Petition for more visible lanes on Utah roads gets thousands of signatures

(Al Hartmann | Tribune file photo) Salt Lake City residents commute during snowfall in this file photo. One Utahn has created a Change.org petition asking lawmakers to get roads repainted with reflective paint so lanes can be seen during bad weather and at night.

Between falling snow or rain and inadequate lighting at night, it can sometimes be difficult to see the painted lines marking lanes on Utah’s roads.

So Nick Bodkin started a petition, calling on Gov. Gary Herbert and other Utah legislators to fix the painted lines so they’re more visible.

“We’re just wanting to make a platform that’s large enough that we can take it to them and kind of force a change in policy,” Bodkin told FOX 13. “[The lane] just becomes invisible. They’re not capturing light, reflecting it back to you — you’re just on a black road.”

The petition asks Utah to “begin remarking our interstates, highways, and surface roads with reflective lines to help mitigate these substantial road hazards.”

John Gleason with the Utah Department of Transportation told FOX 13 there’s already reflective paint on the roads.

“The standard reflective bead goes down in all of our paints, and they’re glass beads that, when the headlights shine down on the striping, reflect back,” Gleason said.

But during the winter weather, Gleason said the glass beads painted in the stripes don’t reflect well.

“Especially this time of year, you’ve got salt, you’ve got dirt on the road and that can really cut down on the visibility of the striping there,” he said. He added that UDOT is testing out a different kind of weather-resistant paint out on two areas of Interstate 215.

“We’re encouraged by our results right now, and in the future here, we could see that test area expand," Gleason said. “Who knows? This could be the new standard here.”

Bodkin had more than 15,000 signatures on his petition Monday evening. He said he hopes that something will be done sooner rather than later.

“It’s just one of those things that up to this point we’ve kind of been complacent with and sort of just dealt with,” Bodkin said.

View the Change.org petition here.

Editor’s note: The Salt Lake Tribune and FOX 13 are content-sharing partners.