The Challenge

Chanute, Kansas: By day, Highway US-169 in southeast Kansas is a pleasant stretch of road. However, when the sun goes down, it’s a different story. The road can be hazardous; curves that have no lighting or overhead lights that did not adequately illuminate the curvature of the road and any dangerous aspects of travel on that roadway. SolaRight participated in a study conducted by the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) to see if IIRPM Model YHDD1solar lighting would help reduce accidents and increase driver visibility and reaction time.

 

 

The Action

Yellow and white SolaRight Internally Illuminated Recessed Pavement Markers were installed in the concrete and asphalt road. The different colors were used to aid drivers in delineating the main road and ramps. In all, more than 600 lights were installed. The yellow IIRPMs were used to identify the center line while the white IIRPMs were used to identify the edge lines which are the same colors as the pavement markings.

The Results

Overall, drivers reacted very favorably to the IIRPMs. One of the most positive aspects of SolaRight’s lighting was that, “the operator never lost positive guidance through the turning movement.”* Drivers were surveyed to learn how they felt about the lights. A few comments they made included:

“Awesome lighting for guidance of the ramps love it! Much better than overhead lighting that are too bright and my eyes cannot adjust fast enough.”* “No glare with Solar, more effective in fog, and more environmentally friendly. I drive this route every day from Chanute to Humboldt and it seems to be very effective. I can’t think of any negatives other than deep snow, but overhead lights aren’t very effective in that scenario either.”* “I am a truck driver and drive these routes daily beginning at 2 am. They have been very effective. I would like to see more of them in Kansas”* "I was impressed with how brightly they [shone] coming off ramps.”* “The solar lights are very effective in fog.”* “The solar markers are always on at night.”* “The solar delineators [are] highly visible and effective in all conditions in which I have encountered them.”*

As a result, drivers found the IIRPM lights far more effective in identifying roadway geometry, especially during inclement weather conditions (i.e. fog, rain, etc...).

*Pross, C., P.E., Kansas Department of Transportation District 4 & O’Brien, S., LEED AP, CPC & Crain, C. & Strenth, W., LEED AP, Pittsburg State University School of Construction (2016) Solar Delineator Trial Project, Report No. KS-15-07, 34

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