WE AND THE CAR
The Americans, who have been marking the roadway since 1911, argue: for $ 1 invested in road markings, the gain is at least $ 60. Firstly, cars beat less, and secondly, the throughput of roads and the average flow rate increase.
thirdly, people suffer less in road accidents and the state does not spend money on their treatment. It is known that there are 15–20% fewer accidents on a well-marked road (by the way, almost 190 thousand accidents occur in Russia every year, in which 30 thousand people die).
So the benefits are obvious. What prevents us from contemplating full-fledged “white stripes” on our own roads, highways? First of all, our weather and climatic conditions destroy the white strip. Russia is a huge country: in one region the asphalt warms up to plus 60, in the other it cools down to minus 40, and the marking is the same everywhere and is generally not designed for such fluctuations. Add to this the instability of the materials our roads are made of. Asphalt, concrete and cement (cementitious bituminous components, crushed stone aggregate …) in each area have their own. Local technology, local natural materials - such a heterogeneity of the road surface does not at all contribute to the longevity of the “white strip”.
The poor marking also suffers from the small width of our roads. Traditional Russian highway - one lane in each direction. On such a highway, the marking is attacked by the wheels of cars in a rather hard mode. Build us six-lane highways! Then the “white streak" would have served much longer. Do not forget the barbaric methods of cleaning (with hard brushes, graders …) and the abundance of studded rubber, ruthless to any marking material (in many European countries, studs are prohibited by law, including for this reason). The shamelessly overloaded long-length trailers also make their contribution, which, despite the weight control, is not uncommon. They destroy both the coating and the markup at the same time.
TEAM SMOKES …
The life of markup happens to be shortened (what do you think?) - politicking! If the local authorities, for whatever reason (for example, as campaigning), order the marking in early spring, then it will lie until the beginning of summer. Here we also take our Russian tradition of marking the road from the airport to the city (from the hotel to the city council …) to the visit of a high-ranking official - whether it is snowing, in rain, in frost and slush. But the marking will live the prescribed period only if it is laid on a dry canvas and at a plus temperature.
However, roadworkers themselves, as they say, of their own accord, are used to violating the marking technology. How does this happen? The road team receives an order from local authorities and draws up a work schedule: today mark 20 km, tomorrow another 20 … and finish in three weeks. The sun shines for a week - the work argues, and then suddenly it rains, it pours a week, another. The team smokes … But the rental period for equipment is ending and workers have been waiting for a long time in another area - to fulfill the next order. The foreman’s nerves are not iron, and he gives the order …
Road builders do not have money for constant updating of equipment, and many work on shabby scribing machines. And now the boiler rides on wheels, the torch burns under it, and what temperature in that boiler does not interest anyone. Meanwhile, thermoplastic, if overheated or underheated, will not stick to the road or chip in a week.
Well, if in this boiler certified marking material is of acceptable quality. And if, excuse me, a bourd? Formulations for marking in our country are certified purely voluntarily. Colonel E. Konshin from the Research Center for Traffic Safety complained to us that for a year now a statement on the introduction of mandatory certification of marking materials has been gathering dust in Gosstandart. When will they consider it?
HOW MANY TIMES
Contemplating somewhere in the middle of summer, half-caked paint on the road and the road workers busy with its renovation, one involuntarily wonders: what is more profitable - put expensive plastic and live peacefully or use cheap paint, updating it every three months? We asked about this director of the company - manufacturer of marking materials Megotex D. Medvedev. “Paint is cheaper anyway, ” he says. - A square meter - 50-60 rubles (plastic - 400-500 rubles, tapes - 1500-1800 rubles). But we must take into account that roads of different categories require completely different marking methods. For example, such responsible routes as Moscow Rublevka, Kutuzovsky Prospekt, Tverskaya Street, in any case, it is advisable to mark with tape. These are indicative roads, the “face” of the city - there is a special train, “emergency lights”, and you won't mark up every three months. And some lane in the industrial zone, of course, will cost with paint. ”
So, paint is cheap, tape is the road. Thermoplastic seems to be the middle ground. But who will compare, say, not the direct costs of laying, but the indirect losses from the accident rate? Maybe then it turns out that an expensive tape in reality will cost less? A half-erased “zebra” of a pedestrian crossing, almost invisible in the dark, or a half-covered solid dividing line is a sure sign of marking with cheap, low-quality materials. However, apparently, we still have to put up with this for a long time. To convince the authorities to invest the necessary funds in the layout, according to current ideas, you need to have a powerful lobby, serious media support. And who will do this, who will lobby? For example, it is much more profitable for road workers to go out three times a year - more work, more pay …
NEW GOST -
DO NOT DECLINE IN THE CUVET!
Nevertheless, from January 1 of this year, the authorities introduced a new GOST “Road marking”. There are many changes in it, unfortunately, there are also incidents. Now the width of the marking line will reach 20 cm (earlier than 10), which should improve its visibility on multi-lane roads. On two-lane roads, from now on you can draw an intermittent edge line - do not confuse with the dividing line and do not turn into a ditch! Who ever came up with such an innovation? They say that for the sake of economy … True, the traffic police explained to us that such a “pattern” may be allowed to be applied only on roads of the lower category.