Today: Friday, May 25, 2018, 1:32 pm (PST)

More reflective line paint means better visibility

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VICTORIA – Crews have started line painting throughout the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island, with higher-quality glass beads included in the paint formula, so drivers can see brighter, more reflective road lines.

“Road markings need to not only survive, but shine on B.C.’s West Coast, especially at night and in rainy conditions,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “The ministry’s top priority is making sure our roads and highways are as safe as possible. By including larger, higher quality glass beads in our paint mix, it will be easier for people to see our lines when it’s dark and the weather is bad.”

Painting has begun, and this week work is taking place in the Pemberton area, Victoria and Duncan. In total, more than 3,000 kilometres of roads and highways will be painted in the region this year.

Adding glass beads to line paint greatly increases reflectivity. The larger and higher-quality beads to be used in second coats this year in the region will provide 20% more reflectivity than the previous formula.

Also, requests for proposal were recently issued through BCBid for the next Pavement Marking Service Agreements, which will go into effect on Dec. 16, 2018. The following changes are being made to improve on the current agreements:

* 20% more lines painted annually throughout the province

* Use of larger glass beads for increased reflectivity and visibility at night, and thicker paint for longer-lasting pavement marking in coastal areas

* Second coat application in areas that experience premature wear

* Enhanced contractor monitoring and auditing, to maintain consistent performance

There are five pavement marking service areas in the province: Vancouver Island, Lower Mainland, Thompson-Cariboo, Okanagan-Kootenay and Northern Region. Each of the upcoming pavement marking service agreements, which were last tendered in 2013, are for five-year terms, and include an optional two-year extension.

The ministry works closely with contractors to continually test new paint formulations, and products to ensure that high-performing, environmentally friendly formulations are used in B.C.

Private contractors are responsible for repainting more than 20,000 kilometres every year, on highways and provincially owned side roads in B.C., using close to one million litres of paint and 500,000 kilograms of glass beads. This work starts every spring, and continues through the summer and into the fall.

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