DOT Wants Motorists To Pay More Attention To Message Signs

Posted June 15, 2005 4:33 a.m. EDT

— Message signs usually say something like "Delays Ahead" or "Call 511." Now, state Department of Transportation engineers are trying to make message signs at work zones worth your time.

The first new approach message flashed in the U.S. Highway 1 corridor in Cary reads "Project 20 percent complete."

"On this project, we're trying to basically keep the public's attention and keep the public aware of what we're doing on the project," DOT engineer Bob Shultes said.

The messages are nothing deep, you only have seconds to glance at them, but by keeping the information tied to the work zone and by keeping it fresh, engineers hope to keep drivers looking.

"We're trying to be proactive and let the public know, 'Hey, we're thinking in in advance. We're trying to make this better, so you don't have delays and backups that could've been prevented and kind of give you some idea of future planning and that type of thing," Shultes said.

One message that's about to appear deals with the U.S. Open in Pinehurst. It is a welcome message that will read, "no lane closures affecting golf traffic."