agency or private toll facility responsible for the operations 
of the road or street. It is not FHWA's intent to limit requests for 
interim approvals to only public agencies or private toll road 
authorities. Requests for interim approvals, interpretations, and 
changes can be made by anyone. However, requests for experimentation 
approvals will continue to be accepted only from public agencies or 
private toll road authorities.
    The FHWA also modifies Figure 1A-2 to reflect the ``interim 
approval'' process and to make the figure more accurately reflect the 

text of the MUTCD.
    7. In Section 1A.11 Relation to Other Publications, the FHWA 
modifies the STANDARD statement to update the documents listed to the 
latest editions. The FHWA also adds additional sources of information 
in the SUPPORT statement and revises the order of the sources of 
information, alphabetizing first by source, then by the title of the 
document. There were several editorial comments suggesting revisions to 
reflect current editions of documents that the FHWA incorporates in 
this final rule.
    8. In Section 1A.12 Color Code, the FHWA adds to the STANDARD 
statement the assignment of the color fluorescent pink to incident 
management to make it easier for road users to follow directions 
relating to traffic incidents. This color was referred to as 
fluorescent coral in the NPA. The FHWA received several comments from 
the NCUTCD, ATSSA, the Ohio, California, Virginia and Missouri DOTs, 
and traffic control device manufacturers, regarding this color. ATSSA, 
the Virginia DOT, and several traffic control device manufacturers felt 
that the color should be called fluorescent pink, other traffic control 
device manufacturers agreed with the color coral, and Minnesota DOT 
wanted more studies regarding effectiveness of the color. The FHWA 
believes that the study \3\ that found this color to be effective is 
sufficient and that further study is not needed. The coordinates of the 
color box are most appropriately titled ``fluorescent pink,'' and the 
FHWA intends for the color to appear pinker in nature, similar to the 
sample signs that were studied and found effective, rather than coral. 
The FHWA reorders the items in the STANDARD statement so that the 
colors appear in alphabetical order, adds the color ``fluorescent 
pink,'' and restores the color ``coral'' as unassigned. The color 
coordinates for the color fluorescent pink are indicated below.
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    \3\ ``Improvement of Conspicuity of Trailblazing Signs: Phase 
III--Evaluation of Fluorescent Colors'', Virginia Transportation 
Research Council (VTRC) Report No. FHWA/VTRC 01-CR4, February 2001, 
by Neale, Anders, Schreiner, and Brich, may be ordered from VTRC at 
the following URL: http://www.virginiadot.org/vtrc/main/index_main.htm.
 The color tested and recommended in this report is 
referred to as fluorescent coral, however the characteristics (color 
box coordinates, etc.) of the color tested are more accurately 
described as fluorescent pink.

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[[Page 65500]]

    The Commission Internationale de l'Eclairage (CIE) (English: 
International Commission on Illumination) chromaticity coordinates 
(x,y), defining the corners of the Fluorescent Pink daytime color 
region are as follows:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 x                                    y
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  0.450                                0.270
                  0.590                                0.350
                  0.644                                0.290
                  0.536                                0.230
------------------------------------------------------------------------


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                           Luminance factor limits (Y)
                                                               -------------------------------------------------
                                                                             D65                     D150
                                                               -------------------------------------------------
                                                                   Min       Max       YF        Min       Max
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fluorescent Pink..............................................       25      none        15        25      none
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Fluorescent materials differ from non-fluorescent materials in that 
the total luminance is the sum of the luminances due to reflection and 
fluorescence. The luminance factor Y of such materials is the sum of 
the luminance due to reflection (YR) and the luminance due 
to fluorescence (YF). Therefore, 
Y=YR+YF. If the value YF is greater 
than zero, the material is fluorescent; if YF equals zero, 
then the luminance factor Y is equal to YR.
    These four pairs of chromaticity coordinates determine the 
acceptable color in terms of CIE 1931 Standard Colorimetric System (2 
degree standard observer) measured with CIE Standard Illuminant D65 in 
accordance with the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) 
standard E991. In addition, the color shall be fluorescent, as 
determined by ASTM E1247.\4\ The FHWA amends title 23, Code of Federal 
Regulations, part 655, appendix to subpart F, to add chromaticity 
coordinates and luminance factor limits for the color of fluorescent 
pink retroreflective sign materials.
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    \4\ A list of the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) 
standards is available on the Internet at the following URL: http://www.astm.org.
 The ASTM International is a global forum for the 
development of consensus standards. Standard ASTM E991-98 is titled 
``Standard Practice for Color Measurement of Fluorescent 
Specimens.'' Standard ASTM E1247-03 is titled ``Standard Practice 
for Detecting Fluorescence in Object-Color Specimens by 
Spectrophotometry.''
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    Additionally, to be consistent with Section 2C.42 Playground Sign 
(W15-1), the FHWA adds ``playground warning'' to the list of signs 
assigned the fluorescent yellow-green color.
    9. In Section 1A.13 Definitions of Words and Phrases in This 
Manual, the FHWA revises definitions in the STANDARD statement for: 
``Active Grade Crossing Warning System,'' ``Average Day,'' ``Beacon,'' 
``Crosswalk,'' ``Highway Traffic Signal,'' ``Raised Pavement Marker'', 
``Road User,'' ``Shared-Use Path,'' ``Sidewalk,'' ``Sign Illumination'' 
and ``Traffic Control Device'' to better reflect accepted practice and 
terminologies and to provide consistency between the definitions shown 
here and in other parts of the Manual. Additionally, the FHWA adds 
definitions for ``Crashworthy,'' ``Detectable,'' ``Inherently Low 
Emission Vehicle (ILEV),'' ``Pedestrian Facilities,'' and ``Roundabout 
Intersection'' because they are used in the MUTCD. There were a few 
editorial comments regarding some of these definitions that the FHWA 
incorporates in this final rule as appropriate. Also, the FHWA revises 
the definition of ``Inherently Low Emission Vehicle (ILEV)'' to clarify 
that only the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has the authority to 
certify ILEVs.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the definition for ``Preferential 
Lane Marking'' because it is no longer used in the MUTCD. There were no 
comments regarding this change.
    10. In Section 1A.14 Abbreviations Used on Traffic Control Devices, 
the FHWA revises the text in the first STANDARD statement to clarify 
that the abbreviations for the word messages shown in Table 1A-1 are 
the only abbreviations to be used for those word messages. The FHWA 
also adds a GUIDANCE statement at the end of this section to give 
guidance regarding the consistency of abbreviations within a single 
jurisdiction. Additionally, the FHWA revises Tables 1A-1 and 1A-2 to 
include additional abbreviations, delete some abbreviations, and modify 
some abbreviations, based on Texas research on driver understanding of 
abbreviations. The Illinois DOT was opposed to the abbreviations for 
northbound, eastbound, and the like, suggesting that the use of ``NB'', 
etc. should be allowed. The 2000 Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) 
study (by Durkop and Dudek) \5\ on which many of the abbreviation 
requirements were based found very low driver comprehension rates in 
Texas for NB, EB, SB, and WB when used as ``NB Traffic'' or ``US 75 
NB.'' The Texas study suggested that a better alternative would be just 
the initial letter N, S, E, or W. The FHWA reviewed that study and has 
determined that abbreviations such as ``N-BND'' would further enhance 
understanding. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts the changes to this section 
as proposed in the NPA, with minor editorial clarifications.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ ``Texas Driver Understanding of Abbreviations for Dynamic 
Message Signs'', February 2000, by Durkop and Dudek, Texas 
Transportation Institute Report number FHWA/TX-00-1882-1, can be 
obtained from the Texas Transportation Institute, phone (979) 845-
4853. A summary of the results was also published in Transportation 
Research Record 1748, available for purchase from the Transportation 
Research Board at the following URL: http://www4.trb.org/trb/ 
onlinepubs.nsf/web/homepage? OpenDocument.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 2--Signs

    11. In Section 2A.06 Design of Signs, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT 
statement that the ``general appearance'' of the sign legends, colors 
and sizes are shown in the illustrations, because the illustrations may 
not exactly correspond to the letter brush stroke widths of the 
``Standard Highway Signs'' book and the FHWA central values and 
tolerance limits of colors, due to variations in computer display 
monitors and printing processes.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding to the STANDARD statement 
that, unless otherwise stated in the MUTCD for a specific sign, phone 
numbers or Internet addresses shall not be shown on any sign, to reduce 
the possibility of driver distraction. While there was one comment from 
the NCUTCD in support of this change, there were five comments from the 
Arizona, Washington, Virginia, and Illinois DOTs and the City of Plano, 
Texas, specifically opposing the language in the NPA prohibiting phone 
numbers on signs because these may provide important phone numbers that 
are used for services provided to the public by a government agency. 
The FHWA agrees that telephone numbers can be useful, but is concerned 
about driver distraction and the effect on highway safety. To address 
the

[[Page 65501]]

comments, the FHWA revises the STANDARD statement and adds GUIDANCE and 
OPTION statements to allow phone numbers and Internet addresses on 
signs in certain limited circumstances, minimizing the potential 
effects on safety. The language in this final rule permits abbreviated 
telephone numbers (four characters or less) on signs. Signs with 
telephone numbers of more than four characters and Internet addresses 
may be provided in parking and pedestrian areas, or on low-speed 
roadways where engineering judgment indicates that vehicles can safely 
stop out of the traffic flow to read the sign.
    12. In Section 2A.07 Changeable Message Signs, the FHWA revises the 
GUIDANCE statement to include safety messages as one of the types of 
allowable displays for changeable message signs. There were two 
comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change, while two commenters representing the Kansas DOT opposed 
it. The Kansas DOT stated that to encourage the display of safety 
messages on changeable message signs could desensitize the traveling 
public towards regulatory, warning, and guidance information that is 
displayed at other times. The FHWA adopts the proposed change because 
it is included in a GUIDANCE statement, which gives the individual 
States the flexibility to permit or not permit safety messages on 
changeable message signs.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds at the end of the section OPTION, 
SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, and STANDARD statements regarding the use, design, 
and format of safety and other messages so that they do not adversely 
affect the usefulness of the sign. There were two comments from the 
Kansas DOT opposed to the new OPTION statement, stating that changeable 
message signs should be used only when there is a need. Because this is 
an OPTION statement, the FHWA believes that it gives any individual 
State the flexibility to use this option if it so chooses. To 
explicitly reinforce this, the FHWA adds a sentence to the OPTION 
statement that State and local agencies may develop and establish a 
policy regarding safety and transportation-related message signs, for 
both permanent and changeable message signs, which specifies allowable 
messages and applications. To mirror and reinforce the information 
contained in Table 2A-4, the FHWA also adds to the OPTION statement 
that changeable message signs (including portable changeable message 
signs) that display a regulatory or warning message may use a black 
background with a white, yellow, orange, red, or fluorescent yellow-
green legend as appropriate.
    13. In Section 2A.08 Retroreflectivity and Illumination, the FHWA 
revises Table 2A-1 by replacing ``Patterns of incandescent light 
bulbs'' with ``Incandescent light bulbs'' and by adding ``Light 
Emitting Diodes (LEDs)'' to the listed Means of Illumination to reflect 
current technology. There were nine comments from the NCUTCD, the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, traffic control device manufacturers, and private 
citizens supporting this change, particularly the addition of light 
emitting diodes (LEDs). To provide additional clarification to the 
table, the FHWA creates a separate row in the table for light emitting 
diodes under the Means of Illumination and includes symbols or word 
messages and portions of the sign border as sign elements to be 
illuminated. In addition, based on comments from the NCUTCD, the FHWA 
adds to the OPTION statement additional information regarding the use 
of LEDs within the face of a sign and in the border of a sign and adds 
a new STANDARD statement following this OPTION to specify the color and 
flash rate for LEDs used on a sign.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement at the end of 
the section referencing information contained in Section 2A.21 Posts 
and Mountings on the use of retroreflective material on the sign 
support. There was one comment from the NCUTCD in support of this 
change. The FHWA adopts this change.
    14. In Section 2A.10 Shapes, the FHWA revises Table 2A-3 by 
removing the Emergency Evacuation Route Sign from the listed signs for 
the circle shape because the FHWA changes the design of this sign to be 
a rectangular plate in accordance with other guide signs, as indicated 
in Section 2I.03 EVACUATION ROUTE Sign (EM-1). The FHWA received two 
comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change, and one comment from the Florida DOT opposed to it. The 
Florida DOT opposed because it currently uses the circle shape for the 
Emergency Evacuation Route Sign and believes that the proposed change 
would have a large statewide impact to its evacuation program. The FHWA 
notes that the Emergency Evacuation Route Sign has not been changed; it 
has just been put onto a white rectangular background so that the 
circular shape can be reserved for another use. The FHWA adopts the 
change, but to address the Florida DOT's comment, adds a phase-in 
target compliance date of 15 years from the date this final rule is 
effective for the change in shape, for signs in good condition.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises Table 2A-3 to list the Trapezoid 
shape for use as ``Recreational and Cultural Interest Area Series'' and 
``National Forest Route'' signs. The FHWA received two comments from 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, and the NCUTCD in support of this change, 
and adopts this change.
    15. In Section 2A.11 Sign Colors, the FHWA modifies the STANDARD 
statement to read ``The colors to be used on standard signs and their 
specific use on these signs shall be as indicated in the applicable 
sections of this Manual. The color coordinates and values shall be as 
described in 23 CFR, Part 655, Subpart F, Appendix.'' This modification 
clarifies that the color requirements apply to all signs in the MUTCD, 
not just those in Part 2, and refers to the correct location of the 
color coordinates and values. There were no comments on this change.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed using the color coral for incident 
management uses, however in response to comments from traffic control 
device manufacturers about this section and Part 6, the FHWA changes 
this color assignment to fluorescent pink because this name more 
clearly describes the color in the color tints. See also the discussion 
under Section 1A.12 Color Code, which also applies to this section. As 
a result, the FHWA withdraws this proposal to modify the SUPPORT 
statement to delete the color coral from the reserved colors, and 
retains the text as shown in the 2000 MUTCD which includes the color 
coral as a reserved color for a use that will be determined in the 
future. Additionally, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT statement that 
information regarding color coding of destinations on guide signs is 
contained in Section 2D.03 Color, Retroreflection, and Illumination.
    The FHWA also modifies Table 2A-4 by adding a new column on the 
right hand side for the color fluorescent pink, by adding a new row 
``Incident Management'' to the bottom, by adding a second new row 
``Changeable Message Signs'' at the bottom, following Incident 
Management, and by adding or revising color designations and notes to 
reflect proposed changes in other parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA makes 
additional editorial changes to the table, and moves Reference 
Location, Street Name, and Destination signs to be listed as Guide 
signs, and the Evacuation Route sign to be listed under Information 
signs, in response to a comment from Caltrans and to maintain 
consistency within the MUTCD.

[[Page 65502]]

    16. In Section 2A.12 Dimensions, the FHWA adds a second paragraph 
to the SUPPORT statement describing and clarifying the different sizes 
of signs, as detailed in the ``Standard Highway Signs'' book. While the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, supported the change, there were two comments 
from the NCUTCD and the Illinois DOT opposed to this new paragraph. The 
NCUTCD stated that this new paragraph introduced redundancy because 
this information is included in Sections 2B.03 Size of Regulatory Signs 
and 2C.04 Size of Warning Signs, and the Illinois DOT suggested that 
this paragraph was unnecessary. The FHWA agrees that this information 
needs to be included in only one place in the Manual, and adopts the 
text in this section and deletes this information from Sections 2B.03 
and 2C.04. The FHWA revises the last sentence of this paragraph to 
clarify that intermediate sized signs are designed to be used on other 
highway types.
    17. In Section 2A.14 Word Messages, the FHWA modifies the first 
GUIDANCE statement to clarify that the specific ratio of 25 mm (1 in) 
of letter height per 12 m (40 ft) of legibility distance should be a 
minimum. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD supporting this 
change and adopts this change.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement after the first 
paragraph of GUIDANCE to provide additional information that some 
research on sign legibility of older drivers \6\ indicates that a ratio 
of 25 mm (1 in) of letter height per 10 m (33 ft) of legibility 
distance could be beneficial for addressing the needs of older drivers. 
Three commenters from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the sign manufacturing 
industry supported this new SUPPORT statement, and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, and a traffic engineering consultant opposed it. Both opposing 
commenters expressed concern that this additional language would add 
confusion as to what ratio should be used in designing signs. The FHWA 
disagrees with the opposing commenters because SUPPORT statements are 
purely informational and have no legal basis for a mandatory or 
recommended practice.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ Information about this research is summarized on pages 185 
and 186 of the ``Highway Design Handbook for Older Drivers and 
Pedestrians,'' Report number FHWA-RD-01-103, published by the FHWA 
Office of Safety Research and Development, 2001. It is available for 
purchase from The National Technical Information Service, 
Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000. Internet Web site 
address at http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA adds a new GUIDANCE heading for guidance on abbreviations 
after the new SUPPORT statement.
    18. In Section 2A.15 Sign Borders, the FHWA modifies the STANDARD 
statement to require that the corners of all sign borders, except for 
STOP signs, shall be rounded. The FHWA received several comments from 
ATSSA and representatives of the blind community regarding this change. 
The commenters misunderstood this statement both in the NPA and in the 
2000 MUTCD, thinking that it pertained to the corners of the sign 
itself, rather than the sign border, which is included within the sign. 
As noted in the next paragraph, the sign itself does not always have to 
have rounded corners, but the border (typically black on white) does. 
The NPA merely replaced the phrase ``corners of the sign'' with 
``corners of all sign borders'' to provide consistency with the section 
title, Sign Borders. The FHWA adopts the change, as proposed in the 
NPA, in this final rule.
    The NPA also included a proposal to modify the GUIDANCE statement 
to clarify that, where practical, the corners of the sign should be 
rounded to fit the border, except for STOP signs. The FHWA received 
several comments from ATSSA and representatives of the blind community 
supporting the rounding of sign corners. The FHWA received one comment 
from a traffic engineering consultant opposing the statement, 
suggesting that the phrase ``where practical'' was too vague. The FHWA 
agrees and revises this statement to include a reference Section 2E.15 
Sign Borders for specific exemptions regarding the rounding of corners 
of sign.
    19. In Section 2A.16 Standardization of Location, the FHWA 
relocates Figures 2A-3, 2A-4, 2A-5, and 2A-6 to Section 2B.37 ONE WAY 
Signs (R6-1, R6-2) and removes Figure 2A-7 (figure numbering cited here 
reflects 2000 MUTCD). These relocated figures are more appropriate in 
Chapter 2B Regulatory Signs. The FHWA revises the first SUPPORT 
statement to reflect these changes. There were no comments regarding 
this change, and the FHWA adopts this change.
    The FHWA received several comments from Caltrans, the Ohio DOT, the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, and a traffic engineering consultant regarding 
Figures 2A-1 and 2A-2 in the NPA. In response to the comments regarding 
the use of the words ``typical'' and ``examples'', the FHWA changes the 
figure titles to: ``Figure 2A-1 Examples of Heights and Lateral 
Locations of Signs for Typical Installations'' and ``Figure 2A-2 
Examples of Locations for Some Typical Signs at Intersections.'' The 
FHWA also incorporates editorial comments and notes to the figures in 
this final rule.
    The FHWA also revises the second paragraph of the first GUIDANCE 
statement to state the exceptions to placing signs on separate posts in 
list form rather than narrative form, and to clarify that certain 
groupings of regulatory signs are also excepted from the recommended 
mounting on separate posts. These minor editorial clarifications 
respond to a comment from a traffic engineering consultant and reflect 
common practice.
    20. In Section 2A.17 Overhead Sign Installations, the FHWA modifies 
the GUIDANCE statement to clarify that overhead guide signs should be 
used on freeways as well as expressways, under certain conditions. The 
FHWA received two comments from ATSSA and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of this change and adopts this change.
    The FHWA received one comment from a traffic engineering consultant 
suggesting that the last paragraph of the OPTION statement pertaining 
to the placement of signs on bridges of freeways and expressways in 
order to enhance safety and economy is duplicative and unnecessary. The 
FHWA agrees with the comment and makes this minor and editorial 
revision to remove this text from this final rule.
    21. In Section 2A.18 Mounting Height, the FHWA relocates the first 
OPTION and SUPPORT statements so that they appear before the last 
paragraph of the first STANDARD statement. This change improves the 
clarity of the section. The FHWA received one comment from the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change, and adopts this change. The 
FHWA received one comment from a private citizen suggesting that in-
street crosswalk signs are typically mounted much lower than the 
heights included in the first STANDARD statement, and that if they are 
to be excluded from these criteria, appropriate language should be 
included in the final rule. The FHWA agrees that additional language is 
needed and adds a new SUPPORT statement at the beginning of the Section 
that indicates that the provisions of this section apply unless 
specifically stated otherwise for a particular sign elsewhere in the 
MUTCD.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a paragraph to the last OPTION 
statement indicating that if the vertical clearance of other structures 
is less than 4.9 m (16 ft), the vertical clearance to overhead sign 
structures or supports may be as low as 0.3 m (1 ft) higher than the

[[Page 65503]]

vertical clearance of the other structures. These lower clearances for 
the sign structures are sometimes needed to maximize the visibility of 
the signs when low bridge structure or tunnel clearances limit the sign 
visibility. There was one editorial comment from the NCUTCD regarding 
this change, which the FHWA incorporates in this final rule.
    22. In Section 2A.19 Lateral Offset, the FHWA divides the first 
STANDARD statement into a STANDARD and a GUIDANCE statement. The 
STANDARD statement refers to the lateral offset of overhead sign 
supports, and the GUIDANCE statement refers to the lateral offset of 
signs mounted at the roadside. Changing the lateral offset of roadside-
mounted signs to a GUIDANCE provides additional flexibility to 
jurisdictions for signs mounted at the roadside. There was one comment 
from the NCUTCD in support of this change, the Kansas DOT opposed it, 
and Caltrans requested additional clarification. The Kansas DOT opposed 
the conversion of the minimum lateral offset for signs mounted at the 
roadside to a GUIDANCE, and suggested that it should remain a STANDARD 
in order to minimize the chance of allowing signs to be placed 
immediately adjacent to the shoulder or the roadway edge. The FHWA 
disagrees because it is more appropriate for this item to be a 
GUIDANCE, especially given the exemptions in the last OPTION statement. 
The FHWA encourages the 12-foot offset, but provides flexibility to 
jurisdictions for the placement of signs mounted at the roadside in 
places where the 12-foot offsets would not be desirable or practical. A 
State may choose to impose a more stringent requirement if it desires. 
The FHWA adopts this change, as specified in the NPA, in this final 
rule.
    Additionally, in the 2000 edition of the MUTCD a new requirement 
was established in this section that, if located within the clear zone, 
ground-mounted sign supports shall be breakaway, yielding, or shielded 
with a barrier or crash cushion and that supports for overhead-mounted 
signs shall be shielded with a barrier or crash cushion, but no special 
phase-in target compliance date was established at that time. In 
response to comments that agencies are encountering difficulties and 
economic impacts given the extensive testing of devices that has to 
occur in accordance with NCHRP Report 350 \7\ in order to determine and 
certify crashworthiness, the FHWA determines that a special target 
compliance date is required for the crashworthiness provisions in this 
section. In this final rule, the FHWA establishes a phase-in target 
compliance date of January 17, 2013 for crashworthiness of sign 
supports within the clear zone for roads with posted speed limits of 80 
km/h (50 mph) or above. This is consistent with guidance previously 
communicated informally to jurisdictions in a variety of training and 
presentations by the FHWA Office of Safety regarding roadside safety 
and countermeasures for run-off-the-road crashes, and is a reasonable 
target date for achieving compliance on high-speed roads.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ NCHRP Report 350, ``Recommended Procedures for the Safety 
Performance Evaluation of Highway Features,'' 1993, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://gulliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_350-a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    23. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed revisions to Section 2A.20 
Position of Signs, to remove the second sentence under the SUPPORT 
statement as the references to the figures duplicates other references 
elsewhere. Upon further consideration, the FHWA believes that this 
section is not necessary and deletes this section from the MUTCD in its 
entirety in this final rule. This section does not include any 
information that is not already contained elsewhere in the Manual. The 
FHWA revises the subsequent section numbers accordingly.
    24. In Section 2A.21 Posts and Mountings (numbered Section 2A.22 in 
the NPA), the FHWA adds an OPTION statement after the SUPPORT 
statement, indicating that a strip of retroreflective material may be 
used on the supports of regulatory and warning signs to draw attention 
to the sign during nighttime conditions. One consultant and three State 
DOTs opposed this new OPTION, but the NCUTCD and several other agencies 
supported it. Those opposed stated several reasons, such as difficulty 
in deciding which signs should receive a reflective strip, lack of 
research support, and consistency. The FHWA agrees that additional 
instruction is needed regarding the use of the reflective strip, and 
adds the phrase ``Where engineering judgment indicates a need to draw 
attention to the sign during nighttime conditions''. Because this is an 
OPTION, States that oppose it can choose to not allow this use.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a second STANDARD statement after the 
OPTION statement specifying the size, location, and color of the strip 
of retroreflective material if it is used. This provides for uniformity 
of application. Based on comments received from a traffic engineering 
consultant for this section as well as other comments in Section 8B.03 
Highway-rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Sign (R15-1) and Number of 
Tracks Sign (R15-2) regarding the placement of the strip in relation to 
the ground, the FHWA revises this statement to indicate that the bottom 
of the strip be within 0.6 m (2 ft) above the edge of the roadway. The 
FHWA adopts this change, along with editorial modifications, in this 
final rule.
    25. In Section 2A.23 Median Opening Treatments for Divided Highways 
with Wide Medians (numbered Section 2A.24 in the NPA and title changed 
from 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA removes the GUIDANCE statement that appeared 
in the 2000 MUTCD and changes the STANDARD statement to a GUIDANCE 
statement. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of these changes, and two 
comments from ATSSA and the Minnesota DOT opposing the change from 
STANDARD to GUIDANCE. This change makes it recommended rather than 
mandatory that intersections on divided highways where the median width 
at the median opening is 9 m (30 ft) or more, be signed as two separate 
intersections. The commenters suggested that the use of the mandatory 
word ``shall'' would provide for greater consistency between 
jurisdictions and should be maintained to assist tourists and older 
drivers. The FHWA believes that it is important to provide additional 
signing flexibility to jurisdictions regarding median openings. A 
GUIDANCE statement strongly encourages the practice without mandating 
it, and allows for engineering judgment to be used to determine if some 
intersections on roadways with medians wider than 9 m (30 ft) might 
function better without being signed as two separate intersections. 
Therefore, the FHWA adopts the change as specified in the NPA.
    26. In Section 2B.02 Design of Regulatory Signs, the NPA included a 
proposal to add OPTION and GUIDANCE statements at the end of the 
section regarding the use of Changeable Message Signs to provide for 
the display of regulatory signs. The NCUTCD, the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, and a traffic control device manufacturer supported the new 
OPTION statement. Caltrans questioned whether the information also 
applied to portable changeable message signs. The FHWA agrees that the 
OPTION statement applies to more than just regulatory signs, and 
removes this OPTION statement from this section and places it in 
Section 2A.07 Changeable

[[Page 65504]]

Message Signs, with additional changes to the text. The NCUTCD and a 
traffic control device manufacturer supported the new GUIDANCE 
statement, however ATSSA and the Wisconsin DOT opposed it. The 
Wisconsin DOT stated that regulatory messages on changeable message 
signs should only be used to supplement standard ground mounted signs, 
rather than as the sole sign, because they cannot be enforced. ATSSA 
stated that there are previously identified problems regarding the 
contrast in colors of the red prohibition circle on changeable message 
signs. The FHWA disagrees with both of these comments and adopts the 
GUIDANCE statement in this final rule. Regulatory messages on 
changeable message signs can be enforced as long as the jurisdiction 
has the authority to enact temporary regulations and as long as the 
messages conform to MUTCD requirements. The red prohibitory circle and 
slash on a black background, as used on changeable message signs, 
generally have better contrast than those used on static signs. The 
FHWA adopts the changes to this section with revisions as described 
above.
    27. In Section 2B.03 Size of Regulatory Signs, the FHWA removes the 
SUPPORT statement referencing the ``Standard Highway Signs'' book 
because this statement is general and applies to regulatory, warning, 
and guide signs, and a similar statement is included in Section 2A.12 
Dimensions.
    The FHWA modifies Table 2B-1 by adding, removing, and renaming 
signs, and by adding additional sign sizes. These changes and new sign 
sizes reflect changes in Part 2, are values from the ``Standard Highway 
Signs'' book, and reflect regular use by highway agencies. The FHWA 
received several editorial comments from the NCUTCD and Caltrans 
regarding these changes and incorporates those changes as appropriate.
    Additionally, the FHWA increases the sizes of the ONE WAY (R6-2) 
sign and the DIVIDED HIGHWAY CROSSING (R6-3, R6-3a) signs for all roads 
based on the research \8\ addressing the needs of older road users. The 
FHWA adds sign sizes in the ``Expressways'' and ``Freeways'' columns 
for these signs and the R6-1 ONE WAY sign because these are the main 
signs to alert road users of the divided highway. The FHWA received one 
comment from ATSSA supporting these changes. The City of Tucson, 
Arizona, opposed the increase in sign size, stating that the current 
sign sizes are adequate for urban/city street systems. The FHWA adopts 
the sizes as proposed in the NPA because the research indicates these 
sizes are needed in most cases for older drivers. However, to address 
the comment from the City of Tucson, the FHWA is currently reviewing 
ways to better incorporate the needs of urban areas into the MUTCD and 
plans to address those needs in a future rulemaking.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ Information about this research is summarized on pages 94-
100 of the ``Highway Design Handbook for Older Drivers and 
Pedestrians,'' Report number FHWA-RD-01-03, published by the FHWA 
Office of Safety Research and Development, 2001. It is available for 
purchase from The National Technical Information Service, 
Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000. Internet website 
address at http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years 
from the date of this final rule for these sign sizes, for existing 
signs in good condition to minimize any impact on State or local 
governments.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the OPTION statement that signs 
larger than those shown in Table 2B-1 may be used. Sometimes there are 
special conditions that warrant much larger signs and this flexibility 
is needed. There were no comments regarding this change, and the FHWA 
adopts this change.
    28. In Section 2B.04 STOP Sign (R1-1), the FHWA received three 
comments, one from a traffic engineering consultant and two from 
private citizens regarding the use of supplemental plaques with multi-
way STOP signs. The FHWA did not propose any change to this section in 
the NPA, and these comments are outside the scope of this final rule.
    29. In Section 2B.06 STOP Sign Placement, the FHWA corrects an 
error in the STANDARD statement (as published in the 2000 MUTCD) by 
changing the word ``correct'' to ``right'' so that the statement reads, 
``The STOP sign shall be installed on the right side of the approach to 
which it applies.'' There was one comment from a private citizen 
suggesting that the FHWA replace ``traffic lane'' with ``approach'' in 
order to avoid this statement being misinterpreted as requiring a 
separate sign to the right of each stopped lane on a multi-lane 
approach. The FHWA agrees and revises the text accordingly.
    Additionally, the NPA included a proposal that other than a DO NOT 
ENTER sign, no other sign shall be mounted back-to-back with a STOP 
sign, to assure that the shape of the STOP sign is visible to road 
users on other approaches to the intersection. The proposed exception 
for the DO NOT ENTER sign was to allow flexibility in urban areas where 
there may not be enough room to install separate poles for each sign 
and both signs must be installed at the corner. While there was one 
comment from ATSSA in support of this proposed change, the NCUTCD, the 
Arizona, Oregon, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Illinois DOTs as well as the 
Cities of Plano, Texas; Beaverton, Oregon; Kennewick, Washington; and 
Tucson, Arizona, opposed this change, stating that it was too 
restrictive. The FHWA agrees with the State and local DOTs that there 
may be some locations where it may be appropriate to mount signs to the 
back of STOP signs, and changes this STANDARD to a GUIDANCE in this 
final rule and revises the statement to read, ``Other than a DO NOT 
ENTER sign, no sign should be mounted back-to-back with a STOP sign in 
a manner that obscures the shape of the STOP sign.'' The FHWA adds a 
phase-in target compliance date for this new GUIDANCE of 10 years from 
the effective date of this final rule for existing signs in good 
condition, and adds a SUPPORT statement referencing Section 2A.16 
Standardization of Location for further information regarding separate 
and combined mounting of signs with STOP signs.
    30. In Section 2B.09 YIELD Sign Applications, the FHWA clarifies 
the OPTION statement by adding a reference to STOP signs. The change 
states that instead of using a STOP sign, a YIELD sign may be used if 
engineering judgment indicates that one or more of the listed 
conditions exist. The conditions for using a YIELD sign are not being 
changed. The FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals in general support of the change. A traffic engineering 
consultant mistakenly thought that the change represented a major 
change in the method of determining if YIELD is the appropriate sign, 
and suggested a 10-year phase-in target compliance date. The most 
significant change was made in the 2000 MUTCD. The only new concept is 
the clarification that YIELD signs would be used ``instead of STOP 
signs.'' This is only an OPTION and existing STOP signs that are in 
place at intersections where these conditions apply would not be in 
violation of the MUTCD. The FHWA adopts the change with minor editorial 
revisions in this final rule. There is no need for a long compliance 
date to comply with an OPTION. The FHWA notes that the 10-year phase-in 
target compliance date for the change in application of YIELD signs is 
tied to the effective date of the 2000 MUTCD (January 11, 2011).
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement after the OPTION 
statement to require the use of a YIELD sign to assign right-of-way at

[[Page 65505]]

the entrance to a roundabout intersection. An essential design feature 
of a modern roundabout intersection is ``yield-on-entry'' therefore, a 
YIELD sign is necessary at all entrances to the roundabout 
intersection. The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA in support of 
this change, and one comment from the U.S. Access Board opposed to it. 
The U.S. Access Board suggested that the pedestrian crossing be moved 
away from the entry and exit points of the roundabout intersection to 
allow for safer interaction between pedestrians and drivers. This would 
create a midblock crossing, and the FHWA believes that the signing and 
marking of nearby midblock crosswalks should be determined on a case-
by-case basis using engineering judgment. Thus, the FHWA did not make 
changes to this STANDARD, and adopts the new STANDARD statement as 
proposed in the NPA.
    31. In Section 2B.10 YIELD Sign Placement, the FHWA corrects an 
error in the first paragraph of the STANDARD statement by changing the 
word ``correct'' to ``right'' so that the first sentence reads, ``The 
YIELD sign shall be installed on the right side of the approach to 
which it applies.'' Additionally, the FHWA adds a new sentence after 
the first sentence of the STANDARD statement to require that YIELD 
signs shall be placed on both the left and right sides of the 
approaches to roundabout intersections with more than one approach lane 
on the signed approach. This is in concert with best practices of 
modern roundabout intersection design and to assure adequate visibility 
of the YIELD signs. There were two comments from ATSSA and the Kansas 
DOT in general support of these changes, and the FHWA adopts these 
changes, with minor editorial revision.
    Additionally, the NPA included a proposal to add a paragraph to the 
STANDARD statement that other than a DO NOT ENTER sign, no other sign 
shall be mounted back-to-back with a YIELD sign, to assure that the 
shape of the YIELD sign is visible to road users on other approaches to 
the intersection. The proposed exception for the DO NOT ENTER sign was 
to allow flexibility in urban areas where there may not be enough room 
to install separate poles for each sign and both signs must be 
installed at the corner. The FHWA received nine comments from State and 
local DOT's opposed to this change, stating that it was too restrictive 
(see comments and discussion in Section 2B.06 STOP Sign Placement). The 
FHWA agrees and changes this STANDARD to a GUIDANCE and revises the 
statement to read, ``Other than a DO NOT ENTER sign, no sign should be 
mounted back-to-back with a YIELD sign in a manner that obscures the 
shape of the YIELD sign.'' The FHWA adds a phase-in target compliance 
date for this new GUIDANCE of 10 years from the effective date of this 
final rule for existing signs in good condition, and also adds a 
SUPPORT statement referencing Section 2A.16 Standardization of Location 
for further information regarding separate and combined mounting of 
signs with YIELD signs.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a paragraph to the GUIDANCE statement 
stating that, at a roundabout intersection, the face of the YIELD sign 
should not be visible from the circulating roadway. This is recommended 
to prevent circulating vehicles in the roundabout intersection from 
yielding unnecessarily. The FHWA received no comments regarding this 
change, and adopts this change.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION statement at the end of the section to 
allow the installation of an additional YIELD sign on the left side of 
the road and/or the use of a YIELD line at wide-throat intersections. 
This provides for improved visibility of the YIELD signs where needed. 
The FHWA received no comments regarding this change, and adopts this 
change.
    32. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2B.11 Yield Here To Pedestrians Signs (R1-5, R1-5a)''. (This section 
was numbered Section 2B.52 in the NPA.) These new signs alert road 
users of the presence of an unsignalized midblock pedestrian crossing. 
The FHWA includes a STANDARD statement, which states that if YIELD 
lines are used in advance of an unsignalized marked crosswalk, the 
YIELD HERE TO PEDESTRIANS (R1-5 or R1-5a) signs, shall be placed 6.1 to 
15 m (20 to 50 ft) in advance of the nearest crosswalk line. The 
purpose of the STANDARD is to provide for the uniform use and placement 
of these signs and improved pedestrian safety.
    The FHWA received six comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, Cities of 
Tucson, Arizona, and Plano, Texas, the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals, and a traffic engineering consultant in support 
of this new section. One private citizen opposed it, stating that the 
signs are unnecessary because they convey rules of the road, rather 
than site-specific regulations. The Wisconsin DOT and Pierce County, 
Washington, requested clarification of the placement of these signs. In 
response to the comments, the FHWA adds a reference to Section 3B.16 
Stop and Yield Lines to provide additional clarity that the yield line 
is to be placed adjacent to the Yield Here to Pedestrians sign. The 
FHWA adopts this section in this final rule and establishes a phase-in 
target compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of this 
final rule for existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact 
on State or local governments.
    The FHWA received two comments from the Oregon DOT and a traffic 
engineering consultant suggesting that this section be expanded to 
include STOP HERE FOR PEDESTRIAN signs and wording added to allow the 
signs at any marked crosswalk not controlled by a signal, stop sign, or 
yield sign as an option for States or other agencies with statutes that 
require traffic to stop for pedestrians. This goes beyond the scope of 
the NPA, and a future NPA would need to be issued for discussion and 
comment.
    33. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 2B.12 
In-Street Pedestrian Crossing Signs (R1-6, R1-6a).'' (This section was 
numbered Section 2B.53 in the NPA.) These in-street signs remind road 
users of the laws regarding right-of-way at an unsignalized pedestrian 
crossing. The FHWA includes OPTION, GUIDANCE, and STANDARD statements 
describing the use, design and application of the In-Street Pedestrian 
Crossing (R1-6, R1-6a) signs. These signs are included in the MUTCD in 
order to provide for uniformity of these regulatory messages and for 
improved pedestrian safety. The FHWA received four comments from ATSSA, 
the City of Los Angeles, California, the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals, and a traffic engineering consultant in 
agreement with the new section as proposed in the NPA. Another five 
commenters representing the Florida and Wisconsin DOTs, the Cities of 
Los Angeles, California, and Tucson, Arizona, and a traffic engineering 
consultant agreed with the sign in general, but suggested wording 
changes, including deleting the reference to State law from the sign. 
Another five commenters representing the NCUTCD and the Kansas, 
Arizona, and Minnesota DOTs opposed the sign and the inclusion of this 
section in the MUTCD. Those opposed listed several reasons, including 
waiting until the results of a related Transportation Cooperative 
Research Program (TCRP)\9\

[[Page 65506]]

study are released, that in-roadway signs should be discouraged for 
safety reasons, and that signs that remind drivers to obey the law are 
unnecessary. The FHWA disagrees with those opposed to this section 
because research, including an experimentation in Redmond, 
Washington,\10\ has found that this sign is effective at communicating 
important information to drivers and provides for uniformity of these 
regulatory messages and for improved pedestrian safety. Also, the TCRP 
research cited by some commenters is only just beginning and its scope 
of work is too broad to adequately address this specific signing issue. 
The use of these signs is optional, and jurisdictions may decide not to 
allow the use of these signs. The FHWA adopts this new section and sign 
in this final rule, and adds a SUPPORT statement that the provisions of 
Section 2A.18 Mounting Height are not applicable to the mounting height 
of the In-Street Pedestrian Crossing Signs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \9\ ``Improving Pedestrian Safety at Unsignalized Roadway 
Crossings'' is a reach study currently in progress. This is a joint 
effort between the National Cooperative Highway Research Program 
(NCHRP) and the Transportation Cooperative Research Program (TCRP). 
The study is numbered NCHRP Project 3-71 and TCRP D-08. Information 
is available at the following URL: http://rip.trb.org.
    \10\ A copy of ``City of Redmond In-Street Pedestrian Crossing 
Sign Test'', FHWA Experimentation 2-507(EX), six-month 
report by the City of Redmond, June 30, 2003, is available on the 
docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA also adds a new figure numbered and titled ``Figure 2B-2, 
``Unsignalized Pedestrian Crosswalk Signs'' (numbered Figure 2B-22 in 
the NPA) to illustrate the design of the R1-5, R1-5a, the R1-6, and the 
R1-6a signs.
    The FHWA renumbers the remaining sections in this chapter.
    34. In Section 2B.13 Speed Limit Sign (R2-1), numbered Section 
2B.11 in the NPA, the FHWA modifies the STANDARD statement to reference 
the speed limit signs shown in Figure 2B-1. In the NPA, the FHWA 
proposed a new, unique design for the metric speed limit sign. The sign 
had a red circle around the speed value with a ``km/h'' legend below, 
and the supplemental ``km/h'' plaque removed. The FHWA received eight 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and private citizens in general 
support of the new metric speed limit design, and ten comments from the 
Oregon and Minnesota DOTs and private citizens opposed to the sign 
design. Those opposed cited concerns that the red circle is generally 
associated with a prohibitory regulatory message, and that a speed 
limit does not fall into that category of message. In response to the 
comments, the FHWA revises the sign in this final rule to include a 
black circle around the speed value, rather than red. The concept of 
placing a circle around the metric speed limit digits was developed to 
provide a clear and easily noticed distinction between metric and 
English speed limit signs. Because the color red suggests prohibition, 
and green is already used as a permissive message with hazardous 
materials routing signs, the FHWA requires the black colored circle to 
provide distinction for a metric speed limit.
    Based on this new design, the FHWA removes the first SUPPORT 
statement (from the 2000 MUTCD), as it is no longer needed. The new 
design of the metric Speed Limit sign better differentiates a metric 
speed limit sign from an English-unit speed limit sign, and also 
remedies the possible situation where the ``METRIC'' plaque used in the 
old design is damaged or stolen and the sign appears to be an English 
units Speed Limit sign with a higher but erroneous value. Other than 
comments opposed to the change in the metric sign design, there were no 
comments specifically regarding this change, and the FHWA adopts this 
change.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a new paragraph to the first 
GUIDANCE statement indicating that non-statutory speed limits be 
reevaluated at least once every five years to determine if any 
adjustments would be appropriate. The FHWA received one comment from a 
private citizen in support of this change, and four comments from the 
NCUTCD, City of Kennewick, Washington; Lake County, Illinois; and 
Pierce County, Washington, opposed to the new paragraph. Those opposed 
cited concerns about the five-year frequency of review, stating that 
there are many roads and streets on which conditions remain stable for 
much longer than five years and that conducting speed limit 
reevaluations every five years on such roads would be a major burden on 
the States and local governments. The FHWA agrees with some of these 
concerns, and therefore the FHWA expands the paragraph to clarify that 
this review should take place on segments of roadways that have 
undergone a significant change in roadway characteristics or 
surrounding land use since the last review.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed clarifications to the third paragraph 
of the GUIDANCE statement to differentiate the rounding of a speed 
limit on a sign located on a non-residential street from a sign located 
on a residential street. The FHWA received several comments from the 
NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, and a traffic engineering consultant 
opposing this change, requesting simpler terminology and the ability 
for jurisdictions to round speeds up or down, regardless of street 
classification. A traffic engineering consultant suggested less 
reliance on the 85th percentile speed. Based on these comments, the 
FHWA simplifies the statement to read, ``When a speed limit is to be 
posted, it should be within 10 km/h or 5 mph of the 85th percentile 
speed of free-flowing traffic.''
    The FHWA adds a paragraph to the end of the OPTION statement, which 
states that a changeable message sign that displays to approaching 
drivers the speed at which they are traveling may be installed in 
conjunction with a Speed Limit sign. The FHWA received one comment from 
a traffic control device manufacturer supporting this change. The FHWA 
adopts the change, as proposed in the NPA, in this final rule.
    The FHWA also adds, following the OPTION statement, a GUIDANCE 
statement, which states that if a changeable message sign displaying 
approach speeds is installed, the legend YOUR SPEED XX KM/H (MPH) or 
similar legend should be shown. Changeable message signs displaying the 
actual speeds of approaching drivers have been widely used in many 
jurisdictions over the past decade or more to enhance driver compliance 
with speed limits. However, a variety of colors have been used for the 
display of the numerals of the actual speed. For consistency with Table 
2A-4 and the MUTCD's general principles of sign colors, FHWA adds to 
this GUIDANCE statement that the color should be yellow legend on black 
background or the reverse of these colors. The FHWA establishes a 10-
year phase-in target compliance date from the effective date of this 
final rule for the color of the legend of the changeable message 
portion of the ``YOUR SPEED'' sign, for existing signs in good 
condition, to minimize any impacts on State or local governments.
    35. In Section 2B.15 Night Speed Limit Sign (R2-3) (numbered 
Section 2B.13 in the NPA), while there were no changes proposed in the 
NPA, the FHWA makes editorial changes in this section to be consistent 
with Section 2B.13 Speed Limit Sign. In addition, in response to 
comments received, the FHWA changes the metric version of the Night 
Speed Limit sign in Figure 2B-1 to show a white circle around the 
metric speed digits and include the ``km/h'' message all within one 
panel. This is necessary for consistency with the adopted concept of 
enclosing metric speed limit values in a circle to assure that they are 
easily distinguished from speed limits in English units.
    36. In Section 2B.16 Minimum Speed Limit Sign (R2-4), numbered 
Section 2B.14 in the NPA, the FHWA received

[[Page 65507]]

several comments opposing the design of the metric sign in Figure 2B-3 
(numbered Figure 2B-2 in the NPA). The comments were similar to those 
received on Section 2B.13 Speed Limit Sign (R2-1). (See also the 
discussion of that section above.) Because the color red suggests 
prohibition, and green is already used as a permissive message with 
hazardous materials routing signs, the FHWA requires the black colored 
circle to provide distinction for a metric minimum speed limit.
    37. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 2B.17 
FINES HIGHER Plaque (R2-6).'' (In the NPA, this new section was 
numbered and titled ``Section 2B.15 Fines Higher Sign (R2-6)''). The 
FHWA agrees with comments from the NCUTCD and a traffic engineering 
consultant suggesting that the term ``sign'' be replaced with 
``plaque''. This new section consists of OPTION, GUIDANCE, and STANDARD 
statements on the uses of the FINES HIGHER plaque to advise road users 
when increased fines are imposed for traffic violations within 
designated roadway segments. The FINES HIGHER plaque should be 
installed below an applicable regulatory or warning sign in a temporary 
traffic control zone, a school zone, or other applicable designated 
zone. The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA specifically in support 
of the new section, and one comment from the Wisconsin DOT opposing it. 
The Wisconsin DOT stated that the sign is not necessary because these 
laws are already State statutes and need not be signed. Because this is 
an OPTION, States can choose not to allow the use of this plaque. Many 
other States are finding that this sign enhances safety in school zones 
and temporary traffic control zones by reminding drivers of a law that 
might not always be prevalent on their minds. It also serves to alert 
drivers from other States about this law, which may not be the same as 
the laws in their home State. The FHWA adopts this new section, with 
minor editorial revisions, and renumbers the remaining sections.
    38. The FHWA removes Section 2B.16 Reduced Speed Ahead Signs (R2-5) 
Series (as numbered and titled in the 2000 MUTCD) because these signs 
are warning signs and appear in Chapter 2C in this final rule. The 
intended message is more properly categorized as a warning message 
rather than a regulatory message.
    See discussion in Section 2C.30 Speed Reduction Signs (W3-5, W3-5a) 
where FHWA adds the newly designated warning signs. That discussion 
applies to this section also. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts the removal 
of former Section 2B.16 as proposed in the NPA. To minimize any impacts 
to State and local governments, in Section 2C.30 the FHWA establishes a 
phase-in target compliance date of 15 years from the effective date of 
this final rule for existing R2-5 signs in good condition to be changed 
to W3-5 or W3-5a signs.
    39. In Section 2B.19 Turn Prohibition Signs (R3-1 through R3-4, and 
R3-18) (numbered and titled ``Section 2B.17 Turn Prohibition Signs (R3-
1 through R3-4)'' in the 2000 MUTCD and in the NPA), the FHWA includes 
a new symbol sign which combines the No Left Turn and the No U-turn 
symbol signs into one symbol sign (R3-18), and adds to the OPTION and 
GUIDANCE statements information on the proper use of the sign. This new 
sign will reduce the sign clutter at an intersection where both 
movements are restricted and make it easier for road users to 
understand the multiple turn restrictions. The FHWA received six 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, Caltrans and the Cities of Tucson, 
Arizona; and Plano, Texas, supporting this new sign. The Virginia DOT 
opposed this change due to the fact that Virginia State law already 
prohibits U-turns when a No Left Turn sign is present. Because not all 
States have this law, the FHWA believes that this sign should be 
available for use by States at those locations where both U-turns and 
left turns are prohibited. The FHWA adopts the OPTION and GUIDANCE 
statements in this final rule. Because it is an OPTION, States are not 
obligated to use the new sign.
    40. In Section 2B.21 Mandatory Movement Lane Control Signs (R3-5, 
R3-5a, and R3-7) (numbered Section 2B.19 in the NPA), the FHWA revises 
the GUIDANCE statement to clarify that the lane control pavement 
markings mentioned are lane-use arrow markings. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, 
and the FHWA adopts this change.
    41. In Section 2B.25, Reversible Lane Control Signs (R3-9d, R3-9f 
through R3-9i) (numbered and titled, ``Section 2B.23 Reversible Lane 
Control Signs (R3-9c through R3-9i)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA 
removes the R3-9c and R3-9e signs and all of their references in the 
section. Using just the R3-9d sign will improve uniformity and maintain 
consistency with the red X symbol used in reversible lane signal 
systems. The DO NOT ENTER symbol is intended to be used to prohibit 
entry into a roadway or ramp, and using this symbol to prohibit use of 
a single lane of a roadway that is otherwise available for travel is 
inconsistent and degrades the meaning of the symbol. The FHWA also 
revises the first STANDARD statement to clarify that the barriers 
mentioned are physical barriers.
    Additionally, the FHWA modifies item B of the second OPTION 
statement to read, ``An engineering study indicates that the use of the 
Reversible Lane Control signs alone would result in an acceptable level 
of safety and efficiency.'' This is to clarify that an engineering 
study needs to evaluate whether safety and efficiency will be 
maintained with signs alone.
    The FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of these changes, and the FHWA adopts the 
changes.
    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years 
from the effective date of this final rule for existing signs in good 
condition to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    42. In Section 2B.26 Preferential Only Lane Signs (R3-10 through 
R3-15) (numbered and titled Section 2B.48 Preferential Lane Signs (R3-
10 through R3-17) in the NPA), the FHWA changes several GUIDANCE 
statements to STANDARD statements to be consistent with requirements of 
STANDARDS in other sections of the MUTCD and to ensure that these 
critical signs are properly designed and applied to enhance safety and 
reduce road user confusion. The FHWA also includes cross-references to 
other sections, as appropriate. Additionally, the FHWA revises 
information for the R3-10 through R3-14 signs in Table 2B-1 in this 
final rule. The FHWA also revises Figure 2B-7 (numbered Figure 2B-21 in 
the NPA) to correct errors and illustrate examples of signs consistent 
with the text in this final rule. All of these changes respond to 
comments received from Caltrans, the Florida and Minnesota DOTs, 
traffic engineering consultants, and private citizens requesting 
clarity, and they provide consistency with other areas of the MUTCD.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed modifying the first paragraph of the 
third GUIDANCE statement regarding types of preferential lane signs for 
which the diamond symbol should not be used (because the diamond symbol 
is intended to be used only to denote HOV lanes). The restriction of 
using the diamond symbol only for HOV lanes is now included in a 
STANDARD statement in Section 2B.27 Preferential Only Lanes for High-
Occupancy Vehicles (HOVs) (numbered 2B.49 in the NPA), and is cross-
referenced in

[[Page 65508]]

Section 2B.26 Preferential Only Lane Signs (R3-10 through R3-15). As a 
result, the FHWA is not making the change to the first paragraph of the 
third GUIDANCE statement that was proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA changes the last paragraph of the third GUIDANCE statement 
(of the 2000 MUTCD) to a fifth STANDARD statement (second in the NPA) 
to be consistent with requirements in Section 2A.07 Changeable Message 
Signs. These requirements indicate that changeable message signs 
serving as HOV signs shall be the required sign size and shall display 
the required letter height and legend format that corresponds to the 
type of facility and design speed. This change from a recommended 
practice to a required practice is made to preclude the use of 
insufficiently sized or designed changeable message signs to display 
these important regulatory messages for HOV lane use. The FHWA received 
one comment from the NCUTCD in support of this change, and one comment 
from Caltrans suggesting further clarification. To respond to the 
comments, the FHWA inserts an OPTION statement prior to the STANDARD, 
indicating appropriate uses of changeable message signs, and the FHWA 
includes editorial modifications to the STANDARD.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new GUIDANCE statement at the end of 
the section stating that the Inherently Low Emission Vehicle (ILEV) 
(R3-10b) sign should be used when it is permissible for a properly 
labeled and certified ILEV, regardless of the number of occupants, to 
operate in the HOV lanes and that, when used, the ILEV signs should be 
ground mounted in advance of the HOV lanes and at intervals along the 
HOV lanes based upon engineering judgment. A uniform sign design and 
application is needed to enhance driver understanding and compliance 
regarding ILEV use of HOV lanes and also to correspond to changes in 
Section 2B.27 Preferential Only Lanes for High Occupancy Vehicles 
(HOVs). The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA in support of this new 
statement, and two comments from Caltrans and the Minnesota DOT opposed 
to it. The opposing commenters suggested that there are different types 
of ILEV vehicles, and that the text needed to be clarified. To respond 
to those comments, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT statement, following the 
GUIDANCE, that explains what an ILEV is, similar to the definition in 
Section 1A.13, and also providing citations of applicable sections of 
the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). The R3-10b sign is recommended 
for use when a State or local jurisdiction permits ILEVs to use a 
particular HOV lane facility.
    The FHWA establishes a 10-year phase-in target compliance date from 
the effective date of this final rule for signs in good condition to 
comply with the new requirements of Section 2B.26 Preferential Only 
Lane Signs (R3-10 through R3-15), to minimize any impact on State or 
local governments.
    43. In Section 2B.27 Preferential Only Lanes for High-Occupancy 
Vehicles (numbered and titled Section 2B.49 High Occupancy Vehicle 
(HOV) Lanes in the NPA), the FHWA adds a second paragraph to the first 
STANDARD statement that the requirements for a minimum number of 
occupants in a vehicle to use an HOV lane shall be in effect for most, 
or all, of at least one of the usual times during the day when the 
demand to travel is greatest (such as morning or afternoon peak travel 
periods) and the traffic congestion problems on the roadway and 
adjoining transportation corridor are at their worst. The FHWA also 
adds in the last paragraph the requirement of a Federal review (as 
outlined in Section 2 of the Federal-aid Highway Program Guidance on 
HOV Lanes \11\) prior to initiating a proposed project (including a 
proposed test or demonstration project) that seeks to significantly 
change the operation of the HOV lanes for any length of time. The FHWA 
received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in general support of the changes to this section, and one comment from 
Caltrans opposed to the specific change regarding Federal review of a 
proposed test or demonstration project. Caltrans felt that FHWA review 
is not currently required. However, the Federal review is required 
because of provisions in Titles 23 and 49 of the United States Code as 
well as a variety of commitments, agreements, transportation planning 
requirements, and transportation conformity requirements under the 
Clean Air Act. The FHWA responds by providing an additional reference 
to the Federal-Aid Highway Program Guidance on HOV Lanes, which gives 
very detailed information about the basis of the review and factors 
considered.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \11\ The ``Federal-Aid Highway Program Guidance on High 
Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lanes'' dated March 28, 2001, is available 
at the following URL: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/operations/hovguide01.htm
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to modify the first STANDARD 
statement to allow motorcycles to use HOV lanes that received Federal-
aid program funding. The FHWA also proposed to require agencies to 
allow a vehicle with less than the required number of occupants to 
operate in the HOV lanes if:
    A. The vehicle is properly labeled and certified as an ILEV and the 
lane is not a bus-only HOV lane; or
    B. The HOV lanes are part of a project that is participating in the 
FHWA Value Pricing Pilot Program.\12\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \12\ The Value Pricing Pilot Program is an experimental program 
to learn the potential of different value pricing approaches for 
reducing congestion authorized by Section 1216(a) of the 
Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21). Information 
is available at the following URL: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/vppp.htm
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA adopts this requirement as it pertains to motorcycles 
because, under the provisions of 23 U.S.C. 102(a)(1), motorcycles are 
specifically identified as not a single-occupant vehicle. However, the 
FHWA recognizes that the provisions of 23 U.S.C. 102(a)(2) and 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations in 40 CFR section 
88.313-93 permit, but do not require, States to allow ILEVs to use HOV 
lanes. Further, the FHWA recognizes that the applicable provisions of 
the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) permit, but 
do not require, States to allow vehicles with fewer than two occupants 
to operate in HOV lanes if the vehicles are part of a value pricing 
program. Therefore, the FHWA revises the paragraph in Section 2B.27 
about these uses of HOV lanes to OPTION statements rather than STANDARD 
statements.
    The FHWA also revises the first SUPPORT statement to clarify the 
examples of significant operational changes to HOV lanes. While most of 
this information was included in the NPA (and the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA 
provides examples in the form of individual items in this final rule 
for clarity. The FHWA adds implementing a pricing option to an existing 
HOV lane, such as High Occupancy Toll (HOT) lane or toll lane to the 
list of example items to reflect current practice.
    The FHWA modifies this section to add a SUPPORT statement at the 
end of the section. The SUPPORT statement states that the Inherently 
Low Emissions Vehicle (ILEV) program requirements, certification 
program, and other regulatory provisions are developed and administered 
through the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration (EPA). The 
U.S. EPA is the only entity with the authority to certify ILEVs. 
Vehicle manufacturers must request the U.S. EPA to grant an ILEV 
certification for any vehicle to be considered and labeled as meeting 
these standards. According to the U.S. EPA,

[[Page 65509]]

1996 was the first year that they certified any ILEVs. The U.S. EPA 
regulations specify that ILEVs must meet the emission standards 
specified in 40 CFR 88.311-93 and their labeling must be in accordance 
with 40 CFR 88.311-93(c).
    The changes in Section 2B.27 are also necessary to assure 
consistency with the FHWA requirements to comply with the National 
Environmental Policy Act (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) process.
    44. In Section 2B.28 Preferential Only Lane Sign Applications and 
Placement (numbered Section 2B.50 High-Occupancy Vehicle Sign 
Application and Placement in the NPA), in the NPA the FHWA proposed 
adding a SUPPORT statement after the GUIDANCE statement, to state that 
Figures 2E-44 through 2E-show application and placement examples of HOV 
signing for entrances to barrier-separated HOV lanes and direct 
entrances to and exits from HOV lanes. The FHWA received four comments 
regarding the proposed changes to this section. The NCUTCD and the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, supported the changes, the Connecticut DOT 
suggested an editorial change to clarify the new figure, and Caltrans 
opposed the number of signs required for concurrent-flow HOV lanes. The 
FHWA revises the number of signs required for concurrent-flow HOV lanes 
to be more consistent with the practice of some leading States with HOV 
lanes. Also, the FHWA makes editorial revisions to and reorganizes the 
section to add clarity to differentiate between specific situations of 
barrier-separated, buffer-separated, concurrent flow, and direct access 
ramps as they relate to Preferential Only Lane signing, to address 
comments on this and other related sections from agencies that operate 
HOV facilities, suggesting that the many provisions of this section 
were not consistent with other provisions of the MUTCD and the section 
needed clarification and consistency.
    The FHWA establishes a 10-year phase-in target compliance date from 
the effective date of this final rule for existing signs in good 
condition to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    45. In Section 2B.33 Keep Right and Keep Left Signs (R4-7, R4-8) 
(numbered Section 2B.28 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the first OPTION 
statement that the Keep Left (R4-8) sign may be used at locations where 
it is necessary for traffic to pass only to the left of a roadway 
feature or obstruction.
    The FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement to clarify that the Keep 
Right sign should be mounted on the face of, or just in front of, a 
pier or other obstruction separating opposite directions of traffic in 
the center of the highway such that traffic will have to pass to the 
right of the sign.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new STANDARD statement following the 
GUIDANCE statement indicating that the Keep Right sign shall not be 
installed on the right side of the roadway in a position where traffic 
must pass to the left of the sign.
    The changes in this section clarify the proper uses of Keep Right 
and Keep Left signs. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, in general support of the changes to this 
section, and adopts these changes.
    46. In Section 2B.34 DO NOT ENTER Sign (R5-1) (numbered Section 
2B.29 in the NPA), the FHWA modifies the GUIDANCE statement with 
respect to the placement of the DO NOT ENTER sign. The GUIDANCE states 
that, if used, the DO NOT ENTER sign should be placed directly in view 
of the road user at the point where a road user could wrongly enter a 
divided highway, one-way roadway, or ramp, and includes a reference to 
Figure 2B-10 (numbered Figure 2B-8 in the NPA). The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting the overall 
changes to this section, and the FHWA adopts these changes.
    Additionally, the FHWA renumbers and retitles Figure 2B-2 (as 
numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) from ``Typical Wrong-Way Signing for a 
Divided Highway'' to ``Figure 2B-10 Example of Wrong-Way Signing for a 
Divided Highway with a Median Width of 9 m (30 ft) or Greater'' 
(numbered Figure 2B-8 in the NPA). The FHWA received two comments from 
private citizens in general support of the changes to this figure, and 
the FHWA adopts the changes.
    47. In Section 2B.36 Selective Exclusion Signs (numbered Section 
2B.31 in the NPA), the FHWA changes item H in the SUPPORT statement 
from ``Hazardous Cargo'' to ``Hazardous Material'' to reflect the 
changes in Section 2B.52 Hazardous Material Signs (R14-2, R14-3). The 
FHWA received two comments from ATSSA and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of this change, and adopts this change. The FHWA received 
additional editorial comments to provide consistency with other areas 
of the MUTCD, and the FHWA incorporates the comments in this final 
rule.
    48. In Section 2B.37 ONE WAY Signs (R6-1, R6-2) (numbered Section 
2B.32 in the NPA), the FHWA relocates four figures from Section 2A.16 
to this section. The FHWA renumbers and retitles Figures 2A-5 and 2A-6 
to ``Figure 2B-12. Examples of Locations of ONE WAY Signs (Sheet 1 of 
2, Sheet 2 of 2)'' (numbered Figures 2B-10 and 2B-11 in the NPA); 
Figure 2A-4 to ``Figure 2B-13. Examples of ONE WAY Signing for Divided 
Highways with Medians 9 m (30 ft) or Greater'' (numbered Figure 2B-12 
in the NPA); and Figure 2A-3 to ``Figure 2B-14. Examples of ONE WAY 
Signing for Divided Highways with Medians Less Than 9 m (30 ft) '' 
(numbered Figure 2B-13 in the NPA). The FHWA also adds a new figure, 
``Figure 2B-15. Examples of ONE WAY Signing for Divided Highways with 
Medians Less Than 9 m (30 ft) and Separated Left-Turn Lanes'' (numbered 
Figure 2B-14 in the NPA). These figures are most directly associated 
with ONE WAY signs and are most appropriately located in this section, 
which contains the text about ONE WAY signs. The FHWA received a few 
editorial comments regarding these figures, and incorporates those 
changes as appropriate in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the depiction of the optional Keep 
Right signs on the medians in Figures 2B-14 and 2B-15 to show them at a 
45 degree angle facing the road users on the cross street, to make it 
easier for drivers to determine the location of the median nose and to 
enter the proper roadway of a divided highway. The FHWA received three 
comments from ATSSA and private citizens in support of these changes. 
The FHWA adopts the changes to these figures.
    49. In Section 2B.40 Design of Parking, Standing, and Stopping 
Signs (numbered Section 2B.35 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the 
GUIDANCE statement that where special parking restrictions are imposed 
during heavy snowfall, Snow Emergency signs should be installed and 
that the legend will vary according to the regulations, but the signs 
should be vertical rectangles, having a white background with the upper 
part of the plate a red background. Signs of this type are used by many 
jurisdictions. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this 
change. In addition, the FHWA adds a paragraph at the end of the 
GUIDANCE statement regarding the use of the VAN ACCESSIBLE (R7-8a) 
plaque. A final rule adding this information to the 1988 edition of the 
MUTCD was adopted in 1998, however this was inadvertently left out of 
the 2000 MUTCD.
    50. In Section 2B.44 Pedestrian Crossing Signs (R9-2, R9-3) 
(numbered Section 2B.39 in the NPA), the FHWA

[[Page 65510]]

modifies the second OPTION statement by changing ``PEDESTRIANS 
PROHIBITED'' to ``NO PEDESTRIAN CROSSING'' as the proper word message 
sign to be used as an alternate to the No Pedestrian Crossing (R9-3a) 
symbol sign. ``NO PEDESTRIAN CROSSING'' is the intended meaning of the 

symbol and more clearly describes the actual restriction of pedestrian 
movement. The FHWA received comments from the Association of Pedestrian 
and Bicycle Professionals and the City of Tucson, Arizona, specifically 
in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    The FHWA also received comments from the Florida DOT and the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, suggesting that the section does not mention 
signalized crossings. These comments are outside the scope of this 
rulemaking and would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking.
    51. In Section 2B.45 Traffic Signal Signs (R10-1 through R10-21) 
(numbered and titled ``Section 2B.40 Traffic Signal Signs (R10-1 
through R10-13)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA revises the title to 
reflect additional traffic signal signs. These signs are shown in 
Figures 2B-18 and 2B-19.
    The FHWA adds to the second OPTION statement that the R10-3d sign 
may be used if the pedestrian clearance time is sufficient only for the 
pedestrian to cross to the median. This sign is similar to the existing 
R10-3b sign except that next to the WALK symbol is the message ``START 
CROSSING TO MEDIAN WATCH FOR VEHICLES.'' The FHWA also modifies Figure 
2B-18 (numbered Figure 2B-17 in the NPA) to add illustrations of the 
R10-3d sign and the R10-3e sign. The R10-3e sign is a variant 
incorporating ``time remaining to finish crossing'' and is consistent 
with countdown pedestrian signals as adopted in Part 4. The FHWA 
received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change and one question from the U.S. Access Board regarding how 
this information would be given in audible and vibrotactile formats. 
The Access Board stated that, if accessible signals are used at an 
intersection where pedestrians should cross only to a median and then 
wait until a different phase to complete their crossing, it would be 
important for the accessible devices to communicate this fact to the 
pedestrian with visual disabilities. This comment actually pertains to 
Chapter 4E Pedestrian Signals, and it goes beyond the scope of this 
rulemaking and would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking. The 
FHWA adopts the change, as proposed in the NPA, in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises and relocates the third OPTION 
statement (from the 2000 MUTCD) to follow the second STANDARD statement 
to indicate that a symbolic NO TURN ON RED (R10-11) sign may be used as 
an alternate to the R10-11a and R10-11b signs. The symbolic sign has a 
symbolic red ball rather than using the ``No Right Turn'' symbol, to 
avoid confusion with the R3-1 (No Right Turn) sign.
    In Figure 2B-19 Traffic Signal Signs (numbered Figure 2B-18 in the 
NPA), the FHWA received several comments regarding the illustration of 
``No Right Turn on Red'' signs. ATSSA and a traffic engineering 
consultant agreed with the return of the R10-11 sign and the removal of 
the R10-11c and R10-11d signs. The Cities of Plano, Texas, and Los 
Angeles, California, and some private citizens were opposed to the 
removal of the R10-11c and R10-11d signs, stating that the use of 
symbol signs should be encouraged over word signs. The FHWA disagrees 
with the opposing commenters because the use of the No Right Turn 
symbol sign should be reserved for actual prohibition of all right turn 
movements at an intersection to have the appropriate impact on safety. 
Extensive use of a No Right Turn on Red sign featuring the No Right 
Turn symbol would degrade the influence of the R3-1 sign. The City of 
Los Angeles and a private citizen suggested different designs for the 
sign. The FHWA disagrees with these different designs because they are 
too complex. The FHWA adopts the R10-11 sign with a red ball symbol 
included on the bottom line of the sign. The FHWA also revises the sign 
number for R10-20b to be R10-20a, and places the word ``or'' between 
the two R10-20a signs to clarify that the signs illustrate two examples 
of different word messages that can be used to provide times and days.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the second GUIDANCE statement to 
indicate that where turns on red after the driver stops are permitted 
and the turn signal indication is a RED ARROW, the RIGHT (LEFT) ON RED 
ARROW AFTER STOP (R10-17a) sign should be installed adjacent to the RED 
ARROW signal indication to conform to the ``Uniform Vehicle Code and 
Model Traffic Ordinance'' (UVC) as revised. The revised UVC prohibits 
turns on a RED ARROW after stopping unless a sign specifically allowing 
the turn is in place. The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA in 
support of this change, and three comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans 
and the City of Kennewick, Washington, opposing it. Kennewick, 
Washington, opposed this new sign, because the State of Washington 
allows the turn on red arrow after stop in certain instances, unless 
otherwise prohibited by signs. The FHWA is in favor of maintaining 
consistency with the majority of the other States who already have laws 
that agree with this meaning of the red arrow.
    The NCUTCD opposed this new paragraph as well as the signs, stating 
that it is ``inappropriate.'' Without additional explanation, the FHWA 
cannot respond to this comment.
    Caltrans opposed the new sign suggesting that where turns on red 
are permitted after stopping and the signal indication is a RED ARROW, 
that changing the signal indication from a RED ARROW to a Red Ball 
would be more appropriate than fixing the situation with a sign. The 
FHWA agrees that while there may not be many places where the R10-17a 
sign is needed, there are intersections with unusual geometrics or 
special lane use control for which an all-arrow right-turn signal head 
makes sense and from which there is no reason that turns on red should 
be prohibited. It is primarily for these situations that the R10-17a 
sign should be used. The FHWA adopts use of this sign in this final 
rule, with minor modifications.
    Additionally, the FHWA relocates the last item in the second 
GUIDANCE statement to the first paragraph under the third OPTION 
statement (new fourth OPTION statement) and changes it to read that 
when right turn on red after stop is permitted and pedestrian 
crosswalks are marked, the TURNING TRAFFIC MUST YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS 
(R10-15) sign may be used. This change is necessary to prevent 
potential overuse and a reduced effectiveness of the sign. The FHWA 
received two comments from ATSSA and a traffic engineering consultant 
in support of this change. The U.S. Access Board opposed, stating that 
the use of the sign should not be restricted to just marked crosswalks. 
The traffic engineering consultant who supported the change also 
suggested that the sign would also be useful during the green interval 
to remind drivers to yield to pedestrians who are crossing during the 
concurrent WALK interval. The FHWA agrees and adds a paragraph to the 
OPTION stating that a TURNING TRAFFIC MUST YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS sign 
may be used to remind drivers who are making turns to yield to 
pedestrians, especially at intersections where crosswalks are

[[Page 65511]]

marked and right turn on red is permitted.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a paragraph to the OPTION 
statement allowing the use of supplemental plaques showing times of day 
or with the legend WHEN PEDESTRIANS ARE PRESENT below a NO TURN ON RED 
sign, to allow the flexibility to restrict turns on red only during 
certain times or when a pedestrian conflict is present. The traffic 
engineering consultant also supported the use of both of the suggested 
plaques. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety presented results 
from recent field research indicating that time-of-day restrictions are 
effective in reducing right turn on red related safety threats to 
pedestrians but the WHEN PEDESTRIANS ARE PRESENT plaque is not because 
its vague message makes enforcement difficult.\13\ Based on this 
research, the FHWA revises the text to deletes the WHEN PEDESTRIANS ARE 
PRESENT plaque. Because it is a word message, State and local highway 
agencies may still use the WHEN PEDESTRIANS ARE PRESENT plaque 
prohibiting right turns on red when pedestrians are present if their 
laws so dictate, but they are not encouraged to do so because research 
has shown these plaques are ineffective. Finally, to respond to a 
comment from a traffic engineering consultant, the FHWA moves the last 
paragraph of this OPTION statement regarding the use of Traffic Signal 
Speed signs to the end of the second OPTION statement because this 
paragraph relates more to the information provided in the second 
OPTION.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \13\ ``Field Evaluation of Two Methods for Restricting Right 
Turn on Red to Promote Pedestrian Safety,'' by Retting, Nitzburg, 
Farmer, and Knoblauch, for the Insurance Institute for Highway 
Safety, was published in the January 2002 issue of the ``ITE 
Journal,'' a publication of the Institute of Transportation 
Engineers (ITE). Information on obtaining a copy of this publication 
is available from ITE at the following URL: http://www.ite.org.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA proposed in the NPA to add to the third STANDARD statement 
that the EMERGENCY SIGNAL--STOP WHEN FLASHING RED (R10-14) sign shall 
be used in conjunction with emergency beacons to correspond with 
proposed changes in Part 4 of the MUTCD, which proposed to require the 
use of these signs with Emergency Beacons. Due to extensive comments in 
opposition to the Emergency Beacon in Part 4, the FHWA does not adopt 
these changes in Part 4. (See the discussion of Section 4F.03). 
Therefore, the FHWA removes the R10-14 sign, associated text, and 
illustration from Part 2.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding to the STANDARD statement the 
requirement to use a ``U Turn Yield to Right Turn'' sign when U-turns 
on a green arrow signal conflict with right turns on a green arrow 
signal. While there were comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and 
a traffic engineering consultant in support of this change, the FHWA 
received comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, and the City of Kennewick, 
Washington, opposed it, stating that the sign would not be understood, 
or was inappropriate. The FHWA concurs that there is some possibility 
of misunderstanding. Because there is no data to support or refute 
these concerns, the FHWA changes this to an OPTION statement, allowing 
the use of the sign but not requiring it. The FHWA also modifies 
Sections 4D.05 Application of Steady Signal Indications and 4D.09 
Unexpected Conflicts During Green or Yellow Intervals accordingly.
    52. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2B.46 Photo Enforced Signs (R10-18, R10-19)'' (numbered Section 2B.51 
in the NPA.) This new section provides guidance to State and local 
agencies on the use of the photo enforcement signs to alert road users 
of this type of traffic enforcement. The FHWA includes an OPTION 
statement with two paragraphs. The first paragraph states that a 
TRAFFIC LAWS PHOTO ENFORCED (R10-18) sign may be installed at a 
jurisdictional boundary to advise road users that some of the traffic 
regulations within that jurisdiction are being enforced by photographic 
equipment. The second paragraph states that a PHOTO ENFORCED (R10-19) 
sign may be mounted below a regulatory sign to advise road users that 
the regulation is being enforced by photographic equipment.
    Additionally, the FHWA includes a STANDARD statement, which states 
that if the PHOTO ENFORCED (R10-19) sign is used below a regulatory 
sign, it shall be a rectangle with black legend and border on a white 
background.
    The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this new section and two 
comments from the Wisconsin DOT and the Insurance Institute of Highway 
Safety opposed to it.
    The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety stated that placing the 
TRAFFIC LAWS PHOTO ENFORCED sign at jurisdictional boundaries is vague 
with regard to which traffic laws (speed, red light) are photo 
enforced. The FHWA disagrees because this sign can be a useful reminder 
to drivers to obey all traffic laws, just speed limits and red lights. 
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety also suggested that rather 
than the general PHOTO ENFORCED regulatory sign, specific regulatory 
signs should be developed for both red light cameras and automated 
speed enforcement. The FHWA disagrees because the consistent placement 
of the PHOTO ENFORCED sign should provide adequate notice and should 
have the desired effect on driver behavior.
    The Wisconsin DOT noted that not all States allow the use of photo 
enforcement. Because use of these signs is optional, States that do not 
use photographic enforcement will not need to use these signs.
    The FHWA adopts this section in its entirety, as proposed in the 
NPA, in this final rule. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target 
compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule 
for existing signs of different designs that are in good condition to 
minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    53. In Section 2B.52 Hazardous Material Signs (R14-2, R14-3) 
(numbered and titled ``Section 2B.46 Hazardous Cargo Signs (R14-2, R14-
3)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA changes the title and revises the 
OPTION and GUIDANCE statements to replace ``cargo'' with the word 
``material'' and revises the symbol for the Hazardous Material sign 
(R14-3) sign to be HM rather than HC, to correspond with Section 2B.36 
Selective Exclusion Signs and to reflect the change in terminology in 
the industry. The FHWA received three comments from ATSSA, the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen in support of these changes, and 
three comments from private citizens suggesting changes to the design 
of the R14-3 sign, particularly changes in the color of the circle 
around the letters. The FHWA adopts the sign design as proposed in the 
NPA. The FHWA revises the phase-in target compliance date to 10 years 
from the effective date of this final rule (the NPA proposed five 
years) for existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact on 
State or local governments.
    54. In Section 2B.54 Other Regulatory Signs (numbered Section 2B.51 
in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA proposed to revise the STANDARD statement 
to indicate that the symbol for the seat belt symbol is in the 
``Standard Highway Signs'' book. The FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change. However, consistent 
with FHWA's desire to include illustrations of all

[[Page 65512]]

signs from the SHS that are referenced in the MUTCD, as discussed 
above, the FHWA retains the symbol for the seat belt symbol, and places 
it in a new Figure 2B-22.
    55. In Section 2C.02 Application of Warning Signs, the FHWA 
modifies the SUPPORT statement to reflect that ``categories'' not 
``applications'' of warning signs are shown in Table 2C-1. This change 
makes the text and Table 2C-1 consistent.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes the title of Table 2C-1 from 
``Application of Warning Signs'' to ``Categories of Warning Signs'' and 
adds new roadway related and traffic related signs and supplemental 
plaques to the table based on changes in other sections of Chapter 2C. 
The change in the title of the table better reflects the actual content 
of the table. There was one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in agreement with the overall changes in this section. One traffic 
engineering consultant questioned why the Railroad Advance Warning sign 
is not listed in the table. This table only includes those signs that 
are found in Chapter 2C, not those found in other parts such as Part 8. 
The MUTCD has separate sign tables in other Parts as appropriate. 
Another traffic engineering consultant questioned why W16-8, W14-1p, 
and W14-2p are identified as plaques. The W16-8 plaque must be used in 
combination with a W2 or W3 sign according to Section 2C.49 Advance 
Street Name Plaque (W16-8, W16-8a), and thus is correctly referred to 
as a plaque. Because the W14-1P and W14-2P plaques can be used alone 
according to Section 2C.21 DEAD END/NO OUTLET Signs (14-1, W14-1a, W14-
2, W14-2a), the FHWA revises the table to remove the ``P'' designation 
from these two signs, and the rectangular forms of these signs are 
designated the W14-1a and W14-2a signs.
    56. In Section 2C.03 Design of Warning Signs, based on an editorial 
comment from a traffic engineering consultant, the FHWA adds 
playgrounds to the listing of signs in the OPTION statement that may 
have a black legend and border on a yellow background or a black legend 
and border on a fluorescent yellow-green background.
    57. In Section 2C.04 Size of Warning Signs, the FHWA removes the 
SUPPORT statement referencing the ``Standard Highway Signs'' book 
because this statement is general and applies to regulatory, warning, 
and guide signs. A similar statement is included in Section 2A.12 
Dimensions. The removal of this SUPPORT statement responds to two 
comments from the NCUTCD and the Illinois DOT.
    The FHWA changes Table 2C-2 to add sizes for the Expressways W1 
Series Arrows signs, the Expressways and Freeways W7 Series Truck 
Runaway signs, the Expressways and Freeways W12-2P Low Clearance signs, 
and to increase the sizes for all roadways except Freeways for the W10-
1 Advance Grade Crossing sign, to enhance visibility of this sign for 
all road users, including older drivers. The FHWA received one comment 
from the NCUTCD in overall agreement with the changes to the table. The 
Oregon DOT suggested that the size for the W1 series signs be 900 x 900 
mm (36'' x 36'') for conventional roads because these curvature signs 
are very important. The FHWA agrees that these signs are important, but 
these signs are in the 750 x 750 mm (30'' x 30'') category because they 
are symbol signs that can be recognized from a greater distance than 
words can be read.
    The FHWA adopts the changes to Table 2C-2 as proposed in the NPA 
and adds the W1 Combination series signs to the Diamond shaped category 
in this final rule. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance 
date of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule for 
existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact on State or 
local governments.
    58. In Section 2C.05 Placement of Warning Signs, the FHWA changes 
the STANDARD statement to a SUPPORT statement, to respond to a comment 
from the City of Tucson, Arizona, suggesting that using the phrase 
``general requirements'' in a STANDARD statement was not clear. The 
FHWA agrees and revises the wording to reference Sections 2A.16 to 
2A.21 for information on placement of warning signs.
    The FHWA changes Table 2C-4 so that the distances for the placement 
of advance warning signs correspond to the values in the 2001 AASHTO `` 
A Policy on Geometric Design of Highway and Streets'' \14\ book and to 
make the table easier to use. The FHWA combines the ``Condition B'' and 
``Condition C'' columns (as shown in the 2000 MUTCD) and labels them 
``Condition B''. The FHWA also adds columns for 90, 100, and 110 km/h 
and 60 and 70 mph for the deceleration to the listed advisory speed and 
rows for 70 and 75 mph for the Posted or 85th Percentile Speed. 
Finally, the FHWA revises the Notes to reflect the other changes taking 
place throughout the MUTCD. These changes to Table 2C-4 reflect the 
needs of older road users and improve the clarity of the Notes. The 
FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and ATSSA in support of the 
changes. There were three comments from the Nevada, Wisconsin, and 
Oregon DOTs opposed to these changes, suggesting that the sign 
placement distances were either too long, or too short. Advanced 
placement distances have significantly decreased based on the 2001 
AASHTO Policy, and the MUTCD reflects these changes. To address 
comments about this table the FHWA removes the word ``minimum'' from 
footnote 5 in both sheets of the table, and removes the metric units 
from the notes on the English units table, and vice versa.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \14\ ``A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets,'' 
4th Edition, 2001, in both hardcopy and CD-ROM, is available from 
the American Association of State Highway and Transportation 
Officials (AASHTO) by telephone (800) 231-3475, facsimile (800) 525-
5562, mail AASHTO, P.O. Box 96716, Washington, DC 20090-6716, or at 
its Web site http://www.transportation.org and click on Bookstore. 
This document is a guide, based on established practices and 
supplemented by research, to provide guidance to the highway 
designer to provide for the needs of highway users while maintaining 
the integrity of the environment. It is incorporated by reference 
into the CFR at 23 CFR 625.4.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    59. In Section 2C.06, Horizontal Alignment Signs (W1-1 through W1-
5, W1-11, W1-15) (titled ``Horizontal Alignment Signs (W1-1 through W1-
5)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA revises the section title to reflect 
the new Hairpin Curve (W1-11) sign and the 270 Degree Loop (W1-15) 
sign.
    In the first OPTION statement, the FHWA adds the use of the Hairpin 
Curve sign and the 270 Degree Loop sign based on the change in 
horizontal alignment. These new signs better portray the severe 
curvature for these types of alignment changes. The FHWA received three 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
supporting the addition of these new signs, and adopts the OPTION 
statement regarding these signs.
    The FHWA also adds to the GUIDANCE statement a recommendation to 
install a One-Direction Large Arrow (W1-6) sign or Chevron Alignment 
(W1-8) sign on the outside of a turn or curve when the Hairpin Curve 
sign or 270-Degree Loop sign is installed. This provides for enhanced 
warning to road users of the severe alignment change and may help 
reduce run-off-the-road crashes.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a second GUIDANCE statement 
following the STANDARD statement. This proposed GUIDANCE recommended 
that the need for additional curve warning signs or advisory speed 
reduction warning plaques be based on an engineering

[[Page 65513]]

study or on engineering judgment. The FHWA received one comment from 
the NCUTCD suggesting that this statement was redundant. The FHWA 
agrees with this comment because traffic engineers consider the need 
for additional warning signs for curves or turns using engineering 
judgment or studies as part of common practice. The FHWA withdraws this 
proposal, and deletes this GUIDANCE from this final rule.
    The FHWA adds an OPTION statement at the end of the section that 
provides a method that may be used to determine the need for additional 
speed reduction warning signs. The FHWA includes these optional 
criteria for determining the need for additional recommended speed 
reduction signs to mitigate the high number of run-off-the-road crashes 
along curves and ramps. Similar to their comments in Section 2C.36 
Advisory Exit, Ramp, and Curve Speed Signs (W13-2, W13-3, W13-5), the 
NCUTCD Regulatory and Warning Sign Technical Committee, Caltrans and 
the City of Kennewick, Washington, suggested deleting this statement as 
well as other statements in this section referring to the Curve Speed 
sign. Those opposed cited their disagreement with the whole concept of 
the Curve Speed sign and the lack of criteria for its use. The FHWA 
believes this is a helpful sign to remind drivers of the advisory speed 
that should be added for optional use. Most curves are very well 
outlined with delineators or chevron signs. However, because crashes 
are still occurring, the FHWA believes that this sign could be used to 
advantage to remind drivers of the recommended reduction in speed as 
they proceed along the curve or ramp. The FHWA includes this statement, 
as well as other references to the Curve Speed sign in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds metric information to Table 2C-5 to 
show the metric speed value of less than or equal to 50 km/h along with 
the English unit of less than or equal to 30 mph and shows the metric 
speed value of greater than 50 km/h along with the English unit of 
greater than 30 mph. The metric values were inadvertently omitted from 
the 2000 MUTCD.
    60. In Section 2C.07 Combination Horizontal Alignment/Advisory 
Speed Signs (W1-1a, W1-2a) (titled ``Combination Horizontal Alignment/
Advisory Speed Sign (W1-9)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the NPA included 
several proposed revisions to this section and the addition of Figure 
2C-2 to provide for enhanced uniformity of application of these types 
of signs and improved safety on curves and turns. While there were two 
comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen in 
support of the changes, several commenters from the NCUTCD, the 
Washington and Wisconsin DOTs, and the Product and Highway Safety 
Institute expressed concern.
    The NCUTCD Regulatory and Warning Sign Technical Committee 
recommended deleting this section and the associated sign images on 
Figure 2C-1 because of a lack of consensus in the profession on the 
proper application of these signs. The NCUTCD offered to review 
applications and develop a recommendation for future consideration. As 
a result of the comments received, the FHWA withdraws these proposed 
revisions and Figure 2C-2. However, in order to distinguish between the 
combination curve signs, the FHWA retains the revised sign codes of W1-
1a and W1-2a instead of W1-9. The FHWA also renumbers subsequent 
figures (as numbered in the NPA). After the NCUTCD has reviewed 
existing applications of this type of signing (which exist in only a 
few States) and makes further recommendations on application and 
placement issues, the FHWA may consider changes to this section in a 
future rulemaking.
    61. In Section 2C.10 Chevron Alignment Sign (W1-8), the FHWA adds 
to the STANDARD statement that a border shall not be used on the 
Chevron Alignment sign. This change corrects an error in the 2000 
MUTCD. The FHWA adopts this change.
    The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD suggesting that the 
second OPTION statement be revised to state that multiple Chevron 
Alignment signs may be used on the far side of a T-intersection to 
inform drivers of a change of horizontal alignment. The FHWA disagrees 
because a Two-Direction Large Arrow sign (W1-7) may be used instead. 
Chevron signs should be limited to use for curves only. Changes to this 
statement may be appropriate for a future rulemaking.
    62. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.11 Truck Rollover Warning Signs (W1-13).'' This section was numbered 
Section 2C.54 in the NPA. This new section includes OPTION and STANDARD 
statements on the use of the Truck Rollover warning sign to warn 
drivers of vehicles with a high center of gravity of a curve or turn 
having geometric conditions that are prone to cause such vehicles to 
lose control and overturn. This new section provides for uniform design 
and application of signs for this purpose, using the Pennsylvania sign 
design that research found to be most effective in warning truckers of 
the condition.\15\ The FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD, 
ATSSA, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen in support of 
this change, and four comments from the Oregon and Wisconsin DOTs and a 
private citizen suggesting that the sign design be revised for clarity. 
As a result, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT statement clarifying that the 
curved arrow on the sign shows the direction of the roadway curvature, 
and that the truck tips in the opposite direction. In the NPA, the FHWA 
proposed two versions of the sign. Several commenters from State DOTs 
opposed the W1-13a Combination sign, stating that there was too much 
information on the sign for the motorist to understand. Based on these 
comments, the FHWA removes the W1-13a Combination sign from this final 
rule. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 
years from the effective date of this final rule for existing signs in 
good condition to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \15\ ``Ramp Signing for Trucks,'' by the Center for Applied 
Research, Inc., December 20, 1989, a research project conducted for 
the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) under contract number 
DTFH61-88-C-00048, is available from FHWA Turner-Fairbank Highway 
Research Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, Virginia 22101, Web 
site http://www.tfhrc.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    63. In Section 2C.12 Hill Signs (W7-1, W7-1a, W7-1b) (numbered 
Section 2C.11 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement to 
clarify that on longer grades, the Hill sign with distance (W7-3a) 
plaque or the combination distance/grade (W7-3b) plaque at periodic 
intervals of approximately 1.6 km (1 mi) spacing should be considered. 
This change clarifies that the plaques should not be used alone but 
should supplement the Hill sign. The FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this 
change.
    64. In Section 2C.13 Truck Escape Ramp Signs (W7-4 Series) 
(numbered Section 2C.12 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the STANDARD 
statement to indicate that at least one of the W7-4 series warning 
signs shall be used when truck escape ramps are installed. This change 
clarifies that additional warning signs may be used as conditions 
warrant. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change. The FHWA 
also adds an illustration of the regulatory RUNAWAY VEHICLES ONLY (R4-
10) sign on Figure 2B-8 (numbered Figure 2B-6 in the NPA) in this final 
rule.

[[Page 65514]]

    65. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.14 HILL BLOCKS VIEW Sign (W7-6).'' This section was numbered Section 
2C.50 in the NPA. This section includes an OPTION statement on the use 
of the HILL BLOCKS VIEW sign in advance of the crest of a vertical 
curve to advise road users to reduce speed as they approach and 
traverse the hill as only limited sight distance is available. The FHWA 
adds this sign because it is in use, fulfills an important need, and 
has been found by older driver research \16\ to be well understood by 
road users. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, and a traffic engineering consultant in support of this new 
section and the HILL BLOCKS VIEW sign, and seven comments from the 
NCUTCD, the Kansas, Minnesota, and Arizona DOTs, as well as Pierce 
County, Washington, and a private citizen questioning its 
effectiveness. Two commenters representing the Kansas DOT suggested 
that the side-road/cross-road warning signs, with the appropriate 
advisory speed, are more informative to the driver. Because this sign 
may be needed to warn of limited view over a hillcrest where side roads 
and cross roads are not present, the FHWA includes this section and the 
HILL BLOCKS VIEW sign in this final rule. Because this is an OPTION, 
some State and local DOTs may choose to use this sign, and others may 
not.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \16\ Information about this research is summarized on pages 235 
and 236 of the ``Highway Design Handbook for Older Drivers and 
Pedestrians,'' Report number FHWA-RD-01-103, published by the FHWA 
Office of Safety Research and Development, 2001. It is available for 
purchase from The National Technical Information Service, 
Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000, and at the following 
URL: http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additionally, the FHWA includes a GUIDANCE statement, indicating 
that when a HILL BLOCKS VIEW sign is used, an Advisory Speed plaque 
based on available stopping sight distance should accompany it. The 
FHWA includes the plaque because road users should be advised of the 
recommended speed for traversing the hillcrest.
    66. In Section 2C.15 ROAD NARROWS Sign (W5-1) (numbered Section 
2C.13 in the NPA), the FHWA included a proposal in NPA to renumber and 
retitle the Narrow Bridge (W5-2a) sign as a new symbolic Road Narrows 
(W5-1a) sign. The FHWA proposed these changes because it felt that the 
road user's understanding of the symbol is not exclusively as ``narrow 
bridge ahead,'' but rather as symbolic of any narrowing of the road, 
such as the presence of curb bulb-outs or chicanes. The FHWA received 
five comments from the NCUTCD, the Arizona and Minnesota DOTs, 
Caltrans, and private citizens opposing this change, stating that the 
symbolic sign is unsuitable for the Road Narrows message due to its 
depiction of a relatively short distance of narrow roadway, which may 
not agree with all narrow roadway situations. The FHWA agrees and 
deletes the W5-1a sign (designated W5-2a in the 2000 MUTCD) and 
associated OPTION statement as proposed in the NPA, and adopts only the 
word message ROAD NARROWS (W5-1) sign in this final rule.
    67. In Section 2C.16 NARROW BRIDGE Sign (W5-2) (numbered Section 
2C.14 in the NPA), the FHWA removes the reference to the Narrow Bridge 
symbol (W5-2b in the NPA, W5-2a in the 2000 MUTCD) sign from the OPTION 
statement. This change was proposed in the NPA to reflect the proposed 
change of the Narrow Bridge symbol (W5-2b) sign to the Road Narrows 
symbol (W5-1a) sign. The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, the 
Ohio DOT, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, 
while the Florida DOT and Caltrans opposed it. The Florida DOT felt 
that replacing a symbol sign with a word message sign is an exception 
to the international movement toward a more symbolic sign vocabulary. 
Caltrans indicated that the symbolic graphic provides more information 
than the text sign because it indicates a temporary short constriction 
in the roadway with the road widening back to normal after the 
constriction. Based on comments (see discussion regarding Section 2C.15 
ROAD NARROWS Sign (W5-1)), the FHWA deletes the symbol sign in this 
final rule, because it's meaning is not clear. The FHWA establishes a 
phase-in target compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of 
this final rule for replacing existing Narrow Bridge symbol signs in 
good condition with the word message signs to minimize any impact on 
State or local governments.
    68. In Section 2C.19 Divided Highway (Road) Ends Sign (W6-2) 
(numbered Section 2C.17 in the NPA), the FHWA modifies the GUIDANCE 
statement to clarify that a Divided Highway Ends (W6-2) symbol sign 
should be used in advance of the end of a section of physically divided 
highway (not an intersection or junction) as a warning of two-way 
traffic ahead. The reason for this change is that the warning sign 
should be placed in advance of, rather than at, the start of the 
divided highway section. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change and adopts this 
change.
    69. In Section 2C.21 DEAD END/NO OUTLET Signs (W14-1, W14-1a, W14-
2, W14-2a) (numbered Section 2C.19 in the NPA), the FHWA combines 
Section 2C.40 DEAD END/NO OUTLET Plaques as numbered in the NPA with 
this section because the FHWA redesignates these plaques as signs. The 
FHWA modifies the STANDARD statement to clarify that when the W14-1 or 
W14-2 sign is used, the sign shall be posted as near as practical to 
the entry point or at a sufficient advance distance to permit the road 
user to avoid the dead end or no outlet condition by turning off, if 
possible, at the nearest intersecting street. This change gives 
additional flexibility to jurisdictions when posting the sign at the 
exact entry point is not practical due to obstructions or other 
factors. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and incorporates this change.
    The FHWA also received a comment from a traffic engineering 
consultant suggesting restoration of text from the 1988 MUTCD, that was 
removed in the 2000 MUTCD, restricting the use of the W14-1P and W14-2P 
plaques in lieu of the W14-1 and W14-2 signs where traffic can proceed 
straight through the intersection into the dead end street. The FHWA 
agrees that this is necessary to adequately warn road users and 
includes this text as a separate paragraph in the STANDARD statement in 
this final rule.
    70. In Section 2C.22 Low Clearance Signs (W12-2 and W12-2) 
(numbered Section 2C.20 in the NPA), the FHWA clarifies the STANDARD 
statement by removing the words ``or minimum structure height.'' This 
change clarifies the proper application of Low Clearance signs. The 
FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and incorporates the change.
    Additionally, the FHWA clarifies the GUIDANCE statement by changing 
the phrase ``legal limit'' to ``legal maximum vehicle height'' to 
reflect more precisely the proper dimension. The FHWA received two 
comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change, and one from the Virginia DOT opposed to it. The Virginia 
DOT stated that the text in this section differs from the text in 
Section 8B.17 Low Ground Clearance Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Sign 
(W10-13) (numbered Section 8B.16 in the NPA), where there is no mention 
of using distance plaques, and suggests that the text in both sections 
should be the same, and that the GUIDANCE statement in this section be 
changed to

[[Page 65515]]

an OPTION. The FHWA disagrees with downgrading this paragraph to an 
OPTION because drivers of high profile vehicles need this information 
where they can still execute a turning maneuver and an OPTION would not 
be appropriate. However, in response to this comment, the FHWA adds a 
distance plaque to the list of sign types in Section 8B.17.
    71. In Section 2C.23 BUMP and DIP Signs (W8-1, W8-2) (numbered 
Section 2C.21 in the NPA), the FHWA modifies the second GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that a short stretch of depressed alignment that 
might momentarily hide a vehicle should be treated as a no-passing zone 
when centerline striping is provided on a two-lane or three-lane road. 
The change replaces the word ``may'' with ``might'' to avoid possible 
confusion of this GUIDANCE statement as an OPTION statement, and 
clarifies that the use of a no-passing zone in this situation only 
applies when centerline striping is provided on the road. The FHWA 
received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    72. In Section 2C.24 SPEED HUMP Sign (W17-1) (numbered Section 
2C.22 in the NPA), the FHWA adds a sentence to the OPTION statement to 
allow the use of the legend SPEED BUMP instead of the legend SPEED HUMP 
on the W17-1 sign. This provides additional flexibility to 
jurisdictions and reduces sign inventory. The FHWA received two 
comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a traffic engineering 
consultant in support of this change, and one comment from the NCUTCD 
opposed to it. The NCUTCD stated that speed humps and speed bumps are 
not the same and are designed and applied differently, and therefore 
should be signed accordingly. While the FHWA agrees that speed humps 
and speed bumps are different, the FHWA believes that the general 
public does not readily perceive the difference in terminology or 
design between speed humps and speed bumps. To allow jurisdictions to 
use the terminology that will be best understood locally and to 
minimize maintenance issues, the FHWA adopts the OPTION statement as 
proposed in the NPA in this final rule. To clarify the intent, the FHWA 
adds a new SUPPORT statement immediately following the OPTION that 
describes speed humps and speed bumps and that, because the terminology 
is not well known by the public, for signing purposes the terms are 
interchangeable.
    73. In Section 2C.26 SHOULDER Signs (W8-4, W8-9, and W8-9a) 
(numbered and titled ``Section 2C.24 SHOULDER and UNEVEN LANES Signs 
(W8-4, W8-9, W8-9a, and W8-11)'' in the NPA), the FHWA removes the 
UNEVEN LANES (W8-11) sign from the title and section text, as well as 
the first SUPPORT and STANDARD statements to move temporary traffic 
control applications signs out of Chapter 2C to respond to comments 
from the NCUTCD and the Washington DOT.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a STANDARD statement just 
before the GUIDANCE statement requiring the use of the SHOULDER DROP 
OFF (W8-9a) sign when a shoulder drop-off, adjacent to the travel lane, 
exceeds 75 mm (3 in) in depth and is not delineated by portable 
barriers. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation in support of this new 
STANDARD, and three comments from the Illinois and Minnesota DOTs 
opposed to it. Those opposed expressed that the text should remain a 
GUIDANCE because requiring the use of SHOULDER DROP OFF signs at all 
locations that meet the criteria would be a considerable hardship on 
agencies to properly identify all locations and sign them at all times. 
The opposing commenters also stated that the public does not fully 
understand the differences between the LOW SHOULDER and SHOULDER DROP 
OFF signs, and suggested that the LOW SHOULDER sign be omitted. The 
FHWA believes that jurisdictions need the proper warning signs to sign 
accurately for conditions where the drop off is greater than 75 mm (3 
inches) and has not yet been repaired. Accordingly, the FHWA restores 
this statement to a GUIDANCE and clarifies the use of the SHOULDER DROP 
OFF sign.
    74. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.28 BRIDGE ICES BEFORE ROAD Sign (W8-13).'' (This section was 
numbered Section 2C.52 in the NPA.) This new section includes an OPTION 
statement on the use of the BRIDGE ICES BEFORE ROAD sign, which states 
that the sign may be used in advance of bridges to advise road users as 
they approach and traverse the bridge during winter weather conditions. 
The FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and three comments from the 
Kansas and Wisconsin DOTs as well as the City of Plano, Texas, opposed 
to it. The opposing commenters indicated that the sign either served no 
purpose, or that as an OPTION statement, States may still choose to use 
different wording for the sign. The FHWA believes that States should 
not use a different wording for a standardized warning sign legend 
because that decreases uniformity. The FHWA adopts this new section in 
this final rule, but modifies the proposed GUIDANCE to OPTION because 
there is no research indicating that display of this sign message 
during warm weather causes any safety or operational problem. However, 
some agencies feel it is good practice to cover or not display the 
message when it is not appropriate. The FHWA also moves this section to 
follow Section 2C.25 SLIPPERY WHEN WET because this follows a more 
logical order within the chapter.
    75. In Section 2C.29 Advance Traffic Control Signs (W3-1, W3-2, W3-
3, W3-4) (numbered Section 2C.26 in the NPA), the FHWA received several 
informational and editorial comments from State DOTs regarding the text 
in the OPTION statement about the use of the BE PREPARED TO STOP sign. 
One comment from the Oregon DOT suggested that other legends be used 
for signs at intersection traffic control in order to preserve the BE 
PREPARED TO STOP signs for flagger applications. The FHWA believes that 
although the BE PREPARED TO STOP sign is mentioned in Section 6F.29 
Flagger Sign (W20-7a, W20-7) in conjunction with the Flagger sign, it 
is not intended to be used only for flagger applications. Because this 
is an OPTION statement, States are not required to use the BE PREARED 
TO STOP sign for non-flagger situations.
    The FHWA also received two comments from private citizens 
suggesting shortening the message on the sign to PREPARE TO STOP for 
conciseness and to allow use of a larger text font. The FHWA disagrees 
because PREPARE TO STOP would imply that the condition that must be 
stopped for is always present.
    The FHWA also clarifies that the reference to a beacon in the 
second OPTION statement and the second GUIDANCE statement is a 
reference to a warning beacon. This clarification is necessary to be 
consistent with prescribed use of warning beacons in Part 4 of the 
MUTCD. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of these changes, and the FHWA incorporates these changes.
    76. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.30 Speed Reduction Signs (W3-5, W3-5a).'' (This Section was numbered 
Section 2C.51 in the NPA.) This new section includes a GUIDANCE 
statement, which recommends using the Speed Reduction signs to inform 
road users of a reduced speed zone when engineering judgment indicates 
the need

[[Page 65516]]

for advance notice to comply with the posted speed limit ahead. These 
new warning signs replace the R2-5a, b, and c signs because the 
intended message is more properly categorized as a warning message 
rather than regulatory message. The FHWA received five comments from 
ATSSA, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen in support of 
this change, and fourteen comments from several State and local DOTs 
opposed to the change. Those who opposed the change indicated that the 
existing signs are more recognized by drivers, and therefore have the 
desired effect of reducing speeds where needed. Although some of the 
opposing commenters, such as the NCUTCD and the Washington DOT, agreed 
that the sign should be classified as a warning rather than a 
regulatory sign, many still favored use of the existing signs for 
economic reasons or indicated disagreement with the design of the 
proposed signs.
    The FHWA disagrees with the use of an advisory speed plaque with a 
word message ``Reduced Speed Ahead'' sign as was suggested by some 
commenters. This is an inappropriate use of an advisory speed plaque 
and would only serve to further confuse the motoring public about what 
the difference is between a (regulatory) speed limit and a (non-
enforceable) advisory speed. The sign proposed in the NPA is the most 
logical and the one that best serves the public because it is 
consistent with other advance warning signs that warn of a specific 
regulation ahead, such as the symbolic Stop Ahead and Yield Ahead 
signs. The Canadian MUTCD \17\ has incorporated a similar concept of 
speed reduction signs for several decades. The NCUTCD and the Missouri 
DOT felt that the proposed sign would be a maintenance burden on 
jurisdictions due to having to stock and carry on sign maintenance 
vehicles multiple versions of the Speed Reduction sign with different 
numerical speed values. In view of Canada's long-standing use of this 
concept of speed reduction sign, the FHWA believes that this has not 
proven to be an unreasonable maintenance burden in Canada, nor has it 
been an unreasonable problem for jurisdictions in the U.S. with other 
standard signs in the MUTCD that provide for multiple speed values or 
distance values, such as the R2-1 Speed Limit sign, the W12-2 Low 
Clearance warning sign, the W13-1 Advisory Speed Plaque, or the W13-2 
and W13-3 Exit and Ramp Speed advisory signs. Clear and unambiguous 
advance warning of a reduced regulatory speed limit ahead is an 
extremely important message that warrants the use of the sign as 
proposed in the NPA. The FWHA adopts the language for this section, as 
proposed in the NPA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Canada'', 
1998, and a December 2002 update, are available for purchase from 
the Transportation Association of Canada, at the following URL: 
https://mediant.magma.ca/tacatc/bookstore/bookstore.cfm click on 
``Traffic Control''.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To respond to comments regarding the costs associated with this 
change, the FHWA revises the phase-in target compliance date to 15 
years from the effective date of this final rule for existing R2-5 
signs in good condition to be changed to W3-5 or W3-5a signs, to 
minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    The FHWA received several comments from the Arizona DOT and private 
citizens suggesting revisions to the design of the W3-5 and W3-5a signs 
to make them more legible from longer distances. To address these 
comments, the FHWA makes minor refinements to the English unit version 
of the W3-5 symbol sign to make the numerals 9 inches high for the 36'' 
x 36'' sign and 12 inches high for the 48'' x 48'' sign, and adjusts 
the layout slightly. The FHWA also deletes the metric alternate of the 
W3-5 symbol sign because the numerals on it would be too small. The 
only allowable metric version of the Speed Reduction Warning sign is to 
be the metric word message W3-5a sign.
    Additionally, the FHWA includes a STANDARD statement, which 
requires that a Speed Reduction Warning sign be followed by a Speed 
Limit (R2-1) sign installed at the beginning of the zone where the 
speed limit applies and that the speed limit displayed on the Speed 
Reduction sign shall be identical to the speed limit displayed on the 
subsequent Speed Limit sign. This is needed to provide for uniform 
application of these signs. The Minnesota DOT opposed this new 
paragraph, indicating that Section 2B.13 Speed Limit Sign (R2-1) 
already states that an R2-1 sign is required. The FHWA disagrees 
because Section 2B.13 does not require that statutory speed limits be 
posted, and this new paragraph is needed because it correctly limits 
the use of the Speed Reduction signs to only locations that are prior 
to ``posted'' speed limits. The FHWA adopts this paragraph in this 
final rule.
    77. In Section 2C.31 Merge Signs (W4-1, W4-5) (numbered Section 
2C.28 in the NPA), the FHWA includes the addition of the new Entering 
Roadway Merge (W4-5) sign in the title (referred to as W4-1a in the 
NPA). In addition to the title change, the FHWA adds a recommendation 
to the GUIDANCE statement, which states that when a Merge sign is to be 
installed on an entering roadway that curves before merging with the 
major roadway, the Entering Roadway Merge (W4-5) sign should be used. 
This sign is recommended for this condition because it better portrays 
the actual geometric conditions to road users on the entering roadway. 
The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and one comment from the 
Minnesota DOT opposing it. The Minnesota DOT indicated that drivers 
will not understand the sign, and suggested changing the W4-5 sign to 
an ``ENTERING MERGE AREA'' word sign. The FHWA disagrees and believes 
that this symbol sign would more accurately inform the drivers on the 
ramp that they must merge and adopts the change as proposed in the NPA. 
The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years from 
the effective date of this final rule for existing signs in good 
condition to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    78. In Section 2C.32 Added Lane Signs (W4-3, W4-6) (numbered 
Section 2C.29 in the NPA), the FHWA changes the title to reflect the 
addition of the new Entering Roadway Added Lane (W4-6) sign (referred 
to as W4-3a in the NPA). In addition to the title change, the FHWA adds 
to the GUIDANCE statement, that when an Added Lane sign is to be 
installed on a roadway that curves before converging with another 
roadway that has a tangent alignment at the point of convergence, the 
Entering Roadway Added Lane (W4-6) sign should be used. This sign is 
recommended for this condition because it better portrays the actual 
geometric conditions to road users on the entering roadway. The FHWA 
received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and one comment from the Minnesota 
DOT opposed to it. The Minnesota DOT stated that drivers would not 
understand the sign. The FHWA disagrees because the orientation of the 
symbol on the sign will better convey to drivers on the ramp that they 
are about to flow into an added lane. Also, the FHWA notes that this 
sign has been used in the State of Washington for the intended 
geometric conditions. The FHWA adopts the change, as proposed in the 
NPA, in this final rule. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target 
compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule 
for existing signs in good condition to

[[Page 65517]]

minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    79. In Section 2C.33 Lane Ends Signs (W4-2, W9-1, W9-2) (numbered 
Section 2C.30 in the NPA), the FHWA changes the title of the section to 
reflect the addition of the Lane Ends (W4-2) sign (referred to as the 
Lane Reduction sign in the NPA.) This symbol sign was included in the 
1988 edition of the MUTCD but in the 2000 Edition of the MUTCD it was 
deleted from Part 2 due to poor comprehension of the 1988 symbol by 
road users. However, in Part 6 of the 2000 MUTCD this symbol sign 
continued to be shown in many of the figures, particularly for the 
Typical Applications in Chapter 6H, and therefore this symbol sign has 
continued to be widely used by State and local highway agencies.
    The FHWA believes that a symbolic sign for the Lane Ends message 
continues to be needed and in the NPA the FHWA proposed changes the 
design of the Lane Ends (W4-2) symbol sign to improve comprehension by 
road users. The FHWA received nine comments from the NCUTCD, the 
Minnesota DOT, and private citizens opposed to the new sign design and 
five comments from the Oregon, Virginia and Wisconsin DOTs as well as 
private citizens in support of the new sign design.
    The opposing commenters suggested that the new design would not be 
understood and also stated that there was not sufficient research to 
support the new design. An FHWA human factors research project \18\ has 
found that road users very poorly comprehend the meaning of the 
previous design of the W4-2 sign. The research found that the old 
design is commonly misinterpreted to mean ``merge ahead'' or ``road 
narrows'' and does not adequately convey the intended message of a lane 
ending (reduction in the number of lanes.) This research also evaluated 
an alternative design similar to the design used in Canada but with 
more graphic elements (bent arrows.) This study found that 
comprehension of the tested alternative symbol was much better than the 
old W4-2 design, but because of the complexity of the added graphical 
elements (arrows) the legibility distance was less than that of the old 
W4-2 design. The FHWA adopts a revised design for the W4-2 sign that is 
identical to the design used in Canada for several decades. A study in 
Canada \19\ found the Canadian symbol sign to be legible in the range 
of 70 to 200 meters, which is better legibility than most symbols. The 
FHWA adopts this design in this final rule because the long-standing 
Canadian use of this sign indicates it is successful and because having 
a uniform design between the U.S. and Canada will benefit cross-border 
travelers. Several State DOTs suggested that the OPTION allowing 
jurisdictions to modify the Lane Ends sign to represent the actual road 
lane configuration be removed. The FHWA agrees and eliminates the 
OPTION allowing the sign to be modified. The adopted sign design 
conveys that the number of lanes is being reduced by one, regardless of 
how many total lanes are on the roadway. The FHWA establishes a phase-
in target compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of this 
final rule for existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact 
on State or local governments.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ ``Evaluation of Selected Potential MUTCD Signs,'' by 
Alicandri and Wochinger, 2000, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) 
report number FHWA-RD-00-053, is available from FHWA Turner-Fairbank 
Highway Reserach Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, Virginia 
22101, or through their web site at the following URL: http://www.tfhrc.gov
.
    \19\ ``Age Differences in the Legibility of Symbol Highway 
signs,'' by Frank Schieber and Donald Kline, 1994, is available for 
downloading at the University of South Dakota's Web site at the 
following URL: http://www.usd.edu/_schieber/pdf/signs.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additionally, the FHWA adds the Lane Ends (W4-2) symbol sign to the 
first and second GUIDANCE statements and to the OPTION statement, 
indicating that the W4-2 symbol sign is an alternative to the LANE ENDS 
MERGE LEFT (RIGHT) (W9-2) word sign. This will provide additional 
flexibility to jurisdictions. The FHWA received one comment from 
Caltrans opposed to this change, stating that allowing the option to 
use word or symbol signs will lead to motorist confusion. The FHWA 
disagrees because there are many examples in the MUTCD where 
jurisdictions may choose between symbol signs and word message signs 
and there is no data indicating this causes confusion. Also, this 
provides jurisdictions with more flexibility. The FHWA adopts this 
change, as proposed in the NPA, in this final rule.
    80. In Section 2C.34 Two-Way Traffic Sign (W6-3) (numbered Section 
2C.31 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement that a Two-
Way Traffic sign with an AHEAD (W16-9P) plaque should be used to warn 
road users of a transition from a one-way street to a two-lane, two-way 
section of roadway. The FHWA makes this addition in response to three 
comments received from private citizens regarding this section and a 
figure in Section 2B.37 ONE WAY Signs (R6-1, R6-2) (numbered 2B.32 in 
the NPA), where use of the sign is also illustrated, indicating that 
this revision should be made to clarify the text. The most common use 
of the W6-3 sign is along sections of two-lane, two-way roadways. In 
the specific case that is illustrated in Section 2B.37, the W6-3 sign 
is posted on the one-way street, in advance of where it changes to a 
two-way road. Therefore, the use of an AHEAD plaque with the W6-3 sign 
is recommended to enhance safety by minimizing possible 
misinterpretation of the meaning of the sign in that particular 
application. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years from the effective date of this final rule for existing 
signs in good condition to minimize any impact on State or local 
governments.
    81. In Section 2C.36 Advisory Exit, Ramp, and Curve Speed Signs 
(W13-2, W13-3, W13-5) (numbered Section 2C.33 in the NPA), the FHWA 
changes the design of the metric exit speed, ramp speed, and curve 
speed signs, and advisory speed signs/plaques so that the metric speed 
value is within a black circle with ``km/h'' below. This new design 
better differentiates between warning signs and plaques with metric 
units for speed from those using English units for speed. The FHWA 
received two comments from ATSSA and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
overall support of changes in this section. Three commenters 
representing the Minnesota and Ohio DOTs and a private citizen opposed 
the design of the metric exit speed sign, stating that this non-
standard sign may not be recognized and understood by motorists. The 
FHWA disagrees and, consistent with decisions regarding the R2-1 sign 
in Chapter 2B, the FHWA adopts the metric exit speed sign as proposed 
in the NPA.
    The FHWA received one comment from the Oregon DOT opposed to the 
first STANDARD statement regarding the use of the RAMP SPEED sign in 
addition to the EXIT SPEED sign, stating that the added signs clutter 
the sign environment and that the warning can more easily be handled 
with proper curvature signs with advisory speed plaques. The commenter 
suggested that the RAMP SPEED signs be an OPTION rather than a 
STANDARD. While the FHWA does not agree with removing the RAMP SPEED 
sign from the STANDARD, the FHWA adds a new OPTION paragraph stating 
that a Curve or Turn sign with Advisory Speed plaque may be used in 
place of a Ramp Speed sign if it is located such that it clearly does 
not apply to drivers on the main roadway. The NCUTCD suggested that all 
of the references to curves and

[[Page 65518]]

Curve Speed signs be removed from the STANDARD and OPTION statements. 
The FHWA disagrees because this is a helpful sign to remind drivers of 
the advisory speed. Most curves are very well outlined with delineators 
or chevron signs. Because crashes are still occurring on curves, the 
FHWA believes that there is a need to remind drivers of the recommended 
reduction in speed as they proceed along the curve or ramp. The FHWA 
includes this statement, as well as other references to the Curve Speed 
sign, in this final rule.
    The FHWA also adds a new paragraph to the OPTION stating that, 
based on engineering judgment, the Curve Speed sign may be installed on 
the inside or the outside of the curve to enhance its visibility. The 
FHWA incorporates this new paragraph in this final rule to be 
consistent with changes elsewhere in Part 2 of the MUTCD.
    The FHWA also adds a new figure numbered and titled ``Figure 2C-7 
Example of Advisory Speed Signing for an Exit Ramp.'' This figure 
illustrates the use of the Exit Speed sign along the deceleration lane 
and the use of the Ramp Speed signs along the actual ramp. The figure 
clarifies application of these signs to jurisdictions. Based on 
editorial comments suggesting additional clarity to this figure, the 
FHWA adopts this new figure, with revisions, in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the OPTION statement at the end of 
the section, that the advisory speed may be the 85th percentile speed 
of free-flowing traffic, the speed corresponding to a 16-degree ball-
bank indicator reading,\20\ or the speed otherwise determined by an 
engineering study due to unusual circumstances. The wording of this 
paragraph in this final rule incorporates comments received from the 
NCUTCD, the Kansas DOT, a traffic engineering consultant and private 
citizens on the proposed wording in the NPA, specifically the ball-bank 
test. The FHWA includes this OPTION criteria to enhance the uniformity 
of determining the recommended advisory speed and to provide additional 
warning to motorists, because highway curves have a crash rate about 
three times the rate for highway tangent segments and a run-off-the-
road crash rate about four times the tangent segment rate. The FHWA 
also adds a new SUPPORT statement that further describes the ball-bank 
indicator reading and its correlation with the 85th percentile speed, 
based on research conducted for the Maryland Department of 
Transportation.\21\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \20\ The ball bank indicator reading is a measure of the 
overturning force (side friction), measured in degrees, on a vehicle 
negotiating a horizontal curve.
    \21\ ``Advisory Speeds on Maryland Highways--Technical Report'', 
August 1999, by Brudis and Associates, Inc., is available from 
Brudis and Associates, 9220 Rumsey Road; Suite 110, Columbia, 
Maryland 21045, Phone (410) 884-3607.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    82. In Section 2C.37 Intersection Warning Signs (W2-1 through W2-6) 
(numbered Section 2C.34 in the NPA), the FHWA changes the design of the 
CIRCULAR INTERSECTION (W2-6) sign to a symbol sign with three rotating 
arrows to better portray the operations at circular intersections. The 
FHWA received eight comments from ATSSA, the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
traffic engineering consultants, and private citizens in support of the 
new sign design and six comments from the Kansas, Virginia, and 
Wisconsin DOTs as well as the City of Lenexa, Kansas, opposing it. The 
commenters who opposed suggested that road users may not understand the 
new sign and offered new designs, or stated that the sign in the 2000 
MUTCD should be restored. The FHWA adopts the three-arrow sign as 
proposed in the NPA because it is consistent with the international 
symbol for a roundabout intersection and with FHWA roundabout design 
guidance \22\ and has significantly longer recognition distance than 
the previous sign. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance 
date of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule for 
existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact on State or 
local governments.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \22\ ``Roundabouts: An Informational Guide,'' FHWA, 2000. Report 
Number: FHWA-RD-00-067 is available at the following URL: 
http://www.tfhrc.gov/safety/00068.htm.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In order to educate road users, the FHWA clarifies the first 
paragraph of the OPTION statement to include that a TRAFFIC CIRCLE word 
message plaque may accompany the Circular Intersection (W2-6) sign 
installed in advance of a circular intersection.
    Additionally, the FHWA modifies the GUIDANCE statement to clarify 
that the Intersection Warning signs, other than the Circular 
Intersection Warning symbol (W2-6) sign and the T-intersection symbol 
(W2-4) sign, should not be used on approaches controlled by STOP signs, 
YIELD signs, or signals. This change, which was suggested by the 
NCUTCD, allows the W2-4 sign to be used on the stem of a T-
intersection, regardless of how the intersection is controlled, to 
provide additional warning information to road users.
    83. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.39 Traffic Signal Signs (W25-1, W25-2).'' (This section was numbered 
Section 2C.53 in the NPA.) This new section includes a STANDARD 
statement on the use of the ONCOMING TRAFFIC HAS EXTENDED GREEN (W25-1) 
and ONCOMING TRAFFIC MAY HAVE EXTENDED GREEN (W25-2) traffic signal 
signs. The STANDARD statement requires that, unless a separate left-
turn signal face is provided and is operated as described in Section 
4D.06 Application of Steady Signal Indications for Left Turns, if the 
possibility exists that a CIRCULAR YELLOW signal indication could be 
displayed to an approach from which drivers are turning left 
permissively without the simultaneous display of a CIRCULAR YELLOW 
signal indication to the opposing approach (see Section 4D.05), either 
a W25-1 or a W25-2 sign be installed near the left-most signal head. 
The FHWA adds this new section because these signs are adopted in 
Chapter 4D as one of several ways to eliminate or reduce safety issues 
associated with the ``yellow trap'' (as described in the discussion of 
Section 4D.05) in some traffic signal phasing sequences. The FHWA 
received three comments from ATSSA, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a 
traffic engineering consultant in support of this new section and 
associated signs, and many comments from the NCUTCD, State and local 
DOTs, and private citizens opposed to it. The proposed wording of the 
signs in the NPA, CAUTION ONCOMING GREEN EXTENDED (W25-1) and CAUTION 
ONCOMING GREEN MAY BE EXTENDED (W25-2), stimulated many comments from 
the NCUTCD, the Arizona DOT, Pierce County, Washington; the City of 
Plano, Texas; and the City of Los Angeles, California, regarding the 
use of the word ``Caution,'' stating that the warning sign colors 
should communicate to the driver that caution is needed, rather than 
explicit use of the word. Many of these same commenters suggested that 
the public would not understand the signs, and some jurisdictions are 
opposed to allowing any situations in which the ``yellow trap'' can 
occur. The FHWA recognizes that there are some locations where no other 
signal sequence other than a yellow trap is reasonably feasible due to 
unique combinations of intersection geometrics, traffic volumes, and 
the like. The FHWA believes that these signs will serve a useful 
purpose, and revises the text of the signs to remove the word 
``Caution'' and to clarify their meaning.
    84. In Section 2C.40 Vehicular Traffic Signs (W8-6, W11-1, W11-5, 
W11-5a, W11-8, W11-10, W11-11, W11-12p,

[[Page 65519]]

W11-14) (numbered and titled ``Section 2C.36 Motorized Traffic Signs 
(W8-6, W11-5, W11-5a, W11-8, W11-10, W11-10a, W11-12)'' in the NPA), 
the FHWA changes the title to be consistent with the changes in Section 
2C.41 and to reflect the addition and deletion of some signs from this 
section.
    The FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, State 
DOTs, traffic engineering consultants, and private citizens regarding 
specific signs listed in the first OPTION statement, as well as the 
signs shown in Figure 2C-9 (numbered Figure 2C-10 in the NPA). The Ohio 
DOT suggested that bicycles be included in the list of vehicles in this 
statement and removed from the first paragraph of Section 2C.41 because 
bicycles are vehicles. The FHWA agrees and, in addition to adding 
bicycles and the W11-1 sign to this section, the FHWA adds the W11-11 
Golf Cart and W11-14 Horse-Drawn Vehicle signs.
    The FHWA adds a sentence in this OPTION that the TRUCK CROSSING 
(W8-6) word message sign may be used as an alternate to the Truck 
Crossing symbol sign, to provide additional flexibility. The FHWA 
received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this 
change, and incorporates this change. The FHWA establishes a 10-year 
phase-in target compliance date from the effective date of this final 
rule for the new symbol signs W11-1, W11-5, W11-5a, W11-11, and the 
W11-14 signs, for existing signs in good conditions, to minimize any 
impacts on State and local governments.
    The FHWA received several comments regarding the sign images in 
Figure 2C-9 (numbered Figure 2C-10 in the NPA). The NCUTCD, the 
Illinois DOT, and private citizens opposed the W11-5a tractor sign, and 
the Virginia DOT supported the sign. Many of the commenters who opposed 
the new sign suggested that the existing W11-5 sign is sufficient, and 
road users will not distinguish the differences between the two signs. 
The W11-5a sign was actually adopted in a 1997 final rule,\23\ and 
inadvertently omitted from the 2000 MUTCD. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts 
the W11-5a sign in this final rule.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ Final rule on FHWA Docket 95-7, published in the Federal 
Register on January 9, 1997, at 62 FR 1363, amended the 1988 MUTCD 
to include the ruling on Official Request for Change number II-228 
(C) to add an alternative symbol sign W11-5a for farm machinery.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Four commenters representing State and local DOTs and private 
citizens also opposed the new W11-10a truck sign, again stating that 
existing W11-10 sign is sufficient, and road users will not distinguish 
the differences between the two signs. The FHWA agrees and removes the 
W11-10a sign from the MUTCD in this final rule. In addition, based on a 
comment from the Ohio DOT, the FHWA separates Figure 2C-9 into two 
figures titled ``Figure 2C-9 Vehicular Traffic Signs'' and ``Figure 2C-
10 Nonvehicular Traffic Signs.'' On the figure titled ``Nonvehicular 
Traffic Signs,'' the FHWA adds sign images of the W11-7 Equestrian and 
W11-9 Handicapped signs. Based on the comments from the NCUTCD and a 
private citizen, the FHWA removes the W11-4a Horse-and-Buggy, W11-15 
Waterfowl, and the W11-10a construction dump truck signs from Figure 
2C-9 as well as the section text. The FHWA believes that only one sign 
depicting a horse and buggy and one sign depicting a truck is 
necessary. See also the discussion that follows regarding the Waterfowl 
Sign.
    In the second OPTION statement, the FHWA adds that a supplemental 
plaque with the legend SHARE THE ROAD may be mounted below Vehicular 
Traffic warning signs. The purpose of this addition is to allow the use 
of this sign to provide additional warning to road users. The NCUTCD 
suggested that the SHARE THE ROAD plaque be moved to Figure 2C-11 and 
removed from this section. The FHWA adds the SHARE THE ROAD plaque to 
Figure 2C-11.
    85. In Section 2C.41 Nonvehicular Signs (W11-2, W11-3, W11-4, W11-
6, W11-7, W11-9) (numbered Section 2C.37 in the NPA), the FHWA changes 
the title to reflect that this section pertains to nonvehicular signs, 
not just Crossing signs. The FHWA moves the Bicycle (W11-1), Golf Cart 
(W11-11) and Horse-Drawn Vehicle (W11-14) symbol signs from this 
section to Section 2C.40 because they represent vehicular signs. This 
responds to several comments from State DOTs and traffic engineering 
consultants. The FHWA adds the Equestrian (W11-7) symbol sign, which 
had been adopted previously as a standard symbol in an amendment to the 
1988 MUTCD but which had been inadvertently omitted from the figure 
illustrating Nonvehicular Signs in the 2000 MUTCD. Based on comments 
from the NCUTCD, State and local DOTs, and private citizens opposed to 
the Waterfowl Crossing sign that was proposed in the NPA because of 
lack of research showing effectiveness of the symbol, the FHWA 
withdraws that sign from the figure and the text of this final rule. 
Future research may develop an improved symbol for this message.
    The FHWA also revises the second OPTION statement to clarify that 
the supplemental plaques such as AHEAD or XX METERS may be used with 
the Nonvehicular warning signs, when used in advance of a crossing. 
These plaques are specifically intended to provide advance notice to 
road users of crossing activity. The FHWA received no comments 
regarding this change, and adopts this change.
    Additionally, the FHWA modifies the STANDARD statement to specify 
that when Nonvehicular warning signs are used at a crossing, the signs 
shall be supplemented with a diagonal downward pointing arrow (W16-7p) 
plaque showing the location of the crossing. This reflects the fact 
that Nonvehicular warning signs can be used either in advance of or at 
the crossing, and is consistent with the practice of using the diagonal 
downward pointing arrow with other similar signs located at a crossing. 
The FHWA received one comment from the Kansas DOT in support of this 
change, and one comment from the Oregon DOT opposed to it, stating that 
the requirement to use the arrow plaque at all signed crossings adds 
excessive signing without much benefit. The Oregon DOT suggested that 
use of the arrow plaque remain an option for supplementing any crossing 
sign, but not be required. The FHWA notes that the required use of the 
plaque was established in the 2000 MUTCD, and at that time the FHWA 
established a January 17, 2011 phase-in target compliance date. The 
revisions to this STANDARD statement in the 2003 MUTCD merely add 
clarity. Consistent use of the arrow plaque at crossings is needed to 
educate the public regarding the meaning of the plaque.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the third OPTION statement to state 
that Pedestrian, Bicycle, School Advance Crossing, and School Crossing 
signs and their related supplemental plaques may have a fluorescent 
yellow-green background with a black legend and border. This change 
reflects the common practice for supplemental plaques to be of the same 
color as the signs they supplement. The FHWA received one comment from 
ATSSA in support of this change and adopts this change.
    86. In Section 2C.46 Advisory Speed Plaque (W13-1) (numbered 
Section 2C.42 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the first OPTION statement 
to permit the use of an Advisory Speed (W13-1) plaque to supplement any 
warning sign to indicate the advisory speed for a condition. The FHWA 
received one comment from Pierce County, Washington, suggesting that 
the 2000 MUTCD wording be retained, stating that the proposed revision 
may

[[Page 65520]]

encourage widespread and ineffective use of the W13-1 plaque. The FHWA 
disagrees and adopts the revision in this final rule, changing the 
proposed phrase ``recommended speed'' to ``advisory speed'' in this 
statement, as well as the STANDARD, GUIDANCE, and OPTION statements for 
consistency.
    In the STANDARD statement, the FHWA requires the use of the 
Advisory Speed plaque where an engineering study indicates a need to 
inform road users of the advisory speed for a condition and, if they 
are used, the speed shown shall be a multiple of 10 km/h or 5 mph. This 
change clarifies which sign should be used when an engineering study 
indicates the need to advise road users of the advisory speed and how 
to determine what the recommended speed is for the condition. The FHWA 
received two comments from the Oregon and Kansas DOTs stating that an 
engineering study is an unnecessary expense, and recommended that the 
statement be changed to engineering judgment. The OPTION statement 
gives the flexibility to use the Advisory Speed plaque where only 
engineering judgment has been applied and no study has been performed. 
The STANDARD only requires the use of an Advisory Speed plaque where an 
engineering study has been performed and shows a need for the plaque. 
Because there is no requirement for an engineering study, the FHWA 
adopts the change, as proposed in the NPA, in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add an OPTION statement at the end 
of the section indicating how to determine the advisory speed along a 
ramp or curve. The FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, 
Yakima and Pierce Counties in Washington State, and a traffic 
engineering consultant opposed to the language in the NPA. As a result, 
the FHWA replaces the proposed language with the language adopted in 
Section 2C.36 Advisory Exit, Ramp, and Curve Speed Signs (W13-2, W13-3, 
W13-5). In concert with the changes in Section 2C.36, the FHWA also 
repeats the SUPPORT statement that further describes the ball-bank 
indicator reading and its correlation with the 85th-percentile speed in 
this section. (See also the discussion in Section 2C.36 regarding the 
ball-bank indicator reading and its correlation with the 85th 
percentile speed.)
    87. In Section 2C.47 Supplemental Arrow Plaques (W16-5p, W16-6p, 
W16-7p) (numbered Section 2C.43 in the NPA), the FHWA changes the title 
to reflect the existence of the diagonally pointing down arrow plaque 
and includes the designation in the section text. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change and 
adopts this change. The FHWA also received another editorial comment 
from a traffic engineering consultant suggesting that all plaques be 
assigned a ``p'' designation to distinguish them as plaques. The FHWA 
agrees that this change will provide additional clarity and consistency 
and will perform a comprehensive review of the MUTCD to achieve 
consistency in this designation in the future. The FHWA will consider 
including this in a future rulemaking.
    88. The FHWA removes Section 2C.46 DEAD END/NO OUTLET Plaques (W14-
1P, W14-2P), as numbered in the NPA, from the MUTCD. The FHWA changes 
the designation of these plaques to signs because they are permitted to 
be used alone, and moves the appropriate information to Section 2C.21 
DEAD END/NO OUTLET Signs (W14-1, W14-1a, W14-2, W14-2a) in this final 
rule.
    89. In Section 2C.50 CROSS TRAFFIC DOES NOT STOP Plaque (W4-4p) 
(numbered Section 2C.27 in the NPA), the FHWA replaces the entire 
section (of the 2000 MUTCD) with new OPTION and STANDARD statements. 
The OPTION statement specifies that the CROSS TRAFFIC DOES NOT STOP 
(W4-4p) plaque may be used in combination with a STOP sign when 
engineering judgment indicates that conditions are present that are 
causing or could cause drivers to misinterpret the intersection as a 
multi-way stop condition. The STANDARD statement specifies that if the 
W4-4p plaque is used, it shall be installed below the STOP sign. The 
new text for this section is necessary to provide for more uniform 
application of this plaque. The FHWA received two comments from the 
Cities of Plano, Texas, and Tucson, Arizona, in support of these 
changes and one editorial comment from the NCUTCD, which the FHWA 
incorporates in this final rule. The FHWA also changes the sign 
designation in the title to ``W4-4p'' and changes corresponding text 
throughout the section. In response to two comments from private 
citizens, the FHWA adds to the OPTION statement that the W4-4p plaque 
may use alternate messages such as TRAFFIC FROM LEFT (RIGHT) DOES NOT 
STOP or ONCOMING TRAFFIC DOES NOT STOP when such messages more 
accurately describe the traffic controls established at the 
intersection.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the arrow from the design of the 
plaque to reduce potential confusion and misunderstanding as to whether 
the arrow denotes the direction cross traffic is flowing or the 
direction toward which the driver is to look for cross traffic. The 
FHWA received four comments from the Cities of Plano, Texas, and 
Tucson, Arizona, and private citizens in support of this change. The 
FHWA received one comment from the Minnesota DOT opposed to it, citing 
concerns that removal of the arrow would increase the confusion. The 
FHWA believes that the arrow is the source of the confusion and 
therefore removes the arrow from the design of the plaque.
    90. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.52 High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Plaque (W16-11).'' (This section was 
numbered Section 2C.48 in the NPA.) This new section includes an OPTION 
statement on the use of the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Plaque. 
Specifically, an HOV (W16-11) plaque may be used to warn drivers in an 
HOV lane of a specific condition and to differentiate a warning sign 
specific for HOV lanes when the sign is also visible to traffic on the 
adjoining general purpose roadway. Additionally the diamond symbol may 
be used instead of the word message HOV and, when appropriate, the 
words LANE or ONLY may be used. This will enhance road user 
understanding of which signs apply to which lanes. The FHWA received 
three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of this new section, and adopts this new section, with minor 
changes to Figure 2C-11.
    91. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
2C.53 PHOTO ENFORCED Plaque (W16-10).'' (This section was numbered 
Section 2C.49 in the NPA.) This new section includes an OPTION 
statement on the use of the PHOTO ENFORCED plaque in advance of 
locations of photo enforcement of traffic laws, thereby alerting 
motorists of the use of cameras as an enforcement tool. This section 
facilitates consistency with the PHOTO ENFORCED plaque for use with 
regulatory signs, as described in Section 2B.46 Photo Enforcement Signs 
(R10-18, R10-19).
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement to require that, 
if used below a warning sign, the PHOTO ENFORCED plaque be a rectangle 
with a black legend and border on a yellow background. This STANDARD 
makes the color of the plaque consistent with the color of the warning 
sign it supplements.
    The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this new section, and adopts 
this section. The Wisconsin DOT stated that some States have statutes 
that do not allow

[[Page 65521]]

photo enforcement of traffic regulations, and therefore those States 
will not allow the use of these signs. Because this is an optional 
plaque used to indicate an optional application, States are not 
required to use this plaque.
    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years 
from the effective date of this final rule for the PHOTO ENFORCED 
plaque, for existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact on 
State or local governments.
    92. In Section 2D.03 Color, Retroreflection, and Illumination, the 
FHWA makes revisions to provide for enhanced uniformity of design and 
application of color-coding of destinations in guide signs. The FHWA 
adds a SUPPORT statement following the first STANDARD statement, which 
states that color coding is sometimes used to help road users 
distinguish between multiple potentially confusing destinations. The 
SUPPPORT statement gives examples of valuable uses of color coding 
including guide signs for roadways approaching or inside an airport 
property with multiple terminals serving multiple airlines, and 
wayfinding signs for various traffic generator destinations within a 
community or area. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a traffic engineering consultant 
supporting this change, and adopts this change.
    The FHWA adds a second STANDARD statement that prohibits the use of 
different color sign backgrounds to provide color-coding of 
destinations and requires that the color-coding shall be accomplished 
by the use of different colored square or rectangular panels on the 
face of the guide signs. The FHWA received three comments from the 
NCUTCD, ATSSA, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change, 
and adopts this change.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION statement, which states that the 
different colored panels may include a black or white (whichever 
provides the better contrast with the panel color) letter, numeral, or 
other appropriate designation to identify the airport terminal or other 
destination. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change, and adopts this 
change.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT statement, which states that 
two examples of color-coded guide sign assemblies are shown in Figure 
2D-1. Figure 2D-1 is a new figure titled ``Examples of Color-Coded 
Destination Guide Signs'' and illustrates two overhead guide signs 
examples of color-coded airport terminal destination guide signs and an 
example of a color-coded community destination guide sign. The FHWA 
received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, and a private citizen 
supporting this new figure, as well as suggesting editorial changes to 
the figure, which the FHWA incorporates in this final rule. The FHWA 
received one comment from a representative of an airport suggesting a 
separate standard for on-roadway signing at major international 
airports. This goes beyond the scope of the NPA, and will have to be 
addressed in a future rulemaking.
    93. In Section 2D.04 Size of Signs, the FHWA rephrases the first 
OPTION statement to clarify that reduced letter height, reduced 
interline spacing, and reduced edge spacing may be used on guide signs 
if the sign size is limited by factors such as lane width, and vertical 
and lateral clearance. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and one 
from a private citizen opposed to it. The opposing commenter stated 
that allowing the reduction of guide sign dimensions may lead to 
substandard sign dimensions being used in situations where it would 
otherwise be possible to remove the constraint, and suggests that an 
engineering study be performed before substandard guide signs are used. 
The FHWA disagrees and believes that, because agencies install guide 
signs to provide drivers with needed information, they will not 
intentionally and repeatedly use smaller signs based on the revisions 
to this OPTION. The FHWA adopts this change, as proposed in the NPA, in 
this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a STANDARD statement that 
prohibits the use of reduced spacing between the letters or words of 
the legend as a means of reducing the overall size of a guide sign, to 
provide for enhanced legibility of guide signs, especially for older 
road users.
    The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA supporting this STANDARD. 
Four commenters from State DOTs opposed this language as a STANDARD, 
and suggested that it be GUIDANCE to provide necessary flexibility to 
deal with unusual situations. The FHWA agrees that this flexibility is 
needed in some cases, and adopts this language, with additional 
clarifying information, as a GUIDANCE statement in this final rule.
    94. In Section 2D.05 Lettering Style, the FHWA revises the second 
paragraph of the STANDARD to specify that the lettering for place names 
and destinations for conventional road guide signs shall be in capital 
letters or combination lower-case letters with initial upper-case 
letters and that all other lettering for conventional road guide signs 
shall be in capital lettering. To respond to a comment from a private 
citizen suggesting complete consistency between the ``Standard Highway 
Signs'' book and the MUTCD, the FHWA revises the text slightly from 
that proposed in the NPA.
    95. In Section 2D.06 Size of Lettering, the FHWA removes the last 
paragraph in the STANDARD statement (from the 2000 MUTCD), which 
required sign panels to be large enough to accommodate the legend 
without crowding. The FHWA modifies that information and includes it in 
Section 2D.04 Size of Signs, where it is more appropriately located. 
The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    One comment from a private citizen suggested that language in this 
section be added expressly forbidding the use of mixed case lettering 
on conventional-road guide signs unless it is Series E Modified/
Lowercase. The FHWA disagrees because street name signs are guide signs 
and they can use mixed case lettering other than E Modified.
    96. In Section 2D.08 Arrows, the FHWA received one comment from a 
private citizen stating that the first paragraph of the STANDARD 
statement indicating that down arrows shall be used only on overhead 
guide signs that restrict use of specific lanes to traffic bound for 
the destination(s) and/or route(s) indicated by the arrows, is in 
conflict with the optional signs that have down arrows in Figures 2E-
35, 2E-36, and 2E-37. The FHWA agrees that some of the optional signs 
depicted in Figures 2E-35, 2E-36, and 2E-37 are in error. The FHWA 
revises Figures 2E-35, 2E-36, and 2E-37 by removing the optional signs 
as appropriate.
    97. In Section 2D.11 Design of Route Signs, the FHWA revises the 
first paragraph of the fourth STANDARD statement by removing the 
reference to the publication ``A Proposal for Uniform County Route 
Marker Program on a National Scale'' for design and use of County road 
identification signs because this publication is no longer available 
from the National Association of Counties or any other source. However, 
because the pertinent requirements of that document are still valid, 
the FHWA incorporates applicable text from that document into the 
STANDARD statement. No new requirements are imposed by this change, 
because the

[[Page 65522]]

previously referenced document had been incorporated by reference into 
the 2000 MUTCD as well as previous editions.
    98. In Section 2D.17 ALTERNATE Auxiliary Signs (M4-1, M4-1a), the 
FHWA adds the qualifiers of time or distance to the word ``shorter'' in 
the GUIDANCE statement. This addition clarifies that the shorter (time 
or distance) or better-constructed route should retain the regular 
route number. The ability to define the shorter route in terms of 
either time or distance provides additional flexibility. The FHWA 
received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change, and adopts this change.
    99. In Section 2D.23 TEMPORARY Auxiliary Signs (M4-7, M4-7a), the 
FHWA changes the title to reflect the addition of the new TEMP (M4-7a) 
sign and adds the TEMP (M4-7a) sign to the OPTION and STANDARD 
statements. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts 
this change.
    100. In Section 2D.26 Directional Arrow Auxiliary Signs (M6 
Series), the FHWA removes the M6-8 and M6-9 multiple direction advance 
arrow auxiliary signs. These specific arrow signs are not consistent in 
design concept with the other Directional Arrow Auxiliary Signs. The 
M6-6 and M6-4 signs or separate assemblies for each route direction 
should be used instead to provide enhanced clarity to road users. The 
FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, a State DOT, and the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    101. In Section 2D.27 Route Sign Assemblies, the FHWA renumbers 
Figure 2D-2 of the 2000 MUTCD to Figure 2D-6 and modifies all three 
sheets of the figure to make the sign assemblies illustrated in the 
figure consistent with requirements in Section 2D.15 Cardinal Direction 
Auxiliary Signs (M3-1 through M3-4) regarding the size of the initial 
letter of the Cardinal Direction Auxiliary Signs, and to illustrate 
directional assemblies that reflect the most recent practice. The FHWA 
received comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
support of these changes, and a few editorial changes. In this final 
rule, the FHWA revises the numbers of the U.S. routes on all three 
sheets to conform to the convention of odd numbers for north-south 
routes and even numbers for east-west routes. The FHWA also revises the 
numbers for all the State routes on these three sheets, even though not 
all States adopt the U.S. route numbering convention for their State 
routes.
    102. In Section 2D.31 Confirming or Reassurance Assemblies, the 
FHWA removes from the STANDARD statement the requirement that, if used, 
the Confirming Assembly be installed just beyond intersections of 
numbered routes.
    Additionally, in the first GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA recommends 
that a Confirming assembly should be installed just beyond 
intersections of numbered routes.
    The FHWA also adds a SUPPORT statement that states that Confirming 
and Reassurance Assemblies are Directional Assemblies.
    These changes are adopted because use of the Confirming assembly 
beyond intersections with numbered routes should be a recommended 
practice rather than completely optional. Confirming assemblies are an 
important safety and operational feature that lets the road user know 
that he/she is on the correct route just beyond the decision point. The 
Confirming assembly provides highly desirable information to road 
users. These changes allow flexibility in installing the signs to 
adjust to roadside conditions. The FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes to this section, and 
adopts these changes.
    103. In Section 2D.34 Destination Signs (D1 Series), the FHWA 
changes the title to add sign number designations and changes the 
section text to clarify which signs are applicable to the material in 
the section. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in overall support to the changes in this section.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed moving material concerning the use of 
a sloping arrow at an irregular intersection from the second GUIDANCE 
statement (of the 2000 MUTCD) to a new second OPTION statement. The 
FHWA received one comment from the Illinois DOT opposed to this change, 
suggesting that the term ``irregular'' is not appropriate. The FHWA 
agrees and, to address this issue, the FHWA combines the preceding 
GUIDANCE and the OPTION into one GUIDANCE statement that reads, 
``Unless a sloping arrow will convey a clearer indication of the 
direction to be followed, the directional arrows should be horizontal 
or vertical.''
    104. In Section 2D.36 Distance Signs (D2 Series), the FHWA changes 
the title to add sign number designations. The FHWA also changes the 
section text to clarify which signs are applicable to the material in 
the section, and adds the D2-3 (three destination distance sign), to 
reflect all the signs included in the series.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding a recommendation in the first 
GUIDANCE statement that the distance shown on the sign be the distance 
to the center of the central business district, or to the point where 
the major north/south and east/west routes serving the city intersect, 
or to some point near the center of the city. While two commenters 
representing the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this 
change, commenters from the Illinois and Kansas DOTs opposed the 
wording. The Kansas DOT suggested that the distance on the sign should 
be to a point where the city limits either cross or abut the route. The 
FHWA disagrees because many cities have city limits that now encompass 
large geographic areas or the entire county, and using the city limit 
as a basis for distance would give misleading information to the 
driver. The Illinois DOT suggested that the distance be determined on a 
community-by-community basis, and that the layout of the community be 
considered in relation to the highway being signed. The FHWA agrees 
with this suggestion and revises the GUIDANCE accordingly because the 
FHWA believes it provides the flexibility to determine distances that 
will be better understood and accepted by road users.
    105. In Section 2D.38 Street Name Sign (D3-1), the FHWA changes the 
title to reflect the appropriate sign designation. In the first 
GUIDANCE statement the FHWA adds a recommendation that on multi-lane 
streets with speed limits of 60 km/h (40 mph) or more the minimum 
letter size should be 200 mm (8 in). Larger letter sizes are needed to 
improve sign legibility and safety for older road users. In this same 
GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA deletes the recommendation that larger 
letter heights be used for Street Name signs mounted overhead because 
more specific guidance is added elsewhere in this section. The FHWA 
received comments from ATSSA and the Virginia DOT in support of these 
changes, while the NCUTCD suggested even larger letter sizes for 
lettering on multilane higher-speed streets.
    The Oregon and Wisconsin DOTs, the Cities of Tucson, Arizona; and 
Plano, Texas; and Pierce County, Washington, opposed the change. The 
opposing commenters primarily indicated that this change creates a 
financial impact on agencies, and that the larger letter heights will 
create longer street name signs that cannot be mounted and maintained 
using post top mounts.

[[Page 65523]]

Several commenters suggested that this be an OPTION, rather than 
GUIDANCE. The FHWA disagrees. The use of larger letter sizes is not 
precluded in the 2000 MUTCD, so it is already an option. Fewer agencies 
will convert their street name signs to the larger letter sizes if the 
GUIDANCE is reduced to an OPTION. The larger signs will be beneficial 
to all road users on higher-speed multi-lane streets, especially older 
road users. Also, many jurisdictions use post-top mountings of longer 
street name signs with larger letters, taking advantage of 
appropriately designed attachment hardware. Because this is GUIDANCE, 
rather than a STANDARD, jurisdictions can be used in special 
circumstances if determined necessary by the engineer. To mitigate the 
financial impact on State or local governments, the FHWA establishes a 
phase-in target compliance date of 15 years from the effective date of 
this final rule for existing signs in good condition. The phase-in 
target compliance date for symbol sizes and 6'' letter sizes for 
lettering on ground-mounted Street Name signs on roads that are not 
multi-lane streets with speed limits greater than 60 km/h (40 mph) 
remains unchanged from that previously established, and is still 
January 9, 2012.
    The FHWA also adds a clarification to the first OPTION statement. 
The OPTION statement in the 2000 MUTCD generally states that a symbol 
or letter designation may be used to identify the government 
jurisdiction. The FHWA revises the paragraph to provide more 
specificity by stating that a symbol or letter designation may be used 
on a Street Name sign to identify the governmental jurisdiction, area 
of jurisdiction, or other government-approved institution. This change 
provides additional flexibility for jurisdictions that install Street 
Name signs, allowing them to identify areas of the city, neighborhoods, 
and the like. The FHWA received no comments regarding this change, and 
adopts this change.
    The FHWA adds to the first STANDARD statement that if a symbol or 
letter designation is used, the height and width of the symbol or 
letter designation shall not exceed the letter height of the sign. This 
provides for more uniform Street Name sign design and assures that the 
name of the street will have more prominence on the sign than the 
jurisdictional symbol or letter designation. The FHWA received one 
comment from ATSSA supporting this change, and one editorial comment, 
which the FHWA adopts in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed two changes in the second OPTION 
statement. First, the FHWA proposed eliminating midblock locations from 
the provision concerning locations where Street Name signs may be 
installed because Street Name signs are not appropriate at non-
intersection locations. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD 
and a local DOT opposed to this revision because there are locations 
other than intersections where Street Name signs are appropriate. The 
FHWA agrees and withdraws this proposal. Second, the FHWA eliminates 
the provision allowing the installation of a supplemental Street Name 
sign separately or below an intersection-related warning sign on 
intersection approaches because this is an inappropriate use of the 
sign. Instead, the Advance Street Name plaque, as described in Section 
2C.49 Advance Street Name Plaque (W16-8, W16-8a), is appropriate for 
this purpose. The FHWA received no comments regarding this change, and 
adopts this change.
    The FHWA adopts several changes to the fourth GUIDANCE statement. 
First, the FHWA eliminates the recommendation on the color of the 
supplemental Street Name sign when it is combined with a warning sign 
because this is now termed an Advance Street Name plaque and is 
discussed in Section 2C.49.
    Second, the FHWA recommends that in urban and suburban areas, 
especially where Advance Street Name signs are not used, overhead-
mounted street name signs be considered. If overhead Street Name signs 
are used, the lettering should be at least 300 mm (12 in) high in 
capital letters or 300 mm (12 in) upper-case letters with 225 mm (9 in) 
lower-case letters. The FHWA received two comments from ATSSA and the 
U.S. Access Board in support of this change, and five from the NCUTCD 
and State and local DOTs opposed to it. Those who opposed this change 
felt that the signs would be too large, that the size of the sign may 
not properly fit on traffic signal mast arms, that wind loading may 
also be an issue on mast arms, and that financial impacts would be 
high. The FHWA adopts this change in this final rule because 300 mm (12 
in) letters are superior to 250 mm (10 in) letters in terms of 
legibility distance for older drivers as well as all drivers. Lettering 
on overhead signs need to be larger than roadside mounted signs to 
achieve adequate visibility. The 300 mm (12 in) size is a GUIDANCE, not 
a STANDARD, so smaller letters can be used if determined necessary by 
the engineer. To mitigate economic impacts, the FHWA establishes a 15-
year phase-in target compliance date from the effective date of this 
final rule (rather than January 9, 2012, as proposed in the NPA) for 
this paragraph, for existing signs in good condition.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT statement at the end of the 
section referencing Section 2C.49 for information regarding the use of 
street name signs as supplemental plaques for use with intersection-
related warning signs. The FHWA received one editorial comment, which 
it incorporates in this final rule.
    106. The FHWA adds a new section, numbered and titled ``Section 
2D.39 Advance Street Name Signs (D3-2)'' that describes the uses, 
placement, legend, and lettering sizes for Advance Street Name signs. 
The FHWA received two comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a 
traffic control device manufacturer supporting this new section, and 
several editorial comments that the FHWA adopts in this final rule.
    The GUIDANCE includes two separate paragraphs regarding placement 
of Advance Street Name signs on arterial highways in rural areas and in 
urban areas. The FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD and the 
Virginia, Minnesota, and Kansas DOTs opposing the language that Advance 
Street Name signs be used in advance of all intersections with 
exclusive turn lanes in rural areas. The Virginia DOT felt that this 
could have a major cost impact. The Kansas DOT felt that Advance Street 
Name signs could contribute to sign clutter along major arterials, and 
suggested that their use in urban areas be based on an engineering 
study. The FHWA disagrees and adopts the language, with minor 
modifications, in this final rule. The FHWA strongly encourages the use 
of these signs in rural and urban areas as specified in the MUTCD. 
These signs, especially in rural areas, are one of the most important 
things that can be done to improve older driver safety and convenience, 
and they also benefit other drivers. To mitigate economic impacts, the 
FHWA establishes a 15-year phase-in target compliance date from the 
effective date of this final rule (rather than January 9, 2012, as 
proposed in the NPA) for existing signs in good condition.
    To respond to a comment by the NCUTCD suggesting that the paragraph 
is redundant, the FHWA withdraws the second OPTION statement that was 
proposed in the NPA because this information is contained in the first 
OPTION statement in this final rule.
    To preserve consistency of letter sizes, the FHWA withdraws two 
paragraphs from the STANDARD statement that

[[Page 65524]]

were proposed in the NPA, and creates a new GUIDANCE that references 
the letter sizes given in Section 2D.38 Street Name Sign (D3-1).
    To clarify the intent and recognize common practices regarding the 
use of directional arrows on these signs, the FHWA adds a new paragraph 
to the last OPTION statement that provides information regarding the 
placement of directional arrows.
    The FHWA renumbers the following sections accordingly.
    107. In Section 2D.45 General Service Signs (D9 Series) (numbered 
Section 2D.44 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA adds Electric Vehicle 
Charging to the list of services, one or more of which General Services 
signs must carry, in accordance with the second STANDARD statement. The 
FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support 
of this change, and adopts this change. The FHWA also adds an 
illustration of the Electric Vehicle Charging sign (D9-11b) to Figure 
2D-11.
    The FHWA changes the words ``CB Monitoring'' in the fourth OPTION 
statement to ``Channel 9 Monitored'' and makes a corresponding change 
in item C of the fourth GUIDANCE statement. These changes reflect 
current practice and terminology. The FHWA received one comment in 
support of these changes from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and adopts 
these changes. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date 
of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule for existing 
signs in good condition to minimize any impact on State or local 
governments.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes references in the fourth OPTION 
statement to the Road Conditions Dial 511 (D12-5) sign and adds new 
OPTION, STANDARD, and GUIDANCE statements regarding the use and design 
of the redesigned TRAVEL INFO CALL 511 (D12-5) sign. These changes 
reflect the assignment of 511 as the nationwide traveler information 
telephone number. The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA in support 
of these changes. The Virginia DOT suggested that the sign legend be 
``TRAVEL INFO DIAL 511.'' The FHWA agrees to change ``TRAVELER'' to 
``TRAVEL'' in this final rule, however does not agree to use the word 
``DIAL'' because it is antiquated terminology. The NCUTCD and Minnesota 
suggested that allowing the logo of a transportation agency or traveler 
information service to be two times the letter height used in the 
legend of the sign, as proposed in the GUIDANCE, was too large. The 
FHWA disagrees because some large traveler information agency logos are 
more recognizable than the sign text and this instant recognition is 
valuable to the traveler.
    108. In Section 2D.46 Reference Location Signs (D10-1 through 10-3) 
and Intermediate Reference Location Signs (D10-1a through D10-3a) 
(numbered and titled ``Section 2D.45 Reference Posts (D10-1 through 
D10-3)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FWHA changes the title and the term 
``reference posts'' to ``reference location signs'' throughout the 
section to correspond to terminology used throughout the MUTCD. The 
FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, the Kentucky, 
Wisconsin, and Kansas DOTs, Pierce County, Washington, and private 
citizens regarding proposed changes to this section as well as to 
Section 2E.54 Reference Location Signs and Enhanced Reference Location 
Signs (D10-4, D10-5) in the NPA. The FHWA revises both of these 
sections in this final rule. The following paragraphs describe this 
final rule, specifically differences between this final rule and the 
2000 MUTCD. Where applicable, notations are included to detail where 
the language for this final rule reflects comments received.
    The FHWA adds a SUPPORT statement at the beginning of the section 
to identify two types of reference location signs and their sign 
designations: Reference Location signs (D10-1, 2, 3) and Intermediate 
Reference Location signs (D10-1a, 2a, 3a).
    The FHWA also adds to the first OPTION statement a description of 
Intermediate Reference Location signs.
    In the first STANDARD statement, the FHWA adds a paragraph 
indicating that when Intermediate Reference Location signs are used to 
augment the reference location sign system, the Reference Location sign 
at the even kilometer (mile) shall display a decimal point and zero 
numeral. The FHWA also distinguishes between use on conventional roads 
and freeways. The design of reference location signs used on 
conventional roads is the same as currently listed in the STANDARD, and 
the FHWA includes a minimum sign size of 250 mm (10 in) wide vertical 
panel. If reference location signs are used on freeways or expressways, 
the FHWA requires that the Reference Location signs contain 250 mm (10 
in) white numerals on 300 mm (12 in) wide vertical green panels with a 
white border. The FHWA received several comments from State DOTs 
suggesting that blue panels be used, or at least included as an option. 
Although a blue background has been used by some States in FHWA-
approved experimentations,\24\ the FHWA believes that the standard 
green background of the 30-year old ``mile marker'' system should be 
used. These signs fit into the category of guidance signs much more 
than they do into the category of motorist information signs. The FHWA 
does allow the use of blue backgrounds for the Enhanced Reference 
Location signs, as described in Section 2E.54. The FHWA also includes 
panel heights for one, two, and three digit signs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ Information on the various designs and colors used for 
these experimentations is included in ``Location Marker Signs for 
Incident Management,'' September 2001, a report by Didier M. Valdes, 
et al., of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayag[uuml]ez, for the 
Federal Highway Administration under contract number DTFH61-00-X-
00091-F. This document is available from the Department of Civil 
Engineering and Surveying. University of Puerto Rico, Mayag[uuml]ez, 
Puerto Rico, 00681-9041.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA also includes a paragraph in the first STANDARD indicating 
how to determine reference location sign distance numbering for routes 
within a State, with and without overlaps with other routes. The FHWA 
also requires the installation of reference location signs on the right 
side of the roadway, except as provided in the OPTION statement. One 
commenter suggested that reference location markers be installed in the 
median because they are less of a maintenance issue when placed in the 
median. The FHWA disagrees because road users generally expect signs to 
be mounted on the right side of the roadway.
    The FHWA adds an OPTION statement indicating that Reference 
Location signs may be installed in the median where conditions limit or 
restrict installation on the right side of the roadway. The FHWA 
further expands the OPTION, based on comments, to indicate that on two-
lane conventional roadways, Reference Location signs may be installed 
on one side of the road only and that they may be installed back-to-
back. The OPTION also states that Reference Location signs may be 
placed up to 9 m (30 ft) from the edge of the pavement.
    The FHWA also revises the first STANDARD statement to clarify that 
the minimum mounting height of reference location signs shall be 4 feet 
to the bottom of the sign, to be consistent with the mounting height 
for delineators.
    To mitigate economic impacts, the FHWA establishes a 10-year phase-
in target compliance date from the effective date of this final rule 
for the location and spacing of Reference Location Signs and design of 
Intermediate Reference Location Signs, for existing signs in good 
condition.

[[Page 65525]]

    The FHWA removes the last OPTION statement from the 2000 MUTCD in 
this final rule because the signs that the statement refer to are now 
called Intermediate Reference Location signs, and are described in more 
detail in Section 2E.54.
    109. In Section 2D.48 General Information Signs (I Series) 
(numbered Section 2D.47 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA removes all 
references concerning Adopt-A-Highway signs from the MUTCD. Current 
State and local practices pertaining to Adopt-A-Highway signs vary 
widely and, in some cases, include the use of commercial logos for 
indicating Adopt-A-Highway sponsors. The use of logos has raised deeper 
policy issues regarding Federal and State laws concerning advertising 
along the right-of-way, general commercialization of the right-of-way, 
the safety of motorists and workers, and the ability to raise revenues 
for activities such as litter removal. Recent discussions of the 
signing criteria in the MUTCD, along with dialogue of several American 
Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) 
subcommittees, have highlighted that these issues go beyond the current 
standards included in the MUTCD. For example, the AASHTO Subcommittee 
on Maintenance has argued that several States have existing contracts 
that allow a commercial entity to exchange maintenance and litter 
pickup services for signs acknowledging the commercial sponsors who pay 
for the services. These contracts supplement scarce maintenance 
resources for these States. The Subcommittee also noted that the use of 
more experienced crews in such arrangements is safer than using 
volunteers.
    The AASHTO Subcommittee on Traffic Engineering, on the other hand, 
has argued that these acknowledgements of the commercial sponsors is an 
opening for other types of advertising (including electronic 
advertising on overhead dynamic message signs along freeways and at 
signalized intersections) and raise serious concerns over driver 
distraction, confusion, and crash potential and liability. At the 
request of the Subcommittee on Maintenance, the AASHTO Standing 
Committee on Highways has established a task force to consider 
commercialization within the right-of-way, including, but not limited 
to, signage for the Adopt-A-Highway program.
    An FHWA policy memorandum dated November 9, 2001 \25\ indicated 
that these signs are acknowledgement signs, not advertisements. 
However, until the AASHTO study is completed, the FHWA removes all 
references to Adopt-A-Highway signs in the MUTCD. The FHWA received two 
comments from the NCUTCD and Caltrans in support of this position, and 
two from ATSSA and the Connecticut DOT opposed to it.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \25\ Policy memorandum is available for downloading from the 
following URL: http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov/res-memorandum_adopt-a-highway_110901.htm
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding new OPTION, GUIDANCE, and 
STANDARD statements regarding the use of signs to display safety or 
transportation-related messages. These messages, such as ``SEAT BELTS 
BUCKLED?'' and ``DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE,'' are in common and widespread 
use in many jurisdictions and they provide valuable reminders to road 
users of important laws. The additions to this section were proposed in 
order to provide for consistency in application of these types of 
messages on General Information signs and to reduce the possibility of 
such signs being misused. The FHWA received four comments from the 
NCUTCD, Caltrans, the Minnesota DOT, and a private citizen opposed to 
these new statements, stating that they do not regulate, warn or guide 
motorists, and should not be encouraged. The FHWA disagrees with these 
comments. However, because these statements are duplicative of 
statements already contained in Chapter 2A, the FHWA withdraws these 
statements from Section 2D.48 in this final rule.
    Finally, the FHWA revises the third STANDARD statement replacing 
the words ``jurisdiction logos'' with ``boundary'' to provide 
additional flexibility to highway agencies to use different colors for 
political boundary signs. The FHWA received no comments regarding this 
change, and adopts this change.
    110. In Section 2D.49 Signing of Named Highways (numbered Section 
2D.48 in the 2000 MUTCD), in the first STANDARD statement the FHWA adds 
additional requirements for installing memorial signs on the mainline. 
These requirements prohibit the use of memorial names on the 
directional guide signs, interference with necessary highway signing, 
and placement which compromises the safety or efficiency of traffic 
flow. The STANDARD statement is identical to the STANDARD statement in 
Section 2E.08 Memorial Highway Signing. The FHWA adds this for 
consistency and to clarify the acceptable locations to install memorial 
signs. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change, and adopts this change.
    111. The FHWA adds a new section, numbered and titled ``Section 
2D.52 National Scenic Byways Sign (D6-4, D6-4a).'' This section 
includes SUPPORT, OPTION, and STANDARD statements that describe the 
National Scenic Byways program and the signs that may be placed on 
roads designated as National Scenic Byways or All-American Roads by the 
U.S. Secretary of Transportation. This new section provides for 
uniformity of design and application of markers on designated National 
Scenic Byways. The FHWA received three comments in support of the new 
section and the D6-4 signs. The FHWA incorporates several suggested 
clarifications to the proposed language in this final rule, including 
revising the SUPPORT statement to remove unnecessary information. In 
addition, the FHWA includes the proper color illustration of the D6-4 
and D6-4a signs, which features a blue flag and border, red text, and 
white background. The black and white version was inadvertently 
published in the NPA. The FHWA also adds an illustration of a half-size 
D6-4 sign in response to comments.
    112. In Section 2E.01 Scope of Freeway and Expressway Guide Sign 
Standards, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT to clarify that guide signs for 
freeways and expressways are primarily identified by sign name and not 
necessarily by a standard sign number. The FHWA incorporates this 
additional minor editorial information in this final rule to clarify 
the intent of the section.
    113. In Section 2E.10 Number of Signs at an Overhead Installation 
and Sign Spreading, the FHWA expands the title and relocates the 
SUPPORT and GUIDANCE statements related to sign spreading from Section 
2E.11 Pull-Through Signs to this section because they are more 
appropriately associated with sign location installation. The FHWA 
received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
supporting this change, and adopts this change.
    114. In Section 2E.11 Pull-Through Signs, the FHWA shortens the 
title to reflect the relocation of the SUPPORT and GUIDANCE statements 
that deal with ``sign spreading'' to Section 2E.10 Number of Signs at 
an Overhead Installation and Sign Spreading.
    In the first sentence in the GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA replaces 
the words ``only when'' with ``where'' to broaden the use of Pull-
Through signs. The FHWA adopts this change to recognize that Pull-
Through signs can be beneficial in congested traffic for

[[Page 65526]]

road users, especially older drivers, at many locations. The FHWA also 
recommends that Pull-Through signs with down arrows be used where 
alignment of the through lanes is curved and the exit direction is 
straight ahead, where the number of through lanes is not readily 
evident, and at multi-lane exits where there is a reduction in the 
number of through lanes. The FHWA received three comments from the 
NCUTCD, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen supporting 
the proposed changes to the text and one comment from a private citizen 
opposed to it. The opposing commenter suggested the wording be revised 
to clarify that Pull-Through signs be used where there is a reduction 
in the number of through lanes because it is not appropriate to 
recommend Pull-Through signs at all multi-lane exits. The FHWA agrees 
and modifies the text to clarify the use of Pull-Through signs with 
down arrows at multi-lane exits where there is a reduction in the 
number of through lanes.
    115. In Section 2E.13 Size and Style of Letters and Signs, in Table 
2E-3, the FHWA adds dimensions for the ``Action Message Word'' row and 
adds a row with dimensions for the sizes of ``Numerals and Letter'' for 
Gore signs. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD in support of 
the changes to this table. Based on an editorial comment, the FHWA 
revises the dimensions for the Action Message Word under ``category a'' 
for major interchanges to make this entry consistent with all of the 
other entries on this table.
    In Table 2E-4, under item H, Rest Area and Scenic Area Signs, the 
FHWA changes the values for Distance Fraction to 250 mm (10 in), and 
the values for Distance Word to 300 mm (12 in) to correct an error in 
the 2000 MUTCD. A commenter from the Oregon DOT noted this inadvertent 
transposition of values and the FHWA agrees with this correction.
    116. In Section 2E.19 Diagrammatic Signs, the FHWA proposed in the 
NPA to add to item A of the first STANDARD statement the option of 
showing each individual lane arrangement, based on research related to 
the needs of older road users.\26\ The FHWA also proposed adding a 
second illustration to Figure 2E-3 Diagrammatic Sign for a Single-Lane 
Left Exit to show two diagrammatic arrows instead of just one. The FHWA 
received comments from the NCUTCD, the Kansas DOT, and a private 
citizen opposing the new sign design, stating that the size of the sign 
would be increased, the message difficult to read, and that additional 
guidance should be provided so that readers know how to design the 
signs. The FHWA agrees that additional research and study is needed to 
refine the design of the individual lane arrangement style of the 
diagrammatic sign. Therefore, the FHWA withdraws this proposal to 
include the option of showing each individual lane arrangement, as well 
as the proposal to add an illustration within Figure 2E-3.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \26\ Information about this research is summarized on pages 190 
and 191 of the ``Highway Design Handbook for Older Drivers and 
Pedestrians,'' Report number FHWA-RD-01-103, published by the FHWA 
Office of Safety Research and Development, 2001. It is available for 
purchase from The National Technical Information Service, 
Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000, or at their Web site at 
the following URL: http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA adopts additional editorial changes to improve the graphic 
representations in Figures 2E-3 through 2E-7 to be consistent with the 
text.
    117. In Section 2E.23 Lateral Offset (titled ``Lateral Clearance'' 
in the 2000 MUTCD and the NPA), the FHWA changes the title to be 
consistent with changes in terminology as discussed in Section 2A.19 
Lateral Offset.
    118. In Section 2E.28 Interchange Exit Numbering, the FHWA revises 
the first STANDARD statement to require that a space be included 
between the suffix letter and the exit number on an exit number plaque 
for multi-exit interchanges. The FHWA received one comment from 
Caltrans opposed to this change, suggesting that the FHWA change this 
to a GUIDANCE because total width is an issue on signs, especially in 
retrofitting signs. The FHWA disagrees and adopts this change because 
the space between the exit number and suffix letter is important for 
adequate legibility. The FHWA also adds to this STANDARD that exit 
numbers shall not include the cardinal initials corresponding to the 
directions of the cross route. This sentence is moved from Section 
2E.42 Cloverleaf Interchange because it is more appropriate in this 
section.
    The FHWA relocates the second OPTION statement (of the 2000 MUTCD) 
to the first GUIDANCE statement. Because road users might not expect a 
left exit and have difficulty in maneuvering to the left, the FHWA 
recommends that the word ``LEFT'' be added to the exit number plaque. 
The FHWA received one comment from a private citizen in support of this 
change, and six comments from the NCUTCD, and the Minnesota, Kansas, 
and Wisconsin DOTs opposed to it. Most of the commenters in opposition 
felt the addition of the word ``LEFT'' to the exit number plaque should 
be an OPTION, rather than GUIDANCE. The FHWA disagrees and adopts this 
change as a GUIDANCE because of numerous complaints of the difficulty 
that road users have in knowing when an exit is on the left. Very few 
road users know that when the exit plaque is installed on the top left 
edge of the sign, it means the exit is on the left.
    The FHWA also adds additional text that, for exits that are not 
numbered (no exit plaque), a LEFT plaque should be added to the top 
left edge of the sign for a left exit. The FHWA adopts this text to 
address a comment from a private citizen suggesting that non-numbered 
exits needed to be addressed in a manner that is consistent with the 
way numbered left exits are signed, to provide for adequate safety at 
these locations. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date 
of 15 years from the effective date of this final rule for the new 
GUIDANCE for existing signs in good condition to minimize any impact on 
State or local governments.
    The FHWA adds an OPTION statement following the first GUIDANCE 
statement, stating that the portion of the exit number plaque 
containing the word ``LEFT'' may have a black legend and border on a 
yellow background. This OPTION statement mirrors other similar uses of 
the black on yellow color pattern for signs and panels associated with 
left exits in the MUTCD. The FHWA received three comments from the 
NCUTCD, the Minnesota DOT, and a private citizen opposed to this new 
statement, but these commenters provided no reasoning for their 
opposition. The FHWA adopts the OPTION in this final rule because it is 
consistent with the EXIT ONLY and LEFT EXIT color scheme, it further 
increases conspicuity of the infrequent left exit, and it is an 
optional treatment that jurisdictions may use but is not required.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the EXIT 13 plaque from Figure 2E-3 
to reflect the changes in Section 2E.28. The FHWA makes additional 
editorial modifications to the figures to correspond with the text and 
correct minor errors.
    119. In Section 2E.30 Advance Guide Signs, the FHWA modifies the 
first GUIDANCE statement to provide necessary clarification for 
placement of advance guide signs. This change responds to a comment 
from Caltrans stating that clarification on advance sign placement is 
necessary to address situations where it is not practical to use three 
Advance Guide signs because of very close spacing between interchanges. 
This minor change does not add any new requirements and

[[Page 65527]]

provides additional flexibility to jurisdictions to address unique 
situations.
    In the STANDARD, the FHWA removes the requirement to use the 
specific distance message for the 2 km (1 mi) and 4 km (2 mi) Advance 
Guide signs, to respond to a question from Caltrans as to why the 1 km 
(0.5 mile) sign was not included. All Advance Guide signs shall contain 
the appropriate distance message.
    120. In Section 2E.34 Exit Gore Signs, the FHWA revises the 
STANDARD statement so that it is worded in a manner consistent with the 
rest of the MUTCD. The STANDARD statement in this final rule includes a 
definition of ``gore'' and indicates that the Exit Gore sign shall be 
located in the gore.
    The FHWA adds an OPTION statement to allow mounting a panel 
indicating the advisory speed the for the ramp below the Exit sign, to 
supplement and not replace the exit or ramp advisory speed warning sign 
where extra emphasis of an especially low advisory ramp speed is 
needed. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD in support of the 
new OPTION statement as proposed in the NPA, one comment from Caltrans 
requesting additional information, and two comments from Minnesota and 
Kansas DOTs opposed to the change, stating that more information was 
needed. The FHWA adopts the new OPTION statement with additional 
language to clarify the usage of the advisory speed panel and to 
emphasize that the supplemental advisory speed panel is not intended to 
replace the exit or ramp speed warning sign. This option provides 
jurisdictions additional flexibility for reminding road users of the 
recommended speed for an especially low-speed exit ramp.
    121. In Section 2E.36 Distance Signs, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT 
statement after the first STANDARD statement that the minimum size of 
route shields identifying a significant destination point appear in 
Tables 2E-1 through 2E-4. The FHWA received a comment from Caltrans 
that route shields are more commonly used on Distance Signs than text 
identification of route numbers. The FHWA agrees with this comment and 
believes that route shields are more quickly identifiable by road users 
than words. Accordingly, the FHWA revises Figure 2E-22 to show a U.S. 
38 route shield rather than a text identification of the route, and 
adds an OPTION that the text identification of a route may be shown 
instead of a route shield.
    122. In Section 2E.42 Cloverleaf Interchange, the FHWA relocates 
the last sentence of the STANDARD statement regarding exit numbers to 
Section 2E.28 Interchange Exit Numbering because that section deals 
with overall interchange exit numbering, and the statement is 
applicable to all interchanges, not just cloverleaf interchanges. 
Although this change was not included in the NPA, the FHWA includes 
this minor editorial change in this final rule to clarify the intent 
based on a comment from Caltrans questioning whether the information 
regarding exit numbers was applicable only to cloverleaf interchanges. 
The FHWA also changes the OPTION to a second GUIDANCE statement to be 
consistent with similar GUIDANCE in Section 2E.44 Partial Cloverleaf 
Interchange.
    123. In Section 2E.43 Cloverleaf Interchange with Collector-
Distributor Roadways, the FHWA adds a new Figure 2E-29 and a SUPPORT 
statement referencing Figure 2E-29 for examples of guide signs for full 
cloverleaf interchanges with collector-distributor roadways. The FHWA 
renumbers subsequent figures accordingly. A figure very similar to new 
Figure 2E-29 was in the 1988 MUTCD, but was inadvertently left out of 
the 2000 MUTCD. Several commenters pointed out this error and the FHWA 
corrects it in this final rule.
    124. In Section 2E.49 Signing of Approaches and Connecting 
Roadways, the FHWA removes the entire text of the section (from the 
2000 MUTCD) and adds new SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, STANDARD, and OPTION 
statements, as well as five new figures (Figures 2E-34 through 2E-38). 
The new statements address sign sequences and sign design for 
conventional roads with one lane and multi-lane traffic approaching an 
interchange. The new statements also clarify the use of signs for 
approaches and connecting roadways in order to better convey to road 
users the ramp configuration and the maneuver that a road user would 
have to make to get on the desired ramp or connecting roadway. The FHWA 
adopts the statements proposed in the NPA, with editorial modifications 
to the text and figures to respond to comments and maintain consistency 
with changes in other sections. The FHWA also removes from Figures 2E-
28 through 2E-33 the depiction of signing on the roads approaching the 
freeway and adds a note cross-referencing to the appropriate Figure 2E-
34 through 2E-38.
    125. In Section 2E.51 General Service Signs, the FHWA changes from 
three to two the number of meals per day for which a food establishment 
should have a continuous operation to serve in item B.2 in the first 
GUIDANCE statement. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and 
the Wisconsin DOT supporting this change, and three comments from the 
Minnesota and Connecticut DOTs and a private citizen opposed to it. The 
opposing commenters indicated that restaurants that serve less than 
three meals a day are not adequately serving the motoring public, and 
that the more stringent criteria should remain, in order to reduce sign 
clutter and better serve motorists. The FHWA disagrees because many 
restaurants of interest to travelers serve only two meals per day. In 
addition, this is consistent with changes made in Section 2F.01 
Eligibility regarding eligibility of businesses for Specific Service 
Signs. The FHWA adopts the change, as proposed in the NPA.
    126. In Section 2E.54, the FHWA changes the title from ``Reference 
Posts'' to ``Reference Location Signs and Enhanced Reference Location 
Signs (D10-4, D10-5)'' to reflect the new Enhanced Reference Location 
sign and to be consistent with changes in other chapters of Part 2 of 
the MUTCD. The FHWA received comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of these changes. Caltrans and a private citizen suggested 
that the abbreviation of kilometer be corrected. The same private 
citizen opposed the green color of the signs, stating that a blue 
background is used by some States, and opposed the FHWA's proposal to 
include the decimal point to indicate the fractional character of the 
mile or kilometer in both this section and Section 2D.46 Reference 
Location Signs (D10-1 through D10-3) and Intermediate Reference 
Location Signs (D10-1a through D10-3a). The FHWA revises both of these 
sections to address comments as appropriate, and to provide consistency 
with Section 2D.46. The FHWA also adds Figure 2E-45 illustrating the 
sign images. The FHWA adopts the decimal point for intermediate signs 
because the FHWA believes that this will make it clearer to road users 
that it denotes a portion of a mile or kilometer.
    To mitigate economic impacts, the FHWA establishes a phase-in 
target compliance date of 10 years from the effective date of this 
final rule for the design of Enhanced Reference Location signs and 
Intermediate Enhanced Reference Location Signs as specified in the 
second STANDARD statement, for existing signs in good condition.
    127. In Section 2E.56 Radio Information Signing, the FHWA adds a 
SUPPORT statement at the end of the section with a cross-reference to 
Section 2D.45 General Service Signs (D9 Series),

[[Page 65528]]

for information about the use and design of a TRAVEL INFO CALL 511 
(D12-5) sign. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed the addition of OPTION and 
STANDARD statements mirroring text in Section 2D.45, however, the FHWA 
believes that a cross-reference to Section 2D.45 is sufficient in this 
section.
    128. In Section 2E.57 Carpool and Ridesharing Signing (titled 
``Carpool Information Signing'' in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the 
OPTION statement that Carpool Information signs may include Internet 
addresses or telephone numbers within the legend. This exception to a 
general prohibition against Internet addresses or telephone numbers 
with more than four characters in Section 2A.06 Design of Signs, 
reflects long-standing and common current practice and provides for 
additional information to road users. The FHWA received two comments 
from the Virginia DOT and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
this change, and one from the NCUTCD opposed to it, stating the 
inconsistency with Section 2A.06. The FHWA adopts this change, as 
proposed in the NPA. Section 2A.06 allows the use of telephone numbers 
and Internet addresses when specifically authorized for certain signs 
in the MUTCD. A specific exemption is intended to be authorized by 
Section 2E.57 for carpool signs. However, to encourage use of shorter 
numbers, the FHWA changes the illustration of the Carpool sign (D12-2) 
in Figure 2D-12 to show ``*CAR'' rather than a 10-digit number.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes the size of the maximum vertical 
dimension of the logo or symbol in the STANDARD statement from 900 mm 
(36 in) to 450 mm (18 in) to enhance the legibility of the primary 
message. The FHWA received no comments regarding this change, and 
adopts it in this final rule.
    129. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
2E.59 Preferential Only Lane Signs.'' This section was titled ``High-
Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Signs'' in the NPA. In the NPA, the FHWA 
proposed to include STANDARD, GUIDANCE, OPTION, and SUPPORT statements 
regarding the use and placement of signs for HOV lanes and facilities 
and five figures illustrating examples of HOV signing applications. The 
FHWA received several comments from Caltrans, the Minnesota DOT, and 
private citizens regarding this new section, ranging from editorial 
comments to opposition regarding specific statements, to a suggestion 
not to include the new section or figures until the section is reviewed 
in more detail by the Guide and Motorist Information Sign Technical 
Committee of the NCUTCD. The FHWA disagrees with the commenter 
suggesting that additional time is needed for review. There was ample 
time for individuals to review and provide comments on this proposed 
section. Also, prior to preparing the NPA, the FHWA considered 
available information about the state of the practice of HOV signing. 
The FHWA reviewed the docket comments and conducted a thorough revision 
of the proposed language to address comments, remove inconsistencies, 
and clarify the text as it relates to signing for specific situations 
for barrier-separated, buffer-separated, concurrent flow, and direct 
access ramps.
    One of the private citizens suggested that the section provide 
guidance that differentiates between an HOV lane physically ending and 
an HOV lane designation ending with the lane continuing as a mixed-flow 
lane. The FHWA agrees and clarifies the text and figures to provide 
examples of these conditions and guidance for proper signing.
    Caltrans suggested that additional information and examples be 
provided regarding the use of changeable message signs (CMS), so that 
States do not inadvertently implement CMS signs for static, rather than 
dynamic signing purposes. The FHWA agrees and includes references to 
new Sections 2B.26 Preferential Only Lane Signs and 2B.28 Preferential 
Only Lane Sign Application and Placement (numbered Sections 2B.48 and 
2B.50 in the 2000 MUTCD) at the beginning of this section and repeats 
pertinent information regarding the use of CMS signs in this section.
    Caltrans also suggested that the proposed size of ground mounted/
barrier mounted HOV signs was too small to contain all of the necessary 
information at the appropriate text size. The FHWA agrees and, in 
concert with Section 2B.26, the FHWA modifies the size and layout of 
the text that appears in the legend of the R3-10 through R3-14 signs to 
be consistent with the other sections in Part 2 regarding size of text 
associated with the type of facility.
    The FHWA also received several comments from a private citizen 
regarding the use of the diamond symbol on the HOV signs. In some 
cases, the diamond was inadvertently shown incorrectly and/or 
inappropriately on signs in the figures in the NPA. The FHWA clarifies 
the use of the diamond symbol and the word ``HOV'' on signs to 
correspond with the option that agencies have to use either the diamond 
symbol or ``HOV'' that is included in Sections 2B.26 and 2B.28. The 
FHWA clarifies the use of the diamond symbol and includes a diamond in 
the top left corner of the legend of the guide sign for all guide signs 
that appear in the gore areas for exits onto HOV lanes. These guide 
signs in gore areas appear in the figures for this section to respond 
to comments from a private citizen suggesting additional information on 
the gore signs.
    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years 
from the effective date of this final rule for this new section, for 
existing signs in good condition.
    130. In Section 2F.01 Eligibility, the FHWA changes from three to 
two the number of meals per day for which a food establishment should 
have a continuous operation to serve in item B.2 of the fourth GUIDANCE 
statement to be consistent with changes in Section 2E.51 General 
Service Signs. (See also the discussion in Section 2E.51.)
    131. In Section 2F.04 Number and Size of Logos and Signs, the FHWA 
changes the second STANDARD statement to require that a logo panel on 
signs for conventional roads and ramps not exceed 750 mm (30 in) in 
width instead of 600 mm (24 in) to be consistent with the proportions 
of panels for freeways and expressways. The FHWA received three 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
support of this change, and adopts this change.
    132. In Section 2F.08 Double-Exit Interchanges, the FHWA adds to 
the OPTION statement that at a double-exit interchange where there are 
four logo panels displayed for one of the exits and one or two panels 
to be displayed for the other exit, the logo panels may be arranged in 
three rows with two panels per row, to make the layout of the sign more 
logical. The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and one from the Minnesota 
DOT opposed to it. The opposing commenter suggested that the signing 
concept would confuse motorists. The FHWA believes that the commenter 
was confused as to what the sign would look like. Therefore the FHWA 
adds an illustration in Figure 2F-1 and believes that there should be 
no reason for drivers to be confused with this arrangement. The FHWA 
adopts the change.
    133. In Chapter 2G TOURIST-ORIENTED DIRECTIONAL SIGNS, the FHWA 
changes ``Typical'' to ``Examples of'' in the titles of Figures 2G-1 
and 2G-2 because the information shown is only an example of many 
acceptable arrangements of signs. The FHWA

[[Page 65529]]

received no comments regarding these changes, and adopts these changes.
    134. In Section 2G.01 Purpose and Application, in the second 
STANDARD statement, the FHWA adds language prohibiting the placement of 
tourist-oriented directional signs on conventional roads in urban 
areas. This clarifies and strengthens the current requirement that such 
signs shall only be used on rural conventional roads.
    Also, the FHWA relocates the current first paragraph of the 
GUIDANCE statement to become a new second paragraph of the second 
STANDARD statement. This change requires, rather than recommends, that 
tourist-oriented directional signs incorporate information from and be 
used in place of Specific Service signs where both types of signs are 
needed at an intersection.
    The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of these changes, and adopts these changes.
    135. In Section 2G.07 State Policy, the FHWA changes the phrase 
``State or Federal laws'' to ``State and Federal laws'' in the STANDARD 
statement, to clarify that both types of laws must be heeded. The FHWA 
received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    136. In Section 2H.08 Placement of Recreational and Cultural 
Interest Area Symbol Signs, the FHWA combines Figures 2H-5 and 2H-6 
into a single figure titled ``Figure 2H-5 Recreational and Cultural 
Interest Area Symbol Signs'' illustrating all approved recreational and 
cultural interest symbol signs. The previous titles of Figures 2H-5 and 
2H-6 were inaccurate, and the FHWA received a comment from the Arizona 
DOT recommending that all currently approved recreational and cultural 
interest symbols be shown in the figures of Chapter 2H. The FHWA agrees 
and adopts these minor changes for accuracy and consistency.
    137. In Section 2H.09 Destination Guide Signs, the FHWA clarifies 
in the second STANDARD statement that linear parkway-type highways that 
primarily, rather than merely, function as arterial connectors, even if 
they also provide access to recreational or cultural interest areas, 
shall not qualify for the use of white-on-brown destination guide 
signs. The FHWA adopts this change to improve uniformity of guide 
signing on these important arterials. The FHWA received two comments 
from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this 
change, and adopts this change.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding illustrations of trapezoidal-
shaped directional guide signs to Figure 2H-2 to correspond with the 
optional use of this shape for recreational or cultural interest area 
directional signing as provided for in this section. The FHWA received 
two comments from the NCUTCD and the Minnesota DOT opposed to adding 
these illustrations, suggesting that the trapezoidal shape not be 
included in the figure nor the section text. The trapezoidal shape was 
not illustrated in the 2000 MUTCD because it is not widely used, due to 
higher costs for sign blanks versus rectangular shaped blanks. However, 
some agencies do still use the trapezoidal shape, so it is 
inappropriate to remove this option from the text of the MUTCD without 
allowing public comment. Therefore, the FHWA includes illustrations of 
the trapezoidal shaped signs in Figure 2H-2 in this final rule with a 
note identifying them as optional.
    138. In Section 2I.03 EVACUATION ROUTE Sign (EM-1), in the first 
STANDARD statement, the FHWA changes the design of the EVACUATION ROUTE 
(EM-1) sign to a rectanglular sign with a blue circular symbol with a 
directional arrow and the legend EVACUATION ROUTE. This change reserves 
the circular shape sign exclusively for rail grade crossings and 
enhances the conspicuity and legibility of the EVACUATION ROUTE sign. 
The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and three comments from the 
Florida and Oregon DOTs and a private citizen opposed to it. The 
Florida DOT feels that the change would have a large statewide impact 
to their hurricane evacuation signing program. The private citizen felt 
that the sign shape should remain circular so that it will continue to 
be recognized as a Civil Defense sign, and that changing the shape 
creates unnecessary work and expense for agencies. The Oregon DOT 
indicated their belief that the new design was too similar to the Trail 
Marker sign and, as a result, motorists may not recognize the 
Evacuation Route Markers with the appropriate amount of importance. The 
FHWA notes that the Emergency Evacuation Route Marker has not been 
changed; it has just been put onto a white rectangular background so 
that the circular shape can be reserved for another use. The FHWA 
adopts the change in this final rule. The FHWA revises the phase-in 
target compliance date to 15 years from the effective date of this 
final rule (the NPA proposed 10 years) for existing signs in good 
condition to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a sentence in the first 
STANDARD stating that the minimum size for this sign is 600 x 600 mm 
(24 x 24 in) and the circular symbol diameter is 2.5 mm (1 in) smaller 
than the width of the sign. The FHWA received one comment from the 
Arizona DOT suggesting that increasing the minimum size of the EM-1 
sign to be the same size as other standard route markers may distract 
drivers from other route markers that are far more important for 
everyday route guidance, and suggests that the 450 x 450 mm (18 x 18 
in) size be left as an available option. The FHWA agrees and removes 
this sentence from the STANDARD statement and creates a new table in 
Chapter 2I listing sign sizes for the EM-1 through EM-7 signs for two 
categories ``Conventional Roads'' and ``Minimum.'' For the EM-1 sign, 
the FHWA includes 600 x 600 mm (24 x 24 in) for conventional roads and 
450 x 450 mm (18 x 18 in) as the minimum.
    In the second STANDARD statement, the FHWA changes the detail 
regarding the colors to be used on the EVACUATION ROUTE (EM-1) sign to 
correspond with the design changes required by the first STANDARD 
statement. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed that at least the arrow, 
legend and corners of the sign shall be retroreflective. The FHWA 
received two comments from ATSSA and a traffic control device 
manufacturer opposed to this change, stating that the entire sign needs 
to be retroreflective because, in the event of a need to evacuate, 
power systems may not be available to externally illuminate these signs 
and weather conditions may be extremely poor for visibility. The FHWA 
agrees and requires that the entire sign be retroreflective.
    The FHWA adds to the second OPTION statement that the legend on the 
EVACUATION ROUTE sign may be modified to describe the type of 
evacuation route, such as HURRICANE, to provide additional information 
to road users. The FHWA did not receive any comments regarding this 
change, and adopts this change.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to Figure 2I-1 illustrations of the 
HURRICANE EVACUATION ROUTE, AREA CLOSED, TRAFFIC CONTROL POINT, MEDICAL 
CENTER, and HURRICANE SHELTER signs and illustrations of six new 
directional signs for EMERGENCY SHELTER, FALLOUT SHELTER, CHEMICAL 
SHELTER, WELFARE CENTER, REGISTRATION CENTER, and DECONTAMINATION

[[Page 65530]]

CENTER signs. The FHWA removes all size notations from the signs in 
this figure, and lists the sign sizes under the ``Conventional Roads'' 
column in the new table in this chapter. The FHWA received two comments 
from Caltrans and the Arizona DOT questioning why the EM-1 sign in the 
illustration includes the word ``HURRICANE.'' Because this is probably 
the most common type of evacuation route that is currently signed in 
the U.S., the FHWA uses the hurricane sign in the figure as an example. 
To address these comments in this final rule, the FHWA adds an asterisk 
to the EM-1 sign and a note stating that HURRICANE is an example of one 
type of evacuation route, and that the legend for other types may also 
be used, or this line of text may be omitted.
    139. In Section 2I.08 Emergency Aid Center Signs (EM-6 Series), the 
FHWA adds to the STANDARD statement that the EM-6 series signs shall be 
a horizontal rectangle and that the identifying word and the word 
``CENTER'', the directional arrow, and the border shall be black on a 
white background. Although this text was not included in the NPA, the 
FHWA adopts this change in this final rule to clarify the colors of 
these signs, consistent with longstanding requirements of the Standard 
Highway Signs book for the design of these signs. This does not impose 
any new requirements.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 3--Markings

    140. In Section 3A.01 Functions and Limitations, based on a comment 
from the NCUTCD, the FHWA adds a list describing the hierarchy system 
for longitudinal lines in order to clarify the intended functions of 
various types of longitudinal lines, similar to text that was in 
Section 3A.06 of the 2000 MUTCD. This text is most appropriately 
located in Section 3A.01.
    141. In Section 3A.03 Materials, the FHWA received one comment from 
the Motorcycle Safety Foundation requesting that motorcycles be 
considered when selecting pavement marking materials, especially 
longitudinal markings, because traction is important to motorcyclists. 
Because the FHWA did not propose changes to this section in the NPA, 
and a change to add ``motorcycles'' could have a significant impact on 
agencies, the FHWA declines incorporating any changes at this time. 
This goes beyond the scope of this rulemaking and would need to be 
addressed in a future rulemaking.
    142. In Section 3A.04 Colors, the FHWA revises the STANDARD 
statement to clarify the use of black markings. Black markings can be 
used in conjunction with any other color marking to add contrast to it. 
The FHWA removes the existing reference to object markers because it is 
not an appropriate reference. The FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting these changes to this section. A 
traffic control device manufacturer suggested adding a paragraph to 
denote that channelizing devices such as tubular markers and 
longitudinal channelizers are often used to reinforce white 
channelizing lines. The FHWA declines incorporating this comment 
because this topic is adequately covered in Section 3F.02 Channelizing 
Devices.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the section titled, ``Section 3A.05 
Colors of Pavement Markings'' (as it appeared in the NPA) and moves 
this information to Section 3A.04. The FHWA renumbers the remaining 
sections accordingly.
    In response to comments from the NCUTCD and the Wisconsin DOT, the 
FHWA removes the reference to white and yellow raised pavement markers, 
because raised pavement markers are distinguished from others by their 
physical characteristics, rather than color. Raised pavement markers 
are described in detail in Section 3B.11 Raised Pavement Markers.
    The Ohio DOT and a traffic engineering consultant suggested adding 
text in this section to acknowledge that blue raised pavement markers 
may be used as fire hydrant locators. The FHWA agrees with this 
addition in conjunction with the addition of blue raised pavement 
markers to Section 3B.11, and adds a sentence to the STANDARD statement 
in Section 3A.04.
    143. In Section 3A.05 Widths and Patterns of Longitudinal Pavement 
Markings (referred to as Section 3A.06 in the NPA), the FHWA received 
two comments from the NCUTCD and the Ohio DOT opposed to proposed 
changes to the STANDARD statement to remove the descriptions of the 
functions of longitudinal pavement markings. The FHWA agrees with these 
comments and moves these items to Section 3A.01 Functions and 
Limitations. Additionally, the FHWA moves the last item of the 
STANDARD, pertaining to lengths of broken and dotted lines, to Section 
3B.11 Raised Pavement Markers and revises it to clarify that it 
pertains to the spacing of raised pavement markers.
    The FHWA deleted ``on rural highways'' from the GUIDANCE statement 
to clarify that this guidance refers to all roadway types, not just 
rural highways. A private citizen expressed concern that this revision 
would imply that the pavement marking section would be applicable to 
toll facilities as well. Due to the unique nature of toll plazas, the 
citizen suggested that uniformity of toll plaza marking be addressed 
before including toll facilities under the blanket of ``all roadway 
types.'' While the FHWA realizes that toll plaza applications are not 
specifically discussed in the MUTCD, the FHWA plans to study toll plaza 
applications and defers that discussion to a future rulemaking. The 
FHWA adopts the revision, as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA received one comment from the Washington DOT supporting 
the FHWA's proposal to revise the OPTION statement to differentiate 
between the dimensions for dotted lines used for line extensions and 
lane drop/add markings and the proposed revisions to the dimensions for 
the line segments and gaps to be consistent with other sections in Part 
3. The Wisconsin DOT opposed this revision, stating that they are using 
a higher gap ratio. The Ohio DOT felt that this should be a GUIDANCE 
statement. Because changing this to a GUIDANCE may have cost impacts to 
agencies, the FHWA adopts the language as proposed in the NPA as an 
OPTION, but the FHWA may consider changing it to a GUIDANCE in a future 
rulemaking.
    144. In Section 3B.01 Yellow Centerline Pavement Markings and 
Warrants, the FHWA changes the title ``Yellow Centerline and Left Edge 
Line Pavement Markings and Warrants'' to ``Yellow Centerline Pavement 
Markings and Warrants.'' The FHWA also moves the fourth STANDARD 
statement of Section 3B.01 to Section 3B.06 Edge Line Pavement Markings 
because edge lines are appropriately covered in Section 3B.06. The FHWA 
received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
these changes, and the FHWA adopts these changes.
    A traffic engineering consultant suggested that the term ``traffic 
lane'' be clarified to specify whether parking lanes and bicycle lanes 
were included. The FHWA agrees with this suggestion, and replaces the 
phrase ``traffic lane'' with ``lanes for moving motor vehicle traffic'' 
where appropriate in this section. The FHWA received a comment from a 
private citizen in Newton, Massachusetts stating that it is common 
practice in the northeast to paint a single yellow centerline stripe on 
narrow or low-volumes streets. The commenter suggests additional 
language explaining the use of single yellow centerlines be added to 
this section to account for the proposed changes to remove the 
descriptions of longitudinal

[[Page 65531]]

lines from Section 3A.05 Widths and Patterns of Longitudinal Pavement 
Markings. As a result of this and other comments received to the 
proposed change in Section 3A.05, the FHWA moves the descriptions of 
line types to Section 3A.01 Functions and Limitations in this final 
rule. Accordingly, the FHWA believes that the meaning of solid 
centerlines will be clear. Adding additional information regarding 
single yellow centerlines requires additional research in the future 
and goes beyond the scope of this rulemaking.
    145. In Section 3B.02 No Passing Zone Pavement Markings and 
Warrants, the FHWA revises the second STANDARD statement to clarify 
that no-passing zone markings on approaches to highway-rail grade 
crossings shall conform with Section 8B.20 Pavement Markings, and 
eliminates the requirement that no passing zone markings be used at 
other appropriate locations, to be consistent with Part 8 Traffic 
Controls for Highway-Rail Grade Crossings, and eliminate overlap with 
more specific requirements for no passing zone markings elsewhere in 
Section 3B.02. One commenter from Pierce County, Washington, suggested 
clarification in this section, as well as in Part 8, that No Passing 
Zone striping is not required on roadways that otherwise have no 
centerline striping. The FHWA agrees with this comment and incorporates 
this clarification into this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the third STANDARD statement to 
clarify the dimensions of a no-passing buffer zone, and to eliminate 
the buffer zone dimensions specific to areas where no passing zones are 
required because of limited passing sight distance. There was one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change.
    146. In Section 3B.03 Other Yellow Longitudinal Pavement Markings, 
the FHWA revises the text in the first paragraph of the first STANDARD 
statement to substitute the phrase ``normal double'' for ``two double'' 
in the description of the pavement marking requirements for reversible 
lanes. In the third paragraph of the first STANDARD statement, the FHWA 
clarifies that the pavement marking requirements for a two-way left 
turn lane applies to such lanes that are never operated as a reversible 
lane. These changes improve the clarity of the requirements and provide 
consistency with requirements elsewhere in Chapters 3A and 3B. There 
was one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of these 
changes.
    The FHWA received comments from two traffic engineering consultants 
regarding Figure 3B-7, Example of Two-Way Left-Turn Marking 
Applications. One commenter suggested that the left turn arrow at the 
nose of the left turn bay at the major street be required, rather than 
optional. The FHWA believes that a possible upgrade from OPTION or 
SUPPORT to GUIDANCE is a significant change and would require 
discussion and comment in a future rulemaking. The commenter did not 
present sufficient justification for this requirement therefore the 
FHWA declines incorporating this comment. A traffic engineering 
consultant suggested that the FHWA establish a phase-in target 
compliance date for the spacing of two-way left turn lane pavement 
markings, which was changed in the 2000 MUTCD. The FHWA agrees and 
establishes a five-year phase-in target compliance date from the 
effective date of this final rule for markings in good condition.
    147. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of the proposal to change the title of Section 
3B.04 from ``Edge Line Pavement Markings and Warrants'' to ``White Lane 
Line Pavement Markings and Warrants,'' and to move the fourth STANDARD 
statement of Section 3B.04 to Section 3B.06 Edge Line Pavement 
Markings, because edge lines are appropriately covered in Section 
3B.06. The FHWA adopts these changes.
    148. In Section 3B.05 Other White Longitudinal Pavement Markings, 
the FHWA changes the gap length for lane drop markings from 3.6 m (12 
ft) gaps to 2.7 m (9 ft) gaps in the third OPTION statement to be 
consistent with the ratio of other marking gaps. While the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, supported this change, the Wisconsin DOT opposed this 
revision because they are using a higher gap ratio. The FHWA changed 
the gap spacing in the final rule for the 2000 MUTCD, however there 
were inconsistencies between the text in Section 3B.05 and Figure 3B-10 
of the 2000 MUTCD. The intent of the proposed change was merely to 
correct this inconsistency, and therefore the FHWA adopts the wording 
as proposed in the NPA.
    149. In Section 3B.06 Edge Line Pavement Markings, the FHWA adds to 
the STANDARD statement text pertaining to left and right edge lines 
that is being moved from Sections 3B.01 Yellow Centerline Pavement 
Markings and Warrants and 3B.04 White Lane Line Pavement Markings and 
Warrants. These changes result in all edge line pavement marking 
information being contained within one section. ATSSA opposed the 
reference to ``normal'' lines in these two paragraphs, because 
``normal'' lines are defined in Section 3A.05 Widths and Patterns of 
Longitudinal Pavement Markings as 4 inches to 6 inches in width. ATSSA 
suggests that FHWA require 6-inch lines on all Federal-aid projects, 
based on a recent study by the Texas Transportation Institute \27\ that 
29 States are using 6-inch or wider longitudinal lines on the roadway 
in at least some applications. However, this study did not indicate 
that 6-inch lines would improve safety or have better visibility than 
4-inch lines. Four-inch lines are adequate. This is a topic for further 
study and possibly a future rulemaking. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts 
the changes to this section as proposed in the NPA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ ``The Use of Wider Longitudinal Pavement Markings,'' Texas 
Transportation Institute (TTI) Research Report 0024-1, Timothy J. 
Gates and H. Gene Hawkins, 2002. This report is available at the 
following URL: http://ted.tamu.edu/Documents/02-0024-1.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To respond to a suggestion from a traffic engineering consultant, 
the FHWA changes the STANDARD statement to include major driveways in 
the locations where edge line markings shall not be continued and to 
include major driveways as locations where dotted edge lines extensions 
may be used. The addition of ``major driveways'' will clarify the 
intent of this section.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION statement, which states that wide 
solid edge line markings may be used for greater emphasis. Wide edge 
lines can sometimes be useful in reducing run-off-the-road crashes at 
curves and this option will provide additional flexibility for 
jurisdictions to use these markings where needed.
    Additionally, in the GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA clarifies that 
edge line markings should not be broken for minor driveways, to be 
consistent with other areas of the MUTCD.
    The FHWA received a comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
supporting the changes to this section.
    150. In Section 3B.08 Extensions Through Intersections or 
Interchanges, the FHWA received two comments from the Wisconsin DOT and 
a traffic engineering consultant regarding the proposed addition to the 
GUIDANCE statement on the placement and dimensions of pavement markings 
that are continued through intersections and interchanges. The traffic 
engineering consultant opposed the proposal that edge lines not be 
extended into or continued through intersections or

[[Page 65532]]

interchanges. Accordingly, the FHWA adds an OPTION statement after the 
STANDARD statement to indicate that a normal line may be used to extend 
a wide line through an intersection. In addition, the FHWA adds an 
OPTION statement after the first GUIDANCE to clarify that dotted 
extensions of edge lines may be used as line extensions. The FHWA 
received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
supporting these changes.
    The FHWA clarifies the first paragraph of the second GUIDANCE 
statement by including ``major driveways'' to be consistent with other 
changes made in this chapter.
    151. In Figure 3B-11, Examples of Extensions through Intersections 
or Interchanges, the FHWA deletes ``Interchanges'' from the title, 
because this figure does not include interchanges, and makes other 
modifications to the graphic and legend for clarity.
    152. In Figure 3B-12, Examples of Lane Reduction Markings, the FHWA 
adds a graphic ``c'', which was contained in the 2000 MUTCD and 
incorporates modifications in the graphic to be consistent with changes 
in the MUTCD in order to address two comments; one from the NCUTCD and 
the other from the Wisconsin DOT suggesting that graphic ``c'' be 
added.
    153. In Section 3B.10 Approach Markings for Obstructions, the FHWA 
revises the first STANDARD and GUIDANCE statements to change 
``diagonal'' to ``tapered'' where it refers to the line type. This 
change is as a result of the decision made by the FHWA in Official 
Interpretation 3-156 \28\ to correct an error in word usage 
and clarify the text. The FHWA received no comments regarding this 
change.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \28\ A copy of the FHWA's Official interpretation 3-156 
is available for downloading from the American Traffic Safety 
Services Association the following URL: http://www.atssa.com/pubinfo/downloads/10-16-02a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    154. In Section 3B.11 Raised Pavement Markers, the FHWA changes the 
first SUPPORT statement to a STANDARD because this is a definition and 
all definitions are standards. Because there were several comments from 
the NCUTCD, Caltrans, and a traffic control device manufacturer opposed 
to specifying 10 mm (0.4 in) as the height of the retroreflective 
surface, the FHWA withdraws this proposal due to lack of research to 
support a specific height of retroreflective surface and restores the 
language to that used in the 2000 MUTCD, indicating that the height of 
the device is at least 10 mm (0.4 in).
    The FHWA adds an OPTION statement after the STANDARD statement, 
which states that blue raised pavement markers may be used to mark the 
positions of fire hydrants. This is common practice in many 
jurisdictions.
    The FHWA adds a second STANDARD statement describing the spacing 
for raised pavement markers. This statement is moved from Section 3A.05 
Widths and Patterns of Longitudinal Pavement Markings (Section 3A.06 in 
the NPA).
    The FHWA also adds a SUPPORT statement at the end of this section 
that references the Institute of Transportation Engineers 2001 
``Traffic Control Devices Handbook'' \29\ for more information 
regarding the spacing of raised pavement markings.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \29\ Traffic Control Devices Handbook,'' Institute of 
Transportation Engineers (ITE), 2001 is available for purchase from 
the ITE Bookstore at the following URL: http://www.ite.org/bookstore/index.asp
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    155. In Section 3B.12 Raised Pavement Markers as Vehicle 
Positioning Guides with Other Longitudinal Markings, the FHWA received 
one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting the changes 
and comments from the NCUTCD and the Ohio DOT suggesting clarifications 
and reversion back to some of the 2000 MUTCD text. Accordingly, the 
FHWA withdraws this proposal to indicate that raised pavement markers 
as positioning guides should be spaced ``no greater than 3N'' and 
retains the 2000 MUTCD language of the SUPPORT, indicating that typical 
spacing for raised pavement markers as positioning guides is ``2N''. 
The FHWA also revises the second OPTION statement to the language of 
the 2000 MUTCD for consistency.
    To address the Ohio DOT comment and provide agencies with 
flexibility in raised pavement marker spacing, the FHWA adds an OPTION 
statement to indicate that a spacing of 3N may be used for some 
applications on freeways and expressways. A 1997 study by the Ohio 
Department of Transportation \30\ found that 120 foot spacing (3N) 
spacing is adequate in providing guidance to the wet-night driver on 
freeways in some, but not all, circumstances.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \30\ ``A Field Demonstration and Accident Study of 120-Foot 
Spacing of Raised Pavement Markers on Ohio Freeways,'' January 2, 
1997, by Whit W. Wardell and Mohammad M. Khan, is available from the 
Ohio DOT Office of Traffic Engineering, 1980 West Broad Street, 
Columbus, Ohio 43223, telephone number (614) 466-3601.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    156. In Section 3B.13 Raised Pavement Markers Supplementing Other 
Markings, the FHWA's proposal to revise item B1 of the GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that raised pavement markers should not 
supplement right edge line markings unless they are spaced closely 
enough (no greater than 3 m (10 ft) apart) to approximate the 
appearance of a solid line received several opposing comments from the 
Metropolitan Planning Organization of Cincinnati, Ohio, the City of 
Phoenix, Arizona, traffic engineering consultants, and private 
citizens. In particular opposition, the bicycle community stated that 
raised pavement markers cause steering difficulties for bicyclists. The 
NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported the proposed changes, 
however these commenters expressed that more information was needed on 
the proper spacing of raised pavement markers. Accordingly, the FHWA 
does not adopt the proposed revision to Item B1 of the GUIDANCE 
statement. In the future, the FHWA may engage in rulemaking to address 
the use of raised pavement markers on edge lines in locations where 
bicycles are not permitted.
    In item B.2 of the GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA revises the 
recommended spacing to be used between raised pavement markers 
supplementing broken line markings from 2N to ``no greater than 3N'' 
because this is an acceptable spacing for most applications. There were 
no comments regarding this change. (See also the discussion in Section 
3B.12 Raised Pavement Markers as Vehicle Positioning Guides with Other 
Longitudinal Markings regarding Ohio's testing of raised pavement 
marker spacing.)
    Additionally, in item B.5 of the GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA 
revises the recommended spacing to be used between raised pavement 
markers that supplement edge line extensions through freeway 
interchanges from N/2 to ``no greater than N'' because this is an 
acceptable spacing for most applications. There were no comments 
regarding this change.
    157. In Section 3B.14 Raised Pavement Markers Substituting for 
Pavement Markings, there were several comments from the Washington and 
Ohio DOTs and the City of Plano, Texas, opposing the FHWA's proposal to 
revise the required spacing between raised pavement markers, while the 
NCUTCD supported the proposed change. The FHWA modifies the first 
paragraph of the STANDARD statement to clarify raised pavement marker 
spacing when used to substitute for broken line markings. The FHWA adds 
language to clarify spacing for 4 and 5 marker installations, as well 
as to clarify placement of retroreflective or internally illuminated 
markers. The FHWA

[[Page 65533]]

eliminates the proposed 10-year phase-in target compliance date, 
because no new requirements are being imposed.
    The FHWA proposed to revise the second STANDARD statement to change 
the spacing of raised pavement markers substituting for dotted lines to 
N/4, rather than N/8. The NCUTCD agreed, but the City of Plano, Texas, 
opposed it, suggesting that the spacing be ``no greater than N/4.'' The 
FHWA agrees with the City of Plano, because it would be consistent with 
the first STANDARD statement, and makes this change in this final rule.
    158. In Section 3B.15 Transverse Markings, in the first STANDARD 
statement the FHWA adds ``yield lines'' and ``speed hump'' markings to 
the list of transverse markings required to be white markings.
    The FHWA changes the second paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement to 
a STANDARD statement, which requires that pavement marking letters, 
numerals, and symbols be installed in accordance with the Pavement 
Markings chapter of ``Standard Highway Signs book'' \31\ to be 
consistent with requirements elsewhere in the MUTCD and to correct an 
oversight in the 2000 MUTCD.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ ``Standard Highway Signs,'' FHWA, 2002 Edition is available 
for purchase from the U.S. Government Printing Office Bookstore, 
Superintendent of Documenets, Room 118, Federal Building, 1000 
Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Internet Web site at http://bookstore.gpo.gov.
 It is also available on the FHWA's Web site at 
http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov/ ser-shs--millennium.htm is available for 
inspection and copying at the FHWA Washington Headquarters and all 
FHWA Division Offices as prescribed at 49 CFR part 7.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    There were two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of the changes to Section 3B.15.
    159. In Section 3B.16 Stop and Yield Lines, in the second paragraph 
of the first GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA clarifies that YIELD signs 
are an exception to the recommendations on the use of stop lines to be 
consistent with the intended use of yield lines. One traffic 
engineering consultant suggested that Stop lines should be an OPTION, 
because wide crosswalk lines work well. This goes beyond the scope of 
this rulemaking and would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking. 
The NCUTCD, City of Tucson, Arizona, and The Association of Pedestrian 
and Bicycle Professionals agreed with changes to this section. The FHWA 
adopts the text as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA modifies the OPTION statement to clarify that yield lines 
may also be placed at locations where vehicles are to yield to 
pedestrians in compliance with a YIELD HERE TO PEDESTRIANS (R1-5 or R1-
5a) sign to correspond with the addition of this new sign to Chapter 2B 
Regulatory Signs. There were no comments on this change.
    The FHWA revises and adds to the second GUIDANCE statement to 
enhance pedestrian safety by indicating the recommended placement of 
yield lines at unsignalized midblock crosswalks. One private citizen 
suggested that yield lines extend across both directions of travel, 
from sidewalk to sidewalk, on both sides of the crosswalk so that all 
motorists are aware of the pedestrian crossing. The FHWA disagrees with 
this comment because drivers are not approaching the crosswalk from the 
left side of the centerline, therefore it would not be appropriate to 
place a yield line all the way across the roadway on both sides of the 
crosswalk.
    The FHWA also adds a new paragraph to the second GUIDANCE statement 
regarding placement of yield lines at midblock crosswalks. The Florida 
DOT suggested that ``Yield to Pedestrians (R1-5 or R1-5a)'' signs be 
used in the vicinity of transit stops. The FHWA disagrees with this 
comment because local agencies will likely take the location of transit 
stops into consideration when determining where midblock crosswalks 
will be installed.
    The Oregon DOT requested that an OPTION be added to allow the use 
of a stop line with ``Stop Here for Pedestrians'' signs at crosswalks 
not controlled by a signal, stop sign, or yield sign. The FHWA 
disagrees with this comment, because research has not been conducted to 
determine if driver response and obedience to these signs would be 
adequate. Research that led to the proposal to add the ``Yield Here to 
Pedestrians'' sign and the yield line markings for midblock 
uncontrolled pedestrian crossings only evaluated driver response to the 
``Yield Here * * *'' sign, and did not evaluate a ``Stop Here * * *'' 
sign.\32\ The FHWA adopts the text as proposed in the NPA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \32\ ``Advance Yield Markings Reduce Motor Vehicle/Pedestrian 
Confllicts at Multilane Crosswalks with an Uncontrolled Approach,'' 
by Van Houten, Malenfant, and Malenfant, and McCusker, 2001. It is 
available from the Center for Education and Research in Safety, at 
the following URL: ``http://www.cers-safety.com/ 
advanceyieldmarkings.pdf.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA also adds a new figure numbered and titled ``Figure 3B-15 
Examples of Yield Lines at Unsignalized Midblock Crosswalks'' relating 

to the new text, and renumbers all of the following figures in the 
chapter accordingly.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement at the end of 
the section to emphasize that drivers who yield too close to crosswalks 
on multi-lane approaches place pedestrians at risk by blocking other 
drivers' view of pedestrians. There were no comments regarding this 
change.
    160. In Section 3B.17 Crosswalk Markings, the FHWA received several 
comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, the City of Plano, Texas, and 
traffic engineering consultants regarding proposed changes in the 
second GUIDANCE statement increasing the upper limit of the range for 
spacing diagonal or longitudinal crosswalk marking lines from 300 to 
600 mm (12 to 24 in) to 300 to 1500 mm (12 to 60 in) and specifying the 
relationship between marking spacing and line width. The NCUTCD 
supported the proposed change, and the other comments suggested 
additional clarification. In response to these comments, the FHWA 
revises the first GUIDANCE statement to clarify the width of crosswalks 
(with transverse lines or with diagonal or longitudinal lines) and to 
indicate that the width is measured as the gap between the inside of 
the lines. The City of Plano, Texas, requested that options for 
different crosswalk patterns be included in the MUTCD. This goes beyond 
the scope of this rulemaking and will have to be addressed in a future 
rulemaking.
    161. In Section 3B.19 Pavement Word and Symbol Markings, the FHWA 
changes the fourth paragraph of the first GUIDANCE statement to clarify 
that the longitudinal space between word or symbol message markings 
does not apply to the two opposing arrows of a two-way left-turn lane 
marking. This change is in response to a comment from Caltrans 
requesting clarification.
    In addition, the FHWA modifies the third STANDARD statement to 
allow the use of STOP markings at the ends of aisles in parking lots 
even though there is no STOP sign. The NCUTCD opposed this additional 
language, and requested that the language from the 2000 MUTCD be 
retained until the broader issue of the MUTCD and private property is 
addressed. The FHWA adopts the changes, as proposed in the NPA, because 
the MUTCD is applicable to public and private parking lots in a growing 
number of States, and the change is very important for parking lot 
safety.
    162. In Section 3B.21 Curb Markings, in the first paragraph of the 
STANDARD statement, the FHWA clarifies that the requirement for signs 
to be used with curb markings does not apply if the no parking zone is 
controlled by statute or

[[Page 65534]]

local ordinance, to minimize unnecessary sign clutter. The NCUTCD and 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this change. In response to a 
comment from a private citizen, the FHWA adds additional clarity by 
inserting an OPTION statement indicating that curb markings without 
signs or word markings may be used to convey a general prohibition of 
parking within a specified distance of a stop sign, driveway, fire 
hydrant, or crosswalk.
    163. In Section 3B.22 Preferential Lane Word and Symbol Markings, 
the FHWA adds to the second STANDARD statement that more than one 
symbol or word marking can be used to mark a preferential lane, that 
the word message ``HOV'' is acceptable as a preferential marking 
(relocating this from the OPTION statement), and that the ``T'' marking 
shall be the light rail transit preferential lane symbol. Additionally, 
in the same STANDARD statement, the FHWA requires that symbol or word 
markings for each preferential lane use be installed if two or more 
preferential lane uses are permitted in a single lane. These changes 
provide uniformity for marking of multi-use preferential lanes and 
provide a distinctive symbol for light rail transit. The NCUTCD and the 
Florida DOT supported this change. Caltrans opposed the ``T'' marking, 
stating that the ``T'' marking could be mistaken as the abbreviation 
for other uses (such as taxis, trams, and trains). The FHWA adopts the 
wording as proposed in the NPA. While possible future research may find 
that there is a better marking, there are currently very few 
applications of exclusive light rail transit lanes on street. If a 
better symbol is indicated by research in the future the FHWA will 
address this accordingly in a future rulemaking.
    164. In Section 3B.24 Markings for Roundabout Intersections, the 
FHWA adds a new STANDARD statement, which prohibits marking bicycle 
lanes on roundabout intersections. Many comments, especially from the 
bicycling community, agreed with this statement.
    As a result of a comment from the New York DOT, the FHWA changes 
Item C of the SUPPORT statement to clarify that the flare or widening 
for a roundabout intersection approach should allow for proper 
operation as needed. This is a critical characteristic of a modern 
roundabout intersection. In addition, the FHWA adds a paragraph to the 
last OPTION statement regarding the option of using yield lines in 
roundabout intersections. The FHWA also adds yield lines to the figures 
illustrating roundabout intersection markings to correct an omission 
noted by a traffic engineering consultant, regarding yield lines in 
roundabout intersections. These minor changes to the SUPPORT, OPTION, 
and figures do not impose any new requirements and are considered 
editorial in nature.
    165. In Section 3C.01 Object Marker Design and Placement Height, 
the FHWA adds to the text of the first STANDARD statement the sign 
numbers for Type 1 markers for clarity. The FHWA also adds text to 
reflect the FHWA's Official Interpretation 3-155(I) \33\ to 
clarify the text for Type 2 markers. The FHWA inserts that the minimum 
width of both the yellow and black stripes on a Type 3 striped marker 
shall be 75 mm (3 in), to provide for uniformity of appearance of these 
markers. The FHWA establishes a 10-year phase-in target compliance date 
from the effective date of this final rule for existing markers in good 
condition.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \33\ A copy of the FHWA's Official Interpretation number 3-
155(I) is available from the American Traffic Safety Services 
Association's web site at the following URL: http://www.atssa.com/pubinfo/downloads/5-31-02b.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    One commenter suggested that there be a maximum width specified for 
the stripes. The FHWA has no information regarding a reasonable maximum 
width and therefore additional research is necessary. This issue may be 
the subject of a future rulemaking.
    166. In Section 3D.01 Delineators, the FHWA changes the STANDARD 
statement indicating that delineators are considered guidance devices 
rather than warning devices to a SUPPORT statement to be consistent 
with other parts of the MUTCD. Two commenters from the NCUTCD and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this change.
    167. In Section 3D.04 Delineator Placement and Spacing, in response 
to a comment from a traffic engineering consultant, the FHWA adds to 
the first GUIDANCE statement a description of the three ways that 
delineators can be mounted with guardrail. This text is needed for 
consistency with the notes in Figure 3D-1 and to reflect common 
practices.
    168. In Section 3E.01 Colored Pavements, the FHWA makes several 
changes to reflect that red colored pavement is no longer being 
considered a traffic control device. The FHWA adds to the SUPPORT 
statement that colored pavement located between the crosswalk lines is 
not considered to be a traffic control device. The FHWA removes item A 
of the STANDARD statement concerning when the color red is used, and 
removes the second GUIDANCE statement concerning how the color red is 
used. The FHWA received several comments regarding this change from the 
NCUTCD, traffic control device manufacturers, and State DOTs, many in 
favor and requesting that colored pavement for bicycle lanes also be 
included. One commenter from the Arizona DOT expressed concern that the 
use of colored pavement may be expanded and used inappropriately, in 
the absence of further direction. The FHWA adopts the language as 
proposed in the NPA. The use of colored pavement in bicycle lanes is 
currently under experimentation and may be appropriate for discussion 
in a future rulemaking.
    Additionally, in the first GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA adopts text 
that recommends that colors that degrade the contrast of white 
crosswalk lines, or that might be mistaken by road users as a traffic 
control application, not be used for colored pavement located between 
crosswalk lines. Four commenters, representing associations for the 
blind, agreed with this statement.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 4--Highway Traffic Signals

    169. In Section 4A.02 Definitions Relating to Highway Traffic 
Signals, the FHWA removes the definition of ``Emergency Beacons'', to 
correspond with FHWA's decision to remove the proposed section numbered 
and titled in the NPA ``Section 4F.04 Emergency Beacon'' from this 
final rule (see discussion of Section 4F.03 Operation of Emergency-
Vehicle Traffic Control Signals).
    The FHWA received three comments from the Missouri DOT and the 
cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Plano, Texas, opposed to the proposal to 
revise the definition of ``Pedestrian Clearance Time'' to correspond to 
proposed changes in the standards contained in Section 4E.10 Pedestrian 
Intervals and Signal Phases. The commenters stated that defining 
pedestrian clearance time as a standard eliminates the flexibility in 
calculating clearance time. The FHWA disagrees with the commenters 
because this definition must correspond to the text of Section 4E.10, 
and in that section, the FHWA adopts the provision to calculate 
pedestrian clearance time from curb to curb and not to allow clearance 
time to be calculated to the middle of the farthest lane. (See 
discussion of Section 4E.10.) The FHWA adopts the language as proposed 
in the NPA.
    The FHWA also received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Plano, Texas, requesting that the new definitions for ``Separate Left 
Turn Signal Face,'' and ``Shared Left Turn Signal Face'' be deleted, 
because these phrases are described in Section 4D.06

[[Page 65535]]

Application of Steady Signal Indications for Left Turns, and the 
definitions are not completely consistent with practice in some areas 
of the country. The FHWA disagrees with these comments and adopts the 
language because different jurisdictions do have their own accepted 
definitions for these terms that are not necessarily consistent with 
the MUTCD, thus it is important to have the MUTCD definitions for these 
terms stated at the beginning of this part to avoid misunderstanding.
    170. In Section 4B.02 Basis of Installation or Removal of Traffic 
Control Signals, the FHWA received one comment from Caltrans regarding 
the proposal to remove the maximum time limit of one year for signal 
poles and cables to remain in place after removal of the signal heads 
from item E of the OPTION statement. The commenter requested deleting 
this OPTION and not allowing poles to remain in place after removal of 
a signal, because the commenter believes that this practice could 
result in a potential safety hazard and maintenance responsibilities. 
The FHWA adopts the wording proposed in the NPA, because leaving the 
poles in place is only an option, and agencies can remove poles if they 
believe them to constitute a significant safety problem and/or if they 
are reasonably certain that the signal would never be placed back into 
service.
    171. In Section 4B.03 Advantages and Disadvantages of Traffic 
Control Signals, the FHWA received four comments from the NCUTCD, local 
DOTs, and a private citizen regarding the proposal to revise item B of 
the second paragraph of the SUPPORT statement to suggest that signal 
timing review and updating be conducted if needed and that every two 
years is just one of several possible frequencies of review. The 
private citizen suggested that the timeframe reference be lengthened to 
``at least every five years'' and strengthened to a STANDARD in order 
to encourage jurisdictions to maintain traffic signal timings. The 
NCUTCD and the cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Plano, Texas, opposed a 
reference to any specific time frame, and suggested that the timeframe 
be determined by engineering judgment. The FHWA agrees with the concept 
of these comments and revises the sentence to delete the timeframe 
reference and to include engineering judgment and significant traffic 
flow and/or land use changes in determining the frequency of the review 
of signal timing.
    172. In Chapter 4C Traffic Control Signal Needs and Studies, the 
FHWA received one general comment from a traffic engineering consultant 
that public transit interests be incorporated when determining the need 
for installing a traffic control signal. The commenter suggested that 
either a ninth warrant be added to recognize the special needs 
associated with bus operations, or one of the current eight warrants be 
modified to recognize public transit needs. This goes beyond the scope 
of this rulemaking. Research has just started regarding this issue,\34\ 
and this topic may be suitable for a future rulemaking action.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \34\ ``Improving Pedestrian Safety at Unsignalized Roadway 
Crossings'' is a research study that is currently in progress. This 
is a joint effort between the National Cooperative Highway Research 
Program (NCHRP) and the Transportation Cooperative Research Program 
(TCRP). The study is numbered NCHRP Project 3-71 and TCRF D-08. 
Information is available at the following URL: http://rip.trb.org.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    173. In Section 4C.01 Studies and Factors for Justifying Traffic 
Control Signals, the FHWA received two comments from Caltrans and the 
Minnesota DOT opposed to the recommendation in the GUIDANCE statement, 
which states that a traffic control signal installed under projected 
conditions should be studied again within one year after placing it in 
stop-and-go operation to determine if it is still justified and, if it 
is not justified, it should be taken out of stop-and-go operation or 
removed. Both commenters stated that conducting these follow-up studies 
would take additional manpower and could be politically sensitive. 
Additionally, the Minnesota DOT suggested that Section 4B.02 Basis of 
Installation or Removal of Traffic Control Signals already contains 
information related to removing traffic control signals. The Minnesota 
DOT also noted that the one-year requirement would conflict with 
Warrant 8, which states that one can use projected volumes five years 
out. The FHWA revises the language to add, ``Except for locations where 
the engineering study uses the satisfaction of Warrant 8 to justify a 
signal'' at the beginning of the second sentence, in order to correct 
the stated conflict of the proposed language with Warrant 8. In terms 
of the additional manpower that could potentially be required to 
conduct studies, the FHWA believes that the number of follow-up studies 
that would need to be conducted would be few and that, in many cases, 
the jurisdiction could require the studies to be completed by the 
developer's traffic engineer. The FHWA adopts the language as proposed 
in the NPA with the above-mentioned modification to avoid conflict with 
Warrant 8.
    The FHWA received one comment from Caltrans opposed to the proposal 
to allow the OPTION of using the left-turn volume on the major-street 
as the minor-street volume and the corresponding single direction of 
opposing traffic as the major street volume. The commenter felt that 
this would allow signals to be installed at non-intersection locations. 
The FHWA disagrees with the commenter because this is an OPTION 
statement and need not be applied. There are many locations, such as 
left turns onto freeway ramps, where the left turn versus opposing 
through movement conflict creates the need for a signal. The FHWA 
adopts the language as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA received four comments from Caltrans, the Kansas DOT, the 
Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals, and a traffic 
engineering consultant in general agreement with adding item H to the 
OPTION statement, which indicates that bicyclists may be counted as 
either vehicles or pedestrians when studying the need for a traffic 
control signal. To add clarity and consistency for how this is applied, 
as suggested by the Kansas DOT, the FHWA revises this section and 
includes this information as a new paragraph within the OPTION and adds 
a new SUPPORT statement indicating that bicyclists are usually 
considered as vehicles when they are riding in the street, and as 
pedestrians when they are clearly using pedestrian facilities.
    174. In Section 4C.02 Warrant 1, Eight-Hour Vehicular Volume, the 
FHWA received several comments regarding the proposal to add a new 
OPTION statement to explain the use of 56 percent traffic volumes under 
certain conditions and modify Table 4C-1 to include additional criteria 
for a combination of Conditions A and B as reflected in the text. Three 
commenters, including the NCUTCD, the Ohio DOT, and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, agreed with the use of the 56 percent traffic volumes. 
However, six commenters, including Caltrans, the Kansas and North 
Carolina DOTs, the City of Kennewick, Washington, and a private 
citizen, were opposed to the use of the 56 percent volumes, stating 
that the reduced volume allows signals to be installed at locations 
with low volumes. The FHWA believes that the use of the 56 percent 
volumes has been successfully applied in the past by many jurisdictions 
and should be allowed. Because it is an OPTION, jurisdictions have the 
ability to decide whether or not this option will be used. The FHWA 
adopts the 56 percent column in the table as proposed.

[[Page 65536]]

    175. In Section 4C.05 Warrant 4, Pedestrian Volume, based on a 
comment from the NCUTCD, the FHWA removes the second sentence under 
item A of the GUIDANCE statement. The NCUTCD suggested that it is not 
necessary to describe the type of actuated operation that should be 
used at a traffic control signal, if this warrant is met. The FHWA 
agrees that the sentence is unnecessary and duplicative of the first 
sentence and makes this minor editorial change to remove this sentence 
in this final rule.
    176. In Section 4C.06 Warrant 5, School Crossing, based on a 
comment from the NCUTCD similar to its comment on Section 4C.05 
suggesting that it is not necessary to describe the type of actuated 
operation that should be used at a traffic control signal, if this 
warrant is met, the FHWA removes the second sentence under item A of 
the GUIDANCE statement.
    177. In Section 4C.08 Warrant 7, Crash Experience, the FHWA 
received several comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, the City of 
Kennewick, Washington, and a private citizen regarding the proposed 
OPTION explaining the use of 56 percent traffic volumes. The comments 
were similar to those received regarding similar proposed wording in 
Section 4C.02 Warrant 1, Eight-Hour Vehicular Volume. The FHWA adopts 
the 56 percent column in the table as discussed in Section 4C.02.
    178. In Section 4D.01 General, the FHWA removes from the STANDARD 
statement the requirement that a traffic control signal be operated in 
either a steady (stop-and-go) mode or a flashing mode at all times. 
That former requirement was in conflict with other STANDARD statements 
in Chapter 4E that require flashing indications (flashing UPRAISED HAND 
pedestrian signal indications) to be displayed during an otherwise 
steady mode of traffic control signal operation. This change allows 
practitioners the flexibility to use flashing indications along with 
steady indications where appropriate in a signal sequence to improve 
the efficiency or safety of the intersection. The FHWA received 
comments from the NCUTCD and the U.S. Access Board supporting the 
removal of this requirement, and the FHWA adopts it.
    The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the Wisconsin 
DOT opposed to the removal of ``within or'' from item B of the STANDARD 
statement describing exceptions to locations where STOP signs shall not 
be placed in conjunction with any traffic control signal operation. The 
FHWA agrees with the commenters who suggested that these words need to 
be retained to cover situations where minor driveways or extremely low-
volume roadways intersect within the controlled area. The FHWA 
withdraws this proposal and retains the existing language in the 2000 
MUTCD.
    The FHWA adds a STANDARD statement prior to the GUIDANCE 
reiterating text that also appears in Chapter 4C Traffic Control Signal 
Needs Studies, that restricts signalization of midblock crosswalks if 
they are located within 90 m (300 ft) from the nearest traffic control 
signal, unless the proposed traffic control signal will not restrict 
the progressive movement of traffic. The FHWA believes that repeating 
the STANDARD found elsewhere in Part 4 will improve the chances of 
readers properly applying this restriction. The FHWA adds this 
statement based on a comment received from the NCUTCD recommending this 
change.
    The FHWA also received three comments regarding the GUIDANCE 
statement that the location of signalized midblock crosswalks should be 
at least 30 m (100 ft) away from adjacent stop or yield controlled 
driveways or streets. The NCUTCD suggested revised wording to clarify 
that midblock crosswalks should not be signalized if they are located 
within 30 m (100 ft) from adjacent stop or yield controlled driveways 
or streets. The FHWA agrees with this recommendation and adopts this in 
this final rule. One commenter from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
suggested that there are some situations where a signalized midblock 
crossing would be less than 30 m (100 ft), and therefore the wording 
should be changed to allow flexibility. The FHWA disagrees with the 
commenter because the suggested wording will diminish the text to the 
point where it is meaningless. Because this is a GUIDANCE, conditions 
where there is a good engineering reason to deviate would still be able 
to be accommodated without violating the MUTCD. A traffic engineering 
consultant questioned the five-year phase-in target compliance date, 
stating that it would be a burden for jurisdictions to address existing 
locations where signalized midblock crosswalks did not meet the new 
criteria within a five-year timeframe. Accordingly, the FHWA changes 
the phase-in target compliance date from five years to 10 years from 
the effective date of this final rule.
    However, the FHWA clarifies that the December 31, 1996, compliance 
date established in Official Ruling IV-8 (Sg-44) \35\ issued in 1987 is 
not affected by this ``new'' 10-year phase-in target compliance date. 
The 1987 ruling was that all ``half-signals'' (signalized pedestrian 
crossings where only the major street and the pedestrian crosswalk are 
provided with signal indications, and the minor street is stop-sign 
controlled) located ``at'' intersections had to be either relocated to 
a midblock location or modified to include signalization of the minor 
street approaches by December 31, 1996. That date still applies to such 
non-conforming signals that were in place as of the 1987 ruling. (Some 
of the ``half-signals'' still have not been relocated or modified.) The 
new 10-year date is intended to apply only to ``half-signals'' 
installed after 1987 that may not be immediately at the intersection 
but are within 100 feet of a side street or driveway controlled by stop 
or yield signs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------


    \35\ Official Ruling IV-8 (Sg.-44) is described on page OR-IV-4 
of the 1988 edition of the MUTCD. This ruling was published in a 
final rule in 1987 in the Federal Register at 52 FR 7126.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    179. In Section 4D.03 Provisions for Pedestrians, the FHWA received 
one comment from a traffic engineering consultant suggesting that 
consideration of accessible pedestrian signals be an OPTION, rather 
than GUIDANCE. The FHWA strongly disagrees because this GUIDANCE merely 
recommends accessible pedestrian signals ``where appropriate'' and 
refers to Sections 4E.06 Accessible Pedestrian Signals and 4E.09 
Accessible Pedestrian Signal Detectors. In those sections, there is 
guidance on what conditions should prompt a study and what factors 
should be considered, but the decision to use the device is optional. 
The FHWA strongly supports provisions in the MUTCD that provide 
accommodations for all pedestrians and road users. In addition, the 
FHWA feels that by including this as a GUIDANCE, it will encourage more 
traffic engineers to consider issues involving pedestrians with 
disabilities. The FHWA adopts the changes to this section as proposed 
in the NPA.
    180. In Section 4D.04 Meaning of Vehicular Signal Indications, the 
FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, State DOTs, and a 
private citizen regarding the proposal to remove the phrase ``unless 
otherwise determined by law'' from the beginning of the STANDARD 
statement. While the NCUTCD and a private citizen were in favor of the 
change, the Ohio, North Carolina, Florida, and Oregon DOTs were opposed 
to it. Those opposed were concerned that the removal of the

[[Page 65537]]

phrase would cause legal issues within their respective States. The 
FHWA adopts the changes as specified in the NPA, because the intent of 
this change is to enhance traffic safety by encouraging national 
uniformity between States in the meaning of traffic signal indications.
    The FHWA received several comments from Caltrans, the Minnesota 
DOT, the U.S. Access Board and the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals regarding the addition to item A.3 that the 
pedestrian does not automatically have the right of way when starting 
to cross at the time that a green signal is first shown. The commenters 
generally opposed this addition, thinking that it was actually in 
conflict with State laws that require vehicles to yield to pedestrians. 
Some slower drivers who enter the intersection during the last moments 
of the yellow change interval or red clearance interval may not clear 
the intersection before the start of the next movement's green 
interval. Pedestrians should have a legal requirement to let this 
traffic exit the intersection before stepping into the path of an 
oncoming vehicle. The FHWA adopts the text as proposed in the NPA, 
which corresponds to recent changes in the Uniform Vehicle Code.\36\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \36\ The ``Uniform Vehicle Code and Model Traffic Ordinance,'' 
2000 edition, is published by the National Committee on Uniform 
Traffic Laws and Ordinances (NCUTLO), 107 S. West Street, 
110, Alexandria, Virginia 22314. It is available for 
inspection at the FHWA Office of Transportation Operations, 400 7th 
Street, SW., Room 3408, Washington, DC 20590, as prescribed at 49 
CFR part 7. Purchase information is available on the Web site for 
NCUTLO at http://www.ncutlo.org.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA received one comment from the North Carolina DOT opposing 
the addition to item C.2 that a turn on a RED ARROW signal indication 
after stopping is allowed only when a sign is in place permitting the 
turn on red arrow (to conform to the Uniform Vehicle Code) and the 
corresponding removal of the existing OPTION statement at the end of 
the section dealing with right-turn on a red arrow. The commenter felt 
that the meaning and application of red signal indications should be 
the same for red balls and arrows. FHWA disagrees because it believes 
that national uniformity and traffic safety will be best served by the 
text as proposed in the NPA. The FHWA adopts the proposed text.
    181. In Section 4D.05 Application of Steady Signal Indications, the 
FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, State and local DOTs, 
regarding additions and revisions to item B.4 of the STANDARD 
statement. This item lists conditions under which a steady circular 
yellow signal indication may be displayed to an approach from which 
drivers are turning left. The commenters were particularly concerned 
with signal displays that result in what is referred to as the ``yellow 
trap.'' A ``yellow trap'' occurs when drivers in the opposing direction 
are not simultaneously being shown a circular yellow indication. This 
can lead to drivers who are attempting to make a permissive left turn 
falsely thinking that the opposing traffic is coming to a stop. The 
Minnesota and Oregon DOTs are opposed to allowing any situations in 
which the ``yellow trap'' can occur. The FHWA recognizes that there are 
some locations where no other signal sequence other than one that 
includes a yellow trap is reasonably feasible due to unique 
combinations of intersection geometrics and traffic volumes. 
Accordingly, the FHWA revises item B.4(c) to account for such 
conditions. Additionally, based on changes in Section 2C.39 Traffic 
Signal Signs, the FHWA revises the legend of the W25-1 and W25-2 signs 
item B.4(c) and (d) to clarify their message, and to be consistent with 
Section 2C.39.
    The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, Caltrans, the North 
Carolina DOT, and the City of Kennewick, Washington, opposed to adding 
to item F.2 of the STANDARD statement that would require the use of a 
``U Turn Yield to Right Turn'' sign when U-turns on a green arrow 
signal conflict with right turns on a green arrow signal. While the 
North Carolina DOT agreed with the proposed change to advise U-turn 
motorists to yield, the remaining commenters felt that drivers would 
not understand the proposed wording on the sign and that additional 
research is necessary. The FHWA concurs and, because there is no data 
to support or refute those concerns, the FHWA changes this to an OPTION 
statement, allowing the use of the sign but not requiring it. This 
OPTION statement is located at the end of the section. The FHWA also 
modifies Section 2B.45 Traffic Signal Signs accordingly.
    182. In Section 4D.06 Application of Steady Signal Indications for 
Left Turns, the FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, 
Caltrans, and the Oregon and Minnesota DOTs suggesting clarifying 
language to item A in the STANDARD statement that provides for the use 
of separate or shared left turn signal faces and separate signal face 
sequences for ``permissive only'' mode of operation. The FHWA agrees 
and includes additional clarifying language in this final rule.
    183. In Section 4D.09 Unexpected Conflicts During Green or Yellow 
Intervals, the FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, regarding the revision to item A of the STANDARD 
statement. These commenters were concerned about the proposal to add an 
exception for the situation regarding U-turns as described in item F.2 
of Section 4D.05 Application of Steady Signal Indications to the 
prohibition of displaying a steady GREEN ARROW or YELLOW ARROW signal 
indication to vehicular movements that conflict with other vehicles 
moving on a green or yellow signal indication. (See the discussion 
regarding Section 4D.05) Accordingly, the FHWA revises item A to be 
consistent with the changes in Section 4D.05 that change the text to an 
OPTION.
    184. In Section 4D.10 Yellow Change and Red Clearance Intervals, 
the FHWA received several comments from Caltrans, AAA, and a private 
citizen proposing changes to how the yellow change interval and the red 
clearance interval are calculated. These comments go beyond the scope 
of this rulemaking, and would need to be addressed in a future 
rulemaking.
    185. In Section 4D.12 Flashing Operation of Traffic Control 
Signals, the FHWA received two comments from the cities of Tucson, 
Arizona, and Kennewick, Washington, in agreement and two comments from 
Caltrans and the Wisconsin DOT opposed to revising the GUIDANCE 
statement to eliminate the word ``maximum'' in describing the duration 
of six seconds for a steady red clearance interval in the change from 
red-red flashing mode to steady (stop and go) mode. Caltrans felt that 
the time duration should not be fixed at a specific number of seconds 
because of difficulties in timing the interval exactly. The FHWA 
disagrees with the opposing comments because less than six seconds is 
not enough time to recognize that the signal has stopped flashing, and 
more than six seconds is too long, creating unnecessary congestion at 
the intersection. Also, modern traffic signal control equipment 
provides accurate digital timing of an interval such as this. The FHWA 
adopts the language as proposed in the NPA.
    186. In Section 4D.15 Size, Number, and Location of Signal Faces by 
Approach, the FHWA received two comments from AAA and Caltrans 
suggesting stronger language to require the use of 300 mm (12 inch) 
signal heads, rather than 200 mm (8 inch) signal heads in order to 
improve visibility and safety. Because there were no changes to this 
wording proposed in

[[Page 65538]]

the NPA, such a change is outside the scope of this rulemaking and 
would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA received eleven comments from the NCUTCD, State and local 
DOTs and a private citizen regarding the proposal to increase the 
maximum allowable distance for 300 mm (12 inch) far side signal heads 
(without a supplemental near-side signal head) from the stop line to 55 
m (180 ft) based on local engineering judgment. Eight commenters, 
representing the North Carolina DOT, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Miami-Dade, 
Sarasota, and Broward counties in Florida, the City of Boca Raton, 
Florida, and a private citizen strongly supported the change. Three 
commenters from the NCUTCD, the Minnesota DOT, and the City of Plano, 
Texas, were opposed to it, stating concerns about older drivers, poor 
weather conditions, and need for additional research data. The FHWA 
disagrees with those opposed because experience has shown that 12 inch 
signals are adequately visible from 180 feet away in most 
circumstances, and this change will provide considerable cost savings 
for State and local agencies. If an agency does not want to place 
signal heads more than the previous 150-foot distance, they are not 
required to do so. The FHWA adopts the language as proposed in the NPA.
    187. In Section 4D.18 Design, Illumination, and Color of Signal 
Sections, the FHWA removes the GUIDANCE statement concerning the color 
of signal housings because there is no consensus that yellow signal 
housings are universally best in all of the various environments. In 
actual practice, far fewer than 50 percent of the signal heads in the 
United States are highway yellow. California, New York, and many other 
very large jurisdictions require signal heads to be other colors, such 
as green, black, gray, or brown. Some states require the front surfaces 
of the housings to be black while painting the back surfaces of the 
housing yellow. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, supporting the removal of this GUIDANCE. The FHWA adopts the 
removal in the final rule.
    188. In Section 4E.02 Meaning of Pedestrian Signal Head 
Indications, the FHWA received several comments from the U.S. Access 
Board and organizations representing the blind community opposed to the 
revision of item A of the STANDARD statement to indicate that a 
pedestrian does not automatically have the right of way when starting 
to cross when a WALK signal is first shown. These comments were 
identical to those received for Section 4D.04 Meaning of Vehicular 
Signal Indications suggesting that the change was in conflict with 
State laws that require vehicles to yield to pedestrians. Some slower 
drivers who enter the intersection during the last moments of the 
yellow change interval or red clearance interval may not clear the 
intersection before the start of the next movement's green interval. 
Pedestrians should let this traffic exit the intersection before 
stepping into the path of an oncoming vehicle. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the proposed 
change. The FHWA adopts the text as proposed in the NPA, which 
corresponds with recent changes in the Uniform Vehicle Code.
    189. In Section 4E.03 Application of Pedestrian Signal Heads, the 
FHWA received one comment from Caltrans opposing the proposal to delete 
item D of the STANDARD statement. The commenter cited potential safety 
reasons for objecting to the change in this section. The FHWA agrees 
and revises the statement to clarify that that pedestrian signal heads 
are required at locations where engineering judgment determines that 
multiphase signal indications would confuse pedestrians using a 
crosswalk guided only by vehicular signal indications. The language in 
the 2000 MUTCD implied that all multiphase signals needed pedestrian 
signals, even in the absence of any pedestrian activity.
    190. In Section 4E.04 Size, Design, and Illumination of Pedestrian 
Signal Head Indications, the FHWA received several comments from 
NCUTCD, organizations representing the blind community as well as State 
and local DOTs regarding the proposal in the first paragraph of the 
STANDARD statement that symbolized messages for pedestrian signal heads 
are required to be solid and not allowing the use of ``outline style'' 
symbols. Five commenters representing NCUTCD and organizations 
associated with the blind were in favor of the proposed language, while 
four commenters representing the New York DOT, the cities of Kennewick, 
Washington, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Tucson, Arizona, and a private 
citizen opposed the language. Those opposed to the language expressed 
concern that countdown style pedestrian signals would not be permitted, 
because many of those that are currently available commercially are of 
the outline style, and that new light emitting diode (LED) style 
outline symbol pedestrian signal heads that have recently been 
installed in cities such as Salt Lake City, Utah have been favorably 
received. To address these comments, the FHWA revises the language to 
state that all new pedestrian signal head installations shall consist 
of solid symbolized messages and that existing pedestrian signal head 
indications with lettered or outline style symbol messages may be 
retained for the remainder of their useful service life.
    The FHWA received several comments from representatives of the 
blind community requesting the addition of a new statement indicating 
that the intensity of LED pedestrian signal indications should respond 
to ambient light. The concern is that during daytime conditions, 
persons with low vision benefit from pedestrian signal indications 
displayed at their maximum intensity, and at night signals at maximum 
intensity create glare conditions for people with low vision, making it 
difficult for them to see crosswalk lines and other features that aid 
crossing. The addition of a statement regarding ambient light could 
have potentially significant impacts on agencies and thus must be 
addressed in a future rulemaking. This would require inclusion in a 
future NPA for public review and comment. Accordingly, the FHWA 
declines to address this comment at this time.
    The FHWA adds a seventh paragraph to the STANDARD statement to 
specify the flash rate for the flashing upraised hand pedestrian signal 
head indication to be consistent with flash rates specified in other 
sections of Part 4. There were no comments on this change and the FHWA 
adopts this change.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds an OPTION statement and a STANDARD 
statement at the end of the section to allow and describe the use of an 
animated eyes symbol on pedestrian signal heads. Three commenters from 
the Kansas and Minnesota DOTs opposed these additions, stating that the 
animated eyes might be confusing to pedestrians and questioning their 
effectiveness. The FHWA disagrees with the comments because research 
37, 38 has documented benefits to alerting pedestrians to 
look both ways for approaching vehicles. Because use of these symbols 
in an option, jurisdictions can decide not to use this device.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \37\ Use of Animation in LED Pedestrian Signals to Improve 
Pedestrian Safety, Ron VanHouten, et al., ITE Journal, February 
1999. This issue of ITE Journal is available for purchase from the 
Institute of Transportation Engineers at http://www.ite.org and 
click on ``Bookstore''.
    \38\ Use of Animated LED `Eyes' Pedestrian Signals to Improve 
Pedestrian Safety, Florida Department of Transportation, January 
2000. It is available at the following URL: http://www11.myflorida.com/safety/ped_bike/handbooks_and_research/research/led_eyes.pdf
.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 65539]]

    191. In Section 4E.06 Accessible Pedestrian Signals, there were 
several comments from the Minnesota DOT and representatives of the 
blind community regarding the proposed addition to the second paragraph 
of the fourth GUIDANCE statement on how sound pressure levels of the 
accessible walk signal tone should be measured. Based on those 
comments, the FHWA revises the statement to indicate that the sound 
pressure level should conform to the requirements of ISO 1996-1:1982 
and ISO 1996-2:1987,\39\ rather than explicitly stating the method to 
be used when measuring sound pressure levels.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \39\ These standards are available from the International 
Organization for Standardization web site at the following URL: 
http://www.iso.ch/iso/en/CatalogueListPage.CatalogueList.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    192. The FHWA received several comments from NCUTCD, State and 
local DOTs, representatives of the blind community and private citizens 
regarding the proposal to add a new section numbered and titled 
``Section 4E.07 Countdown Pedestrian Signals'' containing OPTION, 
STANDARD, and GUIDANCE statements on the design, use, and operation of 
countdown pedestrian signals. Countdown pedestrian signals have been 
shown by research and experimentation in a variety of cities, such as 
San Jose, California,\40\ to be beneficial to pedestrians by providing 
additional information to help pedestrians judge the time remaining to 
cross the street. Uniformity in the design and operation of countdown 
pedestrian signals is needed to minimize pedestrian confusion. Many 
commenters, including the NCUTCD, the City of Tucson, Arizona, Lake 
County, Illinois, and the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals were in agreement with adding the new section, and the 
NCUTCD had comments and suggestions regarding the specific wording. 
Based on the comments received, the FHWA clarifies the OPTION statement 
to indicate that the countdown display informs pedestrians of the 
number of seconds remaining in the pedestrian change interval (rather 
than the number of seconds remaining to cross the street, as proposed 
in the NPA). Additionally, the FHWA clarifies the second STANDARD 
statement to reflect that after the countdown displays zero, the 
display shall remain dark until the beginning of the next countdown. 
The FHWA also clarifies the third STANDARD statement to indicate that 
countdown displays shall not be used during the walk interval nor 
during the yellow change interval of a concurrent vehicular phase.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \40\ Pedestrian Countdown Signals: An Experimental Evaluation, 
Volume 1, by Jan L. Botha, Aleksaner A. Zabyshy, and Jennifer E. 
Day--San Jose State University, Department of Civil and 
Environmental Engineering, and by Ron L. Northhouse, Jaime O. 
Rodriguez, and Tamara L. Nix--City of San Jose Department of 
Transportation, May, 2002. A copy is available on the docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA clarifies the first GUIDANCE statement to reflect the way 
that the countdown timing is controlled as compared to the timing of 
the flashing DON'T WALK interval. Most countdown devices manufactured 
today contain timers external to the signal controller and they 
``learn'' how long the flashing DON'T WALK is and adjust themselves to 
time out so that the zero will be reached at the end of the flashing 
DON'T WALK. This creates a logistical problem for signalized midblock 
crosswalks or exclusive ``scramble'' pedestrian phases. The countdown 
timer of most existing devices will not be able to make the zero occur 
four seconds prior to the end of flashing DON'T WALK, which is timed by 
the controller. The solution for the midblock pedestrian signal 
situation is to set the flashing DON'T WALK interval to be 4 seconds 
less than the calculated required ``pedestrian crossing time'' and to 
also include a 4 second ``red clearance'' interval for the controller 
phase that times the pedestrian WALK--DON'T WALK. During the red 
clearance interval, a steady DON'T WALK is displayed to the crosswalk 
while vehicular traffic continues to have red signals. The pedestrian 
clearance time is thus the sum of the flashing DON'T WALK time plus the 
4 second red clearance. This method will produce a display for the 
pedestrian that is identical to what he/she would see with a countdown 
at a crosswalk that has concurrent vehicular movements. Accordingly, 
the FHWA clarifies the GUIDANCE statement to read:

    If used with a pedestrian signal head that does not have a 
concurrent vehicular phase, the pedestrian change interval (flashing 
UPRAISED HAND) should be set to be approximately four seconds less 
than the required pedestrian crossing time (see Section 4E.10) and 
an additional clearance interval (during which steady UPRAISED HAND 
is displayed) should be provided prior to the start of the 
conflicting vehicular phase. In this case, the countdown display of 
the number of remaining seconds should be displayed only during the 
display of the flashing UPRAISED HAND, should display zero at the 
time when the flashing UPRAISED HAND changes to steady UPRAISED 
HAND, and be dark during the additional clearance interval prior to 
the conflicting vehicular phase.

    The FHWA adopts this new Section 4E.07 with changes and renumbers 
the remaining sections in Chapter 4E accordingly. To minimize any 
impact on State or local governments, the FHWA establishes phase-in 
target compliance dates of 10 years for the hardware and three years 
for the operational requirements (sequence of display, timing, etc.) 
for existing countdown pedestrian signals in good condition.
    193. In Section 4E.08 Pedestrian Detectors, (numbered as Section 
4E.07 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA removes from the last STANDARD 
statement the sentence that instructional signs are not required if 
special purpose pushbuttons are used. The current design of special 
purpose pushbuttons does not require a sign to make users aware of 
their intended purpose. Additionally, the FHWA adds to the third 
GUIDANCE statement comparable text that the special purpose pushbuttons 
do not need an instructional sign. One commenter from the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, was in support of all proposed changes to the section.
    The FHWA received several comments from the U.S. Access Board and 
from organizations representing the blind community regarding the 
proposal to add an OPTION statement at the end of the section to allow 
the use of special pedestrian detectors to provide additional crossing 
time for pedestrians with special needs. Those comments indicated that 
an extended pushbutton press is the preferred method of calling for 
extra pedestrian time. Based on the comments, the FHWA revises the 
wording to state, ``At signalized locations with a demonstrated need 
and subject to equipment capabilities, pedestrians with special needs 
may be provided with additional crossing time by means of an extended 
pushbutton press.''
    194. In Section 4E.09 Accessible Pedestrian Signal Detectors, 
(numbered as Section 4E.08 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA changes the 
SUPPORT statement to a STANDARD statement for consistency because other 
definitions in the MUTCD are standards. Additionally, the FHWA 
relocates the existing first STANDARD statement to become part of the 
new first STANDARD statement at the beginning of the section. There 
were no comments on these changes, and the FHWA adopts these changes.
    The FHWA received several comments from organizations representing 
the blind community opposed to the proposal to retitle Figure 4E-2 from 
``Recommended Pushbutton Locations for Accessible Pedestrian Signals'' 
to ``Typical Locations for Accessible Pedestrian Signals,'' because 
these locations for accessible pedestrian

[[Page 65540]]

signals are not common or typical at this point in time. The FHWA 
agrees with these comments and withdraws this proposal. Because the 
figure illustrates how to apply the GUIDANCE, the title of 
``Recommended * * *'' is more accurate than ``Typical * * *'' Three 
commenters from associations representing the blind community commented 
that the FHWA's arrows symbolizing push buttons in Figure 4E-2 were 
incorrectly revised in the NPA. The pushbuttons and arrows are shown 
correctly on this figure in the NPA. They were shown incorrectly in the 
2000 MUTCD. The FHWA adopts this change as shown in the NPA.
    195. In Section 4E.10 Pedestrian Intervals and Signal Phases, 
(numbered as Section 4E.09 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA removes from 
the first OPTION statement the desire to favor the length of an 
opposing signal phase as a condition for using walk intervals as short 
as 4 seconds. Three commenters representing associations for the blind 
community agreed, and the FHWA adopts this revision.
    The FHWA received over 15 comments from State and local DOTs, the 
U.S. Access Board, and private citizens regarding the proposal to 
increase the pedestrian clearance time so that it is sufficient to 
allow the pedestrian to clear the full width of the traveled portion of 
the roadway in the second GUIDANCE statement. Six commenters, 
representing the U.S. Access Board and associations for pedestrians, 
bicyclists, and the blind, were in agreement with the change.
    Eight commenters, representing Caltrans, the North Carolina, 
Oregon, and Missouri DOTs, the Cities of Campbell, California, and 
Dallas, Texas, and a traffic engineering consultant opposed the change, 
stating cost of retiming, lack of need, increased cycle lengths, and 
difficulty with signal progression as the basis for their opposition. 
While the FHWA realizes that this is an issue for which there is 
significant interest and diverging opinions, the FHWA adopts the 
language as proposed in the NPA. Despite some potential impacts on 
agencies, the FHWA believes that it is appropriate to better address 
pedestrian timing needs and requiring calculation to the far side of 
the traveled portion of the roadway is now appropriate for adequate 
pedestrian safety. With the increases in the number of coordinated 
signal systems, with platoons of vehicles potentially arriving at the 
intersection at the start of the green indication, and with more 
prevalent aggressive driving behavior, it is a significant safety 
concern for pedestrians to be given only enough clearance time that 
they are in the middle of a travel lane when the platoon arrives at the 
start of green. This change will result in only a very small increase 
in the pedestrian clearance time but will significantly enhance 
pedestrian safety. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance 
date of five years for this GUIDANCE, for existing traffic control 
signals in good condition to minimize any impact on State or local 
governments.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the first paragraph of the last 
OPTION statement the option of containing the pedestrian clearance time 
within the vehicular green and yellow change intervals. The North 
Carolina DOT agreed with this change. The FHWA adopts this change as 
proposed in the NPA. However in a directly related issue, the NCUTCD 
commented that, in the second paragraph of the STANDARD statement, 
revisions should be made to prohibit the flashing of the UPRAISED HAND 
(symbolizing DON'T WALK) indication during the yellow change or red 
clearance intervals of the concurrent vehicular phase. The NCUTCD 
stated that this would give pedestrians approximately 4 to 5 seconds of 
extra time to get to the curb or edge of traveled way prior to the 
release of opposing traffic, similar to the red clearance interval to 
which drivers have become accustomed. The FHWA disagrees with this 
comment because to make the prohibition of flashing UPRAISED HAND 
extending into the yellow interval apply to all locations without the 
countdowns would require the opportunity for additional public notice 
and comment in a future rulemaking action due to the potentially large 
cost impacts to some jurisdictions that currently have all their 
controllers set up to display flashing UPRAISED HAND through the yellow 
interval. However, because of the need for consistency, safety, and 
uniformity of operation of all countdown pedestrian signal displays, 
the FHWA adds a new STANDARD statement in this section stating: ``If 
countdown pedestrian signals are used, a steady UPRAISED HAND 
(symbolizing DON'T WALK) signal indication shall be displayed during 
the yellow change interval and any red clearance interval (prior to a 
conflicting green being displayed.) (See Section 4E.07).'' This is for 
consistency with requirements for countdown pedestrian signal displays 
adopted in Section 4E.07.
    196. In Section 4F.01 Applications of Emergency-Vehicle Traffic 
Control Signals, the FHWA proposed adding to the OPTION statement the 
choice of installing an Emergency Beacon instead of an emergency 
vehicle traffic control signal. This corresponded to the proposed new 
Section 4F.04 in the NPA that proposed adding Emergency Beacons as an 
alternative to Emergency Vehicle Traffic Control Signals. Based on 
comments on Section 4F.04, the FHWA is not adopting that section. (See 
also the discussion of Section 4F.04). Therefore, the FHWA withdraws 
the proposed addition to the OPTION statement in Section 4F.01.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the GUIDANCE statement to recommend 
following the provisions of Chapter 4D Traffic Control Signal Features 
not only if a numerical signal warrant is met, but also if a decision 
is made to install a signal after an engineering study, for consistency 
with Chapter 4C Traffic Control Signal Needs Study. There was one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, 
and the FHWA adopts this change.
    197. In Section 4F.02 Design of Emergency-Vehicle Traffic Control 
Signals, the FHWA revises the GUIDANCE statement to indicate that two 
signal faces are required for each major street approach, and that at 
least one of those two signal faces should be located over the roadway. 
This change is for consistency with Chapter 4D Traffic Control Signal 
Features. There was one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
support of this change. The FHWA adopts this change.
    198. The NPA included a proposal by the FHWA to add a new section 
following Section 4F.03 Operation of Emergency-Vehicle Traffic Control 
Signals. This proposed new section was numbered and titled ``Section 
4F.04 Emergency Beacon'' and contained STANDARDS, SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, 
and OPTIONS concerning the design, use, and application of Emergency 
Beacons. Five public agencies, the Caltrans and the Minnesota, North 
Carolina, Oregon, and Wisconsin DOTs, commented in opposition to the 
addition of this section, citing many concerns with the Emergency 
Beacon. Most commenters stated that the proposed new section included 
non-standard operations and signal displays that are in conflict with 
driver expectation. Concerns expressed included:
    (1) The proposed arrangement of colors of indications within the 
signal face for an Emergency Beacon is different from all other signal 
faces. People with red/green color blindness may perceive it to be 
flashing red and green alternately based on indication location within 
the signal face;

[[Page 65541]]

    (2) Under normal traffic signal operation, signal faces must always 
have at least one indication illuminated while the proposed language 
requires the signal face to be dark;
    (3) Because this is a traffic control signal requiring the motorist 
to stop, the requirement for two signal faces per approach should still 
hold. A car driving behind a truck may not be able to see the single 
indication; and
    (4) It is better to keep the operation of this type of a signal 
uniform with other traffic control signals.
    The public agencies also cited concerns about the validity of the 
studies \41\ that were conducted to show that it was a good device. 
There was only one comment in favor of the Emergency Beacon and that 
was from a traffic control device manufacturer. Due to overwhelming 
opposition and valid concerns, the FHWA withdraws this section from 
this final rule. While the manufacturer of the device has indicated 
some potential benefits to public agencies, including cost savings 
compared to a normal Emergency Vehicle Traffic Signal, the serious 
issues raised by the commenting public agencies indicate that further 
research is needed before the Emergency Beacon could be considered 
again in the future.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \41\ ``Special Use Emergency Flashing signals Report'', Archie 
Burnham & Associates, prepared for Richard D. Jones, Right-of-Way, 
Inc., 1995. This report is available on the docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    199. In Section 4G.02 Design of Traffic Control Signals for One-
Lane, Two-Way Facilities, the FHWA changes the GUIDANCE statement, 
concerning the applicability of provisions of Chapter 4D Traffic 
Control Signal Features to traffic control signals for one-lane two-way 
facilities and exceptions to these provisions, to a STANDARD statement. 
One commenter from the City of Tucson, Arizona, agreed with this 
change. The FHWA adopts this change.
    200. In Section 4I.02 Design and Location of Movable Bridge Signals 
and Gates, the FHWA removes from item A of the STANDARD statement the 
explanation that three-section signal faces with red, yellow and green 
signal lenses are generally used if movable bridge operation is quite 
frequent. In the NPA, the FHWA also proposed adding comparable text in 
a proposed SUPPORT statement, which would follow the third paragraph of 
the STANDARD statement. The FHWA received one comment on this change 
from the NCUTCD, recommending that the proposed SUPPORT be changed to 
GUIDANCE, to make it more in line with the intent of the previous text 
in the 2000 MUTCD and to clarify the language. The FHWA incorporates 
the NCUTCD's recommended changes in this final rule. In the 2000 MUTCD, 
the applicable text was in a STANDARD, so it is inappropriate to change 
it to SUPPORT. A recommendation to consider the use of three-section 
signal faces when moveable bridge operation is frequent is appropriate, 
for safety reasons.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the phrase ``on long bridges or 
causeways'' from the last paragraph of the second STANDARD statement 
because two sets of gates may be used on bridges or causeways of any 
length and what constitutes a long bridge or causeway is not and cannot 
be readily defined. There were no comments on this change. The FHWA 
adopts this change.
    201. In Section 4J.03 Design of Lane-Use Control Signals, the FHWA 
adds to the OPTION statement to allow the use of smaller size lane-use 
control signal faces for one-way and two-way left turn arrows in areas 
with minimal visual clutter and low speeds. The FHWA changes the 
definition of low speeds from ``70 km/h (45 mph) or less'' to ``less 
than 70 km/h or less than 40 mph'' to be consistent with similar 
criteria regarding signal lens sizes in Chapter 4D Traffic Control 
Signal Features. There were two comments from the NCUTCD and the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change. The FHWA adopts this 
change with minor editorial revisions in this final rule.
    202. In Section 4K.04 Speed Limit Sign Beacon, the FHWA adds to the 
STANDARD statement a requirement that a Speed Limit Beacon be used only 
to supplement a Speed Limit sign. One commenter from the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, agreed with this change. The FHWA adopts this change.
    203. In Section 4L.01 Application of In-Roadway Lights, the FHWA 
revises the SUPPORT statement to include marked crosswalks in advance 
of roundabout intersections as additional situations for possible use 
of in-roadway lights. In the NPA, highway-rail grade crossings and 
highway-light transit rail grade crossings were also included in the 
statement, however the FHWA removes those elements due to opposition 
expressed by seven commenters from the NCUTCD, railroad agencies, 
associations representing railroads, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a 
private citizen as well as the lack of sufficient research supporting 
its use. One commenter from the City of Plano, Texas, specifically 
agreed with adding the use of in-roadway lights at crosswalks in 
advance of roundabout intersections.
    204. The FHWA received one general comment and two specific 
comments regarding Section 4L.02 In-Roadway Warning Lights at 
Crosswalks. A traffic engineering consultant suggested a SUPPORT 
statement be added to discuss possible trip and fall hazards of lights 
in crosswalk lines, because they are not readily detected by a blind 
person's cane. The U.S. Access Board made two suggestions regarding the 
flash rate for in-roadway warning lights and the use of audible and 
vibrotactile cues at crossings with in-roadway lights. These comments 
are beyond the scope of this rulemaking and may be addressed in a 
future rulemaking.
    205. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a new section following 
Section 4L.02 In-Roadway Warning Lights at Crosswalks. The proposed new 
section was numbered and titled ``ion 4L.03 In-Roadway Lights at 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossings and Highway-Light Rail Grade Crossings' 
and contained STANDARD, GUIDANCE, and OPTION statements describing the 
design, application, and operation of in-roadway warning lights and in-
roadway stop line lights at highway-rail and highway-light rail transit 
grade crossings. Based on the comments received from the NCUTCD, 
railroad owners, associations representing the railroad industry, the 
State DOTs of Wisconsin, Ohio, Nevada, and Oregon, the Cities of Plano, 
Texas, and Tucson, Arizona, the FHWA determines that the proposed 
addition of this section was premature. Although the concept of using 
in-roadway flashing lights at grade crossings logically makes sense as 
a means of increasing driver observance of the crossing, the details of 
colors, locations, and specific applications of in-roadway lights for 
grade crossings has not been sufficiently researched to draw 
supportable conclusions. Such research is underway in California and 
Michigan, but results will not be available for several years. The 
commenters in opposition to adding this section make strong arguments 
and cite some valid concerns. Therefore, the FHWA withdraws the 
proposed section in its entirety in this final rule and will await 
research results, prior to consideration of a possible rulemaking on 
this subject in the future.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 5--Traffic Control Devices for 
Low-Volume Roads

    206. In Section 5A.03 Design, the FHWA revises the second paragraph 
of the STANDARD statement to refer to sign sizes on low speed, low 
volume roads by adding a sentence to this paragraph stating that the 
minimum

[[Page 65542]]

sign sizes shall only be used on low-volume roads where the 85th 
percentile or posted speed is less than 60 km/h (35 mph). This 
additional text was recommended in comments received from the NCUTCD 
indicating that the FHWA should provide clarification about the use of 
minimum sign sizes on low-volume rural roads. The FHWA believes that it 
is necessary to clarify the intent of the minimum sign size, to provide 
adequate safety by preventing signs that are too small to be read at 
higher speeds from being used on higher speed, low-volume rural roads.
    The FHWA received five comments from the NCUTCD, the Oregon and 
Minnesota DOTs, and a traffic engineering consultant regarding Table 
5A-1 Sign Sizes on Low-Volume Roads (titled ``Minimum Sign Sizes on 
Low-Volume Roads'' in the NPA and 2000 MUTCD). The NCUTCD suggested a 
revised table that includes separate columns for Minimum, Typical, and 
Oversized sizes to provide more information to agencies. The FHWA 
agrees with this comment and incorporates this revised table into this 
final rule. The NPA included a proposal to reduce the minimum size of 
the W20-1, W20-7a, W20-7b, W21-1a, and W21-6 signs from 900 x 900 mm 
(36 x 36 in) to 600 x 600 mm (24 x 24 in) to be consistent with minimum 
sizes of other signs of comparable design. The Minnesota and Oregon 
DOTs opposed the reduction in these sign sizes on grounds of worker 
safety. The revised table in this final rule includes the 900 x 900 mm 
(36 x 36 in) as the typical size and 750 x 750 mm (30 x 30 in) as the 
minimum size for the W20-1, W3-4, W20-7b, and W21-1a signs, and shows 
750 x 750 mm (30 x 30 in) as the typical size and 600 x 600 mm (24 x 24 
in) as the minimum size for the W21-6 sign. Accordingly, this revised 
table addresses comments from the DOTs regarding specific sign sizes by 
providing three possible sizes, rather than just one size, for all of 
the signs. The FHWA also deletes the NO CENTER STRIPE (W8-12) sign from 
Table 5A-1 in this final rule, because this sign has little if any 
application to low volume roads, and adds the PASS WITH CARE (R4-2) and 
the Two-Direction Large Arrow (W1-7) signs.
    207. In Section 5B.03 Speed Limit Signs (R2 Series), the FHWA 
received five comments from the NCUTCD, the Minnesota, Oregon, and Ohio 
DOTs, as well as the City of Tucson, Arizona, regarding the proposal to 
revise the illustration of the R2-1 metric speed limit sign in Figure 
5B-1 Regulatory Signs on Low-Volume Roads to correspond to a similar 
proposed revision in Chapter 2B Regulatory Signs. In the NPA, the 
proposed design of the metric speed limit sign included the metric 
speed value within a red circle with the legend ``km/h'' below it. Two 
commenters agreed with the proposal and three opposed it. See 
discussion regarding Chapter 2B Regulatory Signs where FHWA changes the 
color of the circle to black.
    208. In Section 5B.04 Traffic Movement and Prohibition Signs (R3, 
R4, R5, R6, R9, R10, R11, R12, R13, and R14), the FHWA adds an 
illustration of the PASS WITH CARE, (R4-2), sign to accompany the DO 
NOT PASS (R4-1) sign in Figure 5B-1 Regulatory Signs on Low-Volume 
Roads because agencies commonly use this sign. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change.
    209. In Section 5C.05, the FHWA retitles the section from ``Narrow 
Bridge Sign (W5-2a)'' to ``NARROW BRIDGE Sign (W5-2)'' because in 
Chapter 2C Warning Signs, the FHWA removes the symbol version of this 
sign and requires the use of only the word version of the sign. There 
were four comments from the NCUTCD, the Ohio DOT, and the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and the FHWA adopts this 
change. Related to this, the FHWA adds a phase-in target compliance 
date of 10 years from the effective date of this final rule for the 
replacement of Narrow Bridge symbol signs, consistent with the phase-in 
target compliance date for Section 2C.16 NARROW BRIDGE Sign (W5-2).
    210. In Section 5C.09 Vehicular Traffic and Nonvehicular Signs (W11 
Series and W8-6), the FHWA received two comments from the Arizona and 
Ohio DOTs regarding the proposal in the NPA to change the section title 
to ``Motorized Traffic and Nonvehicular Signs (W11 Series and W8-6).'' 
The commenters suggested that the terms should be changed to better 
accommodate bicycles. The FHWA agrees and revises the title by changing 
``Motorized'' to ``Vehicular,'' consistent with changes made in Chapter 
2C.
    211. In Section 5C.10 Advisory Speed Plaque (W13-1), the FHWA 
revises the illustration of the metric advisory speed plaque to 
correspond to a similar revision in Chapter 2C. The design of the 
metric advisory speed plaque includes the metric speed value within a 
black circle with the legend ``km/h'' below it. The FHWA received two 
comments supporting the change, and two opposed to it. See discussion 
regarding Chapter 2C where FHWA adopts the use of the metric speed 
value within a black circle with the legend ``km/h'' below it. That 
discussion also applies to this section.
    212. In Section 5C.12 NO TRAFFIC SIGNS Sign (W18-1), the FHWA 
changes the sign number code in the title and elsewhere in this section 
and elsewhere in the MUTCD from ``W16-2'' to ``W18-1''. The W16-2 code 
is already assigned to the Distance Ahead Plaque, thus this duplication 
is corrected by reassigning the NO TRAFFIC SIGNS Sign code to W18-1.
    213. In Section 5F.02 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Sign 
(R15-1, R15-2), the FHWA revises the last paragraph of the STANDARD 
statement to create two new paragraphs, which are duplicates of text 
contained in the second standard statement in Section 8B.03 regarding 
the use of retroreflective strips. The FHWA incorporates this minor 
editorial change for consistency with other sections of the MUTCD.
    214. In Section 5F.04, STOP and YIELD Signs, the FHWA removes the 
words ``State or local'' from the OPTION statement, to reflect that 
jurisdictions responsible for grade crossings may be any level of 
government or may be quasi-governmental or non-governmental. One 
commenter from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this change. 
However, another comment from the Wisconsin DOT suggested that if the 
words ``State and local'' are removed from this section that this 
section would then be inconsistent with Section 8B.08 STOP (R1-1) or 
YIELD (R1-2) Signs at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings, which still refers 
to State or local highway agencies. The commenter suggested that this 
section contain similar criteria and guidance to that contained in 
Section 8B.08. The FHWA agrees in principle; however, it is Sections 
2B.04 to 2B.10 that contain the appropriate criteria that should be 
referenced. The FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA and 
includes a cross-reference to Sections 2B.04 to 2B.10.
    215. In Section 5G.03 Channelization Devices, the FHWA replaces the 
second occurrence of the phrase ``temporary traffic control zone'' with 
``work space'' in the OPTION statement to correspond with the 
appropriate terminology in Part 6 Temporary Traffic Control. There was 
one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this 
change, and the FHWA adopts this change.
    216. In Section 5G.05 Other Traffic Control Devices, the FHWA adds 
a SUPPORT statement referring to Figure 5G-1 for some of the signs that 
might be applicable in a temporary traffic control zone on a low-volume 
road. There were two comments in support of this change from the NCUTCD 
and the City of

[[Page 65543]]

Tucson, Arizona, and the FHWA adopts this change.
    The FHWA also revises Figure 5G-1 Temporary Traffic Control Signs 
on Low-Volume Roads, to change the W20-7a Flagger sign to conform with 
the correctly designed sign in Section 6F.29 Flagger Sign (W20-7a, W20-
7). There was one comment from the NCUTCD in support of this change. 
The FHWA also changes the metric version of the W13-1 Advisory Speed 
Plaque to conform to the use of the black circle for metric speed 
values as adopted in Chapter 2C. Two commenters from the Minnesota and 
Ohio DOTs were opposed to this change, suggesting that the use of the 
color black and the circle symbol are non-standard, and motorists in 
the U.S. will not understand. Similar to previous discussions in 
Chapter 2C, the FHWA disagrees and adopts the change as proposed in the 
NPA. The NCUTCD suggested that the NO CENTER STRIPE (W8-12) sign be 
deleted from this figure. The FHWA agrees and deletes the NO CENTER 
STRIPE sign from the figure, as well as from Table 5A-1, because this 
sign has little if any application to low volume roads.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 6--Temporary Traffic Control

    217. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add to a number of places in 
sections throughout Part 6, references to ensure that temporary traffic 
controls involving or affecting pedestrian walkways and paths account 
for the needs of pedestrians with disabilities. These proposed 
additions followed the accessibility requirements of the Americans with 
Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) (Pub. L. 101-336, 104 Stat. 327, July 
26, 1990. 42 U.S.C. 12101-12213 (as amended)). While the U.S. Access 
Board, many private citizens and associations representing the blind 
generally agreed with including the accessibility requirements, there 
were many comments from private citizens and from the Ohio and Kansas 
DOTs suggesting that the multiple references were unnecessarily 
repetitive, and should be handled in a different manner in this final 
rule. In addition, the Virginia and Oregon DOTs suggested that 
requirements based on the proposed ADA Accessibility Guidelines for 
Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG) \42\ rulings on accessibility of 
public rights-of-way should not be incorporated until the new 
guidelines are adopted by the U.S. Access Board. The FHWA notes that 
the requirements in the MUTCD are not based on the proposed ADAAG 
ruling, rather they are based on existing laws, such as the Americans 
with Disabilities Act (ADA).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \42\ ``Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines 
for Buildings and Facilities,'' as amended through January 1998, is 
published by the U.S. Architectural and Transportation Barriers 
Compliance Board (Access Board), 1331 F Street, NW., Suite 1000, 
Washington, DC 20004-1111. It may be obtained from the Access Board, 
or viewed electronically at the following URL: http://www.access-board.gov/adaag/html/adaag.htm
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Based on general comments and a suggestion by the NCUTCD, the FHWA 
places a common introductory STANDARD statement at the beginning of 
Sections 6A.01, 6B.01, 6C.01, 6D.01, 6F.01, 6G.01, 6H.01, and 6I.01 to 
emphasize accessibility provisions. The FHWA revises the reference as 
the ``Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), title II, 
Paragraph 35.130'' to provide a more specific legal reference.
    The FHWA also adds a SUPPORT at the beginning of each chapter in 
Part 6 that the acronym ``TTC'' refers to ``temporary traffic control'' 
and replaces the words with the acronym in many places throughout Part 
6. This is in response to a comment from a traffic engineering 
consultant suggesting that this acronym is well understood and would 
reduce unnecessary text.
    Additionally, the FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD and the 
Ohio DOT suggesting that the parenthetical reference ``(drivers, 
bicyclists, and pedestrians)'' after ``road users'' be removed, because 
the term ``road users'' is already defined as including these entities. 
There were also arguments from the Florida DOT, the City and County of 
Denver, Colorado, and many private citizens to retain the text as 
proposed throughout Part 6 to remind readers of the importance of 
considering bicyclists and pedestrians. The FHWA includes the 
parenthetical reference the first time it appears in each chapter, and 
removes it from many of the remaining occurrences. The FHWA also 
revises the parenthetical reference to change ``drivers'' to 
``motorists'' and to include pedestrians with disabilities, to reflect 
changes to the definition of ``road user'' that FHWA makes in Part 1 
and elsewhere in the MUTCD. Additionally, the FHWA adds, in a number of 
sections in Part 6, references to the needs of bicyclists through 
temporary traffic control zones, as many temporary traffic control 
plans affect a substantial amount of bicycle activity. The FHWA 
received eight comments from private citizens in support of these 
changes, and adopts these changes.
    218. In Section 6A.01 General, the FHWA received two comments from 
a traffic engineering consultant opposed to the existing second 
STANDARD statement regarding the responsibility for temporary traffic 
control plans and devices as being that of the public body or official 
having jurisdiction for guiding road users. There were no significant 
changes to this statement proposed in the NPA, therefore these comments 
are outside the scope of this rulemaking.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to a number of places in this section 
and a number of sections in Part 6, statements that temporary traffic 
control principles are applicable to managing traffic incidents along 
the roadway because incidents are temporary road or lane closures and 
are one of the major causes of congestion. In this regard, the FHWA 
adds a new chapter titled ``Chapter 6I Control of Traffic Through 
Traffic Incident Management Areas.'' There were no specific comments 
regarding the inclusion of traffic incidents in Chapter 6A, and 
individual comments regarding Chapter 6I are addressed in the 
discussion for that chapter.
    219. In Section 6B.01 Fundamental Principles of Temporary Traffic 
Control, the FHWA adds to a number of places in this section references 
about accounting for the needs of pedestrians with disabilities, 
bicyclists, and traffic incident management responders.
    The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that the 
last paragraph of the second SUPPORT be restored to contain the text in 
the 2000 MUTCD, which included the sentence, ``While these principles 
provide guidance for good temporary traffic control for the 
practitioner, they do not establish standards and warrants.'' The 
commenters felt that removing this sentence would change the emphasis 
of the section to mean that it contains STANDARDs. The FHWA disagrees 
and does not include this sentence because it is a generic statement in 
reference to fundamental principles. Only the second and last 
paragraphs of the section are STANDARDs, the rest are GUIDANCE and 
SUPPORT.
    The FHWA withdraws the proposal to add to the first and second 
GUIDANCE statements that the needs of pedestrians with disabilities 
should be considered when planning, designing and establishing a 
temporary traffic control zone, because this information is now 
contained in a new STANDARD statement at the beginning of the section.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the second GUIDANCE statement that 
the needs of commercial vehicle operators should be assessed and 
appropriate accommodations made when

[[Page 65544]]

developing a public relations plan for a temporary traffic control 
zone. The FHWA received two comments from the National Institute for 
Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and a private citizen supporting 
this change, and the FHWA adopts this change.
    220. In Section 6C.01 Temporary Traffic Control Plans, the FHWA 
adds to the first GUIDANCE statement that planning for all road users 
should be part of the planning and design of the temporary traffic 
control plan. The FHWA also adds a fourth paragraph to the first 
GUIDANCE statement that provisions for effective continuity of 
accessible circulation paths for pedestrians should be incorporated 
into the temporary traffic control process. Several commenters 
suggested editorial revisions for clarity, which the FHWA agrees with 
and adopts in this final rule.
    221. In Section 6C.02 Temporary Traffic Control Zones, the FHWA 
proposed to add a sentence at the end of the SUPPORT statement that the 
incident area begins at the first warning sign or vehicle with a 
rotating/strobe light and extends to the last temporary traffic control 
device or to a point where road users are allowed to return to the 
original lane alignment. The FHWA received two comments from ATSSA and 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and one comment 
from the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH) 
suggesting that ``warning sign or rotating strobe/lights'' may be too 
specific because flares, cones, or other devices might also be used to 
warn of an incident ahead. The FHWA agrees that the first responder to 
an incident might appropriately use other devices, and revises the text 
in this final rule to indicate that the incident management area begins 
at the first warning device (such as a sign, light, or cone).
    222. In Section 6C.03 Components of Temporary Traffic Control 
Zones, the FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, the Illinois DOT, and a private citizen 
regarding proposed changes to Figure 6C-1 Component Parts of a 
Temporary Traffic Control Zone. The FHWA modifies the drawing to show a 
shoulder taper as one of the potential components of a temporary 
traffic control zone. The NCUTCD suggested that the shoulder taper 
should be removed because no other tapers are shown and a shoulder 
taper is not required in the situation pictured. The City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen indicated that the advance 
warning area was referenced incorrectly to the beginning of the 
shoulder taper, rather than the beginning of the merge taper. The FHWA 
believes that the intent of the figure is to show all of the potential 
components of a temporary traffic control zone, rather than a specific 
example, and the shoulder taper should be included in the figure. 
However, the FHWA revises the figure to more accurately show the 
shoulder taper in advance of the merge taper, and dimensions the 
Advance Warning Area to the start of the merge taper, as suggested by 
the two commenters. The FHWA also includes advance warning signs on 
both sides of the one-way roadway as suggested by the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen. The FHWA labels the 
area above the Work Space as a Buffer Space (longitudinal). The City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen stated that this area 
is not considered a buffer space because it is downstream of the Work 
Space. The FHWA disagrees with the commenters because the OPTION 
statement in Section 6C.06 Activity Area indicates that buffer spaces 
may be positioned either longitudinally or laterally with respect to 
the direction of road user flow, and that the activity area may contain 
one or more lateral or longitudinal buffer spaces.
    223. In Section 6C.04 Advance Warning Area, the FHWA received 
several comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and 
private citizens about the sign spacings shown in Table 6C-1 Suggested 
Advance Warning Sign Spacing. There were no changes proposed to this 
table in the NPA, therefore the comments regarding the distances shown 
in this table are outside the scope of this rulemaking and such changes 
would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking. The FHWA notes that 
these are suggested sign spacings and actual placement may be adjusted 
in order to improve sign visibility due to roadway geometry, 
intersections or driveways, or other factors, based on engineering 
judgment.
    224. In Section 6C.06 Activity Area, the FHWA adds a new table 
numbered and titled ``Table 6C-2 Stopping Sight Distance as a Function 
of Speed.'' This table is identical to Table 6E-1. The current Table 
6C-2 is renumbered as Table 6C-3, Taper Length Criteria for Temporary 
Traffic Control Zones. The FHWA received two comments from the 
Wisconsin DOT and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this new 
table, two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggesting that this table be titled ``Guidelines for 
Longitudinal Buffer Lengths,'' and three comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and private citizens opposed to the values 
in the new table. The commenters who opposed the values in the table 
suggested that the values from Table 6E-1 of the 2000 MUTCD should be 
used because they represent a buffer length based upon the braking 
distance that would provide adequate opportunity to stop before 
entering a workspace. These commenters also suggested that the proposed 
longer lengths would result in inordinately and unnecessarily long 
buffers, which will encourage misuse and potentially lack of use, 
particularly in urban areas. The FHWA disagrees because this table is 
referenced in an OPTION statement, and practitioners may use discretion 
in determining the lengths of longitudinal buffer spaces. The FHWA 
adopts the table, as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA adds a reference to new Table 6C-2 to the second OPTION 
statement, as these distances may be used to determine the length of 
the longitudinal buffer space. The FHWA received two comments from the 
Illinois DOT and a private citizen suggesting this change, and the FHWA 
revises the statement slightly in this final rule to add clarity.
    In the third SUPPORT statement, the FHWA proposed to remove the 
phrase ``formidable device'' as well as the reference to arrow panels 
as they relate to determining buffer spaces. The FHWA received one 
comment from a private citizen in support of this change, and three 
comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen opposed it. Those commenters who opposed the change 
suggested restoring the 2000 MUTCD wording, or offered alternate 
wording. They also suggested that this SUPPORT statement be combined 
with the second SUPPORT statement. The FHWA agrees to reword the 
sentence in the SUPPORT statement to state, ``When a shadow vehicle, 
arrow panel, or changeable message sign is placed in a closed lane in 
advance of a work space, only the area upstream of the vehicle, arrow 
panel or changeable message sign constitutes the buffer space.'' The 
FHWA does not combine the second and third SUPPORT statements in this 
final rule.
    In the last GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA adds that incident 
response storage areas should not extend into any portion of the buffer 
space. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that this GUIDANCE should be 
a STANDARD. The FHWA disagrees because of the flexibility that is 
needed to respond to unplanned

[[Page 65545]]

incidents therefore, this statement remains a GUIDANCE in this final 
rule.
    225. In Section 6C.07 Termination Area, the FHWA clarifies the 
STANDARD statement to indicate that temporary traffic control devices 
other than END ROAD WORK signs can be used to signify the end of a 
termination area. The FHWA received one comment from the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and one comment from a 
private citizen opposed to it. The opposing commenter suggested that 
the STANDARD statement be deleted or changed to an OPTION because the 
many work zones have no deviation from the normal path. The FHWA 
disagrees with changing the STANDARD statement because it is clear that 
if road users have not been diverted from their normal path, then a 
termination area would not be needed, and this section would not apply. 
The FHWA adopts the change as proposed in the NPA.
    To provide flexibility to jurisdictions, the FHWA adds to the 
OPTION statement that a longitudinal buffer space may be used between 
the work space and the beginning of the downstream taper. The FHWA 
received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this change, stating 
that the paragraph should be deleted because the area between the work 
space and the beginning of the downstream taper is not a buffer space. 
The FHWA disagrees because such a buffer space could be used in a 
variety of locations, such as for a center lane closure on a multi-lane 
undivided highway or on a two-lane, one-way operation. The FHWA adopts 
this change as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA also received two comments from the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that an additional 
paragraph be added to the OPTION stating that the use of END ROAD WORK 
signs is optional for most daytime maintenance and utility operations. 
The FHWA disagrees that this sentence is needed because there are 
several terms within the section to indicate that use of an END ROAD 
WORK sign is not mandated for termination areas.
    226. In Section 6C.08 Tapers, the FHWA revises the first GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that the appropriate taper length should be 
determined using the criteria in Tables 6C-3 and 6C-4 to address a 
comment from a private citizen stating that the word ``minimum'' does 
not accurately describe the taper lengths in the table. The FHWA agrees 
that the change is needed to correct the error, and revises the 
GUIDANCE statement in this final rule. The same commenter suggested 
that the FHWA also revise the second paragraph of the GUIDANCE 
statement, to remove the word ``maximum'' when referring to the 
distances between devices in a taper. The FHWA disagrees because it 
would not be acceptable to have longer spacing unless there is a good 
engineering reason to do so. The FHWA also inserts a new table numbered 
and titled, ``Table 6C-4 Formulas for Determining Taper Lengths'' 
immediately following Table 6C-3. This table contains the formulas that 
were included as notes to Table 6C-3 in the NPA, except that they are 
included in a tabular format for clarity. This table is also identical 
to Table 6H-4.
    In the fifth GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA deletes the word 
``minimum'' from the description of the length of a downstream taper in 
this final rule. The FHWA received two comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting the word 
``minimum'' be replaced with the word ``maximum,'' however the FHWA 
disagrees. Criteria for downstream tapers, as shown in Table 6C-3 
indicate a set distance, not a minimum or maximum length.
    The FHWA received three comments from the Ohio DOT, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting changes to 
the shifting and downstream taper entries in Table 6C-3. Because there 
were no changes proposed to this table (other than the table number), 
these comments are outside the scope of the NPA. Such changes would 
need to be proposed in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA revises Figure 6C-3 Example of a One-Lane, Two-Way Traffic 
Taper to illustrate a downstream longitudinal buffer space (between the 
work space and traffic from the open-lane approach); a downstream 
taper, noted ``100 ft MAXIMUM;'' shifts the flagger and warning sign 
symbols on the open-lane approach accordingly so that the flagger is 
stationed well beyond the last cone in the downstream taper; and on 
both approaches, shift the END ROAD WORK symbols so that they are 
opposite the last warning signs.
    227. In Section 6C.10 One-Lane, Two-Way Traffic Control, the FHWA 
received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggesting that an OPTION be added after the STANDARD 
statement to indicate that where traffic speeds and volumes are low, 
and where the work area is short and sight distance is good, vehicular 
traffic may be self-regulating. The FHWA disagrees with adding this 
language at this time because similar text is already included in the 
SUPPORT statement. Changing that SUPPORT to an OPTION may be considered 
in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA received two comments from the same commenters suggesting 
that the last paragraph of the GUIDANCE be revised to delete pilot cars 
as one of the means for controlling opposing traffic flows on a one-
lane roadway where affected traffic is not visible from one end to the 
other because a pilot car alone cannot coordinate traffic movements at 
both ends of the operation. The FHWA agrees with the commenter and, 
rather than deleting the option to use a pilot car, the FHWA clarifies 
that a pilot car uses a flagger as defined in Section 6F.54 PILOT CAR 
FOLLOW ME Sign (G20-4).
    228. In Section 6D.01 Pedestrian Considerations, the FHWA proposed 
adding a new GUIDANCE statement at the beginning of the section to 
indicate that pedestrians of all ages and abilities should be provided 
a detectable and usable travel path. The FHWA received one comment from 
the NCUTCD opposed to the new GUIDANCE, suggesting that the text be 
reworded and classified as a SUPPORT statement. The FHWA disagrees and 
adds the introductory STANDARD statement at the beginning of this 
section to emphasize accessibility provisions, as discussed above at 
the start of the Part 6 discussion.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed modifying the second SUPPORT 
statement to include information on other publications that can provide 
useful data for assisting the planning for, and the design of, 
pedestrian facilities. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD 
opposing this language and suggesting that a new Section 6D.02 
Accessibility Considerations be added. The FHWA also received three 
comments from commenters representing the visually disabled community 
suggesting additional wording to clarify that speech messages provided 
by an audible information device are more helpful to pedestrians with 
disabilities than Braille and raised character signs. The FHWA agrees 
with the commenters and withdraws the proposed language. In this final 
rule, the FHWA adds Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations and 
revises Section 6D.01 by adding two paragraphs to the SUPPORT with more 
detailed information describing how to provide information to 
pedestrians with visual disabilities via audible messages, and adds a 
GUIDANCE statement recommending locator tones be used with pushbuttons, 
to be consistent with Part 4 of the MUTCD.

[[Page 65546]]

    Additionally, the FHWA proposed adding to the second STANDARD 
statement that in addition to visual signage, equivalent information in 
alternate formats for pedestrians who have visual disabilities shall be 
provided so that they are not trapped on a closed facility. The FHWA 
received four comments from the NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to the new 
text, stating that it is an unreasonable requirement for all sidewalks, 
or that it should be a GUIDANCE, rather than a STANDARD. The NCUTCD, 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggested 
that the text be revised to explicitly state that where pedestrians 
with visual disabilities normally use the closed crosswalk, a barrier 
detectable by a person with a visual disability traveling with the aid 
of a long cane shall be placed across the full width of the closed 
crosswalk. The FHWA agrees with the suggested text and adopts that text 
in this final rule. The FHWA also received two comments from the City 
of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that the 
existing first sentence, requiring advance notification of sidewalk 
closures by the entity conducting the work was vague. The FHWA agrees 
and expands the sentence in this final rule to indicate that advance 
notification of sidewalk closures shall be provided to the maintaining 
agency.
    The FHWA adds to the second SUPPORT statement that pedestrians are 
reluctant to add distance or out-of-the-way travel to a destination. 
The NCUTCD opposed this new text and three commenters representing 
associations for the blind community suggested including additional 
text regarding the types of barriers that are detectable by a person 
with visual disability. The additional information regarding barrier 
types goes beyond the scope of this rulemaking and the FHWA adopts the 
changes as proposed in the NPA.
    In the second GUIDANCE, the FHWA proposed adding information about 
the general needs of pedestrians with disabilities. The NCUTCD opposed 
the additional information, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and 
a private citizen requested more information, and three commenters 
representing associations for the blind community opposed the text as 
written in the NPA, but suggested new text. The FHWA agrees with the 
suggested text from the associations for the blind community, which 
provides additional information regarding how to communicate with 
pedestrians with visual disabilities in order to alert them to blocked 
routes, alternate crossings, and sign and signal information. The FHWA 
adopts this text in this final rule.
    The FHWA proposed to revise item C of the second GUIDANCE statement 
to include accessible paths as well as provisions for pedestrians who 
have visual disabilities in planning for pedestrians in temporary 
traffic control zones. The NCUTCD opposed the revision, suggesting that 
this information be included in a new Section 6D.02 Accessibility 
Considerations. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen requested additional information regarding how to provide 
audible warnings, and three commenters representing associations for 
the blind community suggested new wording to incorporate the need to 
provide pedestrians with visual disabilities with instructions, as well 
as a reference to accessible pedestrian signals. The FHWA agrees with 
the suggested text from associations representing the blind community, 
and adopts the revised language with the additional information in this 
final rule.
    The FHWA also adds to the second GUIDANCE statement that a 
pedestrian route should not be severed and/or moved for nonconstruction 
activities such as parking for vehicles and equipment. The FHWA 
received one comment from the Florida DOT in support of this change, 
and one comment from the NCUTCD opposed, stating redundancy. The FHWA 
adopts the change as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA proposed expanding the third GUIDANCE statement to include 
additional information regarding how to delineate a pedestrian footpath 
through or around a work site. The NCUTCD opposed the revision, 
suggesting a new Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations be added. A 
commenter from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen requested additional clarification, and three commenters 
representing associations for the blind community suggested rewording 
to reference Section 6F.65 Temporary Traffic Barriers as Channelizing 
Devices for a description of detectable barriers. To address the 
comments, the FHWA clarifies the wording to indicate that if the 
previous pedestrian facility was accessible to pedestrians with 
disabilities, then the footpath provided during temporary traffic 
control should also be accessible, and to denote additional information 
regarding grades and use of barriers and channelizing devices.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION statement that wherever it is 
feasible, closing off the work site from pedestrian intrusion may be 
preferable to channelizing pedestrian traffic along the site with 
temporary traffic control devices.
    The FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement following the third GUIDANCE 
to provide information on how to communicate pedestrian routes to 
pedestrians with disabilities. The FHWA received one comment from the 
NCUTCD opposed to this new statement, two comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen requesting additional 
clarification and three comments from associations representing the 
blind community suggesting rewording of the statement to clarify the 
use of audible instructions, which the FHWA adopts in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to expand the third GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that fencing should be continuous and detectable. 
The FHWA withdraws this proposal because this information is included 
in new Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to expand the first paragraph of the 
fourth GUIDANCE statement to indicate that ballast and other elements 
should not intrude into the accessible passage. The FHWA withdraws this 
proposal, because this information is included in new Section 6D.02 
Accessibility Considerations in this final rule.
    The FHWA expands the last paragraph of the fifth GUIDANCE statement 
to clarify that access to work space by equipment as well as workers 
across pedestrian walkways should be minimized. The FHWA received one 
comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this change, citing disagreement 
with the wording regarding accessibility. The FHWA disagrees with the 
commenter and adopts the change in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to expand the third paragraph of the 
fifth GUIDANCE statement to include information about pedestrian 
accessibility and to add a paragraph at the end of the fifth GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that audible information be provided at locations 
where a temporary pedestrian crossing is implemented. The FHWA received 
one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to these changes, suggesting that 
this information is repetitive. The FHWA withdraws these proposals, 
because this information is included in new Section 6D.02 Accessibility 
Considerations in this final rule.
    The FHWA removes the second sentence from the sixth SUPPORT 
statement regarding the use of tape,

[[Page 65547]]

rope, and other devices along a designated pathway. The FHWA received 
two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen opposed to the removal of the sentence. The commenters did not 
provide a justification for their opposition, and the FHWA removes the 
sentence in this final rule, because these devices should not be used 
where persons with visual disabilities are expected and because use of 
these devices is strongly discouraged in any case.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a paragraph at the beginning 
of the last GUIDANCE statement to indicate that tape, rope, and other 
devices are not detectable and should not be used as a control for 
pedestrian movements. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD 
opposed to this change. The FHWA believes that this information is 
important to provide safe passage for persons with visual disabilities 
and adopts this text, as proposed in the NPA, in this final rule. The 
FHWA also expands the (new) second paragraph of this GUIDANCE to 
emphasize that pedestrian routes should be preserved in urban and 
commercial suburban areas and that alternate routing should be 
discouraged. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to 
this language; however, to emphasize the importance of pedestrian 
routes in these areas, the FHWA adopts this language in this final 
rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add a SUPPORT statement at the end 
of Section 6D.01 to state that the absence of a continuous passage, 
including accessible features, might preclude the use of the facility 
by pedestrians with disabilities. The FHWA received one comment from 
the NCUTCD opposed to this new paragraph, and the FHWA withdraws this 
proposal, because this information is included in new Section 6D.02 
Accessibility Considerations in this final rule.
    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of five 
years from the effective date of this final rule for the changes in 
this section, which in turn affects many other sections in Part 6. 
However, this does not affect the obligations placed on governments by 
the ADA laws and regulations.
    229. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6D.02 Accessibility Considerations.'' This new section contains 
SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, and STANDARD statements specific to pedestrian 
accessibility, including pedestrians with visual disabilities, in 
temporary traffic control zones. The FHWA received several comments 
suggesting that the accessibility information that was repeated 
throughout Part 6 in the NPA should be consolidated into one location. 
While the FHWA includes some accessibility information in each chapter 
of Part 6 in this final rule, the FHWA includes this new section to 
provide all of the necessary information in one place. The dual 
provisions provide the practitioner with the necessary emphasis to 
ensure that there is consideration of the accessibility needs for 
persons with disabilities in the planning, design, implementation and 
operation of temporary traffic control zones. The FHWA strongly 
supports provisions in the MUTCD that provide accommodations for all 
pedestrians and road users. The FHWA establishes a five year phase-in 
target compliance date from the effective date of this final rule for 
accessibility considerations in temporary traffic control zones, which 
in turn affects many other sections in Part 6.
    230. In Section 6D.03 Worker Safety Considerations (numbered and 
titled Section 6D.02 Worker Considerations in the NPA), the FHWA 
changes the title as suggested by NIOSH, because the first SUPPORT 
statement in this section rightly indicates that worker safety is 
equally as important as road user safety. The FHWA also adds to the 
SUPPORT statement information on the need to separate workers on foot 
from moving construction vehicles. The FHWA received one comment from 
the NCUTCD opposed to this new language, suggesting that the issues 
covered in the new text are covered by the Occupational Safety and 
Health Administration (OSHA) regulations and should not be included in 
the MUTCD. The Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North America and 
NIOSH expressed support for the new language, stating that including 
this language in the MUTCD is very important, because it emphasizes the 
hazards to workers on foot created by moving construction vehicles and 
equipment within the work zone. Comments from the Kansas DOT and NIOSH 
suggested editorial revisions, which the FHWA adopts in this final 
rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding to the GUIDANCE statement that 
workers exposed to the risks of moving roadway traffic or construction 
equipment should wear high visibility apparel meeting the requirements 
of the American National Standard for High Visibility Safety Apparel 
\43\ and labeled as meeting ANSI 107-1999 Standard Performance for 
Class 1, 2, or 3 risk exposure. The FHWA received seven comments from 
the North American Association of Transportation Safety and Health 
Officials (NAATHSO), ATSSA, the Virginia DOT, Caltrans, the Laborers' 
Health and Safety Fund of North America, NIOSH, and a traffic control 
device manufacturer in support of this change, three of which suggested 
stronger language to change this to a STANDARD. The FHWA received 
thirteen comments from the NCUTCD, contractors, and State and local 
highway agencies opposed to the proposed safety apparel 
recommendations. The FHWA adopts the wording, as proposed in the NPA, 
but makes changes in Section 6E.02 High Visibility Safety Apparel to 
address issues regarding high-visibility flagger safety apparel.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \43\ ``American National Standard for High Visibility Safety 
Apparel,'' ANSI/ISEA 107-1999, 1999 Edition, or equivalent revision, 
is available for purchase from ISEA--The Safety Equipment 
Association, by telephone (703) 525-1695, facsimile (703) 528-2148, 
mail ISEA, 1901 North Moore Street, Suite 808, Arlington, VA 22209. 
Also, a summary of information about the three classes of apparel in 
the standard is available at the following URL: http://www.safetyequipment.org/hivisstd.htm
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    While NIOSH supported the proposed wording that a ``competent 
person'' be responsible for the worker safety plan within the activity 
area, several commenters representing State and local highway agencies 
and contractors opposed the language, stating that the phrase was 
vague. The FHWA believes that this language is not vague and that it is 
specific enough to be reasonably applied by jurisdictions. The FHWA 
adopts the text as proposed in the NPA.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years from the effective date of this final rule for this change. 
The FHWA received comment from the International Safety Equipment 
Association (ISEA) and the Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North 
America, indicating that worker clothing is an expendable item that 
wears out quickly and must be replaced much sooner than five years and 
therefore no special phase-in target compliance date is needed. Other 
commenters suggested that a shorter phase-in target compliance date is 
advisable because of the important safety benefits of high visibility 
safety apparel. The FHWA believes that high-visibility safety apparel 
for all workers, including supervisors, is very important for safety in 
temporary traffic control areas. Not all worker clothing wears out and 
is replaced quickly, especially the safety apparel worn on the job site 
by supervisors and managers. To provide for a reasonably rapid 
implementation of this important change while

[[Page 65548]]

minimizing impacts on State and local governments, the FHWA establishes 
a three-year phase-in target compliance date from the effective date of 
this final rule for the changes regarding worker safety apparel.
    Additionally, in the same GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA adds 
``Activity Area'' to the list of key elements of worker safety and 
temporary traffic control management that should be considered to 
improve worker safety. The FHWA received two comments from Laborers' 
Health and Safety Fund of North America and NIOSH in support of this 
new text, and one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to it. The NCUTCD 
suggested that this text is already covered in Chapter 6B. The FHWA 
disagrees because worker safety is very important and early planning is 
where many significant worker safety improvements can be made. The FHWA 
adopts the new text in this final rule, with minor editorial changes.
    The FHWA includes ``Worker Safety Planning'' to the list of key 
elements of worker safety and temporary traffic control management that 
should be considered to improve worker safety. The worker safety plan 
should be in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 
1970, ``General Duty Clause'' Section 5 (a)(1)--Public Law 91-596, 84 
Stat. 1590, December 29, 1970, as amended, and with the requirement to 
assess worker risk exposures for each job site and job classification 
in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration 
(OSHA) Regulations as found in 29 CFR 1926.20(b)(2). While NIOSH 
supported this new language, there were comments from the NCUTCD, the 
Virginia, Kansas, California, and North Carolina DOTs, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to it. The 
opposing commenters suggested that the information in this paragraph is 
beyond what would be typical MUTCD material. The FHWA disagrees with 
the opposing commenters because this is GUIDANCE rather than a 
STANDARD, and the FHWA adopts this text to emphasize the importance of 
worker safety and to assure that the applicable laws and regulations 
are referenced.
    The FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement at the end of the section 
that contains information previously included in item E of the GUIDANCE 
statement regarding the judicious use of special devices to maintain 
their effectiveness. The FHWA received one comment from NIOSH opposing 
this change, stating that the statement merits continued emphasis in 
order to prevent misuse. The FHWA disagrees because the original 
placement of this statement in item E made it erroneously appear to be 
an OPTION, when in fact it was a SUPPORT. The FHWA adopts the change as 
proposed in the NPA.
    231. In Section 6E.01 Qualifications for Flaggers, the FHWA 
rewrites the GUIDANCE statement in its entirety to describe in terms 
more appropriate to a temporary traffic control zone environment the 
recommended skills and abilities for a flagger. This change reflects 
the state of the practice in flagger selection and training. The FHWA 
received no comments regarding this change, and adopts this change.
    232. In Section 6E.02 High-Visibility Safety Apparel (titled High-
Visibility Clothing in the NPA), the FHWA proposed to add to the first 
STANDARD statement the requirement that flaggers wear safety apparel 
meeting the requirements of the American National Standard for High 
Visibility Apparel and labeled as meeting ANSI 107-1999 Standard 
Performance for Class 3 risk exposure, to improve worker visibility to 
approaching road users. While the FHWA received six comments from 
ATSSA, the Virginia DOT, the City of Tucson, Arizona, the International 
Safety Equipment Association, the Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of 
North America, and NIOSH in support of using Class 3 high visibility 
safety apparel for flaggers under all conditions, there were sixteen 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, NAATSHO, the South Carolina, North 
Carolina, Wisconsin, and Oregon DOTs, contractors, and a private 
citizen opposed to it, at least for daytime activity. Several 
commenters stated that with the extreme heat conditions in the South, 
Midwest, and Western States that their workers endure in the summer, 
wearing the required uniform jacket and pants or jumpsuit would create 
more health problems. Based on all of the docket comments, the FHWA 
agrees that Class 3 high visibility safety apparel for flagger activity 
should not be a requirement. Instead, the FHWA establishes that, for 
both day and night time activity, Class 2 high visibility safety 
apparel shall be required. The FHWA also concludes that for nighttime 
flagger activity, Class 3 high visibility safety apparel should be 
considered for flagger wear rather than Class 2. Even with the 
requirements for flagger stations to be illuminated for night activity 
that the FHWA establishes in Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, Class 3 
safety apparel should at least be considered for nighttime flagger wear 
because of its increased retroreflective surface area. The FHWA revises 
the STANDARD statement and adds a GUIDANCE statement accordingly.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years for this change. The FHWA received comments from ATSSA and 
the Virginia DOT indicating that flagger clothing is considered 
expendable because it wears out and must be replaced much sooner than 
five years and therefore no special phase-in target compliance date is 
needed. Other commenters suggested that a shorter phase-in target 
compliance date is advisable because of the important safety benefits 
of high visibility safety apparel. The FHWA believes that high-
visibility safety apparel for all flaggers, including supervisors who 
sometimes perform this duty, is very important for safety in temporary 
traffic control areas. Not all worker clothing wears out and is 
replaced quickly, especially the safety apparel worn on the job site by 
supervisors and managers. To provide for a reasonably rapid 
implementation of this important change while minimizing impacts on 
State and local governments, the FHWA establishes a three-year phase-in 
target compliance date from the effective date of this final rule for 
the changes regarding flagger safety apparel.
    233. In Section 6E.03 Hand-Signaling Devices, the FHWA proposed in 
the NPA to add to the OPTION statement other design configurations for 
adding white lights to the STOP/SLOW paddle to improve visibility and 
conspicuity. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, and the Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North America in 
support of the proposed changes and nine comments from NCUTCD, the 
Arizona DOT, Caltrans, private citizens, and traffic control device 
manufacturers opposed to it. The opposing commenters suggested that red 
and yellow lights should also be permitted, and that the information 
regarding the design configurations needed more detail. The FHWA agrees 
that these other colors of lights will be helpful to road users at 
night, as determined by a New York State study.\44\ Therefore, the FHWA 
revises the OPTION statement in this final rule to include the use of 
red and yellow lights, as appropriate. The FHWA also adds two new 
paragraphs to the following STANDARD statement to provide appropriate 
restrictions on the mixing of colors of lights on the STOP

[[Page 65549]]

and SLOW paddles, and well as additional information regarding the 
arrangement of lights on the paddles.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \44\ A copy of ``Effectiveness of STOP/SLOW Paddles Equipped 
With Flashing Red and Flashing Yellow Lights,'' Experiment VI-117(E) 
STOP SLOW PADDLE, by Daniel Paddick, P.E., New York State Department 
of Transportation, is available on the docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA adds to the second STANDARD statement requirements for the 
performance of flashing lights that are used on the STOP/SLOW paddle. 
These flashing rate values are identical to the flashing rate used in 
other parts of the MUTCD. Five commenters representing the New York 
State Assembly, traffic control device manufacturers, and a private 
citizen suggest that ``triple'' flash modes be allowed; however, the 
FHWA disagrees because such high flash rates would appear more like a 
flicker than a flash and those rates would be close to the flash rates 
that may cause epileptic seizures.\45\ The FHWA adopts the change, as 
proposed in the NPA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \45\ The website of the National Society for Epilepsy, a 
professional society in the United Kingdom that specializes in 
epilspsy, states that a flash rate of 5 to 30 hertz (flashes per 
second) can cause seizures in some people. This information is 
available at the following URL: http://www.epilepsynse.org.uk/pages/info/leaflets/photo.cfm.
 A variety of websites of U.S. organizations 
also refer to the problem of photosensitivity (triggering of 
seizures by flickering lights) among epileptic persons.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    234. In Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, the FHWA revises the first 
STANDARD statement to indicate that flagger stations shall be located 
such that approaching road users will have sufficient distance to stop 
at an intended stopping point. The FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and two comments 
from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
opposed to it. Those who opposed the change suggested that it should be 
changed to a GUIDANCE. The FHWA disagrees because it is important that 
flagger stations be located where approaching road users can safely 
stop, and adopts the change in this final rule.
    To enhance worker safety, the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement 
following the first OPTION statement to indicate that flagger stations 
should be located so that an errant vehicle has space to stop without 
entering the work space. The FHWA received one comment from the 
Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North America specifically in 
support of this new statement. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed that this 
statement appear after the first STANDARD statement; however, a 
commenter from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggested moving it further back in the section to tie in 
better with the adjacent statements. The FHWA agrees and adopts this 
new GUIDANCE statement in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed changing the first SUPPORT statement 
to indicate that the Table 6E-1 provides information regarding the 
stopping sight distance as a function of speed. The FHWA received one 
comment from the Illinois DOT opposed to this change, stating that the 
use of Table 6E-1 is currently clear in the text and title of the table 
in the 2000 MUTCD. The FHWA disagrees because the revised SUPPORT 
statement matches the new title of the table, which provides the 
stopping sight distances for various speeds. The FHWA adopts the 
change; however, the FHWA incorporates the text into the following 
OPTION statement in this final rule.
    The FHWA revises the first OPTION statement to indicate that the 
distances shown in Table 6E-1 may be used for the location of a flagger 
station. The FHWA received one comment from NIOSH in support of this 
change; however, two commenters from Caltrans and the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to it. The 
opposing commenters suggested that the FHWA retain the language from 
the 2000 MUTCD indicating that the distances may be increased for 
downgrades and other conditions that affect stopping distance. The FHWA 
agrees and modifies the OPTION statement to include this additional 
information in this final rule.
    The FHWA changes the title of Table 6E-1 from ``Distance of Flagger 
Stations in Advance of the Work Space'' to ``Stopping Sight Distance as 
a Function of Speed'' and changes the distance values to be in 
agreement with AASHTO's ``A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and 
Streets.''\46\ The FHWA received three comments from the Laborers' 
Health and Safety Fund of North America, NIOSH, and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \46\ ``A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets,'' 
4th Edition, 2001, in both hardcopy and CD-ROM, is available from 
the American Association of State Highway and Transportation 
Officials (AASHTO) by telephone (800) 231-3475, facsimile (800) 525-
5562, mail AASHTO, P.O. Box 96716, Washington, DC 20090-6716, or at 
its Web site http://www.transportation.org and click on Bookstore. 
This document is a guide, based on established practices and 
supplemented by research, to provide guidance to the highway 
designer to provide for the needs of highway users while maintaining 
the integrity of the environment. It is incorporated by reference 
into the CFR at 23 CFR 625.4.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additionally, the FHWA changes the GUIDANCE statement (in the 2000 
MUTCD) to a STANDARD statement to indicate that, except in emergency 
situations, flagger stations shall be preceded by an advance warning 
sign or signs and that, except in emergency situations, flagger 
stations shall be illuminated at night. The FHWA believes that anytime 
a flagger is active at night, illumination of the flagger station is 
important to make the flagger more visible to approaching road users. 
The FHWA received one comment from a private citizen suggesting that 
more detail be provided to specify the meaning of ``illumination,'' and 
five comments from the Kansas and Wisconsin DOTs, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that this 
statement remain a GUIDANCE because during emergencies, where flagging 
is needed at night, portable lighting units are not always available. 
The FHWA agrees that lighting and/or advance warning signs are not 
always available for emergency situations, and revises the STANDARD 
statement to exclude emergency situations.
    235. In Section 6F.01 Types of Devices, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT at 
the beginning of this chapter defining the acronym ``TTC'' as discussed 
above at the start of the Part 6 discussion. The FHWA also adds a new 
SUPPORT statement that includes a reference to the FHWA's policy \47\ 
requiring that all roadside appurtenances on the National Highway 
System meet crashworthy performance criteria and referring to and 
repeating the definition of crashworthy as stated in Section 1A.13 
Definitions of Words and Phrases in this Manual. The FHWA adds these 
statements to consolidate information, to emphasize FHWA policies 
regarding accessibility and crashworthiness, and to be consistent with 
crashworthiness provisions in Section 6F.03, 6F.58, 6F.53, 6F.66, and 
6F.82.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \47\ Information on the FHWA policy is available at the 
following URL: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/programs/roadside_hardware.htm_____________________________________-


    The FHWA also relocates the final OPTION and SUPPORT statements 
from this section, and places them in Section 6F.02 General 
Characteristics of Signs, because this information regarding sign 
colors is more appropriate in that section. The FHWA makes this minor 
editorial change to move these statements for clarity and consolidation 
with other text regarding sign colors.
    236. In Section 6F.02 General Characteristics of Signs, following 
the first STANDARD statement, the FHWA inserts OPTION and SUPPORT 
statements regarding the color of warning signs in temporary traffic 
control zones. These statements were in Section 6F.01 in the NPA and 
2000 MUTCD, however the FHWA moves them to this section in this final 
rule where they are more appropriate.

[[Page 65550]]

    The FHWA adds to the second OPTION statement that warning and guide 
signs used for temporary traffic control of incident management 
situations may have a black legend and border on a fluorescent pink 
(referred to as coral in the NPA) background. The FHWA received one 
comment from the Virginia DOT in support of this change, and one from a 
traffic control device manufacturer opposed to it. The opposing 
commenter, representing the sign manufacturing industry, suggested that 
stronger language changing this to a GUIDANCE would help define the use 
of the color for this application and reduce confusion, resulting in 
increased recognition and association with incidents on the part of the 
road user. The FHWA disagrees because of the unplanned nature of 
incidents and the varied agencies and capabilities of first responders, 
agencies should have the ability to continue to use orange signs in 
incident management situations. Use and experience with the fluorescent 
pink color over time will increase awareness. The FHWA adopts the 
optional color fluorescent pink in this final rule.
    The FHWA adds a new table, numbered and titled, ``Table 6F-1 Sizes 
of Temporary Traffic Control Signs'' showing the sizes of temporary 
traffic control warning signs to facilitate the proper use of signs in 
temporary traffic control zones. This table contains the sizes that 
were illustrated with the individual signs in the figures in Chapter 6F 
in the NPA. This table consolidates the information in one location for 
clarity and easy reference. The FHWA references this table in the 
second STANDARD statement. The FHWA also revises the third OPTION 
statement to indicate that the dimensions of signs shown in Table 6F-1 
may be increased wherever necessary for greater legibility or emphasis. 
The FHWA adds this table and makes these changes to respond to a 
comment from Caltrans suggesting that a table of sign sizes in Part 6 
would better serve users than having the information spread throughout 
the part, and to clarify dimensions related to the class of highway on 
which the various sizes are recommended. The FHWA also removes sign 
sizes from the pages of sign images throughout this chapter, because 
this table consolidates all information regarding sign sizes in one 
location.
    The FHWA revises the wording and changes the last SUPPORT 
statement, regarding external sign illumination, to a STANDARD because 
of the need for consistency with requirements throughout other areas of 
the MUTCD. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen noting this inconsistency and 
suggesting that it be corrected, and the FHWA agrees that it is 
important to be consistent.
    237. In Section 6F.03 Sign Placement, in the first STANDARD 
statement, the FHWA adds ``bicycle movements'' to the list of reasons 
why in urban areas the distance between the bottom of the sign and the 
top of the near edge of the traveled way shall be at least 2.1 m (7 
ft), to enhance safety for bicyclists. The FHWA received seven comments 
from the City and County of Denver and private citizens in support of 
this change, and two comments from the Ohio DOT and a private citizen 
opposed to it. The Ohio DOT questioned the relationship between the 
presence of a bicycle and sign height. The FHWA believes that because 
bicyclists do ride on sidewalks in urban areas, they will have an 
effect on signs, especially when riding in a standing position, thus 
higher mounting heights are needed. A private citizen felt that this 
should not be a STANDARD statement if obvious exceptions exist, unless 
they are specifically listed. The FHWA believes that this STANDARD is 
consistent with the first paragraph of Section 2A.18 Mounting Height, 
which is also a STANDARD. The FHWA adds a new SUPPORT statement 
(consistent with Section 2A.18) that the mounting heights apply except 
as otherwise provided elsewhere in the MUTCD.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds language to the STANDARD requiring 
signs to be mounted and placed in accordance with Section 4.4 of the 
``Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines for 
Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG).''\48\ The FHWA received three 
comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and associations 
representing the blind community in support of this new text, and 
comments from the NCUTCD, the Ohio DOT, and Lake County, Illinois, 
opposed to it. The opposing commenters stated several reasons, 
including that this statement is repetitive throughout Part 6, that 
agencies need the flexibility to use engineering judgment on a case-by-
case basis to determine the appropriate measures in a temporary traffic 
control plan, and that the guidelines should be specifically stated in 
the MUTCD, rather than referenced. The FHWA disagrees because the ADAAG 
guidelines are too voluminous to include directly in the MUTCD and 
because ADAAG provides flexibility to determine the need for 
accommodation of pedestrians with disabilities and the actual 
applications that will be used when necessary. The FHWA adopts the 
text, as proposed in the NPA with a modification to address the issue 
of need for accommodation. Repetition is important to elevate the 
practitioners' awareness on the accommodation of pedestrians with 
disabilities and there are specific details in this and other sections 
of Part 6 on the installation of devices to satisfy accommodation.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \48\ ``Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines 
for Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG),'' as amended through January 
1998, is published by the U.S. Architectural and Transportation 
Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board), 1331 F Street, NW., Suite 
1000, Washington, DC 2004-111. It may be obtained from the Access 
Board, or viewed electronically at the following URL: http://www.access-board.gov/
 adaag/html/adaag.htm.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the second GUIDANCE statement that 
signs mounted lower than 2.1 m (7 ft) should not project more than 100 
mm (4 in) into pedestrian facilities. This is in accordance with the 
``Americans With Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines For 
Buildings And Facilities (ADAAG).'' The FHWA received two comments from 
associations representing the blind community supporting this change, 
and comments from the NCUTCD and a traffic engineering consultant 
opposed to it. The NCUTCD felt that this information was repetitive and 
the traffic engineering consultant suggested that ``sidewalk'' be 
removed from the GUIDANCE statement to better accommodate urban 
settings where paved sidewalks extend from the curb face to the 
building line. The FHWA disagrees and adopts the text as proposed in 
the NPA.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding a SUPPORT statement indicating 
that the design and placement of work zone signs is described elsewhere 
in Chapter 6F of the Manual. The FHWA received one comment from the 
NCUTCD opposed this, suggesting that this statement is not necessary. 
The FHWA agrees and deletes this statement from this final rule.
    Additionally, in the 2000 MUTCD, the FHWA established a new 
requirement in this section that sign supports for temporary traffic 
control devices shall be crashworthy, but no special phase-in target 
compliance date was established at that time. Based on comments that 
agencies are encountering difficulties and economic impacts given the 
extensive testing of devices that has to occur in accordance with NCHRP 
Report 350 \49\ in order to determine and

[[Page 65551]]

certify crashworthiness, the FHWA determines that a special phase-in 
target compliance date is required for the crashworthiness provision in 
this section. In this final rule, the FHWA establishes a phase-in 
target compliance date of January 17, 2005 for sign supports for 
temporary traffic control devices to be crashworthy. This is consistent 
with guidance previously communicated informally to jurisdictions in 
training and presentations by the FHWA Office of Safety regarding 
roadside safety and countermeasures for run-off-the-road crashes, and 
is a reasonable phase-in target date for achieving compliance.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement regarding the type 
of sign post to be used in the clear zone. The FHWA received three 
comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen opposed to the new GUIDANCE. The City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen suggested that the statement be 
strengthened to a STANDARD, in order to require that sign posts placed 
in the clear zone be yielding or breakaway. The FHWA disagrees that 
this should be a STANDARD because jurisdictions need the flexibility to 
address unusual situations, but the FHWA revises the wording of the 
GUIDANCE in this final rule to be consistent with other references.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \49\ NCHRP Report 350, ``Recommended Procedures for the Safety 
Performance Evaluation of Highway Features,'' 1993, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://gulliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_350-a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA also adds a SUPPORT statement regarding crashworthiness of 
sign supports. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting 
that this statement is not necessary. The FHWA disagrees because this 
statement conveys important information about crashworthiness of sign 
supports. The FHWA revises the statement slightly in this final rule to 
clarify the language and add a reference to NCHRP Report 350.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding OPTION, GUIDANCE, and OPTION 
statements at the end of the section regarding sign supports for long-
term and short-term use. Based on comments, the FHWA removes these 
statements from this final rule, because this information is contained 
in Section 6F.01 Types of Devices and it is not necessary to repeat it 
in this section.
    In Figure 6F-2, the FHWA adds the phrase, ``above the traveled 
way,'' to the mounting height notes in the figure to be consistent with 
the corresponding standard statements in this section.
    238. In Section 6F.06 Regulatory Sign Design, the FHWA changes the 
first sentence of the SUPPORT statement (in the 2000 MUTCD) to become a 
new STANDARD statement at the beginning of the section, stating that 
temporary traffic control regulatory signs shall conform to the 
standards for regulatory signs presented in Part 2 and in the FHWA's 
``Standard Highway Signs'' book. In the 2000 MUTCD, this sentence 
contains the word ``shall'' but was inadvertently included in the 
SUPPORT statement. This will make this statement consistent with the 
remainder of the MUTCD. The remainder of the SUPPORT statement remains 
a SUPPORT statement. The FHWA received two comments from ATSSA and the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change, and incorporates 
this change in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA identifies the three page images of 
regulatory signs that follow page 6F-7 (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) 
as ``Figure 6F-3 Regulatory Signs in Temporary Traffic Control Zones,'' 
and numbers them Sheets 1 and 2. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed that 
each page of sign images have a distinct figure number and title; 
however, several commenters suggested that the various titles were 
confusing. Additionally the FHWA removes all of the sign sizes from the 
pages of sign images, because sign sizes are now included in Table 6F-
1.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed increasing the size of the following 
signs in Table 6F-1: PEDESTRIAN CROSSWALK, SIDEWALK CLOSED, SIDEWALK 
CLOSED USE OTHER SIDE, SIDEWALK CLOSED CROSS HERE, and SIDEWALK CLOSED 
AHEAD CROSS HERE to make it easier for a pedestrian to read these signs 
from across a wide street. The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to 
the larger sign sizes, and one comment from the Connecticut DOT 
questioning why the larger signs were needed. The reason for increasing 
the size of the signs was to make them more readable from across the 
street, and to make them more readable by pedestrians with visual 
disabilities. Based on the comments, and FHWA's judgment that 48-inch-
wide signs would be too wide, thus in some cases blocking the sidewalk, 
the FHWA restores the size of these signs to 600 x 300 mm (24 x 12 in) 
in this final rule. Jurisdictions may use larger sizes when needed and 
where feasible.
    239. In Section 6F.12 PEDESTRIAN CROSSWALK Sign (R9-8), the FHWA 
adds a STANDARD statement following the OPTION statement that if a 
temporary crosswalk is established, it shall be accessible to 
pedestrians with disabilities. The FHWA received eight comments from 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, the City and County of Denver, and private 
citizens in support of this new statement, and one from the NCUTCD 
opposed to it. The NCUTCD indicated that the statement was repetitious. 
The FHWA agrees; however, repetition is necessary in this case to 
elevate awareness, and the FHWA adopts the statement, with an added 
reference to the new Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, which 
provides additional information about pedestrian accessibility.
    240. In Section 6F.13, SIDEWALK CLOSED Signs (R9-9, R9-10, R9-11, 
R9-11a), to provide adequate route guidance information to pedestrians, 
the FHWA proposed to add to the first GUIDANCE statement that Bicycle/
Pedestrian Detour (M4-9a) or Pedestrian Detour (M4-9b) signs should be 
used where pedestrian flow is rerouted. The FHWA received one comment 
from the NCUTCD opposed to this new text, suggesting that reference to 
these signs is not necessary in this section. The FHWA disagrees and 
adopts the references to the M4-9a and M4-9b signs in this final rule. 
The SIDEWALK CLOSED signs are used in situations where the normal 
pedestrian traffic is rerouted.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT statement that printed 
signs are not useful to pedestrians with visual disabilities. In the 
NPA, the FHWA proposed to add that accessible pedestrian signals can 
provide audible information about closures and alternate routes. The 
FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this additional 
text, stating that it was repetitive. The FHWA received three comments 
from associations representing the blind community suggesting that the 
statement be expanded to provide more useful information about how to 
communicate sidewalk closure information to pedestrians with visual 
disabilities. The FHWA agrees and incorporates additional information 
regarding the use of barriers, detectable barricades, accessible 
signage, and audible information.
    241. In Section 6F.14 Special Regulatory Signs, the FHWA adds a 
SUPPORT statement referencing Section 2B.17 FINES HIGHER PLAQUE for 
information regarding the use of the FINES HIGHER sign, because this 
sign can be useful in enhancing speed enforcement in temporary traffic 
control zones. The FHWA received three comments from ATSSA, the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, and the Associated General Contractors of America in 
support of this new statement, and one from the NCUTCD opposed to it. 
The

[[Page 65552]]

NCUTCD suggested that reference to this sign is not necessary in this 
section. The FHWA disagrees and adopts this new statement in this final 
rule. Practitioners may not otherwise find that such a sign exists 
without the reference in Part 6 where they would typically look for 
temporary traffic control signs and the related text.
    242. In Section 6F.15 Warning Sign Function, Design, and 
Application, the FHWA adds to the first OPTION statement that warning 
signs used for temporary traffic control incident management situations 
may have a black legend and border on a fluorescent pink (referred to 
as coral in the NPA) background, as an alternative to black on orange. 
This is consistent with changes in Section 6F.02 General 
Characteristics of Signs and the new Chapter 6I. The FHWA received one 
comment from Lake County, Illinois, opposed to the use of fluorescent 
pink, suggesting that highway incident management signing needs to be 
consistent with emergency management signing. The FHWA disagrees 
because these are two different situations and there is no reason why 
these signs need to be the same color. The FHWA adopts the change as 
proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, in the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add to the GUIDANCE 
statement that where road users include pedestrians, the provision of 
supplemental audible or tactile warning information should be 
considered for people with visual disabilities. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this statement, 
and four from associations representing the blind community opposed to 
it. The NCUTCD suggested that this statement is repetitive. Three 
comments from associations representing the blind community suggested 
that the statement be revised to provide for supplemental audible 
information or detectable barriers or barricades, rather than tactile 
information, for pedestrians with visual disabilities. The FHWA agrees 
and incorporates these revisions in this final rule. The FHWA also 
inserts a SUPPORT statement following the GUIDANCE to clarify how 
detectable barriers and barricades assist pedestrians with visual 
disabilities.
    Additionally, the FHWA identifies the six page images of warning 
signs that follow page 6F-13 (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) as 
``Figure 6F-4 Warning Signs in Temporary Traffic Control Zones,'' and 
numbers them Sheets 1 through 4. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed that 
each page of sign images have a distinct figure number, however in this 
final rule the FHWA numbers these pages similar to the illustrations of 
regulatory signs. The FHWA identifies the following page of sign images 
``Figure 6F-5 Exit Open and Closed and Detour Signs.''
    Similar to comments in Section 2C.30 Speed Reduction Signs, the 
FHWA received two comments from the Missouri DOT and Lake County, 
Illinois, opposed to changing the Reduced Speed Ahead sign from a 
regulatory sign to a warning sign. Consistent with the decision in Part 
2, the FHWA changes the Reduced Speed Ahead sign to a warning sign with 
sign designations W3-5 and W3-5a.
    The FHWA received three comments from the Ohio DOT, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting additional 
information regarding the use of the new dump truck symbol warning sign 
(W11-10a) to clarify where the sign should be used. Consistent with 
Chapter 2C, the FHWA withdraws the proposed new dump truck symbol 
warning sign (W11-10a) and instead illustrates the W11-10 truck warning 
symbol sign. The FHWA also adds a new section numbered and titled, 
``Section 6F.34 Motorized Traffic Signs (W8-6, W11-10),'' to clarify 
sign use.
    The FHWA received two comments from the Ohio DOT regarding the NO 
CENTER STRIPE (W8-12) sign. First, the Ohio DOT suggested that a sign 
be added to address the situation when the edge line has been 
obliterated. The FHWA believes that this is not usually a situation 
that requires warning, because there are many roads that do not have 
edge lines, however there is nothing that would prohibit an agency from 
developing a special word message warning sign with the legend NO EDGE 
LINE that would be similar to the W8-12 sign. Second, the Ohio DOT 
opposed the NO CENTER STRIPE sign, suggesting that the legend should 
read NO CENTER LINE. The FHWA disagrees because ``centerline'' is a 
single word, and to be technically correct would need to be on the same 
line. The FHWA believes that the public understands both ``centerline'' 
and ``center stripe'' equally well, so it adopts the NO CENTER STRIPE 
legend on the W8-12 sign in this final rule.
    The FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen regarding the BE PREPARED TO STOP 
(designated W20-7b in the NPA) sign. Both commenters suggested that a 
larger size be used. The FHWA revises the designation for this sign to 
be W3-4 throughout Part 6 to maintain consistency with Chapter 2C. The 
W3 Series in Chapter 2C has a conventional size of 900 x 900 mm (36 x 
36 in), however agencies may choose to use larger sizes where they feel 
it is appropriate.
    A traffic engineering consultant suggested that the FHWA add a new 
section to allow for Special Warning Signs similar to the provision for 
Special Regulatory Signs in 6F.14. The FHWA agrees and has included a 
new Section 6F.47 Special Warning Signs.
    243. In Section 6F.17 ROAD (STREET) WORK Sign (W20-1), in the NPA, 
the FHWA proposed adding an OPTION statement indicating that, where 
traffic can enter a temporary traffic control zone from a crossroad or 
a major (high volume) driveway, an advance warning sign may be used on 
the crossroad or major driveway to alert road users. The FHWA received 
comments from ATSSA, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and a private citizen 
in support of this change, and one comment from the NCUTCD suggesting 
that this statement be strengthened to a GUIDANCE. The FHWA agrees that 
use of the sign on the crossroad is important for safety and changes 
this statement to a GUIDANCE in this final rule.
    244. In Section 6F.24 the FHWA changes the title of the section 
from ``Lane Reduction Sign (W4-2)'' to ``Lane Ends Sign (W4-2)'' to 
reflect the sign's name change and to be consistent with Part 2. The 
FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support 
of this change, and adopts this change. The FHWA received three 
comments from the Minnesota DOT, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen opposed to the new sign design for the W4-2 sign, 
which depicts a lane ending. Please refer to the discussion regarding 
this sign in Section 2C.33 Lane Ends Signs (W4-2, W9-1, W9-2) above.
    245. In Section 6F.27 SLOW TRAFFIC AHEAD Sign (W23-1), the FHWA 
proposed changing the sign shape from a rectangle to a diamond. The 
FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen opposed to it to the change in sign shape, 
stating that the rectangular sign fits better than a diamond sign on 
the back of a moving truck, which is where this sign is primarily used. 
The FHWA agrees and illustrates a rectangular shaped W23-1 sign in 
Figure 6F-4.
    246. In Section 6F.28 EXIT OPEN, EXIT CLOSED, EXIT ONLY Signs (E5-
2, E5-2a, E5-3) (titled EXIT OPEN, EXIT CLOSED Signs (E5-2, E5-2a) in 
the NPA), the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement indicating that when an 
exit ramp is closed, a black on orange EXIT CLOSED panel should be 
placed

[[Page 65553]]

diagonally across the interchange/intersection guide signs to enhance 
the information provided to road users. The FHWA received one comment 
from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this new GUIDANCE 
statement, and five comments from the NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, 
Caltrans, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
opposed to it. The NCUTCD suggested that the GUIDANCE be changed to an 
OPTION, because ramp closures may occur for only a short period of 
time, and installing EXIT CLOSED panels on freeway guide signs involves 
significant effort.
    Caltrans and the Wisconsin DOT suggested that the diagonal 
orientation of the sign would be especially confusing on guide signs 
with more than one exit, because a portion of the street name would be 
covered and unreadable for road users desiring to use the exit that is 
open. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
suggested that the size of the panel be changed to better cover the 
sign. The FHWA disagrees with the opposing comments because it is very 
important, particularly for unfamiliar road users, to know that an exit 
is closed, and covering only a portion of the message by using the 
diagonal placement of the sign gives road users a visual clue as to 
what exit is closed. Because this sign may be used for other 
applications, the sign size, as proposed in the NPA, is appropriate.
    The FHWA adds the EXIT ONLY sign (E5-3) to Figure 6F-5, and changes 
the title of the figure to ``Exit Open and Closed and Detour Signs.'' 
The EXIT ONLY sign has been in the ``Standard Highway Signs'' book for 
many years and is used in some applications, so the FHWA determines 
that it is to be included in this section to correct an earlier 
omission.
    247. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6F.34 Motorized Traffic Signs (W8-6, W11-10).'' The FHWA adds this 
section in this final rule for consistency with Section 2C.36 Motorized 
Traffic Signs (W8-6, W11-10) and to address comments received in 
Section 6F.15 Warning Sign Function, Design, and Application. This new 
section mirrors text in Section 2C.36 Motorized Traffic Signs (W8-6, 
W11-10) and includes OPTION and SUPPORT statements clarifying the use 
of the Motorized Traffic (W8-6, W11-10) signs to alert road users to 
locations where unexpected use of the roadway by construction vehicles 
might occur. The FHWA renumbers the subsequent sections accordingly.
    248. In Section 6F.38 Signs for Blasting Areas (numbered Section 
6F.37 in the NPA), the FHWA removes the GUIDANCE statement from this 
section. The GUIDANCE statement included a minimum safe distance of 300 
m (1000 ft) for placing warning signs, however this information is 
stated as a STANDARD in Sections 6F.40 and 6F.41 (numbered 6F.38 to 
6F.40 in the NPA). The FHWA received comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen requesting that this 
inconsistency be resolved. The FHWA agrees that the STANDARD should 
take precedence and removes the GUIDANCE from Section 6F.38.
    249. In Section 6F.40 TURN OFF 2-WAY RADIO AND CELL PHONE Sign 
(W22-2) (numbered Section 6F.39 in the NPA), the FHWA received two 
comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen opposed to adding the word ``CELL'' to the legend of the W22-2a 
sign. The commenters suggested that other mobile phones have the same 
risk of causing premature firing of detonators. These commenters also 
suggested that the sign needed to be more readable with larger letter 
sizes and only three lines of text. The FHWA believes that the sign, as 
proposed in the NPA with the word ``CELL'', is appropriate. The 
Temporary Traffic Controls Committee of the NCUTCD supported the sign 
proposed in the NPA based on information received from representatives 
of the blasting industry and the Federal Communication Commission. Even 
though there are some other types of mobile phones and radios that can 
potentially cause premature firing of detonators, two-way radios and 
cell phones constitute the bulk of the devices in use in vehicles 
today, and the FHWA believes the terminology is best understood by the 
public. The FHWA changes the sign designation from W22-2a to W22-2 in 
this final rule, because there is no sign currently designated W22-2.
    250. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed combining Sections 6F.41 and 
6F.42 (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) into one section numbered and 
titled, ``Section 6F.41 Shoulder and UNEVEN LANES Signs (W8-4, W8-9, 
W8-9a, and W8-11).'' Although the FHWA received comments from a private 
citizen and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation in support of combining 
these sections, the NCUTCD suggested that these two sections should not 
be combined because they each describe unique applications and having 
two separate sections enhances practitioners' understanding. The FHWA 
agrees and separates these sections in this final rule into Section 
6F.42 Shoulder Signs (W8-4, W8-9, W8-9a) and Section 6F.43 UNEVEN LANES 
Sign (W8-11).
    In Section 6F.42 Shoulder Signs (W8-4, W8-9, W8-9a), the FHWA 
includes an OPTION statement to allow the use of the SOFT SHOULDER sign 
to warn of a soft shoulder condition and the LOW SHOULDER sign to warn 
of a shoulder condition where there is an elevation difference of less 
than 75 mm (3 in) between the shoulder and the travel lane. The FHWA 
received two comments in support of these changes from a private 
citizen and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation, and adopts these changes.
    The FHWA received two comments from the Illinois DOT and a traffic 
engineering consultant opposed to mandating the use of SHOULDER DROP 
OFF signs. Those opposed expressed that the text should be a GUIDANCE, 
because requiring the use of SHOULDER DROP OFF signs at all locations 
that meet the criteria would be a considerable hardship on agencies to 
properly identify all locations and sign them at all times. The FHWA 
agrees and revises this as to a GUIDANCE and adds clarifying text 
consistent with Chapter 2C in this final rule.
    In Section 6F.43 UNEVEN LANES Sign (W8-11) (numbered Section 6F.42 
in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA maintains the GUIDANCE statement from the 
2000 MUTCD text, and adds the phrase ``that are open to travel'' at the 
end of the sentence to address a comment received in Section 2C.26 
Shoulder Signs suggesting additional information be included regarding 
the use of the UNEVEN LANES sign. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed 
including the word ``substantial'' in the description of the difference 
in elevation between adjacent lanes. The FHWA received four comments 
from the NCUTCD, the Illinois DOT, the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that the word 
``substantial'' be removed, because it is vague. The FHWA agrees and 
adopts the GUIDANCE with modifications in this final rule.
    251. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6F.45 Double Reverse Curve Signs (W24 Series).'' (This section was 
numbered Section 6F.43 in the NPA.) This section contains an OPTION 
statement regarding the use of the Double Reverse Curve sign when the 
tangent distance between two reverse curves is insufficient for a 
second Reverse Curve sign to be placed between the curves. The FHWA 
received two comments from ATSSA and the City of Tucson,

[[Page 65554]]

Arizona, in support of this new statement, and one from the NCUTCD 
suggesting that the word ``insufficient'' be defined as ``less than 180 
m (600 feet).'' The FHWA agrees and clarifies the OPTION statement in 
this final rule.
    This section also contains a STANDARD statement that if a Double 
Reverse Curve sign is used, the number of lanes illustrated on the sign 
shall be the same as the number of through lanes available to road 
users, and the direction of the double reverse curve shall be 
appropriately illustrated. The FHWA received two comments from ATSSA 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this new statement, and 
three comments from Caltrans, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen suggesting that illustrating the number of lanes 
on the sign may be complex for multi-lane applications. The FHWA adopts 
the text in this final rule, because it is important to convey to road 
users that all of the lanes continue. Two commenters from City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggested that the 
size of the W24 series signs be 1200 x 1200 mm (48 x 48 in). The FHWA 
believes that for one and two lane Double Reverse Curve signs, the 900 
x 900 mm (36 x 36 in) signs as proposed in the NPA are appropriate, but 
that for three or more lanes, larger sizes may be desirable, and there 
is nothing preventing agencies from using larger sign sizes.
    252. In Section 6F.46 Other Warning Signs (numbered 6F.44 in the 
NPA), the FHWA revises the STANDARD statement to reference Section 
6F.02 for exceptions to using black legends and borders on orange 
backgrounds for warning signs. The FHWA includes this change in this 
final rule because it is necessary to be consistent with other sections 
of the MUTCD.
    253. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6F.47 Special Warning signs.'' This section contains OPTION and 
GUIDANCE statements with information regarding the design of special 
warning signs. The FHWA adds this section to this final rule to remind 
readers that special word message warning signs may be used. This 
section parallels a similar section in Part 2 that allows the use of 
special word signs, and adding the section to Part 6 is necessary for 
consistency.
    254. In Section 6F.48 Advisory Speed Plaque (W13-1) (numbered 
Section 6F.45 in the NPA), the FHWA received comments from the Ohio DOT 
opposed to the design of the sign--both the black circle around the 
numerals on the metric sign and the use of periods between the letters 
for the acronym ``M.P.H.'' on the English-units sign. The FHWA 
disagrees that the black circle around the numerals is confusing, 
because it is necessary that this sign look different from the English-
unit sign in order to avoid confusion. The FHWA adopts the black circle 
on the sign in this final rule. The FHWA agrees that periods are not 
necessary in the acronym MPH and removes the periods from the sign 
images and from the listing in Table 1A-1, to reflect common practice.
    255. In Section 6F.50 Guide Signs (numbered Section 6F.47 in the 
NPA), the FHWA adds to the OPTION statement that guide signs used for 
temporary traffic control incident management situations may have a 
black legend and border on a fluorescent pink (referred to as coral in 
the NPA) background as an alternative to black on orange, to correspond 
with the change in Section 6F.02 General Characteristics of Signs. The 
FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support 
of this change, and three comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, a private citizen, and a traffic engineering consultant 
suggesting that wording of the STANDARD and the GUIDANCE relating to 
the color of additional guide signs in temporary traffic control zones 
was inconsistent and confusing. To clarify, the FHWA revises the 
STANDARD statement in this final rule to specify that if additional 
temporary guide signs are used in temporary traffic control zones, they 
shall have a black legend and border on an orange background. The FHWA 
also adds a paragraph to the OPTION stating that when permanent 
directional or street name signs are used with detour signing, they may 
have a white legend on a green background. This will clarify that 
street name signs do not need to be on an orange background.
    256. In Section 6F.52 END ROAD WORK Sign (G20-2) (numbered Section 
6F.49 in the NPA), the FHWA changes the GUIDANCE statement to indicate 
that the END ROAD WORK sign should be placed near the end of the 
termination area, rather than specify a distance beyond the end of the 
temporary traffic control zone as in the 2000 MUTCD. The FHWA received 
two comments from the NCUTCD and the Wisconsin DOT opposed to this 
change. The NCUTCD suggested that the wording be changed to indicate 
that this sign is not always necessary, and the Wisconsin DOT suggested 
that a placement distance be included. The FHWA agrees with the NCUTCD 
and adds the phrase ``when used'' at the start of the GUIDANCE. Rather 
than specifying a distance, the FHWA further clarifies that the END 
ROAD WORK sign should be placed near the end of the termination area, 
as determined by engineering judgment.
    257. In Section 6F.53 Detour Signs and Markers (M4-8, M4-8a, M4-8b, 
M4-9, M4-9a, M4-9b, M4-9c, and M4-10) (numbered Section 6F.50 in the 
NPA), the FHWA changes the title to include signs specifically for 
detouring pedestrians and bicyclists.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the first OPTION statement that 
signs used for temporary traffic control of incident management 
situations may have a black legend and border on a fluorescent pink 
(referred to as coral in the NPA) background, as an alternative to 
black on orange, to correspond to changes in Section 6F.02 General 
Characteristics of Signs. The FHWA received one comment from the City 
of Tucson, Arizona, supporting this change, and incorporates this 
change.
    Additionally, at the end of the second GUIDANCE statement, the FHWA 
adds that the Pedestrian/Bicycle Detour (M4-9a) sign should be used 
where a pedestrian/bicycle detour route has been established because of 
the closing of a pedestrian/bicycle facility to through traffic. In the 
NPA, the FHWA proposed that this be a STANDARD, rather than GUIDANCE; 
however, the FHWA believes that GUIDANCE is more appropriate and is 
consistent with Section 6F.13 Sidewalk Closed Signs. The FHWA adds a 
STANDARD statement that if used, the Pedestrian/Bicycle Detour sign 
shall have an arrow pointing in the appropriate direction.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds an OPTION statement at the end of the 
section that an arrow may be on the sign face or on a supplemental 
plaque. The Pedestrian/Bicycle Detour (M4-9a) sign or Bicycle Detour 
(M4-9c) sign may be used where a pedestrian or bicycle detour route 
(not both) has been established because of the closing of that 
particular facility to through traffic.
    The FHWA received eleven comments from the Florida DOT, the City 
and County of Denver, Colorado, the City of Tucson, Arizona, the 
Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals, and private 
citizens in support of the changes to include signs specifically for 
detouring pedestrians and bicyclists.
    258. In Section 6F.55 Portable Changeable Message Signs (numbered 
Section 6F.52 in the NPA), the FHWA adds a sentence at the end of the 
first STANDARD statement that each character module shall use at least 
a five wide and seven high pixel matrix, based on research regarding 
visibility and

[[Page 65555]]

legibility of changeable message signs.\50\ The FHWA received one 
comment from the NCUTCD opposing this change, stating that other units 
are in use. The FHWA believes that this is a minimum requirement, and 
the FHWA includes this sentence in this final rule.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \50\ ``Changeable Message Sign Visibility,'' Federal Highway 
Administration publication number FHWA-RD-94-077, by P.M. Garvey and 
D.J. Mace, 1994, is available from FHWA, Turner-Fairbank Highway 
Research Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, Virginia 22101. It is 
also available for purchase from The National Technical Information 
Service, Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000. Internet Web 
site address at http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the first GUIDANCE statement that 
for a trailer or large truck mounted sign, the letter height should be 
a minimum of 450 mm (18 in). For a service patrol truck mounted sign, 
the letter height should be a minimum of 250 mm (10 in). The message 
panel should have adjustable display rates (minimum of 3 seconds per 
phase) so that the entire message can be read at least twice at the 
posted speed, the off-peak 85th percentile prior to work starting, or 
the anticipated operating speed. Because the FHWA is retaining the 
current guidance that road users should be able to read the entire 
message twice, there may be a need in some temporary traffic control 
zones to use more than one Portable Changeable Message sign. The FHWA 
incorporates these changes in response to research addressing the needs 
of older road users.\51\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \51\ Information about this research is summarized on pages 253-
263 of the ``Highway Design Handbook for Older Drivers and 
Pedestrians,'' Report number FHWA-RD-01-103, published by the FHWA 
Office of Safety Research and Development, 2001. It is available for 
purchase from The National Technical Information Service, 
Springfield, Virginia 22161, (703) 605-6000. Internet Web site 
address at http://www.ntis.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The FHWA received one opposing comment from a traffic engineering 
consultant suggesting that legibility depends on several factors and 
that, at a minimum, letter heights on trailer or large truck mounted 
signs and changeable message signs mounted on service patrol trucks 
should be the same, at 450 mm (18 in). The Virginia DOT agreed with 
allowing smaller letter heights for service patrol trucks and also 
suggested that letter heights for signs used on work vehicles in moving 
operations could also be smaller. The FHWA received one opposing 
comment from a traffic control device manufacturer suggesting that 
letter heights for changeable message signs should be consistent with 
the size of lettering on static signs. The FHWA disagrees because the 
sign types are entirely different and need to be treated separately. 
The FHWA adopts the letter heights as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to the 
minimum three second per phase recommendation for the adjustable 
display rates, stating that there was no documentation indicating that 
three seconds was appropriate. The FHWA disagrees because a minimum 
display time needs to be specified for each message phase to give road 
users a reasonable chance to read the message before it goes away and, 
based on the previously-cited research addressing the needs of older 
drivers, believes three seconds is sufficient.
    Additionally, for clarity, the FHWA moves the GUIDANCE information 
regarding the factors that agencies should take into account when 
designing changeable messages from the end of the section to the end of 
the first GUIDANCE statement.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes and relocates from the first 
GUIDANCE statement to the following OPTION statement (based on the 2000 
MUTCD) that smaller letter sizes may be used on a sign mounted on a 
trailer or large truck provided that the message is legible from a 
minimum distance of 200 m (650 ft), or a sign mounted on a service 
patrol truck provided that the message is legible from a minimum 
distance of 100 m (330 ft). The FHWA received one comment from the 
NCUTCD opposed to this paragraph, stating that there is not sufficient 
documentation to justify smaller letter sizes. The FHWA adopts the 
OPTION as proposed in the NPA, because service patrol trucks are 
typically small pick-up trucks on which it is not practical to mount 
large signs.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a fourth paragraph to the second 
STANDARD statement to clarify that the mounting of Portable Changeable 
Message signs on a trailer, a large truck, or a service patrol truck 
shall be such that the bottom of the message sign panel shall be a 
minimum or 2.1 m (7 ft) above the roadway in urban areas and 1.5 m (5 
ft) in rural areas when it is in the operating mode, to correspond with 
mounting heights for ground-mounted signs. The FHWA received one 
comment from a traffic engineering consultant opposed to these mounting 
heights, stating that it is sometimes not practical or necessary to 
mount the large, heavy signs this high. The commenter suggested that 
this be changed to a GUIDANCE to give more flexibility. The FHWA 
retains this as a STANDARD, because the only change from the 2000 MUTCD 
is to add that these signs may be mounted lower in rural areas, thereby 
giving agencies additional flexibility. Any further changes would 
require notice and public comment in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA also consolidates all of the SUPPORT statements in this 
section under one heading at the beginning of the section. The FHWA 
makes this minor editorial change to better organize the section, based 
on a suggestion from a traffic engineering consultant.
    259. In Section 6F.56 Arrow Panels (numbered Section 6F.53 in the 
NPA), the FHWA adds to the first GUIDANCE statement that an arrow panel 
in the arrow mode should be used to advise approaching road users of a 
lane closure along major multi-lane roadways in situations involving 
heavy traffic volumes, high speeds, and/or limited sight distances, or 
at other locations and under other conditions where road users are less 
likely to expect such lane closures. The FHWA received one comment from 
the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change. The NCUTCD 
opposed this change suggesting that ``Sequential Chevron mode'' be 
added, because chevron mode is also permitted for arrow panels in this 
case. The FHWA agrees and incorporates this change.
    The FHWA also revises the last paragraph of this GUIDANCE statement 
to clarify that if it is not removed, an arrow panel within the clear 
zone should be delineated with retroreflective temporary traffic 
control devices if it is not feasible to shield it with a barrier or 
crash cushion when it is not in use. The FHWA received one comment from 
a private citizen opposed to this change, stating that shielding the 
arrow panel with a barrier or crash cushion is impractical. The FHWA 
notes that the change proposed in the NPA actually clarified that the 
shielding only pertains to arrow panels not in use, and that 
retroreflective delineation is acceptable. The FHWA adopts the change 
as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA revises the last paragraph of the sixth STANDARD statement 
to clarify the language. The FHWA received no comments regarding this 
change, and adopts this change. However, the FHWA received two comments 
from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
regarding the fifth GUIDANCE statement and the last paragraph of the 
last STANDARD statement concerning the use of the word ``shift'' as it 
relates to moving traffic over laterally. Because the intent throughout 
the MUTCD is that arrow panels are to be used only in merging 
operations, not to shift traffic laterally, the FHWA revises these 
statements accordingly. The FHWA makes these changes in the final rule,

[[Page 65556]]

due to the comments received and the need to clarify the proper use of 
arrow panels.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION at the end of the section to indicate 
that a portable changeable message sign may be used to simulate an 
arrow panel display. The FHWA received one comment from the Illinois 
DOT opposed to this new OPTION, stating that it should be deleted 
because portable changeable message signs are not nearly as conspicuous 
as arrow panels. The FHWA disagrees because portable changeable message 
signs are often used as a supplement to arrow panels well in advance of 
the arrow panels where long queues are expected. The FHWA adopts this 
new OPTION in this final rule.
    260. In Section 6F.58 Channelizing Devices (numbered Section 6F.55 
in the NPA), following the first SUPPORT statement, the FHWA proposed 
adding a STANDARD statement, GUIDANCE statement, and another STANDARD 
statement defining the use of channelizing devices to channelize 
pedestrians and that they need to be detectable to users of long canes. 
While there were eight comments from the City and County of Denver, 
Colorado, and private citizens in support of these new statements, the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggested that 
use of these devices should only be necessary at locations that are 
likely to be used by pedestrians with visual disabilities. Lake County, 
Illinois, opposed this change, stating that the individual highway 
agencies should have more flexibility in meeting the ADA Guidelines. 
Several representatives of the blind community recommended rewording to 
include that the devices should be detectable not only to users of long 
canes, but also visible to persons having low vision, because many 
persons who are severely visually impaired do not travel with the aid 
of a long cane or a guide dog, but rely on their diminished vision for 
travel information. Channelizing devices that are made highly visible 
by strong contrast are accessible to pedestrians with low vision. The 
FHWA agrees and revises the STANDARD statement accordingly. The FHWA 
changes the proposed GUIDANCE to an OPTION, because it was 
inadvertently classified as a GUIDANCE in the NPA. The FHWA also 
modifies this statement, increasing the maximum gap size between the 
bottom rail and the ground to 150 mm (6 in) (proposed as 38 mm, 1.5 
inches in the NPA) to facilitate drainage.
    The FHWA revises the first GUIDANCE statement by removing the 
phrase ``in the immediate area'' from the last sentence regarding 
fragments or other debris from channeling devices or ballast. The 
NCUTCD disagreed with removing this phrase, but did not cite a reason. 
The FHWA adopts the sentence as proposed in the NPA because debris and 
fragments pose a hazard to road users and workers, even if not in the 
immediate area. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggested that this statement should be a STANDARD and that all 
channelizing devices shall be crashworthy. The FHWA disagrees because 
not every channelizing device is required to be crashworthy. The FHWA 
adopts the language of this statement as proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a note to Figure 6F-7 (numbered 6F-14 
in the NPA), (Sheet 1 of 2) that if drums, cones, or tubular markers 
are used to channelize pedestrians, they shall be located such that 
there are no gaps between the bases of the devices, in order to create 
a continuous bottom, and the height of each individual drum, cone, or 
tubular marker shall be no less than 915 mm (36 in) to be detectable to 
users of long canes. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to 
this new note, suggesting that it be revised to indicate that criteria 
apply only at locations where the presence of disabled pedestrians is 
likely. The FHWA addresses this comment by beginning this note with 
``if'' rather than ``when'' in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a note to Figure 6F-7 (numbered 6F-14 
in the NPA), (Sheet 2 of 2) that if barricades are used to channelize 
pedestrians, there shall be continuous detectable bottom and top rails 
with no gaps between individual barricades to be detectable to users of 
long canes. The bottom of the bottom rail shall be no higher than 150 
mm (6 in) above the ground surface. The top of the top rail shall be no 
lower than 915 mm (36 in) above the ground surface. The FHWA received 
three comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen opposed to this new note, suggesting that it be 
revised to indicate that criteria apply only at locations where the 
presence of disabled pedestrians is likely. The FHWA addresses this 
comment by beginning this note with ``if'' rather than ``when'' in this 
final rule.
    The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that the footnote 
regarding nominal lumber dimensions on each of the figures not be 
removed as was proposed in the NPA. The FHWA removes this footnote 
because devices constructed of lumber have not passed NCHRP 350 
crashworthy criteria.
    Additionally, in the 2000 MUTCD a new recommendation was 
established in this section that channelizing devices in temporary 
traffic control zones should be crashworthy. No special phase-in target 
compliance date was established at that time. Based on comments that 
agencies are encountering difficulties and economic impacts given the 
extensive testing of devices that has to occur in accordance with NCHRP 
Report 350 \52\ in order to determine and certify crashworthiness, the 
FHWA determines that a special phase-in target compliance date is 
required for the crashworthiness provision in this section. Therefore, 
in this final rule, the FHWA establishes a special phase-in target 
compliance date of January 17, 2005, for when channelizing devices in 
temporary traffic control zones should be crashworthy. The FHWA 
believes this target date of four years from the effective date of the 
2000 MUTCD provides agencies with a reasonable period in which to phase 
in the use of compliant channelizing devices in temporary traffic 
control zones.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \52\ NCHRP Report 350, ``Recommended Procedures for the Safety 
Performance Evaluation of Highway Features,'' 1993, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://gulliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_350-a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years from the effective date of this final rule for the changes 
in this section regarding pedestrian accessibility (detectability by 
users of long canes). Because a five year phase-in target compliance 
date has been established for Sections 6D.01 Pedestrian Considerations 
and 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, which in turn affect many other 
sections throughout Part 6, a special phase-in target compliance date 
just for Section 6F.58 is not necessary. Accordingly, the FHWA 
withdraws the proposed five-year phase-in target compliance date for 
accessibility requirements of this section.
    261. In Section 6F.59 Cones (numbered Section 6F.56 in the NPA), 
the FHWA adds to the STANDARD statement that retroreflectorization of 
cones that are more than 900 mm (36 in) in height shall be provided by 
horizontal, circumferential, alternating orange and white 
retroreflective stripes that are 100 to 150 mm (4 to 6 in) wide. Each 
cone shall have a minimum of two orange and two white stripes with the

[[Page 65557]]

top stripe being orange. Any non-retroreflective spaces between the 
orange and white stripes shall not exceed 75 mm (3 in) in width. The 
FHWA also adds an illustration of a cone more than 900 mm (36 in) in 
height to Figure 6F-7 (Sheet 1 of 2). These changes will enhance the 
visibility of cones at night and improve safety in temporary traffic 
control zones. The FHWA received three comments from the Ohio DOT, the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals in support of this new paragraph, and adopts it in this 
final rule. The FHWA also adds an illustration of a cone that is more 
than 900 mm (36 in) in height to Figure 6F-7 (sheet 1 of 2), to aid in 
user understanding. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance 
date of five years from the effective date of this final rule for these 
changes in order to minimize any impact on State or local governments.
    Additionally, in the first GUIDANCE statement the FHWA adds that 
cones should not be used for pedestrian channelization or as pedestrian 
barriers in temporary traffic control zones on or along sidewalks 
unless they are continuous between individual devices and detectable to 
users of long canes. Non-continuous, non-detectable series of cones 
have been found to be safety problems for pedestrians with visual 
disabilities. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to 
this new paragraph, suggesting that it is repetitive because 
accessibility is addressed elsewhere. The FHWA agrees that it is 
repetitive but believes that, in this instance, the repetition is 
necessary and the FHWA adopts this paragraph in this final rule.
    262. In Section 6F.60 Tubular Markers (numbered Section 6F.57 in 
the NPA), the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement that tubular markers 
should not be used for pedestrian channelization or as pedestrian 
barriers in temporary traffic control zones on or along sidewalks 
unless they are continuous between individual devices and detectable to 
users of long canes. Non-continuous, non-detectable series of tubular 
marker have been found to be safety problems for pedestrians with 
visual disabilities. The FHWA received comments from the Cities of 
Tucson, Arizona, and Charlotte, North Carolina, the Association of 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals, and a private citizen in support 
of this new paragraph. The NCUTCD opposed it, suggesting that it is 
repetitive because accessibility is addressed elsewhere. The FHWA 
agrees that it is repetitive but believes that, in this instance, the 
repetition is necessary and the FHWA adopts this paragraph in this 
final rule, with minor editorial changes.
    263. In Section 6F.61 Vertical Panels (numbered Section 6F.58 in 
the NPA), the FHWA proposed to include in the first STANDARD statement 
that vertical panels shall be mounted a minimum of 1050 mm (42 in) 
above the pedestrian travel way, so as not to interfere with 
pedestrians, and that vertical panels shall be mounted with the bottom 
no greater than 300 mm (12 in) above the ground. The FHWA received two 
comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals in support of the changes. The 
NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
opposed this change stating that the text should be revised so that the 
requirements pertained only to those areas where disabled pedestrians 
were likely to be present. Because this information regarding 
pedestrian accessibility is now included elsewhere in Part 6 in this 
final rule, the FHWA withdraws this proposal and retains the text in 
the 2000 MUTCD.
    264. In Section 6F.62 Drums (numbered Section 6F.59 in the NPA), 
the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement that drums should not be used 
for pedestrian channelization or as pedestrian barriers in temporary 
traffic control zones on or along sidewalks unless they are continuous 
between individual devices and detectable to users of long canes. Non-
continuous, non-detectable series of drums have been found to be safety 
problems for pedestrians with visual disabilities. The FHWA received 
two comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals in support of the changes. The 
NCUTCD opposed this change stating that the text regarding 
accessibility issues is repetitive. The FHWA disagrees and adopts these 
changes in this final rule.
    The FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that the last paragraph of 
the GUIDANCE statement describing the weighting of drums and need for 
drain holes be changed to a STANDARD. This is a topic that is outside 
the scope of this rulemaking and may be a subject for further 
discussion in a future rulemaking.
    265. In Section 6F.63 Type I, II, or III Barricades (numbered 
Section 6F.60 in the NPA), the FHWA proposed adding a STANDARD 
statement following the first GUIDANCE statement that barricade 
supports shall not project into circulation routes more than 100 mm (4 
in) from the support between 675 mm (27 in) and 2000 mm (80 in) from 
the surface, as described in Section 4.4.1 of the ``Americans With 
Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines For Buildings And Facilities 
(ADAAG).'' Additionally, supports shall not narrow the pedestrian 
facility to less than 1200 mm (48 in) in width, with a 1500 x 1500 mm 
(60 x 60 in) passing space at least every 60 m (200 ft), as described 
in Section 4.3.4 of ADAAG. The FHWA received three comments from the 
Ohio DOT, the City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals in support of this new STANDARD, 
and four comments from the NCUTCD, the Connecticut DOT, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to it. The 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggested that 
the wording be revised so that these requirements are necessary only in 
locations where pedestrians with disabilities are likely to be present. 
The Connecticut DOT suggested that this STANDARD conflicts with other 
sections of the MUTCD. In response to these comments, the FHWA replaces 
the proposed STANDARD with a two-paragraph GUIDANCE statement 
containing additional information regarding the width of pedestrian 
pathways and the mounting heights of signs in temporary facilities.
    In concert with the changes outlined above, the FHWA also changes 
the last sentence of the following STANDARD to a GUIDANCE because it 
also contains information about the width of accessible passages when 
ballast is used. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed this sentence as a 
STANDARD. The change to GUIDANCE is necessary for consistency with the 
other GUIDANCE in this section.
    Additionally, in the 2000 MUTCD the FHWA established a new 
recommendation in this section that barricades in temporary traffic 
control zones should be crashworthy. No special phase-in target 
compliance date was established at that time. Based on comments that 
agencies are encountering difficulties and economic impacts given the 
extensive testing of devices that has to occur in accordance with NCHRP 
Report 350 \53\ in order to determine and certify crashworthiness, the 
FHWA determines that a special phase-in target compliance date is 
required for the crashworthiness

[[Page 65558]]

provision in this section. In this final rule, the FHWA establishes a 
special phase-in target compliance date of January 17, 2005, for when 
barricades in temporary traffic control zones should be crashworthy. 
The FHWA believes this target date of four years from the effective 
date of the 2000 MUTCD provides agencies with a reasonable period in 
which to phase in the use of compliant barricades in temporary traffic 
control zones.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \53\ NCHRP Report 350, ``Recommended Procedures for the Safety 
Performance Evaluation of Highway Features,'' 1993, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://guilliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_350-a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years from the effective date of this final rule for the changes 
in this section regarding pedestrian accessibility. Because a five year 
phase-in target compliance date has been established for Sections 6D.01 
Pedestrian Considerations and 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, which 
in turn affect many other sections throughout Part 6, a special phase-
in target compliance date just for Section 6F.63 is not necessary. 
Accordingly, the FHWA withdraws the proposed five-year phase-in target 
compliance date for accessibility requirements of this section.
    266. In Section 6F.64 Direction Indicator Barricades (numbered 
Section 6F.61 in the NPA), the FHWA makes editorial revisions in the 
STANDARD statement to properly describe the direction indicator 
barricade. The FHWA incorporates this change in this final rule to 
address comments that the term arrow panel in this section was 
incorrectly used in the NPA to describe what should be correctly called 
a One-Direction Large Arrow (W1-6) sign.
    267. In Section 6F.65 Temporary Traffic Barriers as Channelizing 
Devices (numbered Section 6F.62 in the NPA), the FHWA adds SUPPORT and 
STANDARD statements related to the use of temporary traffic barriers as 
traffic control devices. These statements are relocated from Section 
6G.04 Modifications to Fulfill Special Needs, as they are more 
appropriate in this section. The FHWA received two comments from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals in support of these changes, and adopts these changes. 
The FHWA received several editorial comments regarding the second 
paragraph of the first STANDARD statement, and incorporates these 
changes in this final rule to be consistent with other areas of the 
MUTCD.
    268. The FHWA adds a new section, numbered and titled, Section 
6F.66 Longitudinal Channelizing Barricades. (This section was numbered 
Section 6F.53 in the NPA.) This section consists of GUIDANCE, OPTION, 
and SUPPORT statements relating to the use of longitudinal channelizing 
barricades that are lightweight, deformable devices that can be used 
singly as Type I, II, or III barricades. The FHWA received two comments 
from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals in overall support of the text contained within 
this new section. The FHWA also received several comments from 
equipment suppliers suggesting additional uses for longitudinal 
channelizing barricades or modified applications from the proposed text 
in the NPA. The FHWA is not implementing these suggestions at this time 
because these are beyond the scope of this rulemaking.
    The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposing the last 
sentence of the first SUPPORT, stating that the text was not necessary. 
The FHWA agrees and removes the sentence in this final rule.
    The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD suggesting that an 
additional GUIDANCE statement be added between the first SUPPORT and 
OPTION statements to list the characteristics of a barricade. The FHWA 
agrees and, for consistency with other sections in Part 6, adds this 
new GUIDANCE statement in this final rule.
    The FHWA received several comments regarding the last GUIDANCE 
statement as it relates to crashworthiness of longitudinal channelizing 
barricades. While the NCUTCD was opposed to the first paragraph, 
stating that it was not necessary, the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen felt that the GUIDANCE should be 
changed to a STANDARD in order to require that longitudinal 
channelizing barricades be crashworthy. The FHWA adopts the wording as 
proposed in the NPA because the information regarding crashworthiness 
is important and readers should understand that these barricades should 
not be used to shield pedestrians, including workers, from vehicle 
impacts or obstacles. Strengthening this statement to a STANDARD would 
require discussion and comment in a future rulemaking. However, for 
consistency with the special phase-in target compliance date that the 
FHWA established for crashworthiness provisions of other sections in 
Part 6, the FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 
January 17, 2005, for crashworthiness of longitudinal channelizing 
barricades in temporary traffic control zones. The FHWA believes this 
target date of four years from the effective date of the 2000 MUTCD 
provides agencies with a reasonable period in which to phase in the use 
of compliant longitudinal channelizing barricades in temporary traffic 
control zones.
    269. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, Section 6F.67 
Other Channelizing Devices. This section was numbered Section 6F.64 in 
the NPA, and consists of an OPTION statement and a GUIDANCE statement 
that there may be channelizing devices other than those already 
described in Part 6 that may be used in special situations based on an 
engineering study. If used, these other channelizing devices should 
conform to the general size, color stripe pattern, retroreflectivity, 
and placement characteristics established for the devices described in 
Chapter 6F. This use of other channelizing devices was included in 
revision number 3 of the 1988 edition of the MUTCD (Section 6F-1 of 
that edition) but was inadvertently omitted from the 2000 MUTCD. The 
FHWA received one comment from the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals in support of this new section, and adopts this 
new section in this final rule.
    270. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6F.68 Detectable Edging for Pedestrians.'' This section contains 
SUPPORT and GUIDANCE statements with information and examples regarding 
the use of detectable edging along the length of a facility when 
needed. The FHWA includes this new section in this final rule to 
respond to comments throughout Part 6 requesting additional information 
on detectable edging that is consistent with information available from 
the U.S. Access Board, and to consolidate the information on detectable 
edging into a single section for clarity.
    271. In Section 6F.69 Temporary Raised Islands (numbered Section 
6F.65 in the NPA), the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement at the end of the 
section that at pedestrian crossing locations, temporary raised islands 
shall have an opening or be shortened to provide at least a 1500 mm (60 
in) wide pathway for pedestrians. This change is to comply with the ADA 
requirements and to provide for all pedestrians, including disabled 
pedestrians, a clear and useable facility. The FHWA received one 
comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this new statement, indicating that 
it was repetitive, and that accessibility is covered elsewhere. The 
FHWA disagrees because this is important information regarding the 
design of temporary raised islands and adopts the STANDARD as proposed 
in the NPA.

[[Page 65559]]

    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a phase-in target compliance date of 
five years from the effective date of this final rule for the changes 
in Section 6F.69 regarding pedestrian accessibility. Because a five-
year phase-in target compliance date has been established for Sections 
6D.01 Pedestrian Considerations and 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, 
which in turn affect many other sections throughout Part 6, a special 
phase-in target compliance date just for Section 6F.69 is not 
necessary. Accordingly, the FHWA withdraws the proposed five-year 
phase-in target compliance date for accessibility requirements of this 
section.
    272. In Section 6F.70 Opposing Traffic Lane Divider (numbered 
Section 6F.66 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the STANDARD statement that 
opposing traffic lane dividers shall not be placed across pedestrian 
crossings, to assure that pedestrians have a clear and useable 
facility. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    273. In Section 6F.71 Pavement Markings (numbered Section 6F.67 in 
the NPA), the FHWA proposed to add to the STANDARD statement that to 
require that delineation and channelizing devices for use by 
pedestrians shall be accessible and detectable to pedestrians who have 
disabilities and shall be continuous throughout the temporary traffic 
control zone. The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to this new 
language. The City of Tucson, Arizona, expressed support if the text 
was reworded to apply only at locations where persons with disabilities 
are likely to pass. The FHWA withdraws this proposal because 
accessibility information is included in other sections of Part 6 and 
does not need to be repeated here.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed revising the last OPTION statement to 
specify the amount of time that removable, nonreflective, performed 
tape may be used to temporarily cover markings. The FHWA received five 
comments from the NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, a private citizen, and a traffic control device 
manufacturer opposing this change, stating that there is not sufficient 
documentation to support the notion that temporary tape becomes 
ineffective after two weeks. The FHWA agrees and withdraws this 
proposal.
    Additionally, in the NPA the FHWA proposed adding a SUPPORT 
statement at the end of the section that pavement markings alone are 
generally not sufficient for use by pedestrians who have visual 
disabilities. Tactile warnings on the roadway surface or audible 
devices are usually more helpful to these pedestrians. The FHWA 
received four comments from the NCUTCD and associations representing 
the blind community opposed to this new SUPPORT statement. 
Representatives of the blind community stated that there are currently 
no consistently understood tactile markings for roadway surfaces. The 
FHWA agrees with the commenters and withdraws this proposal.
    274. In Section 6F.72 Temporary Pavement Markings (numbered Section 
6F.68 in the NPA), the FHWA modifies the OPTION statement and the 
second GUIDANCE statement to indicate the use of DO NOT PASS and PASS 
WITH CARE signs is acceptable for temporary situations rather than 
pavement markings. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed deleting the use of 
the NO PASSING ZONE sign. While the FHWA received one comment from the 
City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes, the NCUTCD was 
opposed to removing the NO PASSING ZONE sign because it felt that use 
of the sign should remain an option. The FHWA agrees and restores the 
use of the NO PASSING ZONE sign and includes a reference to Section 
2C.35 for use of the NO PASSING ZONE sign in this final rule.
    275. In Section 6F.75 Lighting Devices (numbered Section 6F.71 in 
the NPA), the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement that the maximum 
spacing for warning lights should be identical to the channelizing 
device space requirements. The FHWA received one comment from the 
NCUTCD opposed to this change, suggesting that the proposed wording may 
cause practitioners to think that warning lights are needed on all 
channelizing devices. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggested rewording the text to clarify that the 
statement applies only when warning lights are used to supplement 
channelization. The FHWA adopts the change, with editorial changes to 
indicate that the requirements apply when warning lights are used to 
supplement channelization.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes the second SUPPORT statement (in the 
2000 MUTCD) to an OPTION statement to more accurately reflect the uses 
of lighting devices. The FHWA received one comment from a traffic 
engineering consultant opposed to this change, suggesting that, because 
this sentence refers specifically to warning beacons, it belongs in 
another section. The FHWA disagrees because this statement is generic 
and is most appropriate in this section.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding an OPTION statement at the end 
of this section stating that vehicle hazard warning signals may only 
supplement the rotating lights or strobe lights. The FHWA received 
three comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen opposed to this statement, suggesting that the 
statement was repetitive because this information is contained in the 
previous STANDARD. The FHWA agrees and withdraws this proposal, and 
removes this OPTION from this final rule.
    276. In Section 6F.76 Floodlights (numbered Section 6F.72 in the 
NPA), the FHWA revises the first GUIDANCE statement by removing 
``flagger stations'' from the text and adds a new STANDARD statement, 
following the GUIDANCE, to indicate that, except in emergency 
situations, flagger stations shall be illuminated at night. The FHWA 
incorporates this change in this final rule to retain consistency with 
other sections of the MUTCD, such as in Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, 
and to improve flagger visibility during nighttime operations.
    The FHWA also adds to the existing STANDARD statement that 
floodlighting shall not produce a disabling glare condition for 
approaching road users, flaggers, or workers. The FHWA adds flaggers 
and workers to the statement based on comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen expressing concerns 
about safety of flaggers and workers. The FHWA believes that it is 
important and necessary to protect flaggers and workers, as well as 
road users, from disabling floodlight glare.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding a SUPPORT statement at the end 
of the section, that based on research,\54\ 50 lux (5 foot candles) is 
a desirable nighttime illumination level where workers are active. The 
FHWA received one comment from the Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of 
North America in support of this new statement. The NCUTCD, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, a private citizen, and NIOSH suggested that 
additional information

[[Page 65560]]

should be included regarding illumination levels for other than general 
activities. The FHWA agrees and includes information on illumination 
levels for general activities and for tasks requiring high levels of 
precision and extreme care.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \54\ Information on ``Illumination Guidelines for Nighttime 
Highway Work'', NCHRP Project 5-13, 1993, is summarized in NCHRP 
research Results Digest Number 216, December, 1996, which is a 
available for purchase from the Transportation Research Board's 
bookstore, at the following URL: http://64.118.69.9/acb1/ 
showdetl.cfm?& DID=92&Product--ID=2048& CATID=1&series=7.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    277. In Section 6F.78 Warning Lights (numbered Section 6F.74 in the 
NPA), the FHWA adds Type D 360-degree warning lights, as appropriate, 
throughout the section to provide more flexibility in the use of 
lighting devices. The FHWA received one comment from ATSSA in support 
of these changes, and adopts these changes.
    The FHWA also changes the first paragraph of the first STANDARD 
statement to a SUPPORT statement because it describes what warning 
lights are, rather than providing requirements on their use. The FHWA 
incorporates this minor editorial change in this final rule because the 
language of this statement is more appropriate as a SUPPORT, rather 
than a STANDARD.
    278. In Section 6F.80 Temporary Traffic Control Signals (numbered 
Section 6F.76 in the NPA), to enhance consideration of pedestrian needs 
in temporary traffic control zones, the FHWA adds to the first GUIDANCE 
statement that, where pedestrian traffic is detoured to a temporary 
traffic control signal, agencies should use engineering judgment to 
determine if pedestrian signals or accessible pedestrian signals are 
needed. The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this 
change, stating that the wording is repetitive because accessibility is 
already addressed elsewhere. The FHWA disagrees and includes this 
paragraph in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA proposed in the NPA to add a new STANDARD 
statement that indicates that the supports for temporary traffic 
control signals shall not encroach into a minimum required pedestrian 
pathway width of 1500 mm (60 in), to assure a clear pathway for all 
pedestrians, including disabled pedestrians. The FHWA received comments 
from the NCUTCD, the Cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to this change. The NCUTCD 
stated that the wording is repetitive because accessibility is already 
addressed elsewhere. The Cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and the private citizen suggested that the text be 
reworded to apply only to those locations where pedestrians with 
disabilities are likely to be present. The FHWA agrees and revises this 
paragraph to state that the supports shall not encroach into the 
minimum width of a ``pedestrian access route'' (1200 mm/48 in) or an 
``alternate circulation path'' (900 mm/36 in) to be consistent with the 
various requirements elsewhere in Part 6.
    The FHWA also adds to the second SUPPORT statement a new item ``M. 
The nature of adjacent land uses (such as residential or commercial)'' 
to the list of factors related to the design and application of 
temporary traffic control signals. The FHWA received one comment from a 
private citizen in support of this change, and adopts this change and 
re-letters the remaining items.
    279. In Section 6F.81 Temporary Traffic Barriers (numbered Section 
6F.77 in the NPA), the FHWA modifies the first SUPPORT statement to 
more clearly describe the four primary functions of temporary traffic 
barriers, by deleting the last two sentences related to the functions 
of temporary traffic barriers and adding a portion of text from Section 
6G.11 Work Within the Traveled Way of Urban Streets. The FHWA received 
one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes 
to this section, and adopts these changes.
    280. In Section 6F.82 Crash Cushions (numbered Section 6F.78 in the 
NPA), the FHWA adds to the STANDARD statement that damaged crash 
cushions shall be promptly repaired or replaced to maintain their 
crashworthiness. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    Additionally, in the 2000 MUTCD a new requirement was established 
in this section that crash cushions in temporary traffic control zones 
shall be crashworthy. No special phase-in target compliance date was 
established at that time. Based on comments that agencies are 
encountering difficulties and economic impacts given the extensive 
testing of devices that has to occur in accordance with NCHRP Report 
350 \55\ in order to determine and certify crashworthiness, the FHWA 
believes that a special phase-in target compliance date is required for 
the crashworthiness provision in this section. Therefore, in this final 
rule, the FHWA establishes a special phase-in target compliance date of 
January 17, 2005, for crash cushions in temporary traffic control zones 
to be crashworthy. The FHWA believes this target date of four years 
from the effective date of the 2000 MUTCD provides agencies with a 
reasonable period in which to phase in the use of compliant crash 
cushions in temporary traffic control zones.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \55\ NCHRP Report 350, ``Recommended Procedures for the Safety 
Performance Evaluation on Highway Features,'' 1993, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://gulliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_350-a.pdf
.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    281. In Section 6F.84 Rumble Strips (numbered Section 6F.80 in the 
NPA), to clarify which applications are used for travel lanes and which 
ones are used on the shoulder, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT statement a 
description of longitudinal rumble strips, and clarifies throughout the 
section which statements refer specifically to longitudinal rumble 
strips and which statements refer specifically to transverse rumble 
strips. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
in support of these changes to this section, and adopts these changes.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement following the 
SUPPORT statement that, if it is desirable to use a color other than 
the color of the pavement for a longitudinal rumble strip, the color of 
the rumble strip shall be the same as the longitudinal line the rumble 
strip supplements. If the color of a transverse rumble strip used 
within a travel lane is not the color of the pavement, the color of the 
rumble strip shall be white. These changes are needed to conform to 
general principles for colors of pavement markings. The FHWA received 
two comments from the NCUTCD and the Virginia DOT opposed to this new 
STANDARD statement suggesting that some jurisdictions have used other 
colors, such as yellow and orange. The FHWA believes that white has 
been the traditional color used for transverse rumble strips and adopts 
this statement in this final rule. The use of other colors would need 
further research and may be considered for future rulemaking.
    The FHWA also adds to the GUIDANCE statement that transverse rumble 
strips should not be placed through pedestrian crossings or on bicycle 
routes; should not be placed on roadways used by bicyclists unless a 
minimum clear path of 1.2 m (4 ft) is provided at each edge of the 
roadway or on each paved shoulder; and that longitudinal rumble strips 
should not be placed on the shoulder of a roadway that is used by 
bicyclists unless a minimum clear path of 1.2 m (4 ft) is also provided 
on the shoulder. These changes will minimize interference caused by 
rumble strips to bicyclists using the roadway or shoulder. The FHWA 
received one comment from the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals in support of these changes. The Wisconsin DOT opposed 
them, suggesting that additional text is needed to define the clear 
path at the

[[Page 65561]]

edge of the roadway. The FHWA addresses this comment by providing 
additional language in this final rule that references the AASHTO Guide 
to the Development of Bicycle Facilities, which is listed in Section 
1A.11 Relation to Other Publications.
    282. In Section 6G.01 Typical Applications, in the NPA the FHWA 
proposed adding two SUPPORT statements indicating that temporary 
traffic control zones are subject to all accessibility requirements for 
use by all types of pedestrians. The FHWA received five comments from 
the NCUTCD, the Ohio DOT, the Cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to the wording of these 
statements suggesting that it is repetitive because accessibility 
issues are already covered elsewhere. To address these comments, while 
also stressing the importance of accessibility, the FHWA adds a new 
STANDARD statement to the beginning of this section emphasizing 
accessibility provisions as required by the Americans with Disabilities 
Act.
    Additionally, in the NPA the FHWA proposed to add a GUIDANCE 
statement following the second SUPPORT statement that bicyclists and 
pedestrians should not be exposed to unprotected excavations, open 
utility access, overhanging equipment, or other hazards. The 
Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals supported this new 
statement. For enhanced clarity, the FHWA removes this paragraph from 
this section and moves it, with minor editorial changes, to a new 
section numbered and titled, ``Section 6G.05 Work Affecting Pedestrian 
and Bicycle Facilities.''
    283. In Section 6G.02 Work Duration, the FHWA adds to the SUPPORT 
statement in this section (and in all other sections in Chapter 6G 
except 6G.01, 6G.05, and 6G.14 through 6G.19), providing references to 
other chapters and sections of Part 6 of the MUTCD for additional 
information regarding the steps to follow when pedestrian or bicycle 
facilities are affected by the worksite. Also, the FHWA modifies item C 
in the first STANDARD to clarify that short-term stationary work is 
defined as daytime work of more than one hour within a single daylight 
period. The FHWA received two comments from commenters who did not 
understand why the change was necessary. The change is necessary 
because the single period of daylight in the summertime can last more 
than 12 hours. The FHWA adopts the change as proposed in the NPA.
    284. In Section 6G.04 Modifications to Fulfill Special Needs, the 
FHWA adds throughout the GUIDANCE statement additional information 
related to the need to take into account pedestrian and bicycle usage. 
The FHWA received several editorial comments suggesting changes to the 
wording proposed in the NPA. The FHWA incorporates many of these 
changes and includes additional references to other areas of the MUTCD.
    Additionally, the FHWA moves the SUPPORT and STANDARD statements at 
the end of the section (in the 2000 MUTCD) to Section 6F.65 Temporary 
Traffic Barriers as Channelizing Devices because this text outlining 
temporary traffic barriers is more appropriately located in this 
section. The FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to removing these 
statements from this section, stating that these statements are 
important in this section of modifying the typical applications to 
fulfill special needs. The FHWA disagrees and believes that this 
information is best covered elsewhere, and does not need to be included 
in this section.
    285. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, Section 6G.05 
Work Affecting Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities. This new section 
contains SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, and STANDARD statements with provisions for 
maintaining accessibility for pedestrians as well as bicyclists in 
temporary traffic control zones. The information in this section was 
proposed elsewhere in the NPA. However, based on comments, the FHWA 
believes that this information is best consolidated into one section, 
rather than spread throughout all of the sections of Chapter 6G. The 
FHWA renumbers the remaining sections accordingly.
    286. In Section 6G.06 Work Outside of Shoulder (numbered 6G.05 in 
the NPA), the FHWA proposed adding to the first GUIDANCE statement that 
pedestrians should be separated from the worksite by appropriate 
barriers that maintain accessibility and detectability for pedestrians 
with disabilities. Although one commenter from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, supported this new text, the NCUTCD suggested that it was 
repetitive. The FHWA disagrees that it is repetitive, but removes this 
paragraph from this section and places it in the new section numbered 
and titled, ``Section 6G.05 Work Affecting Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Facilities.''
    287. In Section 6G.07 Work on the Shoulder with No Encroachment 
(numbered Section 6G.06 in the NPA), the FHWA proposed adding to the 
first STANDARD statement that, where pedestrian routes are closed, 
alternate pedestrian routes shall be provided. A private citizen 
supported this new text. The NCUTCD suggested that the STANDARD be 
changed to GUIDANCE because this section involves work on the shoulder 
with no encroachment, and alternate pedestrian routes will not be 
necessary in all locations. The FHWA disagrees with changing this to a 
GUIDANCE, but removes this paragraph from this section and places it in 
the new section numbered and titled, ``Section 6G.05 Work Affecting 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities.''
    Additionally, the FHWA proposed adding a sentence to the GUIDANCE 
statement that, where feasible, signs should be placed so they do not 
narrow any existing pedestrian passage to less than 1500 mm (60 in). 
The FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, opposed to this new sentence. The NCUTCD stated that it was 
repetitive, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, suggested a narrower 
passage be permitted. The FHWA removes the entire paragraph from this 
section and places it in the new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
6G.05 Work Affecting Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities.'' Based on 
comments and to be consistent with other sections in Part 6, the FHWA 
revises the last sentence of this paragraph to permit existing 
pedestrian passages to be narrowed to 1200 mm (48 in) rather than 1500 
mm (60 in). In addition, this is consistent with the ADAAG.
    288. In Section 6G.08 Work on the Shoulder with Minor Encroachment 
(numbered 6G.07 in the NPA), the FHWA proposed adding to the GUIDANCE 
statement that, where feasible, pedestrian routes should be protected 
or alternate accessible and detectable routes should be provided. 
Although the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this new text, the 
NCUTCD suggested that it was repetitive. The FHWA removes this 
paragraph from this section, rewords it and classifies it as a STANDARD 
to be consistent with ADA requirements and places it in the new section 
numbered and titled, ``Section 6G.05 Work Affecting Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Facilities.''
    289. In Section 6G.10 Work Within the Traveled Way of Two-Lane 
Highways (numbered Section 6G.09 in the NPA), the FHWA proposed adding 
to the GUIDANCE statement that pedestrian detours should be avoided 
because pedestrians rarely observe them and the cost of providing 
accessibility and detectability might outweigh the cost of maintaining 
a continuous route. Also, whenever possible, work should be done in a 
manner that does not create

[[Page 65562]]

a need to detour pedestrians from existing routes or crossings. 
Although the City of Tucson, Arizona, supported this new text, the 
NCUTCD suggested that it was repetitive. The FHWA disagrees that it is 
repetitive, but removes this paragraph from this section, and places it 
in the new section numbered and titled, ``Section 6G.05 Work Affecting 
Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities.''
    290. In Section 6G.11 Work Within the Traveled Way of Urban Streets 
(numbered 6G.10 in the NPA), the FHWA adds to the first STANDARD 
statement that, if the temporary traffic control zone affects an 
accessible and detectable pedestrian facility, the accessibility and 
detectability along the alternate pedestrian route shall be maintained. 
The FHWA received one comment from a private citizen in support of this 
change, and four comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
and traffic engineering consultants opposed to it. Most of the opposing 
commenters suggested that this statement should be a GUIDANCE, rather 
than STANDARD. The FHWA disagrees because this is an existing ADA 
requirement. Therefore, the FHWA adopts the text as proposed in the 
NPA. Based on a comment from the Florida DOT and for consistency with 
the new Section 6D.02 Accessibility Considerations, the FHWA adds 
another paragraph to the STANDARD that where transit stops are affected 
or relocated because of work activity, agencies shall provide access to 
temporary transit stops.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement that work 
sites within the intersection should be protected against inadvertent 
pedestrian incursion by providing detectable channelizing devices. The 
FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD opposed to this new 
paragraph, stating that it is repetitive. The FHWA disagrees and adopts 
the text with an editorial change.
    291. In Section 6G.12 Work Within the Traveled Way of Multi-lane, 
Nonaccess Controlled Highways (numbered Section 6G.11 in the NPA), the 
FHWA proposed adding to the first SUPPORT statement that Chapter 6D 
contains information regarding the steps to follow when pedestrian 
facilities are affected by the worksite. Although the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, supported this new text, the NCUTCD suggested that it was 
repetitive. The FHWA rewords this paragraph to match the same paragraph 
that the FHWA places in most of the other sections within Chapter 6G 
and places it at the beginning of the first SUPPORT statement.
    Additionally, the FHWA moves the information in the second SUPPORT 
statement related to the four primary functions of temporary traffic 
barriers to Section 6F.81 Traffic Barriers (numbered Section 6F.75 in 
the NPA) as they more properly belong in that section.
    292. In Section 6G.13 Work Within the Traveled Way at an 
Intersection (numbered Section 6G.12 in the NPA), to reinforce proper 
contact procedures, the FHWA proposed adding language to the first 
STANDARD statement and to the second GUIDANCE statement regarding 
contact with the highway agency having jurisdiction at intersections 
where pedestrian accessibility problems are anticipated. The FHWA 
received several primarily editorial comments regarding these changes. 
The NCUTCD suggested that the references to accessibility were 
repetitive. Based on a comment from a private citizen, the FHWA changes 
the language in the GUIDANCE to a STANDARD to provide greater 
consistency by requiring rather than recommending that the entity 
conducting the work contact the highway agency having jurisdiction when 
working near any (signalized or unsignalized) intersection where 
operational, capacity, or pedestrian accessibility problems are 
anticipated. If these types of problems are anticipated, it is 
important that the highway agency having jurisdiction be contacted even 
if it does not involve a signalized intersection.
    The FHWA proposed adding a STANDARD statement after the second 
GUIDANCE statement that pedestrian crossings shall be protected with a 
pedestrian barrier detectable to pedestrians with visual disabilities. 
The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to this change 
suggesting that this should only be necessary if the crossing is an 
accessible pedestrian crossing. The FHWA agrees and revises the 
statement and classifies it as a GUIDANCE rather than a STANDARD to be 
consistent with new Section 6G.05 Work Affecting Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Facilities.
    Additionally, the FHWA modifies item B of the third OPTION 
statement to indicate that uniformed law enforcement officers, as well 
as flaggers, may be used to direct road users when work is within an 
intersection. The FHWA received two comments from the Laborers' Health 
and Safety Fund of North America and a private citizen in support of 
this change and adopts this change.
    293. In Section 6G.14 Work Within the Traveled Way of Freeways and 
Expressways (numbered Section 6G.13 in the NPA), the FHWA revises the 
first SUPPORT statement to include bicycles in the listing of road 
vehicle mix. The FHWA received one comment from the Kansas DOT opposed 
to this change, suggesting that bicycles should not be allowed on 
freeways. The FHWA adopts this change, with an editorial change to 
clarify that bicycles are included in the vehicle mix only if they are 
permitted. In some areas of the country, Interstate Routes or other 
freeways offer the only access for recreational bicyclists to get 
between destinations, and therefore bicycles are permitted. This is a 
safety issue that has traditionally been left to the States to decide.
    294. In Section 6G.19 Work in the Vicinity of Highway-Rail Grade 
Crossings (numbered Section 6G.18 in the NPA), the FHWA clarifies the 
second sentence of the STANDARD statement by adding the word 
``uniformed'' to describe a law enforcement officer. The FHWA makes 
this clarification in this final rule for consistency with other 
requirements elsewhere in the MUTCD.
    295. The FHWA moves all of the information from Section 6G.19 
Control of Traffic Through Traffic Incident Management Areas, as 
numbered and titled in the 2000 MUTCD, to a new chapter numbered and 
titled ``Chapter 6I Control of Traffic Through Traffic Incident 
Management Areas.'' In its place, the FHWA adds a new section numbered 
and titled, ``Section 6G.20 Temporary Traffic Control During Nighttime 
Hours.'' (This section was numbered Section 6G.19 in the NPA.) This new 
section contains SUPPORT, GUIDANCE, OPTION, and STANDARD statements 
regarding the temporary traffic control measures appropriate during 
nighttime hours. The FHWA received comments from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, the Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North America, and 
NIOSH in support of the new section. Many expressed that a new section 
devoted to temporary traffic control during nighttime hours is needed. 
Several commenters suggested that more information was needed to 
strengthen the section, and some suggested rewording and additional 
text. The NCUTCD favored replacing the proposed text with modified 
language developed by the NCUTCD Temporary Traffic Control Technical 
Committee. The FHWA agrees that additional information is necessary and 
believes the NCUTCD's rewording will clarify the section. Accordingly, 
the FHWA revises the text to incorporate and be

[[Page 65563]]

consistent with changes made in other areas of the MUTCD in this final 
rule, including the requirement for illuminating flagger stations, 
except in emergencies, consistent with Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, 
and additional information on illumination for work areas in general.
    296. In Section 6H.01 Typical Applications, the FHWA changes the 
Typical Applications figures and their accompanying notes to add more 
provisions to accommodate persons with disabilities and pedestrians, 
and to correct inadvertent minor errors in the 2000 MUTCD and in the 
NPA. These changes reflect the changes to all parts of the MUTCD with 
particular reference to Part 6 changes and they make the drawings and 
text consistent with other parts of the MUTCD and elsewhere in Part 6.
    Additionally, in Table 6H-1 and in the corresponding Typical 
Applications, the FHWA changes the titles of Figure 6H-11 from ``Lane 
Closure on Low-Volume Two-Lane Road'' to ``Lane Closure on Two-Lane 
Road with Low Traffic Volumes,'' Figure 6H-15 from ``Work in Center of 
Low-Volume Road'' to ``Work in Center of Road with Low Traffic 
Volumes,'' and Figure 6H-16 from ``Surveying Along Centerline of Low-
Volume Road'' to ``Surveying Along Centerline of Road with Low Traffic 
Volumes.'' These changes will avoid confusion with material in Part 5 
Traffic Control Devices for Low-Volume Roads. Low-volume roads, as 
covered in Part 5, are specifically defined in Section 5A.01 Function 
as, among other criteria, being outside a built-up area and having a 
traffic volume of less than 400 Annual Average Daily Traffic. The 
Typical Applications in Part 6 that refer to low volume roads are not 
intended to be limited only to roads meeting the limited definition of 
Part 5.
    The FHWA inserts Table 6H-4 Formulas for Determining Taper Lengths. 
This information is the same information as was proposed in the NPA, 
except that it is included in a tabular format for clarity.
    Additionally, the FHWA includes the following changes to the notes 
to the figures of typical applications:
    a. Notes for Figure 6H-1: The FHWA replaces item 5 in the STANDARD 
statement (of the 2000 MUTCD) with a new item 5 in the OPTION 
statement, stating that vehicle hazard warning signals may be used to 
supplement high intensity rotating, flashing, oscillating, or strobe 
lights, and a new item 6 in the STANDARD statement, which states that 
vehicle hazard warning signals shall not be used instead of the 
vehicle's high intensity rotating, flashing, oscillating, or strobe 
lights. The FHWA received no comments regarding these changes. These 
same changes have been made in the notes for other figures in Chapter 
6H as applicable and as noted below in the discussions of such figures. 
The FHWA did receive two comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that item 1 in the GUIDANCE 
statement be revised. The suggested change would imply that a single 
sign is used, whereas this statement calls for an additional sign to be 
used. Because operation of the work vehicles may involve crossing from 
the median to the shoulder, all traffic must be warned of such 
conditions, and thus a sign on the median lane side and on the shoulder 
should be used. Accordingly, the FHWA disagrees with the commenters and 
adopts the text as proposed in the NPA.
    b. Notes for Figure 6H-2: The FHWA received two comments from the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen objecting to 
the terminology for devices to be turned off in blasting zones and the 
letter sizes for the W22-2 sign. See discussion of this issue in 
Section 6F.40 TURN OFF 2-WAY RADIO AND CELL PHONE Sign (W22-2).
    c. Notes for Figure 6H-3: See discussion of items regarding vehicle 
hazard warning signals in paragraph a above. That discussion applies to 
Figure 6H-3 also. Additionally, the FHWA adds a new item 7 to the 
STANDARD statement at the end of the Notes that when paved shoulders 
having a width of 2.4 m (8 ft) or more are closed, at least one advance 
warning sign shall be used. In addition, channelizing devices shall be 
used to close the shoulder in advance to delineate the beginning of the 
work space and direct motor vehicle traffic to remain within the 
traveled way. The FHWA received no comments regarding these changes, 
and adopts these changes.
    d. Notes for Figure 6H-4: See discussion of items regarding vehicle 
hazard warning signals in paragraph a above. That discussion applies to 
Figure 6H-4 also.
    e. Notes for Figure 6H-5: The FHWA revises item 4 from a GUIDANCE 
statement to a STANDARD statement to clarify that the ends of the 
barrier shall be treated in accordance with Section 6F.81 Temporary 
Traffic Barriers. The FHWA also removes the word ``(optional)'' 
following ``crash cushion'' in Figure 6H-5. The FHWA makes these 
changes to address two comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting that item 4 as a GUIDANCE 
statement is misleading and it needs to be changed to a STANDARD to be 
consistent with mandatory safety requirements of Section 6F.81 
Temporary Traffic Barriers (numbered as 6F.77 in the NPA). The FHWA 
agrees that this change is necessary for consistency, and revises item 
4 to a STANDARD statement, with some text changes to correspond with 
Section 6F.81.
    f. Notes for Figure 6H-6: See discussion of items regarding vehicle 
hazard warning signals in paragraph a above. That discussion also 
applies to Figure 6H-6.
    g. Notes for Figure 6H-7: The FHWA changes item 1 to a SUPPORT 
statement. It was inadvertently given a STANDARD heading in the 2000 
MUTCD and the NPA, even though it contains no mandatory language. The 
FHWA renumbers the remaining items accordingly. The FHWA revises items 
5 and 6 (numbered items 4 and 6 in the NPA) to match the notes with the 
figure, which illustrates a double reverse curve situation. The FHWA 
makes these minor editorial changes to address two comments from the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting 
that the notes did not match the new double reverse curve illustration. 
The FHWA agrees and makes the changes for consistency.
    h. Notes for Figure 6H-8: The FHWA combines items 2 and 3, as 
numbered in the NPA, into a single item 2 in the OPTION statement for 
clarity and renumbers the following items. The FHWA also adds a new 
item 5 to the OPTION statement that cardinal direction plaques may be 
used with route signs. The FHWA makes these minor changes to address 
two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggesting these changes, to be consistent with other sections 
in Part 6.
    i. Notes for Figure 6H-9: The purpose of Figure 6H-9 is to show 
signing for overlapping routes with a detour. The configuration of the 
actual work space raised comments from the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen as to what is intended by the 
associated signing and barricades. To avoid any confusion, the FHWA 
eliminates any reference to an allowance for local traffic and shows 
the space as a full road closure between the two intersecting routes. 
The FHWA adjusts the barricades and ROAD CLOSED signing accordingly. 
The FHWA also changes the double yellow dashed pavement markings to a 
single yellow dash in response to a comment from a traffic engineering 
consultant that the double yellow dashes are incorrect. The FHWA notes 
that the

[[Page 65564]]

markings in this figure are shown for illustrative purposes only.
    j. Notes for Figure 6H-10: The FHWA moves item 4 in the OPTION 
statement to become a new OPTION item 11, and renumbers the other items 
accordingly for improved clarity. The FHWA also replaces item 4 (item 5 
in the NPA) with the note regarding buffer space that was added to the 
figure in the NPA. The FHWA believes that buffer space is an important 
application that is often ignored, and placing the note in the notes as 
well as on the figure is appropriate. The FWHA also changes item 5 
(item 6 in the NPA) from a GUIDANCE to a STANDARD to be consistent with 
Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, and rewords the statement accordingly. 
The flagger and advance sign series are all moved farther upstream in 
the figure. Additional space is needed beyond the work area to allow 
the traffic in the wrong lane to return to their proper lane without 
conflicting with stopped vehicles in the opposite direction. The FHWA 
makes these changes in this final rule to address comments from the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting 
these changes to be consistent with other areas of the MUTCD.
    k. Notes for Figure 6H-11: The FHWA removes item 2 of the STANDARD 
statement (from the 2000 MUTCD) because this Typical Application 
specifically does not involve the use of flaggers. Typical Application 
10 covers the temporary traffic control zone applicable to this 
STANDARD, using flaggers. The FHWA received no comments regarding this 
change, and adopts this change in this final rule. The FHWA received 
two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggesting that the Type B flashing warning lights referenced 
in the OPTION should be changed to Type A for night work. The FHWA 
disagrees because there is no change from the 2000 MUTCD language 
elsewhere in Part 6 that would justify changing this note for Figure 
6H-11.
    l. Notes for Figure 6H-12: The FHWA adds to item 2 of the STANDARD 
statement that durations of red clearance intervals shall be adequate 
to clear the one-lane section of conflicting vehicles. Additionally, 
the FHWA adds a new item 5 to the STANDARD statement that safeguards 
shall be incorporated to avoid the possibility of conflicting signal 
indications at each end of the temporary traffic control zone. The FHWA 
proposed slightly different wording for item 5 in the NPA, however the 
FHWA modifies the wording based on a comment from a traffic control 
device manufacturer in order to maintain consistency with Section 6F.80 
Temporary Traffic Control Signals of the MUTCD. The FHWA renumbers the 
remaining items.
    m. Notes for Figure 6H-13: The FHWA modifies item 2 of the STANDARD 
statement to indicate that a flagger or uniformed law enforcement 
officer shall be used during a temporary road closure. Additionally, 
the FHWA removes item 3 of the OPTION statement (as numbered in the 
2000 MUTCD) because it is not applicable. The FHWA also adds a new item 
3 as a GUIDANCE statement, which states that the law enforcement 
officer, if used for this application, should follow the procedures of 
Sections 6E.04 Flagger Procedures and 6E.05 Regulatory Sign Authority. 
This is to encourage law enforcement officers to use proper flagging 
devices and procedures for a temporary road closure. The FHWA received 
editorial comments on these changes, which the FHWA incorporates as 
appropriate in this final rule.
    n. Notes for Figure 6H-14: The FHWA adds a new item 6 under 
Flagging Method which states, ``At night, flagger stations shall be 
illuminated, except in emergencies.'' In response to concerns about the 
orientation of the signal heads in the figure, the two overhead traffic 
signal heads in each direction have been relocated to show one post 
mounted head and one overhead mounted traffic signal head.
    o. Notes for Figure 6H-15: The FHWA adds a new item 2 to the 
GUIDANCE statement that workers in the roadway should wear high-
visibility safety apparel as described in Section 6D.03 Worker Safety 
Considerations. See discussion of items regarding vehicle hazard 
warning signals in paragraph a above. The FHWA received comments from 
ATSSA and the Virginia DOT suggesting that all workers exposed to 
traffic wear high visibility safety apparel, and the statement be 
strengthened to a STANDARD. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and 
a private citizen felt the new text is unnecessary because it is 
obvious that workers should wear high visibility safety apparel. The 
FHWA strengthens the existing GUIDANCE statement in 6D.03 to include 
that the high visibility safety apparel should meet the requirements of 
ISEA ``American National Standard for High-Visibility Safety Apparel'' 
(see Section 1A.11 Relation to Other Publications) and labeled as ANSI 
107-1999 standard performance for Class 1, 2, or 3 risk exposure and 
that a competent person, designated by the employer to be responsible 
for the worker safety plan within the activity area of the job site, 
should make the selection of the appropriate class of garment. While 
this is not a mandate as suggested in two of the docket comments, the 
emphasis is significantly heightened from the 2000 MUTCD and does allow 
employer flexibility on the use of the high visibility safety apparel 
to fit the conditions that exist. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts the text 
as proposed in the NPA.
    p. Notes for Figure 6H-17: The FHWA adds a new item 3 to the 
STANDARD statement that if an arrow panel is used, it shall be used in 
the caution mode. The FHWA renumbers the remaining items. Additionally, 
the FHWA removes item 5 of the GUIDANCE statement (as numbered in the 
2000 MUTCD) and moves it to the OPTION statement as part of item 9 that 
the use of a truck mounted attenuator is optional on either a shadow 
vehicle or a work vehicle. Several commenters suggested an optional 
truck mounted attenuator be retained on the work vehicle. The FHWA 
agrees and includes the optional attenuator in this final rule.
    q. Notes for Figure 6H-19: The FHWA repeats the GUIDANCE items from 
the notes for Figure 6H-20 in the notes for Figure 6H-19 to address two 
comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggesting that these items be added because they are 
applicable and necessary for proper use of the typical application. The 
FHWA agrees and makes the editorial change to add these notes in this 
final rule.
    r. Notes for Figure 6H-21: (See discussion of items regarding 
vehicle hazard warning signals in paragraph a above.) The NCUTCD 
objected to the addition of ``optional'' to the flag tree in the 
figure, stating it should be guidance. Optional is consistent with the 
text in Section 6F.57 High-Level Warning Devices. Upgrading to a 
GUIDANCE condition goes beyond the scope of the NPA and would need to 
be addressed in a future rulemaking. Practitioners can choose to make 
its use recommended or mandatory in their jurisdictions if appropriate.
    s. Notes for Figure 6H-22: In the NPA, the FHWA proposed removing 
item 5 (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) from the OPTION statement, 
regarding a right-turn island using channelizing devices. The FHWA 
received three comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen opposed to this proposal, stating that 
the item provides useful information that is not evident from looking 
at the figure. The FHWA agrees and restores the text of the 2000

[[Page 65565]]

MUTCD, with editorial changes. The NCUTCD, the Kansas DOT, the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen objected to the 
removal of ``optional'' from the arrow panel in the figure. In Section 
6F.56 Arrow Panels, the FHWA adds a new GUIDANCE statement on the use 
of arrow panels for certain conditions such as multi-lane, high speed, 
high volume, limited sight distance or unexpected locations which 
applies in this typical application. Accordingly, the FHWA adopts the 
change deleting ``optional'' from the arrow panel in this final rule.
    t. Notes for Figure 6H-24: The NCUTCD objected to the addition of 
``optional'' for the buffer space and the NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen objected 
to the deletion of ``optional'' from the arrow panel in the figure. The 
FHWA agrees with the docket comments and withdraws these proposed 
changes.
    u. Notes for Figure 6H-25: The NCUTCD objected to the term 
``optional'' for the flag tree, stating that for work in intersections 
the high-level warning device is very useful and it should not be 
labeled as optional. Optional is consistent with the text in Section 
6F.57 High-Level Warning Devices. Upgrading to a GUIDANCE condition 
goes beyond the scope of the NPA, and would need to be addressed in a 
future rulemaking. Practitioners can choose to make its use recommended 
or mandatory in their jurisdictions, if appropriate. Based on 
additional comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen, the FHWA relocates the southbound ROAD WORK AHEAD sign 
upstream and dimensions it with respect to the first channelizing 
device rather than the intersection.
    v. Notes for Figure 6H-26: (See discussion of items regarding 
vehicle hazard warning signals in paragraph a above.) The NCUTCD 
objected to the term ``optional'' for the flag tree in the Figure. 
Similar to figures 6H-21 and 24, ``optional'' is consistent with the 
text in Section 6F.57. Practitioners can choose to make its use 
recommended or mandatory in their jurisdictions, if appropriate.
    w. Notes for Figure 6H-27: (See discussion of items regarding 
vehicle hazard warning signals in paragraph a above.) The NCUTCD 
objected to the term ``optional'' for the flag tree in the figure. 
Similar to Figures 6H-12, 24, and 26, ``optional'' is consistent with 
the text in Section 6F.57 High-Level Warning Devices (Flag Trees). 
Practitioners can choose to make its use recommended or mandatory in 
their jurisdictions, if appropriate. In addition, consistent with 
Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations, the FHWA adds a new STANDARD statement 
which states, ``At night, flagger stations shall be illuminated, except 
in emergencies.''
    x. Notes for Figure 6H-28: In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding a 
new item 3 to the GUIDANCE statement that audible warnings should be 
considered where midblock closings and changed crosswalk areas cause 
inadequate communication to pedestrians who have visual disabilities. 
The FHWA received five comments, including comments from 
representatives of the blind community, opposing this new item, and 
suggesting rewording. The FHWA agrees and revises this item by changing 
the phrase ``audible warning'' to ``audible information devices.'' 
Additionally, the FHWA adds the use of Type D 360-degree Steady-Burn 
warning lights to item 7 of the OPTION statement (as numbered in the 
NPA), to provide consistency with other sections in Part 6. There were 
no comments regarding this change, and the FHWA adopts this change. The 
FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and a traffic engineering 
consultant regarding item 1 in the STANDARD statement, suggesting that 
the wording be revised for clarity. The FHWA agrees and clarifies the 
statement in this final rule to indicate that when crosswalks or other 
pedestrian facilities are closed or relocated, the temporary facilities 
shall be detectable and shall include accessibility features consistent 
with features present in the existing pedestrian facility.
    y. Notes for Figure 6H-29: (Refer to the discussion for Figure 6H-
28 regarding item 3 of the GUIDANCE statement and item 1 of the 
STANDARD statement). The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggested that an additional advance pedestrian 
crossing sign is necessary for eastbound traffic on the east leg of the 
intersection. The FHWA agrees and changes the figure accordingly in 
this final rule.
    z. Notes for Figure 6H-30: The FHWA received comments from the 
NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen objecting to the removal of the term ``optional'' for 
the arrow panels in the figure. The FHWA modifies the new GUIDANCE 
statement in Section 6F.56 Arrow Panels on the placement criteria for 
use of arrow panels which will allow optional use in some conditions. 
Accordingly, the FHWA withdraws this proposed deletion of ``optional'' 
from the figure for this Typical Application.
    aa. Notes for Figure 6H-31: The FHWA received one comment from 
Caltrans suggesting that the metric maximum spacing formula for 
channelizing markings, as stated in item 4 of the GUIDANCE, is not 
accurate, and needed to be revised to be accurate and to be consistent 
with Figure 6H-32. The FHWA agrees that this was a typographical error 
and revises this item in this final rule from ``0.1 S km'' to ``0.1 S 
m.'' The FHWA also adds the text ``in km/h (mph)'' following ``where S 
is the speed.'' The FHWA received three comments suggesting that items 
7 and 9 be revised to better correlate with the illustration on Figure 
6H-31. The FHWA agrees and revises the items accordingly in this final 
rule. In note 7, the words ``Two Lane'' are added before ``Reverse 
Curve'' in the first and second sentences of note 7. The FHWA deletes 
the first sentence in note 9. Similar to Figure 6H-30, the FHWA also 
received four docket comments objecting to the removal of the term 
``optional'' for the arrow panels in the figure. For the reasons listed 
in paragraph z above, the FHWA withdraws the proposed deletion of 
``optional'' from the Figure for this Typical Application.
    bb. Notes for Figure 6H-32: In the NPA, the FHWA proposed adding a 
new item 2 to the STANDARD statement requiring at least one advance 
warning sign when paved shoulders having a width of 2.4 m (8 ft) or 
more are closed and that channelizing devices shall be used to close 
the shoulder in advance to delineate the beginning of the work space 
and direct motor vehicle traffic to remain within the traveled way. The 
FHWA received comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and 
a private citizen opposed to this new statement, indicating that this 
statement better relates to work exclusively on the shoulder. The FHWA 
agrees and changes this statement to a GUIDANCE and clarifies the 
statement to indicate that channelizing devices (rather than signs) 
should be used to close the shoulder in advance of the merging taper 
for a lane closure, to direct vehicular traffic to remain within the 
traveled way. The FHWA also adds a new item 4 under GUIDANCE regarding 
use of Reverse Curve signs rather than a Double Reverse Curve sign 
under certain conditions for consistency with GUIDANCE elsewhere in 
Part 6. The FHWA renumbers the remaining items. One docket comment from 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, suggested that item 6 be 
clarified with respect to the start of temporary traffic control near 

railroad grade crossings where queues may extend through the crossing. 
The FHWA agrees and revises ``transition area'' to ``merging taper.'' 
The FHWA

[[Page 65566]]

also revises notes 8 and 9 (numbered 7 and 8 in 2000 MUTCD) in response 
to comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen about coordination with railroads. The FHWA believes that 
additional emphasis is necessary and adds the text ``When a highway-
rail grade crossing exists within the activity area'' to the beginning 
of notes 8 and 9. The FHWA received comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen objecting to the 
removal of the term ``optional'' for the arrow panels in the Figure. 
The FHWA deletes the term optional from the arrow panels in the figure. 
Although the FHWA modifies the new GUIDANCE statement in Section 6F.56 
Arrow Panels on the placement criteria for use of arrow panels which 
will allow optional use in some conditions, in this Typical 
Application, the GUIDANCE conditions prevail; i.e. high speed, multi-
lane highway. The FHWA received comments from the City of Charlotte, 
North Carolina, and a private citizen indicating that the distances for 
the RIGHT LANE CLOSED signs in the figure are in error. The FHWA agrees 
and revises 1500 FT and 450 m to XX FT and XX m.
    cc. Notes for Figure 6H-33: (Refer to discussion for Figure 6H-32 
regarding the new item 3 that the FHWA had proposed to add as a 
STANDARD.) The FHWA proposed removing item 3 of the GUIDANCE statement 
(as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) because it was not applicable to the 
application depicted. The FHWA received three comments from the NCUTCD, 
the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen suggesting 
that the item be retained as a SUPPORT rather than GUIDANCE because it 
contains useful information suggesting that vehicles, equipment, 
workers, and their activities be located on one side of the pavement. 
The FHWA agrees and restores this statement as a SUPPORT.
    dd. Notes for Figure 6H-34: The FHWA adds a new item to the 
STANDARD statement that the information from this figure shall also be 
used when work is being performed in the lane adjacent to the median on 
a divided highway, and specifies which signs to use for the specific 
application in this figure. This is a repeat of an item in the STANDARD 
statement in the notes for Figure 6H-33. The FHWA makes this change to 
address two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggesting that this STANDARD in Figure 6H-33 is also 
applicable to Figure 6H-34. The FHWA agrees that this is needed for 
consistency with requirements elsewhere in Part 6 and adopts this 
change in this final rule. The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggested that the term ``temporary,'' used to describe 
an edge line in note 2, be labeled ``interim'' as temporary markings 
are to remain in place only two weeks. The FHWA disagrees because 
Sections 6F.71 Pavement Markings and 6F.72. Temporary Pavement Markings 
provide adequate guidance for short and long term markings and there is 
no term ``interim'' used to describe markings. Additionally, the FHWA 
received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen indicating that the notes for the crash cushion in the 
figure are redundant. The FHWA addresses the comments and provides 
necessary consistency with other sections of the MUTCD by revising the 
notes and the figure as follows: To maintain consistency with Figure 
6H-5, the FHWA revises note 3 (note 2 in the 2000 MUTCD) by deleting 
the last sentence. The FHWA adds a new STANDARD item 4 to clarify that 
the ends of the barrier shall be treated in accordance with Section 
6F.81 Temporary Traffic Barriers. The FHWA also removes the word 
(optional) following ``crash cushion'' in Figure 6H-34 and changes the 
Section reference from Section 6F.78 to Section 6F.82 Temporary Traffic 
Barriers. Additionally, the FHWA received comments from the City of 
Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen stating that the END 
ROAD WORK sign in the southbound direction should be labeled as 
optional. The FHWA agrees because the ROAD WORK AHEAD sign is optional 
in the southbound direction and revises the figure accordingly.
    ee. Notes for Figure 6H-35: In the NPA, the FHWA proposed modifying 
item 4 of the GUIDANCE statement to indicate that Shadow Vehicle 2 
should be equipped with an arrow panel in a caution mode if on the 
shoulder. The FHWA received comments from the NCUTCD, the Wisconsin 
DOT, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
suggesting that the arrow panel should continue to be used in the arrow 
mode rather than the caution mode because, for this mobile operation, 
the distance between Shadow Vehicles 2 and 1 simulates a merging taper. 
The FHWA agrees and restores the text from the 2000 MUTCD, removing the 
phrase ``in caution mode if on the shoulder'' from this final rule. The 
FHWA also received one comment from Caltrans that an optional truck 
mounted attenuator should be shown on the work vehicle to enhance road 
user and worker safety. The FHWA agrees and adds an optional truck 
mounted attenuator in the figure in this final rule.
    ff. Notes for Figure 6H-36: The FHWA revises item 11 of the OPTION 
statement to clarify that the signs to be used are ``Three Lane Reverse 
Curve'' signs, rather than ``Triple Lane Shift'' signs. The FHWA makes 
this change because it is needed for consistency and to properly 
identify the type of sign to be used. The FHWA also received several 
comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen related to the temporary barrier and crash cushion in 
the figure. Consistent with Figures 6H-5 and 6H-34, the FHWA adds a new 
STANDARD item 4 to clarify that where installed, the ends of the 
barrier shall be treated in accordance with Section 6F.81 Temporary 
Traffic Barriers. The FHWA deletes the parenthetical phrase ``(see 
Section 6F.77 for end treatments)'' in item 13 as the new STANDARD item 
4 covers this information.
    gg. Notes for Figure 6H-37: The FHWA received two comments from the 
City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen objecting to 
the deletion of the label ``optional'' from the arrow panels. The FHWA 
modifies the new GUIDANCE statement in Section 6F.56 Arrow Panels on 
the placement criteria for use of arrow panels which will allow 
optional use in some conditions. In this Typical Application, however, 
the GUIDANCE conditions prevail; i.e. high speed, multi-lane highway. 
Accordingly, the FHWA deletes the term ``optional'' from the arrow 
panels in the figure.
    hh. Notes for Figure 6H-39: The FHWA received comments from 
Caltrans, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private citizen 
related to the position and dimensions of the advance sign series in 
the northbound direction. To clarify the figure and allow flexibility 
for the practitioner, the FHWA changes the distances on the signs from 
1500 FT, \1/2\ MILE, 1 MILE to XX FT, XX MILE and XX MILE. The metric 
equivalents are also changed accordingly to XX m, XX m and XX km. The 
FHWA received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, 
and a private citizen objecting to the deletion of the label 
``optional'' from the arrow panels. The FHWA deletes the ``optional'' 
label because of the modifications made to the new GUIDANCE statement 
in Section 6F.56 Arrow Panels on the placement criteria for use of 
arrow panels which will allow optional use in some conditions. In this 
Typical Application, however, the GUIDANCE conditions prevail; i.e. 
high speed, multi-lane highway.

[[Page 65567]]

    ii. Notes for Figure 6H-40: The FHWA adds to item 3 that YIELD or 
STOP lines should be installed, if needed, across the ramp to indicate 
the point at which road users should YIELD or STOP. The FHWA received 
two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen suggesting additional information should be included in the 
GUIDANCE regarding the placement of YIELD or STOP lines. However, the 
FHWA does not add additional language in this final rule because such a 
change would require further study and public comment. Additionally, 
the FHWA adds a dimension of 7.5 m (25 ft) spacing between channelizing 
devices shown on Figure 6H-40. The FHWA includes this additional 
guidance, beyond the general guidance in Section 6F.58 Channelizing 
Devices about channelizing device spacing, to help improve 
channelization specifically in the median crossover by providing a 
recommended device spacing to minimize the tendency of vehicles to 
drive between devices. The FHWA received one comment from a private 
citizen in support of this change, and the FHWA adopts this change.
    jj. Figure 6H-41: (See discussion regarding channelizing device 
spacing in paragraph ii above.)
    kk. Notes for Figure 6H-42: The FHWA removes items 6 and 7 of the 
OPTION statement (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) because they are not 
applicable to the specific application depicted on Figure 6H-42. In the 
NPA, the FHWA proposed renumbering the remaining item. The FHWA 
received two comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a 
private citizen suggesting that the remaining item, stating that a 
buffer may be used, was not clear without the two previous items, which 
had been removed. The FHWA agrees and deletes the remaining item (6) in 
this final rule because it is unlikely that a buffer will be used for 
this application, thus the note is not necessary. (See the discussion 
and comments for item gg above regarding the label ``optional'' for the 
arrow panels on the figure.)
    ll. Notes for Figure 6H-44: The FHWA removes item 5 in the GUIDANCE 
statement (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) because it is too vague and 
there is no accepted practice to determine how traffic is stabilized. 
The FHWA renumbers the remaining items. The FHWA received no comments 
regarding this change. (See the discussion and comments for paragraph 
gg above regarding the label ``optional'' for the arrow panels on the 
figure.)
    mm. Notes for Figure 6H-45: The FHWA adds a second sentence to 
items 2a and 2e to include changing the mode of the second northbound 
and southbound arrow panels respectively from Caution to Right Arrow 
and from Right Arrow to Caution. The FHWA received comments suggesting 
that these changes are necessary for consistency with Chapter 6F of the 
MUTCD. The FHWA agrees and adopts these changes in this final rule.
    nn. Notes for Figure 6H-46: The FHWA revises item 9 from GUIDANCE 
to a STANDARD consistent with Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations. The 
standard states, ``At night, flagger stations shall be illuminated, 
except in emergencies.'' This change is necessary to be consistent with 
the new STANDARD in Section 6E.05 Flagger Stations.
    297. The FHWA adds a new chapter, numbered and titled ``Chapter 6I 
Control of Traffic Through Traffic Incident Management Areas.'' This 
new chapter contains text from Section 6G.19 Control of Traffic Through 
Incident Areas (as numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) in its entirety with 
several modifications and additional information on the use of 
temporary traffic control devices for traffic incident management 
zones. The new chapter contains a general section as well as sections 
on major, intermediate, and minor traffic incidents, and on use of 
emergency-vehicle lighting (flashing or rotating beacons or strobes). 
This Chapter is included to recognize the importance of safely and 
efficiently controlling traffic through traffic incident areas and the 
unique characteristics of incidents and the traffic controls that 
should be used.
    In Section 6I.01 Control of Traffic Through Traffic Incident 
Management Areas, the FHWA received comments from Lake County, 
Illinois, and the Cities of Tucson, Arizona, and Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen specifically in support of this new 
section, several informational and editorial comments, and some 
comments opposed to specific language within the section.
    Based on a comment from NIOSH suggesting that a distinction be made 
between planned and unplanned events, the FHWA makes a distinction 
between planned and unplanned events and removes language in this 
section, as well as the entire chapter, referring to planned events. 
With pre-planning and coordination between law enforcement and 
transportation agencies, most special events, such as a sporting event 
or a scheduled visit by a dignitary, would not require the emergency 
measures described in this section. This section focuses on management 
of emergency and other unforeseen incidents, including motor vehicle 
crashes, hazardous materials spills, and natural disasters. All 
references to special events are deleted from this chapter.
    The FHWA also revises text within this section to be consistent 
with changes made in other areas of the MUTCD in this final rule. Such 
revisions include clarifying the limits of an incident management area 
and designating the color fluorescent pink as an optional background 
color for incident management signs. Some commenters felt that the 
special color for traffic incident management signing should be 
mandatory or recommended rather than an option. The FHWA agrees it 
would be desirable for all traffic incident management signs to be the 
special color but determines that this is not practical due to the 
unplanned nature of such incidents and the wide variety and 
capabilities of first responders. The reason that the FHWA establishes 
an optional distinctive color (fluorescent pink) for signing for 
incident management is to inform drivers that the temporary traffic 
controls have been set up for an emergency and therefore this is not a 
normal temporary traffic control zone. If incident management 
treatments, including the special sign color, are only used for 
unforeseen situations, drivers will realize that they need to be 
especially alert in incident management situations.
    Consistent with Section 2C.33 of the MUTCD, the FHWA adopts the W4-
2 Lane Ends symbol sign but revises its design to be consistent with 
the Canadian symbol. (Please refer to the discussion in Section 2C.33).
    In response to comments from NIOSH, the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen, the FHWA also revises the third 
paragraph of the first GUIDANCE statement that ``first responders'' to 
the incident should assess the situation and set up temporary traffic 
control related to that assessment. First responders, however, will 
likely be too involved with other tasks related to the incident itself 
and accordingly the FHWA has deleted ``first'' from this statement. The 
statement now recognizes that other responders may perform this 
assessment and the associated tasks for temporary traffic control.
    In Section 6I.02 Major Traffic Incidents, the FHWA received two 
comments from the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and a private 
citizen opposed to the first GUIDANCE statement regarding the use of 
applicable procedures and devices for traffic incidents that are 
anticipated to

[[Page 65568]]

last more than 24 hours. The commenters stated that normal temporary 
traffic control procedures should be recommended for any incident 
lasting more than a few hours. The FHWA disagrees with these comments 
because incidents that are relatively severe can last for most of a 
day, and it is appropriate during these incidents to allow the use of 
incident management procedures and devices, rather than temporary 
traffic control procedures and devices.
    Based on comments from NIOSH and the Iowa DOT, the FHWA revises the 
third paragraph of the second GUIDANCE statement to add uniformed law 
enforcement officers, for consistency with other sections in Part 6.
    Based on comments from the NCUTCD, the City of Charlotte, North 
Carolina, and a private citizen, the FHWA revises the third GUIDANCE 
statement in this final rule to delete the recommendation that 
channelizing devices should be used whenever possible if a roadway is 
expected to be closed for more than three hours. That recommendation 
was inconsistent with the first GUIDANCE statement in this section, 
which states that other chapters of Part 6 should be used if the 
incident will last more than 24 hours. Finally, the FHWA revises the 
last paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement to address a comment from the 
NCUTCD suggesting that the reference to using flares for short-term 
temporary traffic control be deleted.
    In Section 6I.03 Intermediate Traffic Incidents, the FHWA revises 
the SUPPORT statement to clarify the duration of intermediate traffic 
incidents, based on comments from the NCUTCD and to be consistent with 
Section 6I.01 General. The FHWA makes additional revisions to this 
section to be consistent with changes as discussed in Section 6I.02 
Major Traffic Incidents.
    In Section 6I.04 Minor Traffic Incidents, the FHWA revises the 
SUPPORT statement to clarify the duration of minor traffic incidents. 
The FHWA also removes the first paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement and 
adds that paragraph to Sections 6I.01, 6I.02, and 6I.03, as this 
recommendation for training of on-scene responders is generally 
applicable to all types of traffic incidents but especially major and 
intermediate ones.
    In Section 6I.05 Use of Emergency-Vehicle Lighting, the FHWA 
received one comment from NIOSH opposed to the section, suggesting that 
the section does not provide clear, consistent advice on the use of 
emergency-vehicle lighting. The FHWA disagrees because the first 
sentence of the first paragraph points out that emergency-vehicle 
lighting is essential prior to establishing good traffic control and 
the second and third paragraphs encourage emergency-vehicle lighting to 
be kept to a minimum after good traffic control has been established. 
The FHWA adopts this section with an additional GUIDANCE paragraph 
stating that vehicle headlights not needed for illumination, or to 
provide notice to other road users of the incident response vehicle 
being in an unexpected location, should be turned off at night.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 7--Traffic Controls for School 
Areas

    298. In Section 7A.01 Need for Standards, the FHWA received one 
comment from Caltrans suggesting that the STANDARD, which states that 
the types of traffic control devices used in school areas shall be 
related to the volumes and speed of vehicular traffic, street width, 
and the number and age of the students using the crossing, is not 
practical because the type of traffic control devices cannot be related 
to all of the conditions listed. The FHWA agrees that GUIDANCE, to 
provide recommendations rather than a requirement, is appropriate and 
revises this statement in the final rule to a GUIDANCE. In addition, 
this is consistent with the rest of the GUIDANCE statement in Section 
7A.01.
    299. In Section 7A.04 Scope, the FHWA received four comments from 
the NCUTCD, the Kansas DOT, and the Minnesota DOT opposing the removal 
of the second paragraph of the STANDARD restricting the use of portable 
school signs. The FHWA disagrees with the commenters because Arizona 
has extensively used portable school signs, in accordance with Arizona 
State laws and Arizona DOT guidelines that have been in effect for 
several decades.\56\ The FHWA believes that, when designed and placed 
appropriately, portable school signs can be helpful in reducing speed, 
increasing road user awareness of the crossing, and enhancing school 
pedestrian safety. The FHWA believes that the use of these signs is a 
subset of overall ``in-street'' pedestrian devices that the FHWA adopts 
in Part 2. In addition, the State of Washington successfully 
experimented with in-roadway school warning signs,\57\ as discussed 
below under Sections 7B.08 School Advance Warning Assembly (S1-1 with 
Supplemental Plaque) and 7B.09 School Crosswalk Warning Assembly (S1-1 
with Diagonal Arrow). Accordingly, the FHWA adopts the removal of the 
text as specified in the NPA. For consistency with other parts of the 
MUTCD, the FHWA also adds an OPTION that in-roadway signs for school 
traffic control areas may be used consistent with the requirements of 
Sections 7B.08, 7B.09, and 2B.12 In-Street Pedestrian Crossing Signs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \56\ ``Traffic Safety for School Areas Guidelines'', 30-012, 
Arizona Department of Transportation, June 2003, includes Arizona 
DOT guidelines for use of portable school signs and citations of 
applicable Arizona State laws. This document is available at the 
following URL: http://www.dot.state.az.us/ROADS/traffic/standards/School_Safety/Schoolsafety.pdf.
 The longstanding use and success of 
these signs in Arizona is reported in ``School Zone Flashers--Do 
they Really Slow Traffic?'' by Benjamin E. Burritt, Richard C. 
Buchanan, and Eric I. Kalivoda'', an article in ITE Journal, volume 
60, number 1, January, 1990, pages 29-31. A copy of this article is 
available on the docket. Also, this issue of ITE Journal is 
available for purchase from the Institute of Transportation 
Engineers (ITE) at the following URL: http://ite.org and click on 
``Bookstore''.
    \57\ ``School Zone `Delineator' Project: Summary of Preliminary 
Analysis Data'' was prepared in August 2003 by the Washington 
Traffic Safety Commission for the Washington State Department of 
Transportation, as a part of FHWA-approved experimentation number 7-
16. This document is available on the docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    300. In Section 7A.09 Unauthorized Devices and Messages, (titled 
Section 7A.09 Removal of Confusing Advertising in the 2000 MUTCD), the 
FHWA changes the title to provide consistency with other text in the 
MUTCD as well as to avoid conflicting statements to clarify the intent 
of this section. Two commenters from the Ohio DOT and Caltrans 
suggested that the title of the section be changed to clarify the 
intent of the section. The comment from the Ohio DOT also suggested 
that the SUPPORT statement be revised to reference Section 1A.01 
Purpose of Traffic Control Devices in addition to Section 1A.08 
Authority for Placement of Traffic Control Devices, which is already 
referenced. The FHWA agrees that these changes are necessary for 
consistency.
    301. In Section 7B.01 Size of School Signs, the FHWA revises the 
STANDARD statement to indicate that the ``Conventional Road'' size sign 
shall be used on public roads, streets, and highways unless engineering 
judgment determines that a special sign size would be more appropriate, 
and that ``oversized'' sign sizes shall be used on expressways. The 
FHWA also revises the OPTION statement to indicate that ``oversized'' 
sign sizes may be used for application that require increased emphasis, 
improved recognition, or increased legibility.

[[Page 65569]]

    The FHWA also revises the three size columns of Table 7B-1 to 
correspond with the text changes, so that the first column is labeled 
``Conventional Road'', the second column is labeled ``Minimum'' and the 
third is labeled ``Oversized''. The FHWA proposed several changes to 
this table in the NPA to reflect additional new signs, changes in sign 
sizes, and deletion of signs. Based on comments from the NCUTCD, the 
Virginia and Oregon DOTs, Pierce County, Washington, and a traffic 
engineering consultant, the FHWA incorporates additional changes to 
these signs in this final rule. These changes in the table reflect 
changes throughout Part 7 and make the sizes of supplemental plaques 
correspond more closely with the sizes of the signs they supplement. 
The sign sizes in this table are also consistent with the sign sizes in 
Part 2.
    302. In Section 7B.07 Sign Color for School Warning Signs, the FHWA 
changes item A in the OPTION statement to ``School Advance Warning 
Sign'' to be consistent with other changes in the MUTCD. The FHWA also 
changes item D in the OPTION statement to clarify that only the SCHOOL 
portion on the School Speed Limit (S5-1) sign may have a fluorescent 
yellow-green background. The SCHOOL portion of the sign is the warning 
message. The FHWA also adds item H in the OPTION statement to include 
the Reduced Speed School Zone Ahead (S4-5, S4-5a) sign in the list of 
signs that may have a fluorescent yellow-green background with a black 
legend and border.
    303. In Section 7B.08 School Advance Warning Assembly (S1-1 with 
Supplemental Plaque), to respond to a comment from a traffic 
engineering consultant suggesting clarification, the FHWA adds to the 
GUIDANCE statement an exception that the School Advance Warning (S1-1) 
assembly does not need to be installed along a highway when a physical 
barrier, such as fencing, separates school children from the highway.
    The FHWA also adds an OPTION statement at the end of the section to 
describe the use of the in-street reduced size School Advance Warning 
(S1-1) sign and reduced size AHEAD (W16-9p) plaque in advance of a 
school crossing. The Washington State DOT performed a before and after 
study to determine the effectiveness of this sign. Although a final 
report on the evaluation is not complete, a preliminary analysis of the 
data \58\ shows that these signs can be effective in reducing speeds in 
school zones. Based on this experience, the FHWA determines that this 
is an acceptable variation of the In-Street Pedestrian Crossing sign 
discussed in Section 7B.09 School Crosswalk Warning Assembly (S1-1 with 
Diagonal Arrow). This sign will provide an additional tool to increase 
the safety of school crossings by enhancing the conspicuity of advance 
warnings.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \58\ ``School Zone `Delineator' Project: Summary of Preliminary 
Analysis Data'' was prepared in August 2003 by the Washington 
Traffic Safety Commission for the Washington State Department of 
Transportation, as a part of FHWA-approved experimentation number 7-
16. This document is available on the docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For easier reference, the FHWA assigns the page of sign images a 
number and title, ``Figure 7B-1 School Area Signs''.
    Also, the FHWA adds a new figure numbered and titled, ``Figure 7B-2 
Examples of Signing for School Crosswalk Warning Assembly'' to 
illustrate the placement of these assemblies as described in Section 
7B.09.
    Additionally, the FHWA renumbers and retitles Figure 7B-1 (as 
numbered in the 2000 MUTCD) to ``Figure 7B-3 Examples of Signing for 
School Area Traffic Control with School Speed Limits.'' The FHWA 
received a comment in agreement from NCUTCD and a comment in opposition 
from a traffic engineering consultant regarding this figure. The 
traffic engineering consultant questioned the need to have an ``End 
SCHOOL ZONE'' sign. This sign is discussed in Section 7B.13 END SCHOOL 
ZONE Sign (S5-2) and its use is appropriately shown in Figure 7B-3.
    The FHWA adds a new figure numbered and titled, ``Figure 7B-4 In-
Street Signs in School Areas'' to illustrate the placement of these 
signs as described in Sections 7B.08 and 7B.09. The FHWA adds this 
figure in this final rule to provide clarity and to assist users in 
understanding the sign placement.
    304. In Section 7B.09 School Crosswalk Warning Assembly (S1-1 with 
Diagonal Arrow), the FHWA received several comments from the NCUTCD, 
State DOTs, a traffic control device manufacturer, and a private 
citizen regarding the proposal to insert an OPTION statement allowing 
the use of the In-Street Pedestrian Crossing (R1-6 or R1-6a) signs at 
unsignalized midblock crossings. The NCUTCD and the Minnesota DOT were 
opposed to allowing the use of the sign, suggesting that there was not 
sufficient research to support of the effectiveness of the sign. The 
Oregon DOT, a traffic control device manufacturer, and the private 
citizen suggested that use of the sign be permitted at all unsignalized 
school crossings, not just midblock crossings. As discussed above in 
Section 7A.04, the FHWA believes that portable school signs, when 
designed and placed appropriately, can be helpful in reducing speed, 
enhancing road user awareness of the crossing, and enhancing school 
pedestrian safety. The use of these signs is a subset of overall ``in-
street'' pedestrian devices that FHWA adopts in Section 2B.12 In-Street 
Pedestrian Crossing Signs (R1-6, R1-6a), and for consistency, the FHWA 
adopts their use in Section 7B.09. The FHWA deletes ``midblock'' from 
the OPTION in this section and adds language to the STANDARD statement 
regarding sign placement and breakaway requirements.
    The FHWA adds to the OPTION statement to describe the use of the 
reduced size School Advance Warning (S1-1) sign at an unsignalized 
school crossing instead of the In-Street Pedestrian Crossing (R1-6 or 
R1-6a) sign and to describe the use of the reduced size Diagonal Arrow 
(W16-7p) plaque with the reduced size School Advance Warning (S1-1) 
sign. Based on successful experience with this in-street version of the 
School Crosswalk Warning Assembly in Washington State, as discussed 
above under Section 7B.08, the FHWA believes that this is an acceptable 
alternative to the In-Street Pedestrian Crossing (R1-6 or R1-6a) sign 
for use at a school crosswalk.
    Additionally, the FHWA clarifies the STANDARD statement at the end 
of the section to describe the use of the In-street Pedestrian Crossing 
sign and the reduced-size in-street School Advance Warning (S1-1) 
assembly.
    305. In Section 7B.11 School Speed Limit Assembly (S4-1, S4-2, S4-
3, S4-4, S4-6, S5-1) (referred to as Section 7B.11 School Speed Limit 
Assembly (S4-1, S4-2, S4-3, S4-4, S5-1) in the NPA), the FHWA received 
three comments from the Ohio DOT and traffic engineering consultants 
regarding the location of the reduced speed zone in the vicinity of a 
school. While there were no proposed changes to this statement in the 
NPA, the FHWA changes the location of the speed zone in relation to the 
school property line from ``90 m (300 ft)'' to ``30 m (100 ft)'' to 
correct an error in the 2000 MUTCD and address the concerns of the 
commenters. The FHWA also changes the corresponding dimension shown in 
Figure 7B-3.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add to the OPTION statement that 
changeable message signs should subscribe to the principles established 
in Section 2A.07 Changeable Message Signs and other sections of the 
MUTCD,

[[Page 65570]]

for consistency with Section 6F.55 Portable Changeable Message Signs. 
The NCUTCD suggested eliminating redundant references to the changeable 
message signs. Based on this comment, the FHWA creates a new OPTION 
statement after the second STANDARD and moves what was previously the 
first paragraph of the OPTION statement to this new OPTION and revises 
the wording to include references to Section 2A.07 and 6F.55. The FHWA 
deletes the remaining repetitious wording from the second OPTION.
    The FHWA adds new paragraphs to the last OPTION statement 
indicating that fluorescent yellow-green pixels may be used when 
school-related messages are shown on a changeable message sign and that 
changeable message signs that display the speed of approaching drivers 
my be used in a school speed zone. There were no comments on this 
change.
    The FHWA also adds information on the use of the FINES HIGHER (R2-
6) sign to advise road users when increased fines are imposed for 
traffic violations in school zones. One commenter from the Wisconsin 
DOT felt that this sign was not necessary because these laws are 
already in the State statutes and the State generally does not make it 
a practice to sign all statutory requirements. Because this is an 
OPTION statement, any State can decide whether or not to use this sign. 
The FHWA adopts the language as proposed in the NPA.
    306. In Section 7B.12 Reduced Speed School Zone Ahead Sign (S4-5, 
S4-5a) (referred to as Section 7B.12 School Reduced Speed Ahead Sign 
(S4-5, S4-5a) in the NPA), the FHWA received several comments from the 
NCUTCD and State DOTs regarding the use of S4-5 and S4-5a signs. The 
Illinois, Oregon, and Wisconsin DOTs and the NCUTCD opposed the use of 
these signs in place of the rectangular ``School/Reduced Speed Ahead'' 
signs, stating that these signs are not needed and do not add much 
benefit for the impact they would have on the States. The State DOTs 
stated that the S4-5 and S4-5a warning signs may not be as effective as 
the rectangular signs.
    The FHWA disagrees and adds the S4-5 and S4-5a signs in this final 
rule for Part 7 to avoid conflicting sign applications within the 
MUTCD. The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 15 
years from the effective date of this final rule for replacement of 
existing regulatory signs in good condition with these warning signs to 
minimize any impact on State of local governments.
    This is consistent with the decisions in Chapter 2C to add the W3-5 
Speed Reduced Ahead signs in symbol and legend designs for English 
units and the legend design for metric units. In response to the 
NCUTCD's suggestions to enhance the perception and legibility, the FHWA 
modifies the design of the W3-5 symbol sign to reduce the height of the 
legend ``SPEED'' and ``LIMIT'' while increasing the height of the 
numbers of the speed limit. This will provide enhanced perception and 
legibility distance.
    307. In Section 7C.03 Crosswalk Markings, the FHWA adds a new 
SUPPORT statement at the beginning of the section to provide 
information on the use of crosswalk markings. The FHWA received one 
comment from the City of Tucson supporting all of the changes to this 
section as proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the second paragraph of the GUIDANCE 
statement to include extending crosswalk lines to the edge of the 
intersecting crosswalk to discourage diagonal walking between 
crosswalks. The FHWA adds this additional wording to be consistent with 
changes in Section 3B.17 Crosswalk Markings, and because school 
children are pedestrians. To be consistent with Section 3B.17, the FHWA 
also adds additional text at the end of the first GUIDANCE statement to 
indicate that crosswalks should not be used indiscriminately and that 
an engineering study should be performed before placing crosswalks at 
locations away from traffic control signals or STOP signs.
    308. In Section 7C.04 Stop and Yield Lines, the FHWA revises the 
title from ``Stop Line Markings'' to ``Stop and Yield Lines'' and 
revises the entire section to appropriately mirror the STANDARD, 
GUIDANCE, OPTION, and SUPPORT statements contained in Part 3. The FHWA 
received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
all of the changes. The Oregon DOT suggested adding an OPTION to allow 
the use of a stop line with STOP HERE FOR PEDESTRIANS signs at both 
intersection and midblock locations at crosswalks not controlled by a 
signal, stop sign, or yield sign, in order to help enforce State law 
requiring drivers to stop. The FHWA disagrees because STOP HERE FOR 
PEDESTRIAN signs with stop lines are not adopted in Section 2B.11 Yield 
Here to Pedestrians Signs (R1-5, R1-5a) or Part 3 Markings.
    309. In Section 7E.04 Uniform of Adult Crossing Guards and Student 
Patrols (referred to as Section 7E.04 Uniform of Adult Guards and 
Student Patrols in the NPA), the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement that 
adult guards shall wear high-visibility safety apparel labeled as ANSI 
107-1999 standard performance for Class 2, and that student patrols 
shall wear high-visibility safety apparel labeled as ANSI 107-1999 
standard performance for Class 1. This safety apparel will make the 
guards and patrols (and the students they are managing) far more 
visible to approaching road users. The adopted language in this final 
rule includes a slight revision from the NPA that changes the phrase 
``high-visibility retroreflective clothing'' to ``high-visibility 
safety apparel.'' The FHWA incorporates this change in this final rule 
for consistency with terminology used in Part 6 and to avoid any 
possible misinterpretation that all clothing worn must meet the ANSI 
standard. The FHWA adopts a phase-in target compliance date for these 
changes of five years from the effective date of this final rule in 
order to minimize any impact on State or local agencies.
    310. In Section 7E.05 Operating Procedures for Adult Crossing 
Guards (referred to as Section 7E.05 Operating Procedures for Adult 
Guards in the NPA), the FHWA received seven comments from the NCUTCD, 
State and local DOTs, traffic control device manufacturers, and private 
citizens regarding the proposal to add an OPTION statement at the end 
of the section to allow the STOP paddle to be modified to enhance the 
conspicuity of the paddle by adding white flashing lights. All of the 
commenters suggested that the use of red lights also be allowed. The 
FHWA agrees and adds the use of red lights to the OPTION.
    The FHWA also adds item E to the OPTION statement to indicate that 
a series of white lights forming the shapes of the letters in the 
legend of a STOP paddle may be used. This is consistent with adopted 
changes to Parts 2 and 6 of the MUTCD.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement following the new 
OPTION statement to define the acceptable flashing rate of the optional 
flashing lights on STOP paddles. This change is consistent with the 
flashing rate in other parts of the MUTCD. A traffic control device 
manufacturer and private citizen suggested increasing the flash rate to 
three times the normal rate. The FHWA disagrees with allowing an 
increased flash rate because such a flash rate would be close to the 
range of flash rates that may cause epileptic seizures.\59\ The FHWA 
adopts the flash

[[Page 65571]]

rate of between 50 and 60 flashes per minute as proposed in the NPA.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \59\ The website of the National Society for Epilepsy, a 
professional society in the United Kingdom that specializes in 
epilepsy, states that a flash rate fo 5 to 30 hertz (flashes per 
second) can cause seizures in some people. This information is 
available at the following URL; http://www.epilepsynse.org.uk/pages/info/leaflets/photo.cfm.
 A variety of websites of U.S. organizations 
also refer to the problem of photosensitivity (triggering fo 
seizures by flickering lights) among epileptic persons.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 8--Traffic Controls for 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossings

    311. In Section 8A.01 Introduction, the FHWA revises the 
definitions in the STANDARD statement for: ``Advance Preemption and 
Advance Preemption Time'' (change to ``Advance Preemption'' and 
``Advance Preemption Time''), ``Clear Storage Distance,'' ``Dynamic 
Envelope Delineation'' (change to ``Dynamic Envelope''), ``Maximum 
Highway Traffic Signal Preemption Time,'' ``Minimum Track Clearance 
Distance,'' ``Pre-signal,'' and ``Queue Clearance Time'' to reflect 
accepted practice and terminologies. There were a few editorial 
comments regarding some of these definitions that have been 
incorporated in this final rule as appropriate.
    The FHWA also adds definitions for the following because they are 
referred to later in the MUTCD: ``Dynamic Exit Gate Operating Mode,'' 
``Exit Gate Clearance Time,'' ``Exit Gate Operating Mode,'' ``Flashing-
Light Signals,'' ``Timed Exit Gate Operating Mode,'' ``Wayside 
Equipment,'' and ``Vehicle Intrusion Detection Devices'' to reflect 
accepted practice and terminologies. There were a few editorial 
comments regarding some of these definitions that have been 
incorporated in this final rule as appropriate.
    Additionally, in response to a comment from Norfolk Southern 
Railroad, the FHWA removes the definition for ``Monitored 
Interconnected Operation'' because it is not used in the MUTCD. The 
FHWA renumbers the remaining definitions accordingly.
    312. In Section 8A.02 Use of Standard Devices, Systems, and 
Practices, the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement following the STANDARD 
statement. This GUIDANCE statement is identical to the second GUIDANCE 
statement in Section 10A.02 Use of Standard Devices, Systems, and 
Practices, and reinforces that Part 1 principles of design, placement, 
operation, maintenance, and uniformity of traffic control devices 
should be considered for both highway-rail and highway-light rail 
transit grade crossings. There was one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change. The Ohio DOT suggested editorial 
changes to reduce redundancy in listing types of traffic. The FHWA 
agrees and changes the phrase ``drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists'' 
to ``vehicle operators and pedestrians.'' The Virginia DOT suggested 
that the GUIDANCE be changed to a STANDARD. The FHWA disagrees because 
this statement is not specific enough to be a STANDARD.
    313. In Section 8A.03 Uniform Provisions, the FHWA changes the 
STANDARD statement to indicate that no sign or signal shall be located 
in the center of an undivided highway, except in a ``raised island.'' 
In the 2000 MUTCD, the text used the phrase ``island with non-mountable 
curbs,'' however a traffic engineering consultant suggested a change to 
clarify that the curb should not be mountable. The FHWA agrees and 
modifies the text, with slight editorial changes, to be consistent with 
the AASHTO Green Book.\60\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \60\ ``A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets,'' 
4th Edition, 2001, in both hardcopy and CD-ROM, is available from 
the American Association of State Highway and Transportation 
Officials (AASHTO) by telephone (800) 231-3475, facsimile (800) 525-
5562, mail AASHTO, P.O. Box 96716, Washington, DC 20090-6716, or at 
its Web site http://www.transportation.org and click on Bookstore. 
This document is a guide, based on established practices and 
supplemented by research, to provide guidance to the highway 
designer to provide for the needs of highway users while maintaining 
the integrity of the environment. It is incorporated by reference 
into the CFR at 23 CFR 625.4.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    314. In Section 8A.04 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Elimination, the 
FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement at the beginning of the section. This 
GUIDANCE statement is identical to the first GUIDANCE statement in 
Section 10A.04 Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossing Elimination, 
and reinforces that both highway-rail and highway-light rail transit 
grade crossings are a potential source of congestion and agencies 
should conduct engineering studies to determine the cost and benefits 
of eliminating such crossings. The FHWA received one comment from the 
Wisconsin DOT suggesting that the statement also mention that crossings 
are a potential source of crashes. The FHWA agrees and adds the 
appropriate text in this final rule.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds an OPTION statement at the end of the 
section. This OPTION statement is identical to the last OPTION 
statement in Section 10A.04 and reinforces that TRACKS OUT OF SERVICE 
(R8-9) signs may be temporarily installed at locations where both rail 
or light rail transit is eliminated at a highway-rail or highway-light 
rail transit grade crossing until the tracks are removed or paved over. 
The FHWA received one comment from the New Jersey DOT suggesting that 
this new OPTION be made a STANDARD. The FHWA also received a comment 
from the U.S. Access Board suggesting that the preceding GUIDANCE, as 
it relates to paving over tracks where a railroad is eliminated at a 
highway-rail grade crossing, be strengthened by adding a time limit by 
which the tracks should be paved over. The FHWA revises the OPTION 
statement to indicate that based on engineering judgment, the TRACKS 
OUT OF SERVICE sign may be temporarily installed until the tracks are 
removed or paved over and that the length of time that the tracks will 
be out of service before they are removed or paved over may be 
considered in making the decision as to whether to install the sign.
    315. In Section 8A.05 Temporary Traffic Control Zones, the FHWA 
adds a SUPPORT statement at the beginning of the section. This SUPPORT 
statement is identical to the SUPPORT statement in Section 10A.05 
Temporary Traffic Control Zones and reinforces that temporary traffic 
control planning provides for continuity of operations when the normal 
function of a roadway at both a highway-rail and a highway-light rail 
transit grade crossing is suspended because of temporary traffic 
control operations. The FHWA received one comment from the City of 
Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change. The FHWA adopts this 
change.
    316. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled, ``Section 
8B.02 Sizes of Grade Crossing Signs.'' This new section contains a 
STANDARD and an OPTION statement regarding sign sizes for grade 
crossing signs, as well as a reference to a new table numbered and 
titled, ``Table 8B-1 Sign Sizes for Grade Crossing Signs.'' The FHWA 
adds this section and table to consolidate information previously 
contained elsewhere in the MUTCD, make the information more readily 
accessible to readers, and for consistency with changes made in Part 2. 
The FHWA renumbers the remaining sections accordingly.
    317. In Section 8B.03 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Sign 
and Number of Tracks Sign (R15-2) (numbered and titled ``Section 8B.02 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Signs (R15-1, R15-2, R15-9)'' 
in the NPA), the FHWA proposed to add an OPTION statement for the 
optional use of a new Crossbuck Shield sign. The FHWA received two

[[Page 65572]]

comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, and ATSSA in support of the 
Crossbuck Shield sign. Sixteen commenters representing the NCUTCD and 
its railroad technical committee, railroad owners and associations, 
State and local DOTs, and private citizens expressed opposition to the 
use of the Crossbuck Shield sign, suggesting that consideration of 
these proposed changes be deferred pending the NCUTCD's consideration 
of the recommendations of NCHRP Report 470 \61\ regarding requiring the 
display of a YIELD sign or a STOP sign where appropriate, in 
conjunction with the Crossbuck sign. Given the strong response opposing 
the proposal, the FHWA believes that the proposal of the Crossbuck 
Shield was premature and removes all text and graphic references 
regarding the Crossbuck Shield sign from this final rule. States 
currently using the Crossbuck Shield sign under approved 
experimentations may request an extension in writing from the FHWA to 
continue experimental use.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \61\ NCHRP Report 470, ``Traffic Control Devices for Passive 
Railroad-Highway Grade Crossings'', 2002, is available for 
downloading from the Transportation Research Board at the following 
URL: http://gulliver.trb.org/publications/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_470-a.pdf_____________________________________-


    Also, the FHWA revises the second STANDARD statement to clarify the 
placement of retroreflective white material on the front and back of 
the supports for highway-rail grade crossing Crossbuck signs, to within 
0.6 m (2 ft) above the edge of the roadway, except on the side of those 
supports where a STOP or YIELD sign or flashing lights have been 
installed, or on the back side of supports for Crossbuck signs 
installed on one-way streets. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed a distance 
of 0.3 m (1 ft) from ground level, however the FHWA revises the wording 
in this final rule to reflect the many comments that FHWA received from 
the NCUTCD and its railroad technical committee, railroad owners and 
operators, State DOTs in regions where snowfall is common, and private 
citizens suggesting that 0.6 m (2 ft) was more appropriate due to 
potential maintenance problems in northern States associated with snow. 
In addition, the change from ``near ground level'' to ``above the edge 
of the roadway'' responds to many of the same commenters who suggested 
that referencing to the height of the edge of the roadway promotes a 
more uniform display and is more consistent with other sections of the 
MUTCD.
    Additionally, the FHWA received one comment from the Connecticut 
DOT regarding the second paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement relating 
to minimum lateral clearance for the nearest edge of the Crossbuck sign 
to the shoulder or the traveled way. The Connecticut DOT indicated that 
the 3.7 m (12 ft) requirement seemed excessive and could affect the 
motorist's sight to the sign due to physical limitations in rural 
areas. The NPA did not propose any significant changes to this 
statement, rather the NPA included editorial changes to add that this 
GUIDANCE refers to the ``minimum'' lateral clearance and to clarify 
that the greater of 1.8 m (6 feet) from the edge of the shoulder or 3.7 
m (12 ft) from the edge of the traveled way in rural areas (whichever 
is greater) should be used. Because this is a GUIDANCE, if there is a 
good engineering reason for placing the sign closer to the edge of the 
roadway, agencies may do so. The FHWA adopts the language as proposed 
in the NPA with one punctuation revision.
    318. In Section 8B.04 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Advance Warning 
Signs (W10 series) (numbered Section 8B.03 in the NPA), the FHWA 
revises the first STANDARD statement, item A, to better define where 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Advance Warning (W10-1) signs are not 
required on an approach to a crossing from a T-intersection with a 
parallel highway. Five commenters from the NCUTCD, the Utah Transit 
Authority, a traffic engineering consultant and private citizens 
opposed the revision, stating that the wording is repeated in the first 
paragraph of the second STANDARD statement. One commenter from the 
Nevada DOT supported the revisions. The FHWA declines deleting item A 
because it discusses a specific situation for which no W10-1 sign is 
required on an approach to a grade crossing. Item A refers only to ``T-
intersections'' where W10-3 signs are used in both directions of the 
parallel highway. Item A covers approaches where all vehicles crossing 
the track have turned onto the approach from the parallel highway, 
whereas text in the second STANDARD statement covers all intersections 
including 4-way intersections and T-intersections where the track 
crosses the top of the intersection. The FHWA adopts the wording as 
proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the second STANDARD statement to 
clarify the proper use of the W10-2, W10-3, and W10-4 advance warning 
signs if the distance from the parallel highway to the railroad tracks 
is less than 30 m (100 feet). The FHWA received comments from the 
Kansas DOT and Yakima County, Washington, regarding these changes. The 
Kansas DOT suggested that these changes would result in the addition of 
too many additional railroad signs at a high cost to local 
jurisdictions and limited benefit to the traveling public. The FHWA 
believes that if the crossing is within 100 feet of the parallel 
highway, it is important for adequate safety that turning drivers are 
warned that they will encounter a crossing soon after turning.
    Yakima County, Washington, suggested that these signs are a 
combination of railroad crossing warning and intersection warning 
signs, and therefore should be placed in accordance with Chapter 2A and 
Table 2C-4. The FHWA agrees and revises the statement in this final 
rule to include placing the signs in accordance with the guidelines for 
Intersection Warning Signs in Table 2C-4.
    319. In Section 8B.06 Turn Restrictions During Preemption (numbered 
Section 8B.05 in the NPA), the FHWA received several comments from 
members of the NCUTCD Railroad and Light Rail Transit Committee stating 
that the committee recommended deleting the track image that appears in 
the center of the R3-1a and R3-2a signs, and to call these signs R3-1 
and R3-2, because they would become identical to the turn prohibition 
signs in Chapter 2B. The committee felt that track depiction is 
unnecessary and clutters the signs. The FHWA acknowledges that these 
symbol signs involving tracks may need to be re-designed to enhance 
clarity and legibility, but rather than to use the R3-1 and R3-2 signs, 
the FHWA withdraws the R3-1a and R3-2a signs (with tracks) as proposed 
in the NPA and reassigns these signs as word message signs ``NO LEFT/
RIGHT TURN ACROSS TRACKS'' in this final rule. The FHWA believes that 
it is important to use signs that clearly convey that turning across 
the tracks is prohibited, not necessarily all turns at a location.
    320. The FHWA adds a new section titled, ``Section 8B.10 STOP HERE 
WHEN FLASHING Sign (R8-10)'' (numbered Section 8B.09 in the NPA), which 
contains an OPTION statement describing the use of the STOP HERE WHEN 
FLASHING (R8-10) sign as it relates to highway-rail grade crossings. 
The FHWA received one comment from NCUTCD in support of the new section 
and one comment from the Ohio DOT suggesting that the FHWA revise the 
arrow on the STOP HERE WHEN FLASHING (R8-10) sign from a tapered shaft 
arrow to a straight shaft arrow. The FHWA agrees and adopts this 
change.
    321. The FHWA adds a new section titled, ``Section 8B.11 STOP HERE 
ON RED Sign (R10-6)'' (numbered Section 8B.10 in the NPA), which 
contains SUPPORT, OPTION, and GUIDANCE

[[Page 65573]]

statements describing the use of the STOP HERE ON RED (R10-6) sign at 
highway-rail grade crossings. The FHWA received comments from the 
Wisconsin and New Jersey DOTs suggesting that the SUPPORT statement be 
clarified to indicate that the STOP HERE ON RED sign be restricted to 
just those crossings where traffic control signals are used to control 
traffic, and not used at locations with flashing-light signals. The 
FHWA also received several comments from the NCUTCD, railroad 
operators, traffic engineering consultants, and private citizens 
suggesting that the FHWA remove the term ``traffic gates'' from the 
SUPPORT statement because the term is not common in the railroad 
industry. The FHWA agrees with both of these comments and incorporates 
these clarifications into this final rule. The FHWA renumbers the 
remaining sections accordingly.
    322. In Section 8B.15 NO SIGNAL Sign (W10-10) or NO GATES OR LIGHTS 
Sign (W10-13) (numbered and titled ``Section 8B.12 NO SIGNAL Sign (W10-
10)'' in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA adds to the OPTION statement that 
the NO GATES OR LIGHTS (W10-13) sign may be used as an alternate to the 
NO SIGNAL (W10-10) sign. There was one comment from the New Jersey DOT 
opposing this change, stating that they are not in favor of using these 
signs at grade crossings. Because the use of these signs is optional, 
States can determine whether or not they use these signs. Some States 
are interested in using these signs, so the FHWA adopts this change as 
proposed in the NPA.
    323. In Section 8B.16 LOOK Sign (R15-8), (numbered Section 8B.15 in 
the NPA), the FHWA modifies the OPTION statement by removing the 
phrase, ``that do not have active warning devices'' to clarify that the 
LOOK (R15-8) sign may be mounted at any highway-rail grade crossing. 
There was one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of 
the change, and two commenters from the Minnesota DOT and a traffic 
engineering consultant opposed the change. The traffic engineering 
consultant suggested that the LOOK sign should be a warning sign, 
rather than a regulatory sign. Because most State laws require road 
users to look for trains at a grade crossing, as well as the fact that 
this sign regulates pedestrians, the FHWA declines incorporating this 
suggestion. The Minnesota DOT, who opposed the change, suggested that 
the LOOK sign should only apply to highway-rail grade crossings with 
active warning devices. Because this sign is optional and may be used 
in areas of significant pedestrian traffic, regardless of traffic 
control devices at the crossing, the FHWA disagrees and adopts the 
changes as proposed in the NPA.
    324. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
8B.19 Skewed Crossing Sign (W10-12)'' (numbered Section 8B.18 in the 
NPA), which describes the use of the Skewed Crossing (W10-12) sign at 
highway-rail grade crossings when railroad tracks are not perpendicular 
to the highway. Four commenters, representing the NCUTCD, Caltrans, the 
New Jersey DOT, as well as the City of Tucson, Arizona, agreed with the 
changes as proposed, while two commenters from the Nevada DOT suggested 
that more research should be conducted regarding the effectiveness of 
this sign. The FHWA disagrees that any additional study is needed and 
adopts this section in this final rule. One commenter from the Virginia 
DOT suggested revisions to the GUIDANCE statement to provide more 
guidance on the sign design to appropriately depict the skewed 
crossing. The FHWA agrees with this comment and incorporates this 
modification into this final rule.
    325. In Section 8B.20 Pavement Markings (numbered Section 8B.19 in 
the NPA), the FHWA revises the second paragraph of the STANDARD 
statement to clarify that a no-passing marking on two-lane highways is 
needed only in locations where centerline markings are used. The FHWA 
incorporates this change for consistency with changes made in Part 3 in 
this final rule.
    326. In Section 8B.22 Dynamic Envelope Markings (numbered and 
titled Section 8B.18 Dynamic Envelope Delineation in the 2000 MUTCD), 
the FHWA retitles this section to clarify that the text refers to 
pavement markings.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a second paragraph to the OPTION 
statement to clarify that dynamic envelope markings may be installed at 
any highway-rail grade crossing unless a Four-Quadrant Gate system is 
used.
    327. In Section 8C.01 Illumination of Highway-Rail Grade Crossings, 
the FHWA proposed to change the OPTION statement to a GUIDANCE 
statement to indicate that illumination should be installed at, and 
adjacent to, a highway-rail grade crossing when an engineering study 
determines such illumination is needed to improve grade crossing 
safety. One commenter from the City of Tucson, Arizona, agreed with the 
change, however seven commenters, representing the NCUTCD, State and 
local DOTs as well as private citizens, opposed changing the OPTION to 
a GUIDANCE, stating that this would be very expensive to implement and 
that the FHWA should consider the economic impact. The FHWA agrees with 
the economic concerns and to address this situation the FHWA adds an 
OPTION statement before the GUIDANCE, stating that illumination may be 
installed at or adjacent to a highway-rail grade crossing. The FHWA 
adopts the change proposed in the NPA to change the OPTION statement to 
a GUIDANCE statement; however, this GUIDANCE follows the new OPTION 
statement.
    328. In Section 8D.01 Introduction, the FHWA revises the first 
OPTION statement to clarify that flashing-light signals that are post-
mounted or overhead-mounted may be used separately or in combination 
with each other and that flashing-light signals may be used without 
automatic gate assemblies as determined by an engineering study. The 
FHWA received one comment from the Nevada DOT opposing this change, 
stating that this language may enable third parties to apply pressure 
to local authorities that approve crossings not to install automatic 
gates. The FHWA feels that the decision for the crossing treatment 
should be determined by the agency maintaining the roadway after an 
engineering study and adopts the change as proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, in the NPA the FHWA proposed adding to the second 
OPTION statement information that In-Roadway Stop Line Lights and In-
Roadway Warning Lights may be installed at highway-rail grade crossings 
that are controlled by active grade crossing warning systems, as 
discussed in Chapter 4L In Roadway Lights. Eleven commenters 
representing the NCUTCD, State and local DOTs, railroad operators and 
associations, and private citizens opposed this new text. In concert 
with determinations made in Chapter 4L, the FHWA withdraws this 
proposal and retains the language in the 2000 MUTCD.
    329. In Section 8D.02 Flashing-Light Signals, Post-Mounted, the 
FHWA modifies the GUIDANCE statement to clarify the sizes of lenses for 
use in highway-rail grade crossing flashing-light signals and to 
provide guidance for choosing the size of the background behind the 
lenses. The FHWA received five comments from the NCUTCD, stating that 
the NCUTCD Railroad and Light Rail Transit Committee opposed the 
proposed clarification of lens sizes for use in highway-rail grade 
crossing flashing-light signals because lens sizes have been understood 
for many years in the rail industry. The FHWA disagrees because the 
clarifying reference in this section is to Section 4D.15 Size, Number 
and Location of Signal Faces by Approach, which contains good advice

[[Page 65574]]

regarding lens sizes that some agencies and other individuals involved 
with highway-rail grade crossings may not be aware of. The FHWA adopts 
this change as proposed in the NPA. The FHWA received four comments, 
primarily from railroad companies, opposing the guidance for choosing 
the size of the background behind the lenses because Part 4 does not 
contain specified background sizes for any traffic signal. The FHWA 
agrees and withdraws this proposal.
    330. In Section 8D.04 Automatic Gates, the FHWA received a comment 
from a private citizen suggesting that the second paragraph of the 
STANDARD statement be revised to include consideration for the unique 
requirements associated with constant warning time and other advanced 
system devices. The FHWA believes that it is appropriate to make this 
change because the features of constant warning time and other advanced 
systems do not necessarily provide for an operation of the gates 
exactly as described in the paragraph. The FHWA believes that requiring 
constant warning time and other advanced systems to have gate 
operations exactly as described would be an unreasonable burden on 
jurisdictions and is not practical or necessary. Accordingly, the FHWA 
revises the second paragraph of the STANDARD statement to provide an 
exception to the requirements of this paragraph when a constant warning 
time or other advanced system requires otherwise.
    331. In Section 8D.05 Four-Quadrant Gate Systems, the FHWA revises 
and adds to the GUIDANCE statement information to describe the various 
operating modes of exit gates and how they should be used. The FHWA 
received five comments suggesting terminology changes that the NCUTCD 
Railroad and Light-Rail Transit Committee endorsed. The FHWA agrees and 
includes those terminology changes in this final rule. The Committee 
also suggested that the GUIDANCE statement regarding placement of exit 
gates to provide a safe zone be deleted because this practice is seldom 
used. Because Four-Quadrant Gates are a relatively new concept to grade 
crossings, the FHWA believes that if space is available, the exit gates 
should be set back at least one design vehicle length from the nearest 
rail in order to reduce the chances of a vehicle becoming trapped on 
the tracks. The FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the third paragraph of the STANDARD 
statement to accommodate constant warning time or other advanced 
systems, for the same reasons as discussed above in Section 8D.04.
    Based on a comment from a railroad company, the FHWA revises the 
third and fourth paragraphs of the GUIDANCE statement to include 
coordination with the affected railroad company when determining the 
operating mode of exit gates and the Exit Gate Clearance Time.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes the title of Figure 8D-2 from 
``Typical Location Plan for Flashing-Light Signals and Four-Quadrant 
Gates'' to ``Example of Location Plan for Flashing-Light Signals and 
Four-Quadrant Gates.'' There were no comments regarding this change, 
and the FHWA adopts this change.
    332. In Section 8D.07 Traffic Control Signals at or Near Highway-
Rail Grade Crossings, the FHWA received comments from a private citizen 
regarding text in the first OPTION and STANDARD statements related to 
the use of traffic control signals instead of flashing-light signals at 
industrial highway-rail grade crossings and mainline highway-rail grade 
crossings. The commenter suggested that the text include additional 
language specifying train speeds as part of the criteria. These 
comments go beyond the scope of this rulemaking and would need to be 
addressed in a future rulemaking.
    Following the second paragraph of the second STANDARD statement, 
the FHWA adds additional GUIDANCE, STANDARD, GUIDANCE, and OPTION 
statements to better describe the use of pre-signals to improve safety 
at highway-rail grade crossings at locations in proximity to 
intersections controlled by traffic control signals. The FHWA received 
one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting the overall 
changes to this section. One comment from the Wisconsin DOT expressed 
general support for the new language for preemption, but expressed 
concerns regarding the use of pre-signals when the crossing is within 
15 m (50 ft) (or within 23 m (75 ft) for a highway that is regularly 
used by multi-unit vehicles) of an intersection controlled by a traffic 
control signal. This comment is unique to the State of Wisconsin 
because they use near-side signal displays at all intersections. The 
FHWA believes it is inappropriate to change the MUTCD in this case to 
accommodate the practices of one State.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds to the last OPTION statement that at 
locations where a highway-rail grade crossing is located more than 15m 
(50 ft) (or more that 23 m (75 ft) for a highway regularly used by 
multi-unit vehicles) from an intersection controlled by a traffic 
control signal, a pre-signal may be used if an engineering study 
determines a need. The FHWA feels that this addition may improve safety 
for this type of highway-rail grade crossing.
    The FHWA establishes a phase-in target compliance date of 10 years 
for existing installations to minimize any impact on State or local 
governments.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 9--Traffic Controls for 
Bicycle Facilities

    333. In Section 9A.03 Definitions Relating to Bicycles, the FHWA 
adds to the first STANDARD statement a definition for ``Bicycle 
Facilities'' because the term is frequently used in Part 9. The FHWA 
revises the definition slightly from that proposed in the NPA to 
respond to comments suggesting that ``made by public agencies'' be 
removed because there are bicycle facilities that are operated by non-
governmental agencies. The FHWA also removes the definition for 
``Bicycle Path,'' and removes the remaining occurrences of ``bicycle 
path'' from the MUTCD because ``shared use path'' appropriately covers 
the term. The FHWA also revises the definition for ``Shared Use Path'' 
to clarify that it is outside the traveled way. The FHWA renumbers the 
remaining items accordingly.
    334. In Section 9B.01 Application and Placement of Signs, the FHWA 
removes the first SUPPORT statement as it only references Figure 9B-1. 
The FHWA now references Figure 9B-1 in the first STANDARD statement 
because the sign installation standards shown in Figure 9B-1 are 
discussed in this STANDARD. The FHWA received two comments from the 
NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes to 
this section.
    Two commenters opposed the standards for sign size, mounting height 
and lateral clearance. The New York City DOT stated these standards are 
infeasible in dense urban areas, and a traffic engineering consultant 
stated that the minimum vertical clearance of 8 feet is less than the 
ITE Guidelines for Major Street Design,\62\ which specifies 8.2 feet. 
While the FHWA recognizes the importance of these two comments, these 
suggestions go beyond the scope of this rulemaking and would need to be 
addressed in a future rulemaking.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \62\ ``Guidelines for Urban Major Street Design'', Institute of 
Transportation Engineers, 1984. It may be purchased from the 
Institute of Transportation Engineers bookstore at the Web site 
http://www.ite.org.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    335. In Section 9B.02 Design of Bicycle Signs, the FHWA replaces 
the

[[Page 65575]]

term ``bicycle facilities'' with the term ``shared-use path'' in the 
first sentence of the second paragraph of the STANDARD statement 
because this sentence relates only to shared-use paths and not to on-
street bicycle lanes. Shared-use paths are for the use of pedestrians 
(with or without disabilities), skaters, joggers, and other non-
motorized users in addition to bicyclists. There were comments from the 
NCUTCD, the Wisconsin DOT, and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
agreement with the changes. The NCUTCD suggested that the last sentence 
of the STANDARD should retain ``shared use paths.'' The FHWA disagrees 
because this sentence states that the minimum sign sizes for bicycle 
facilities shall not be used in locations that would apply to other 
vehicles, and because the minimum sign size would be too small.
    Additionally, the FHWA changes the title of Table 9B-1 from ``Sign 
Sizes for Shared-Use Paths'' to ``Minimum Sign Sizes for Bicycle 
Facilities'' and separates the column headed ``Minimum Sign Size'' into 
two sub columns headed ``Shared-Use Path'' and ``Roadway,'' to better 
distinguish between the applications of signs on paths and roadways and 
to be consistent with sign sizes used on roadways as described in Part 
2. The FHWA also revises Table 9B-1 by adding additional signs to 
reflect changes elsewhere in Part 9. There were several comments from 
the NCUTCD, local highway agencies, associations representing 
bicyclists, and private citizens in support of these changes. The FHWA 
received two editorial comments regarding the size of the R1-2 YIELD 
sign, and incorporates those changes in this final rule.
    336. In Section 9B.03 STOP and YIELD Signs (R1-1, R1-2), the FHWA 
modifies the first GUIDANCE statement so that it applies to the 
installation of both STOP and YIELD signs, and not exclusively to STOP 
signs. The FHWA includes additional editorial changes in this final 
rule based on comments received requesting that the term ``bicyclists'' 
be changed to ``path users'' and ``drivers'' be changed to ``road 
users.'' These editorial changes provide for consistent terminology 
throughout the MUTCD. Several commenters were in favor of the overall 
changes to this section.
    337. In Section 9B.04, the FHWA changes the title from ``Bicycle 
Lane Signs (R3-16, R3-17)'' to ``Bicycle Lane Signs (R3-17, R3-17a, R3-
17b)'' to reflect the changes to the Bicycle Lane Signs.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes existing text in this section in its 
entirety and replaces it with new text regarding the use of Bicycle 
Lane signs. This modification replaces the existing Bicycle LANE AHEAD 
(R3-16), Bicycle LANE ENDS (R3-16a), and RIGHT LANE Bicycle ONLY (R3-
17) signs with a redesigned BIKE LANE (R3-17) sign to be used in 
conjunction with new supplemental AHEAD (R3-17a) and ENDS (R3-17b) 
plaques. These sign combinations will more clearly provide the 
information contained on the old R3-16, R3-16a, R3-17, and R3-17a 
signs, and will reduce road user confusion. The FHWA received five 
comments from the NCUTCD, ATSSA, Caltrans, the Metropolitan Planning 
Organization of Cincinnati, and the Association of Pedestrian and 
Bicycle Professionals supporting the changes, stating that the 
modifications and redesign of the R13-17 sign and the supplemental 
plaques will help reduce motorist confusion and HOV lane conflicts.
    The Illinois DOT opposed the elimination of the existing R3-17a, 
however the NCUTCD recommended removal of the sign, stating that it was 
confusing to road users. Several citizens and local highway agencies 
sent letters supporting changes to Figure 9B-2 that include the new R3-
17 BIKE LANE sign. The Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle 
Professionals, a traffic engineering consultant, and a private citizen 
expressed confusion between the text in this section and that in 
Section 9C.04 Markings for Bicycle Lanes regarding the use of bike lane 
signs in conjunction with a striped bike lane. As a result, the FHWA 
modifies text in Section 9C.04 to remove the discrepancy between these 
sections.
    338. In Section 9B.05 BEGIN RIGHT TURN LANE YIELD TO BIKES Sign 
(R4-4), The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD supporting the 
minor changes to this section. Additionally, to respond to a comment 
from a private citizen suggesting clarification on the use of this 
sign, the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement to the end of the section to 
clarify that the R4-4 sign should not be used when bicyclists need to 
move left because of a right-turn lane drop situation. The FHWA 
believes that this GUIDANCE statement is necessary for clarity and for 
safety, to reinforce that when there is a right-turn lane drop, it is 
the bicyclists who should yield to motor vehicle traffic when moving to 
the left, thus the R4-4 sign should not be used in those situations.
    339. The FHWA adds a new section following Section 9B.05 BEGIN 
RIGHT TURN LANE YIELD TO BIKES Sign (R4-4). The new section is numbered 
and titled ``Section 9B.06 Bicycle WRONG WAY Sign and RIDE WITH TRAFFIC 
Plaque (R5-1b, R9-3c)'' and provides GUIDANCE and OPTIONS regarding the 
design and placement of Bicycle WRONG WAY Signs. The remaining sections 
are renumbered accordingly. Sixteen commenters, representing the 
NCUTCD, State and local highway agencies as well as private citizens, 
supported this new section. One commenter from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, opposed it, stating that WRONG WAY signs are not necessary for 
informing users of the normal rules of the road. The FHWA disagrees 
because many signs inform drivers of the normal rules of the road, and 
the WRONG WAY sign can provide important additional information to 
bicyclists. The FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA, with a 
minor editorial change, as suggested in a comment from the City of New 
York, to clarify that the RIDE WITH TRAFFIC (R9-3c) sign is actually a 
plaque, because it cannot be installed alone.
    340. In Section 9B.08 No Bicycles Sign (R5-6) (titled ``Bicycle 
Prohibition Sign (R5-6)'' in the NPA), the FHWA changes the sign name 
to be consistent with changes in Section 2B.31 SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP 
RIGHT. The FHWA believes that this minor change is needed to maintain 
consistency with other sections of the MUTCD.
    341. In Section 9B.09 No Parking Bike Lane Signs (R7-9, R7-9a) 
(referred to as Section 9B.08 No Parking Bicycle Lane Signs (R7-9, R7-
9a) in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA changes the title and the first 
STANDARD statement to accurately reflect the name of the sign. Two 
commenters representing the NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, 
expressed agreement with the changes in this section. One commenter 
from New York City expressed concerns that the R7-9 and R7-9a signs 
have limited use in a dense urban area because most bike lanes are 
along roadways where parking is allowed at the curb. While localities 
are seeking signs to prohibit parking in the bike lanes, R7-9 and R7-9a 
do not work in these instances. The use of R7-9a could be confusing to 
use if curbside parking is allowed. With the change in the bike lane 
sign, now R3-17, it further complicates the agency's ability to 
regulate parking in bike lanes. The FHWA determines that the R7-9 and 
R7-9a signs are not appropriate if curbside parking is allowed. If a 
bike lane exists where curbside parking is allowed, pavement markings 
will have to be used to communicate which

[[Page 65576]]

portion of the pavement is for parking and which portion of the 
pavement is for bike use. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed removing the 
R3-17a sign that was available for this purpose. The NCUTCD recommended 
removing the R3-17a sign because the sign is even more confusing to 
road users. The FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA
    342. In Section 9B.10 Bicycle Regulatory Signs (R9-5, R9-6, R10-3) 
(titled Bicycle Regulatory Signs (R9-5, R9-6) in the NPA), the FHWA 
removes the first paragraph of the OPTION statement, and includes the 
R10-3 sign in the section title. Two commenters representing the NCUTCD 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, expressed agreement with the minor 
changes in this section. The FHWA also received one comment from a 
private citizen suggesting that the first sentence of the OPTION 
statement (as proposed in the NPA) was not necessary, and could be 
potentially confusing when taken in context with the three paragraphs 
that follow it. The FHWA agrees and removes that sentence in this final 
rule. The FHWA also adds the R10-3 sign to the title because the sign's 
use is described in this section.
    343. The FHWA adds a new section following existing Section 9B.10 
(new Section 9B.11) Shared-Use Path Restriction Sign (R9-7). The new 
section is numbered and titled ``Section 9B.12 Bicycle Signal Actuation 
Sign (R10-22)'' and provides a new sign giving information to 
bicyclists on how to best situate themselves within the proposed new 
Bicycle Detector pavement marking symbol so that they can actuate the 
traffic signal. The remaining sections are renumbered accordingly. 
Fifteen commenters, representing the NCUTCD, State and local highway 
agencies, as well as private citizens, supported the new section. The 
FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the NPA.
    344. In Section 9B.16 (formerly Section 9B.14) Bicycle Surface 
Condition Warning Sign (W8-10), the FHWA revises the first OPTION 
statement to clarify that BUMP, DIP, PAVEMENT ENDS, and any other word 
message signs are not supplemental plaques used with the W8-10 sign, 
but are instead standard signs to be used independently. The NCUTCD 
supported this change. The FHWA adopts the changes as proposed in the 
NPA.
    345. In Section 9B.17 Bicycle Warning Sign (W11-1) (referred to as 
Section 9B.17 Bicycle Crossing Warning Sign (W11-1) in the NPA), the 
FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD in support of the changes to 
the section, and two comments from traffic engineering consultants 
suggesting additional changes. The commenters stated that the sign has 
other uses besides warning of a crossing. The FHWA agrees that this 
clarifies the use of these signs and changes the title of the section 
as well as the sign name and deletes the word ``Crossing.''
    346. In Section 9B.18 Other Bicycle Warning Signs, the FHWA 
received three comments suggesting that the Narrow Bridge symbol sign 
be kept in the MUTCD. (See the discussion regarding Part 2 where FHWA 
eliminates the Narrow Bridge symbol sign.) Accordingly, the FHWA adopts 
the changes to this section as proposed in the NPA.
    347. In Section 9B.19 Bicycle Route Guide Signs (D11-1), the FHWA 
received several comments from the NCUTCD and private citizens 
supporting the figures and GUIDANCE changes as proposed in the NPA. 
Several commenters suggested editorial changes to the figures, which 
the FHWA incorporates in this final rule. One traffic engineering 
consultant suggested further revisions to clarify the use of stop and 
yield signs on paths in conjunction with crosswalk markings. The FHWA 
believes that this suggestion goes beyond the scope of this rulemaking 
and would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking.
    348. In Section 9B.20 Bicycle Route Signs (M1-8, M1-9) (titled 
Bicycle Route Markers in the NPA), the FHWA changes ``drivers'' to 
``motorists'' in response to an editorial comment. The FHWA received 
three comments from private citizens stating that the bike route signs 
shown in the MUTCD need improvement to meet the needs of bicyclists who 
commute in an urban environment, and to clearly show compass directions 
and route designations. This suggestion goes beyond the scope of this 
rulemaking. The FHWA adopts the text as described in the NPA.
    349. In Section 9C.01 Functions of Markings, the FHWA modifies the 
SUPPORT statement to remove the first sentence because it only refers 
to roadways with a designated bicycle lane and is not broad enough to 
describe markings used for all types of bicycle facilities. There were 
two comments from NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, Arizona, supporting 
this change.
    350. In Section 9C.02 General Principles, the FHWA adds a new 
STANDARD statement after the second GUIDANCE statement. This new 
STANDARD statement referring to the colors, widths of lines, and 
patterns of lines, and symbols used for bicycle markings is being moved 
from Section 9C.03 Marking Patterns and Colors on Shared-Use Paths to 
Section 9C.02 because this text is applicable to all bicycle 
facilities, not just shared-use paths, and is more appropriate in this 
section than Section 9C.03. The FHWA received two comments from NCUTCD 
and the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of this change. One traffic 
engineering consultant stated that the portion of the second GUIDANCE 
statement that refers to selecting pavement marking materials that 
minimize the loss of traction for bicycles under wet conditions should 
be a STANDARD. The FHWA disagrees and believes GUIDANCE is strong 
enough for this sentence because the traction characteristics of 
marking materials are not always known. The FHWA adopts this section, 
with minor editorial changes to Figure 9C-4.
    351. In Section 9C.03 Marking Patterns and Colors on Shared-Use 
Paths, the FHWA moves the STANDARD statement to Section 9C.02 General 
Principles because this text is applicable to all bicycle facilities, 
not just shared-use paths and is more appropriate in that section than 
Section 9C.03. Two commenters from NCUTCD and the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, were in general support of the changes made to this section.
    Additionally, the FHWA removes the SUPPORT statement because it 
discourages the use of centerlines. There were no specific comments 
regarding this change.
    The FHWA adds to the GUIDANCE statement additional information on 
the marking of obstructions in a path.
    The FHWA moves to the OPTION statement the second item of the 
OPTION statement currently in Section 9C.05 Bicycle Detector Symbol 
because letter, symbol, and arrow sizes to be used on shared-use paths 
represent markings rather than markers. The FHWA received comments in 
support of this change, thus the FHWA adopts this change as proposed in 
the NPA.
    Finally, the FHWA moves the contents of existing Section 9C.06 in 
its entirety to Section 9C.03 because this information is more 
applicable in Section 9C.03 as it clarifies the design and placement of 
marking patterns and object markers on shared-use paths. Several 
commenters supported this change.
    352. In Section 9C.04 Markings For Bicycle Lanes, the FHWA revises 
the first sentence of the STANDARD statement to remove the specific 
distance of ``not closer than 20 m (65 ft) from the crossroad'' from 
the requirement for placing bicycle lane

[[Page 65577]]

symbols, to provide jurisdictions with additional flexibility. The FHWA 
received three comments from the City of Tucson, Arizona, Caltrans, and 
the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals in general 
agreement with changes to this section.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a new item to the STANDARD statement 
prohibiting the placement of bicycle lanes to the right of a right turn 
only lane. The FHWA received nineteen comments from the NCUTCD, State 
and local agencies, as well as from private citizens, in support of 
this new statement. One private citizen suggested that this statement 
be broadened to also restrict bike lanes from being positioned to the 
left of a left turn only lane. This goes beyond the scope of this 
rulemaking and would need to be addressed in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA also adds a new item to the STANDARD statement prohibiting 
the placement of bicycle lanes in the circular roadway of a roundabout 
intersection because such markings have been found to cause a false 
sense of security for bicyclists traveling through the roundabout with 
conflicting and turning traffic. This change is consistent with the 
state of the practice for roundabout intersection design and is 
consistent with changes to Section 3B.24 Markings for Roundabout 
Intersections. The FHWA received seventeen comments from the NCUTCD, 
State and local highway agencies, and private citizens in support of 
this change. The Oregon DOT agreed with the principle of discouraging 
the use of bicycle lanes in roundabouts, but suggested that the 
statement be a GUIDANCE, rather than a STANDARD, because it is 
difficult to foresee all possible circumstances. Given the strong 
support for the STANDARD statement, the FHWA adopts the language as a 
STANDARD.
    The FHWA adds a new paragraph to the SUPPORT statement indicating 
that a bicyclist continuing straight through an intersection from the 
right of a right turn lane would be inconsistent with normal traffic 
behavior and would violate the expectation of right-turning motorists. 
The FHWA received one comment from the NCUTCD in support of this 
change.
    The FHWA adds a new GUIDANCE statement to establish guidance for 
bicycle lane markings at locations where a right through lane becomes 
an exclusive right turn lane and at locations where there is a shared 
through and right turn lane next to a right turn only lane. Commenters 
were generally in agreement with this text; however, the Wisconsin DOT 
and a private citizen suggested that the FHWA include a figure to 
illustrate the intent of the text. Such a figure would require 
discussion and comment, thus it is more appropriate for a future 
rulemaking. The Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals 
suggested that the GUIDANCE be changed to a STANDARD. The FHWA believes 
this should be addressed in a future rulemaking.
    The FHWA also adds a GUIDANCE statement and a SUPPORT statement to 
provide guidance on not using posts or raised pavement markers to 
separate bicycle lanes from adjacent travel lanes because they can 
hinder maintenance of the bicycle lane and prevent proper vehicle 
merging. While a private citizen and a traffic engineering consultant 
supported the changes as proposed in the NPA, several commenters 
representing the NCUTCD, the Arizona DOT, the City of Downers Grove, 
Illinois, and the League of American Bicyclists, requested that ``curbs 
or other physical barriers within the traveled way'' be included as 
devices that should not be used to separate bicycle lanes from adjacent 
travel lanes. The SUPPORT item following this GUIDANCE addresses this 
issue in part. The additional text proposed by the commenters goes 
beyond the scope of this rulemaking. The FHWA received comments in 
agreement with the proposed SUPPORT statement, as well as requests for 
revising the language to reorder the text to prioritize the potential 
concerns regarding raised devices and bicycle lanes. The FHWA agrees 
and adopts the changes with minor revisions.
    353. The FHWA removes Section 9C.05 Word Messages and Symbols 
Applied to the Pavement and Section 9C.06 Object Markers on Shared-Use 
Paths, in their entirety. The FHWA incorporates the information from 
these sections into Section 9C.03 Marking Patterns and Colors on 
Shared-Use Paths, as this more properly locates the information. The 
FHWA renumbers the remainder of the sections accordingly.
    354. The FHWA adds a new Section 9C.05 Bicycle Detector Symbol, 
containing an OPTION statement that defines a standard symbol for the 
marking of detector locations for traffic signals actuated by 
bicyclists. This symbol marking is shown in a new figure numbered and 
titled ``Figure 9C-7 Example of Bicycle Detector Pavement Marking.'' 
The FHWA received sixteen comments from the NCUTCD, State and local 
DOTs and private citizens supporting the material in this new section. 
Three commenters from Caltrans and private citizens suggested 
additional text be added regarding the optimum location for placement 
of detectors. The FHWA believes that detector placement is within the 
discretion of the agencies.
    355. In Section 9C.06 Pavement Markings for Obstructions, the FHWA 
received one comment from the NCUTCD supporting the minor changes to 
this section and to Figure 9C-8. The FHWA also received two comments 
from private citizens who suggested that the entire text of this 
section and Figure 9C-8 be removed from the MUTCD because they believe 
it could be used by some jurisdictions to justify not fixing serious 
road defects. The FHWA disagrees and adopts this section and figure in 
the MUTCD; however, the FHWA revises the GUIDANCE as follows: ``In 
roadway situations where it is not practical to eliminate a drain grate 
or other roadway obstruction that is inappropriate for bicycle travel'' 
because it may not always be practical to fix the defect.
    356. In Section 9D.02 Signal Operations for Bicycles, the FHWA 
revises the STANDARD statement to require that signal timing and 
actuation be reviewed and adjusted to consider the needs of bicyclists 
instead of simply requiring the consideration of bicyclists' needs when 
timing signals. Many commenters were in support of this change, and 
several requested that bicycle detectors be used on all roadways where 
bicycle travel is permitted. The FHWA doesn't believe it is necessary 
to require bicycle detectors be placed on all roadways where bicycle 
travel is permitted, but may address this issue in a future rulemaking.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Part 10--Traffic Controls for 
Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossings

    357. In Section 10A.01 Introduction, the FHWA adds a SUPPORT 
statement at the end of the section to reference Section 8A.01 
Introduction for the definitions applicable to Part 10. There were no 
comments on this change and the FHWA adopts it.
    358. In Section 10A.03 Uniform Provisions, the FHWA changes the 
STANDARD statement to indicate that no sign or signal shall be located 
in the center of an undivided highway, except in a ``raised island''. 
This change is necessary to be consistent with changes as discussed in 
Section 8A.03 Uniform Provisions.
    Additionally, the FHWA adds a GUIDANCE statement at the end of the 
section to reinforce that where the distance between tracks exceeds 30 
m (100 ft), additional signs or other appropriate traffic control 
devices

[[Page 65578]]

should be used. There were no comments on this change and the FHWA 
adopts it.
    359. In Section 10A.04 Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossing 
Elimination, the FHWA removes language from the second GUIDANCE 
statement and adds it to the STANDARD statement that if the existing 
traffic control devices at a multiple-track highway-light rail transit 
grade crossing become improperly placed or inaccurate because of the 
removal of some of the tracks, the existing traffic control devices 
shall be relocated and/or modified. The FHWA also adds to the second 
GUIDANCE statement that when a roadway is removed from a highway-light 
rail transit grade crossing, appropriate signs should be placed at the 
end of roadway and other appropriate locations to alert road users that 
the road no longer crosses the light rail transit tracks. There were 
two comments supporting these proposed changes. The FHWA adopts these 
changes.
    The FHWA adds to the OPTION statement at the end of the section so 
that it is identical to the last OPTION statement in Section 8A.04 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Elimination, and incorporates the same 
revisions in this section. Accordingly, the FHWA adds to the OPTION 
statement to indicate that, based on engineering judgment, the TRACKS 
OUT OF SERVICE sign may be temporarily installed until the tracks are 
removed or paved over. Also, agencies may consider the length of time 
that the tracks will be out of service before they are removed or paved 
over in deciding whether to install the sign.
    360. In Section 10A.05 Temporary Traffic Control Zones, the FHWA 
combines the two separate STANDARD statements into one STANDARD 
statement at the beginning of the section. The FHWA received one 
comment in support of this change, and adopts this change.
    The FHWA received one comment from a private citizen suggesting 
that a new paragraph be added to the end of the GUIDANCE statement to 
mirror the GUIDANCE in Section 8A.05 that the width, grade, alignment, 
and riding quality of the highway surface at a light rail transit 
crossing should, at a minimum, be restored to correspond with the 
quality of the approaches to the highway-light rail transit grade 
crossing. The FHWA agrees with the comment and adds this language 
because this is necessary for consistency with Part 8 of the MUTCD and 
would make the temporary light rail crossing as safe as the existing 
conditions.
    361. In Section 10C.01, the FHWA changes the title from 
``Introduction'' to ``Purpose'' to more accurately reflect the contents 
of the section and corrects the text in the STANDARD statement to 
properly indicate that the design and location of signs shall conform 
to all of Part 2. The FHWA received one comment in support of the 
changes, and adopts these changes.
    362. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.02 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Sign (R15-1) and Number 
of Tracks Sign (R15-2) (titled ``Highway-Rail Grade Crossing 
(Crossbuck) Signs (R15-1, R15-2, and R15-9) in the NPA), which provides 
information on the use of Crossbuck signs at highway-light rail grade 
crossings. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed that this section be identical 
to Section 8B.02 (as proposed in the NPA) because the use of Crossbuck 
signs and the proposed optional Crossbuck Shield signs are applicable 
to both highway-light rail transit and highway-rail grade crossings and 
it is important to have this information in both parts of the MUTCD. 
The FHWA received five comments from the NCUTCD and members of the 
Railroad-Light Rail Transit Technical Committee opposed to this 
section, stating that the use of these Crossbuck signs in mixed-use 
alignments where light rail transit operates in streets in urban areas 
is frequently impractical. The FHWA agrees, and clarifies the first 
STANDARD statement to indicate that the Crossbuck sign is mandatory for 
semiexclusive Light Rail Transit alignments, and creates a new OPTION 
statement following the second paragraph of the first STANDARD to 
indicate that use of the Crossbuck sign is optional for mixed-use 
alignments, either alone or in combination with other traffic control 
devices.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add an OPTION statement for the 
optional use of a new Crossbuck Shield sign. See the discussion 
regarding the removal of all text and graphic references to the 
Crossbuck Shield sign in Section 8B.02. Accordingly, the FHWA withdraws 
all text and graphic references to the Crossbuck Shield sign in Section 
10C.02.
    The FHWA revises the third STANDARD statement to require the 
placement of retroreflective white material on the front and back of 
the supports for highway-light rail transit grade crossing Crossbuck 
signs to within 0.6 m (2 ft) above the edge of the roadway, except on 
the side of those supports where a STOP or YIELD sign or flashing 
lights have been installed, or on the back side of supports for 
Crossbuck signs installed on one-way streets. This change is necessary 
for consistency with changes as discussed in Section 8B.02.
    The FHWA renumbers all remaining sections accordingly.
    363. In Section 10C.04 STOP (R1-1) or YIELD (R1-2) Signs at 
Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossings, (numbered and titled 
Section 10C.03 STOP or YIELD Signs (R1-1, R1-2, W3-1a, W3-2a) in the 
2000 MUTCD), the FHWA renumbers and retitles the section to more 
accurately reflect the content of the section.
    The FHWA modifies the last sentence of the STANDARD statement to 
require agencies to install Stop Ahead (W3-1) and Yield Ahead (W3-2) 
Advance Warning Signs when the criteria listed in Section 2C.29 Advance 
Traffic Control Signs, is met.
    The FHWA adds to the list of characteristics in the GUIDANCE 
statement to clarify when STOP or YIELD signs may be used at highway-
light rail transit grade crossings. The FHWA adds characteristics such 
as traffic volume, light rail train speed, and the need to sound an 
audible signal as well as the location of light rail tracks in relation 
to the line of cars waiting to cross. The FHWA received one comment 
from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of these changes, and 
eight comments from the NCUTCD and members of the NCUTCD's Railroad-
Light Rail Transit Technical Committee opposed to using the light rail 
transit speed as one of the characteristics, suggesting that this item 
be deleted from the list. The reason cited by those in opposition was 
that train speed alone is not a factor in the decision to install STOP 
or YIELD signs at light rail transit crossings, provided the other 
conditions listed exist. The FHWA disagrees with deleting this item at 
this time because FHWA believes research or documentation would be 
needed to justify not considering light rail transit speed. The FHWA 
adopts these changes as proposed in the NPA.
    364. In Section 10C.05 DO NOT STOP ON TRACKS Sign (R8-8) (numbered 
Section 10C.04 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA adds to the OPTION 
statement to clarify that DO NOT STOP ON TRACKS (R8-8) signs may be 
placed on both sides of the track, to enhance visibility of the signs 
for road users. The FHWA received two comments in support of this 
change and adopts this change.
    365. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.06 TRACKS OUT OF SERVICE Sign (R8-9)'' describing the use of the 
TRACKS OUT OF SERVICE (R8-9) sign at highway-light rail transit grade

[[Page 65579]]

crossings. While this section is identical to Section 8B.09 TRACKS OUT 
OF SERVICE, the use of the TRACKS OUT OF SERVICE (R8-9) sign is 
applicable to both highway-light rail transit and highway-rail grade 
crossings so the FHWA believes that it is important to have this 
information in both parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA received one comment 
from the Ohio DOT in general support of this new section, and adopts 
this new section in this final rule. The FHWA renumbers the remaining 
sections accordingly.
    366. In Section 10C.07 STOP HERE ON RED Sign (R10-6) (numbered 
10C.05 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA clarifies this section to indicate 
that the STOP HERE ON RED sign be restricted to just those crossings 
where traffic control signals are used to control traffic, and not used 
at locations with flashing-light signals to be consistent with changes 
as discussed in Section 8B.10 STOP HERE WHEN FLASHING Sign (R10-8).
    367. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.08 STOP HERE WHEN FLASHING Sign (R8-10)'' describing the use of the 
STOP HERE WHEN FLASHING (R8-10) sign at highway-light rail transit 
grade crossings. While this section is identical to Section 8B.10 STOP 
HERE WHEN FLASHING, the use of the STOP HERE WHEN FLASHING (R8-10) sign 
is applicable to both highway-light rail transit and highway-rail grade 
crossings so the FHWA believes that it is important to have this 
information in both parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA renumbers the 
remaining sections accordingly.
    368. In Section 10C.09 Light Rail Transit-Activated Blank-Out Turn 
Prohibition Signs (R3-1a, R3-2a) (numbered Section 10C.06 in the 2000 
MUTCD), the FHWA adds a STANDARD statement at the end of the section. 
This STANDARD statement is identical to the STANDARD statement in 
Section 8B.06 Turn Restrictions During Preemption and reinforces that 
at both highway-rail and highway-light rail transit grade crossings 
turn prohibition signs that are associated with preemption shall be 
visible only when the grade crossing restriction is in effect in order 
not to cause confusion to road users. The FHWA received one comment 
from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes to this 
section.
    In concert with comments regarding Section 8B.06, the FHWA received 
several comments from members of the NCUTCD Railroad and Light Rail 
Transit Committee recommending deleting the track image that appears in 
the center of the R3-1a and R3-2a signs and to call these signs R3-1 
and R3-2, because they would become identical to the turn prohibition 
signs in Chapter 2B. See the discussion in Section 8B.06 as it applies 
to this section as well.
    369. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.10 EXEMPT Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Signs (R15-3, W10-1a)'' 
describing the use of the supplemental EXEMPT Highway-Rail Grade 
Crossing (R15-3, W10-1a) signs at highway-light rail transit grade 
crossings. While this section is identical to Section 8B.05 EXEMPT 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Signs (R15-3, W10-1a), the use of these 
supplemental signs is applicable to both highway-light rail transit and 
highway-rail grade crossings, and the FHWA believes that it is 
important to have this information in both parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA 
received one comment in support of this new section and several 
comments from members of the NCUTCD Railroad and Light Rail Transit 
Committee recommending deleting this section and the associated sign, 
stating that this sign is not applicable to light rail transit 
situations. The FHWA adopts this section because there are cases where 
this sign may be appropriate. The FHWA adds to the OPTION statement 
that where neither the Crossbuck nor Advance Warning sign exist for a 
particular crossing, an EXEMPT (R15-3) sign with a white background may 
be placed on its own post on the near right side of the approach to the 
crossing. The FHWA renumbers the remaining sections accordingly.
    370. In Section 10C.13 Light Rail Transit Only Lane Signs (R15-4 
Series) (numbered Section 10C.09 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA titles 
the figure illustrating regulatory sign panels as ``Figure 10C-2 
Regulatory Signs'' and adds to and revises the signs illustrated in the 
figure, to be consistent with Section 2B.26 Preferential Only Lane 
Signs, and to reflect changes elsewhere in Part 10. The FHWA received 
one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in support of the changes 
to this section and two editorial comments, which the FHWA adopts in 
this final rule.
    371. In Section 10C.15 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Advance Warning 
Signs (W10 Series) (numbered Section 10C.11 in the 2000 MUTCD), the 
FHWA revises the entire section by replacing it with the STANDARD, 
OPTION, and GUIDANCE statements also contained in Section 8B.04 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Advance Warning Signs, including the 
revisions as described in Part 8. The use of advance warning signs is 
applicable to both highway-light rail transit and highway-rail grade 
crossings and the FHWA believes that it is important to have 
consistency in the use of these signs so this information is included 
in both parts of the MUTCD. Several members of the NCUTCD Railroad and 
Light Rail Transit Committee suggested that the title and text within 
the section should be ``highway-rail,'' rather than ``highway-light 
rail transit'' in several cases because this sign is not exclusive to 
light rail transit and this sign section should be identical to Section 
8B.03 Highway-Rail Grade Crossing (Crossbuck) Sign (R15-1) and Number 
of Tracks Sign (R15-2). The FHWA agrees and revises the section title 
and appropriate text accordingly in this final rule.
    In addition, many commenters suggested deleting item A of the first 
STANDARD regarding T-intersections, stating that the wording is 
repeated in the first paragraph of the second STANDARD statement. See 
the discussion of this issue under Section 8B.04 Highway-Rail Grade 
Crossing Advance Warning Signs (W10 Series). For these reasons, the 
FHWA adopts item A.
    The FHWA received two comments from a railroad operator and a 
private citizen suggesting changes to item C of the first STANDARD 
statement to change ``where active light rail transit grade crossing 
traffic controls are in use'' to ``controlled with traffic signals or 
stop signs.'' The FHWA disagrees with the suggested change because it 
is necessary for this item to correspond to the text in Part 8. This 
may be a topic for a future rulemaking to consider changing the text in 
both parts. The FHWA adopts item C as proposed in the NPA.
    The FHWA also titles the figure illustrating predominantly warning 
sign panels as ``Figure 10C-3 Warning Signs and Light Rail Station 
Sign'' and adds to and revises the signs illustrated in the figure, to 
reflect changes elsewhere in Part 10.
    372. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.16 Low Ground Clearance Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Sign (W10-5)'' 
which describes the use of the Low Ground Clearance (W10-5) sign at 
highway-light rail transit grade crossings. In the NPA, the FHWA 
proposed that the title of the section and name of the sign be ``Low 
Ground Clearance Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossing Sign,'' 
however the FHWA received four comments suggesting that ``light'' and 
``transit'' be deleted because low-ground clearance signs can be used 
for grade-crossings

[[Page 65580]]

generally, not just light-rail operations. The FHWA agrees and changes 
the section title and sign name in this final rule.
    In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to include the same STANDARD, 
GUIDANCE, OPTION, and SUPPORT statements in this section regarding the 
use of this sign as was contained in Section 8B.17 Low Ground Clearance 
Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Sign. The FHWA believes that this is 
redundant, and instead includes a SUPPORT statement in this final rule 
that references Section 8B.17 for additional information regarding the 
use of the W10-5 sign. The FHWA renumbers the remaining sections 
accordingly.
    373. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.18, Storage Space Signs (W10-11, W10-11a, W10-11b)'' which 
describes the use of Storage Space (W10-11) signs at highway-light rail 
transit grade crossings. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed including a copy 
of the full text from Section 8B.17 Low Ground Clearance Highway-Rail 
Grade Crossing Sign in this new section. The FHWA received one comment 
from the Ohio DOT suggesting that the FHWA cross-reference Section 
8B.18 Storage Space Signs, rather than include the full text. The FHWA 
agrees and deletes the second paragraph of the GUIDANCE statement and 
the OPTION statements as proposed in the NPA, and adds a SUPPORT 
statement indicating that information regarding the use of the W10-11, 
W10-11a, and W10-11b signs is contained in Section 8B.18 in this final 
rule.
    374. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.19 Skewed Crossing Sign (W10-12)'' which describes the use of 
Skewed Crossing (W10-12) sign at highway-light rail transit grade 
crossings. In the NPA, the FHWA proposed to include a copy of the full 
text from Section 8B.19 Skewed Crossing Sign in this new section. The 
FHWA received two comments from the NCUTCD and the New Jersey DOT in 
support of the new section. The Ohio DOT suggested that the FHWA cross-
reference Section 8B.19, rather than include the full text. The FHWA 
agrees and deletes the GUIDANCE and STANDARD statements as proposed in 
the NPA and adds a SUPPORT statement indicating that information 
regarding the use of the W10-12 sign is contained in Section 8B.19. The 
FHWA renumbers the remaining sections accordingly.
    375. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.21 Emergency Notification Sign (I-13 or I-13a)'' which describes 
the use of Emergency Notification (I-13 or I-13a) signs at highway-
light rail transit grade crossings. This section essentially contains 
similar information as is contained in Section 8B.12 Emergency 
Notification Sign, and the FHWA believes that it is important to have 
this information in both parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA received several 
comments from members of the NCUTCD Railroad and Light Rail Transit 
Committee recommending the FHWA delete this section because these signs 
are not applicable in Part 10, especially in urban or downtown areas 
where calls to emergency would be 911. The FHWA adopts this section 
because not all light rail transit lines run only in downtown areas and 
there may be some jurisdictions that may want to use this sign. The 
FHWA revises the text to clarify that the intent is to place Emergency 
Notification signs on highway-light rail transit grade crossing on 
semiexclusive alignments, and the FHWA deletes the sentence from the 
GUIDANCE that states that these signs are typically located on the 
transit right-of-way. The FHWA renumbers the remaining sections 
accordingly.
    376. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.23 Pavement Markings'' which describes the use of pavement markings 
at highway-light rail transit grade crossings. While this section is 
identical to Section 8B.20 Pavement Markings, it is important that the 
use of pavement markings at highway-light rail transit and highway-rail 
grade crossings is consistent so the FHWA believes that it is important 
to have this information in both parts of the MUTCD. The FHWA received 
several comments from the Ohio DOT suggesting that information from 
Part 8 be cross-referenced, rather than repeating the information in 
Part 10. The FHWA includes the full text because there are some 
differences in the figures between the two parts.
    Additionally, to be consistent with changes made to Part 3, the 
FHWA revises the second paragraph of the STANDARD statement to clarify 
that a no-passing marking on two-lane highways is needed only in 
locations where centerline markings are used. The FHWA also adds two 
new figures. The first figure is numbered and titled ``Figure 10C-5 
Example of Placement of Warning Signs and Pavement Markings at Highway-
Light Rail Transit Grade Crossings'' and illustrates the placement of 
warning signs and pavement markings at highway-light rail transit grade 
crossings. The second new figure is numbered and titled ``Figure 10C-6 
Examples of Highway-Light Rail Transit Grade Crossing Pavement 
Markings'' and illustrates the use of R X R and associated pavement 
markings at highway-light rail transit grade crossings. These figures 
were numbered Figures 10C-10 and 10C-11 in the NPA. While these figures 
are identical to Figures 8B-6 and 8B-7, respectively, it is important 
that the warning signs and pavement markings at highway-light rail 
transit and highway-rail grade crossings are consistent so the FHWA 
believes that it is important to have this information in both parts of 
the MUTCD.
    377. The FHWA adds a new section numbered and titled ``Section 
10C.24 Stop Lines'' which describes the use of stop lines at highway-
light rail transit grade crossings. The FHWA received one comment from 
the Ohio DOT suggesting that the FHWA cross-reference Section 8B.21 
Stop Lines, rather than include the full text. The FHWA agrees and 
deletes the GUIDANCE statement as proposed in the NPA and adds a 
SUPPORT statement indicating that information regarding the use of stop 
lines at grade crossings is contained in Section 8B.21. The FHWA 
renumbers the remaining sections accordingly.
    378. In Section 10C.25 Dynamic Envelope Markings (numbered and 
titled ``Section 10C.15 Dynamic Envelope Delineation Markings'' in the 
2000 MUTCD), the FHWA retitles the section to clarify that the text 
refers to pavement markings.
    Additionally, the FHWA modifies the STANDARD statement to clarify 
that, if used, the pavement marking used to delineate the dynamic 
envelope shall be a normal solid white line, contrasting pavement 
color, and/or contrasting pavement texture. This STANDARD is identical 
to that in Section 8B.22 Dynamic Envelope Markings. The FHWA received 
several editorial comments regarding changes to this section and 
figures and incorporates the applicable comments in this final rule.
    379. In Section 10D.01 Introduction, the FHWA removes the STANDARD 
statement because the information is already properly contained in 
Section 10A.01 Introduction.
    Additionally, in the NPA, the FHWA proposed to add to the OPTION 
statement that In-Roadway Stop Line Lights and In-Roadway Warning 
Lights may be installed at highway-light rail transit grade crossings 
that are controlled by active grade crossing warning systems. The FHWA 
received ten comments from the NCUTCD, members of the NCUTCD Railroad 
and Light Rail Transit Committee, State DOTs and railroad associations 
opposed to allowing the use of In-Roadway

[[Page 65581]]

Lights for this application, stating that there has not been enough 
research regarding the effectiveness of In-Roadway Lights. The FHWA 
agrees and withdraws this paragraph in this final rule.
    380. In Section 10D.02 Flashing Light Signals (numbered Section 
10D.04 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA moves this entire section to follow 
Section 10D.01 Introduction so that content contained in Sections 
10D.01 and 10D.02 appears in the same order as it appears in Part 8. 
The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, Arizona, in 
support of this change and adopts this change.
    381. In Section 10D.03 Automatic Gates, the FHWA changes the last 
SUPPORT statement to an OPTION statement to be consistent with the same 
language contained in Section 8D.04 Automatic Gates, on how the 
effectiveness of gates may be enhanced by the use of channelizing 
devices or raised median islands to discourage driving around lowered 
automatic gates. The FHWA received one comment from the City of Tucson, 
Arizona, in support of this change and adopts this change.
    382. In Section 10D.04 Four-Quadrant Gate Systems (numbered Section 
10D.02 in the 2000 MUTCD), the FHWA moves this entire section to follow 
Section 10D.03 LOOK Sign (R15-8) so that content contained in this 
section appears in the same order as it appears in Section 8D.05 Four-
Quadrant Gate Systems.
    The FHWA revises and adds to the GUIDANCE statement information to 
describe the various operating modes of exit gates and how they should 
be used to be consistent with changes as discussed in Section 8D.05 
Four-Quadrant Gate Systems.
    The same NCUTCD Committee also suggested deleting the GUIDANCE 
statement regarding placement of exit gates to provide a safe zone 
because this practice is seldom used. Because Four-Quadrant Gates are a 
relatively new concept to grade crossings, the FHWA believes that if 
space is available, the exit gates should be set back at least one 
design vehicle length from the nearest rail in order to reduce the 
chances of a vehicle becoming trapped on the tracks. The FHWA adopts 
the changes as proposed in the NPA.
    Additionally, the FHWA revises the third paragraph of the STANDARD 
statement to accommodate constant warning time or other advanced 
systems to be consistent with changes as discussed in Section 8D.05 
Four-Quadrant Gate Systems.
    Based on a comment received from a railroad company regarding 
identical text in Section 8D.05, the FHWA revises the third and fourth 
paragraphs of the GUIDANCE statement to include coordination with the 
affected transit agency when determining the operating mode of exit 
gates and the Exit Gate Clearance Time.
    383. In Section 10D.08 Pedestrian and Bicycle Signals and 
Crossings, the FHWA changes the first OPTION statement (in the 2000 
MUTCD) to a GUIDANCE statement to emphasize that if an engineering 
study shows that flashing-light signals alone would not provide 
sufficient notice of an approaching light rail transit vehicle, the 
LOOK (R15-8) sign and/or pedestrian gates should be considered. The 
FHWA received several comments from members of the NCUTCD Railroad and 
Light Rail Transit Committee recommending that the FHWA keep this 
paragraph an OPTION because pedestrian gates are too easily 
circumvented and their effectiveness has never been adequately 
demonstrated. The FHWA changes the text to a GUIDANCE in this final 
rule because if an engineering study has determined that flashing-light 
signals are not enough, then the additional measures should be 
recommended for consideration, not just permitted.

Discussion of Adopted Amendments to Appendix A1--Congressional 
Legislation

    384. In Appendix A1 Congressional Legislation, the FHWA adds 
Section 306 Motorist Call Boxes to the listing of pertinent sections of 
Public Law 104-59--Nov. 28, 1995 (National Highway System Designation 
Act of 1995). This section discusses the uses of motorist call boxes 
along the National Highway System. No comments were received on this 
addition and the FHWA adopts it as proposed in the NPA.

Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) and U.S. DOT 
Regulatory Policies and Procedures

    The FHWA has determined that this action is not a significant 
regulatory action within the meaning of Executive Order 12866 or 
significant within the meaning of the U.S. Department of Transportation 
regulatory policies and procedures. The economic impact of this 
rulemaking will be minimal. Most of the changes in this final rule 
provide additional guidance, clarification, and optional applications 
for traffic control devices. The FHWA believes that the uniform 
application of traffic control devices will greatly improve the traffic 
operations efficiency and roadway safety. The standards, guidance, and 
support are also used to create uniformity and to enhance safety and 
mobility at little additional expense to public agencies or the 
motoring public. Therefore, a full regulatory evaluation is not 
required.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    In compliance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (Pub. L. 96-354, 
5 U.S.C. 60 l-612) the FHWA has evaluated the effects of this action on 
small entities. This final rule adds some alternative traffic control 
devices and only a very limited number of new or changed requirements. 
Most of the changes are expanded guidance and clarification 
information. The FHWA hereby certifies that this action will not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This rule does not impose unfunded mandates as defined by the 
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4, March 22, 1995, 
109 Stat. 48). The revisions directed by this action can be phased in 
by the States over specified time periods in order to minimize 
hardship. The changes made to traffic control devices that would 
require an expenditure of funds all have future effective dates 
sufficiently long to allow normal maintenance funds to replace the 
devices at the end of the material life-cycle. To the extent the 
revisions require expenditures by the State and local governments on 
Federal-aid projects, they are reimbursable. This rule does not impose 
a Federal mandate resulting in the expenditure by State, local, and 
tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 
million or more in any one year (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This action has been analyzed in accordance with the principles and 
criteria contained in Executive Order 13132, and the FHWA has 
determined that this action does not have a substantial direct effect 
or sufficient federalism implications on States and local governments 
that would limit the policymaking discretion of the States and local 
governments. Nothing in the MUTCD directly preempts any State law or 
regulation.
    The MUTCD is incorporated by reference in 23 CFR part 655, subpart 
F. These amendments are in keeping with the Secretary of 
Transportation's authority under 23 U.S.C. 109(d), 315, and 402(a) to 
promulgate uniform guidelines to promote the safe and efficient use of 
the highway. The

[[Page 65582]]

overriding safety benefits of the uniformity prescribed by the MUTCD 
are shared by all of the State and local governments, and changes made 
to this rule are directed at enhancing safety. To the extent that these 
amendments override any existing State requirements regarding traffic 
control devices, they do so in the interest of national uniformity.

Executive Order 13175 (Tribal Consultation)

    The FHWA has analyzed this action under Executive Order 13175, 
dated November 6, 2000, and believes that it will not have substantial 
direct effects on one or more Indian tribes; will not impose 
substantial direct compliance costs on Indian tribal governments; and 
will not preempt tribal law. Therefore, a tribal summary impact 
statement is not required.

Executive Order 12372 (Intergovernmental Review)

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Number 20.205, 
Highway Planning and Construction. The regulations implementing 
Executive Order 12372 regarding intergovernmental consultation on 
Federal programs and activities apply to this program.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501, et 
seq.), Federal agencies must obtain approval from the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they 
conduct, sponsor, or require through regulations. The FHWA has 
determined that this action does not contain a collection of 
information requirement for the purposes of the PRA.

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    This action meets applicable standards in Sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) 
of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, 
to eliminate ambiguity, and to reduce burden.

Executive Order 13045 (Protection of Children)

    The FHWA has analyzed this action under Executive Order 13045, 
Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety 
Risks. This is not an economically significant action and does not 
concern an environmental risk to health or safety that may 
disproportionately affect children.

Executive Order 12630 (Taking of Private Property)

    This action would not affect a taking of private property or 
otherwise have taking implications under Executive Order 12630, 
Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected 
Property Rights.

Executive Order 13211 (Energy Effects)

    The FHWA has analyzed this final rule under Executive Order 13211, 
Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use. We have determined that this is not a significant 
energy action under that order because it is not a significant 
regulatory action under Executive Order 12866 and is not likely to have 
a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of 
energy. Therefore, a Statement of Energy Effects under Executive Order 
13211 is not required.

Regulation Identification Number

    A regulation identification number (RIN) is assigned to each 
regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulations. 
The Regulatory Information Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda 
in April and October of each year. The RIN contained in the heading of 
this document can be used to cross reference this action with the 
Unified Agenda.

List of Subjects in 23 CFR Part 655

    Design standards, Grant programs--Transportation, Highways and 
roads, Incorporation by reference, Signs, Traffic regulations.

    Issued on: November 7, 2003.
Mary E. Peters,
Federal Highway Administrator.

0
In consideration of the foregoing, the FHWA amends title 23, Code of 
Federal Regulations, part 655, subpart F as follows:

PART 655--TRAFFIC OPERATIONS

0
1. The authority citation for part 655 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 23 U.S.C. 101(a), 104, 109(d), 114(a), 217, 315, and 
402(a); 23 CFR 1.32; and 49 CFR 1.48(b).

Subpart F--Traffic Control Devices on Federal-Aid and Other Streets 
and Highways--[Amended]

0
2. Revise Sec.  655.601(a), to read as follows:


Sec.  655.601  Purpose.

* * * * *
    (a) Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and 
Highways (MUTCD), 2003 Edition, FHWA, dated October, 2003. This 
publication is incorporated by reference in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 
552(a) and 1 CFR part 51 and is on file at the Office of the Federal 
Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., Suite 700, Washington, DC. It 
is available for inspection and copying at FHWA, 400 Seventh Street, 
SW., Room 3408, Washington, DC 20590, as provided in 49 CFR part 7. The 
text is also available from the FHWA Office of Transportation 
Operations' Web site at: http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov.
* * * * *

Appendix to Subpart F of Part 655--Alternate Method of Determining the 
Color of Retroreflective Sign Materials and Pavement Marking Materials 
--[Amended]

0
3. Amend Table 3 by adding (after the color Fluorescent Green) the 
color Fluorescent Pink with Chromaticity Coordinates as follows:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 Chromaticity coordinates
                                         -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                  Color                           1                 2                 3                 4
                                         -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             x        y        x        y        x        y        x        y
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  * * * * * * *
Fluorescent Pink........................    0.450    0.270    0.590    0.350    0.644    0.290    0.536    0.230
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


[[Page 65583]]


0
4. Amend Table 3a by adding (after the color Fluorescent Green) the 
color Fluorescent Pink with Luminance Factor Limits (Y) as follows:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                     Luminance factor
                                                        limits (Y)
                      Color                      -----------------------
                                                    Min     Max     YF
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                * * * * *
Fluorescent Pink................................      25    None      15
------------------------------------------------------------------------

[FR Doc. 03-28673 Filed 11-19-03; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-22-P