General Notes - Section D
Traffic Control Devices - Signs and Warning Lights

D-1. Warning signs for temporary traffic control shall have orange background and black border/legend. Warning signs for incident management areas shall have pink background with black border/legend. Orange warning signs may be used in incident management areas if pink signs are not available.

D-2. Sign sheeting shall be of an approved type and listed in Publication 35 (Bulletin 15). Signs manufactured with a mesh or transparent quality are prohibited. Refer to the 2011 Traffic Sign Retroreflective Sheeting Identification Guide in Appendix B of this publication or Publication 46, Exhibits 2-3 and 2-4, for retro-reflective material and level information. Signs bearing Type VII through XI retro-reflective material are considered equivalent and interchangeable.

D-3. When traffic control signs are placed in a temporary traffic control area, all permanent signs that provide a conflicting message shall be covered or removed. See Publication 408, Section 901.3(a), for details on covering signs.

D-4. When a Flagger Ahead (W20-7) sign is displayed, a flagger must be present. Cover or remove this sign immediately upon conclusion of flagging duties.

D-5 When work is suspended, remove all temporary traffic control devices from the roadway and cover warning signs or turn signs from the view of traffic while remaining in the upright position.

D-6. Do not mount temporary traffic control warning signs onto existing sign installations unless the permanent sign has been removed from the post. With the exception of supplemental advisory speed or distance plaques, do not mount multiple warning signs on the same post. This could result in mounting heights below the minimum standard. Drivers need adequate time to read, comprehend, and react to each sign and posting multiple signs on the same post may provide too much information for some drivers to process safely. Temporary traffic control devices shall not be attached to utility poles or other structures unless the owner grants written permission and the signs can be properly positioned to convey their message effectively.

D-7. Sign sizes and size requirements based upon type of highway can be found in Appendix A. Refer to Publication 236 Handbook of Approved Signs for additional and most current information.

D-8. Do not place sign supports on sidewalks, bicycle facilities, or areas designated for pedestrian or bicycle traffic unless there are no suitable alternative locations; an exception is made for signs related to sidewalk and/or bicycle facility closures which are directed towards pedestrians and bicyclists. If sign supports are placed on sidewalks, an accessible path of 48" minimum width shall be provided. This accessible path must remain free from signs, sign supports, horizontal panels, Type III barricade rails, material storage, etc. Refer to PATA 010 for further guidance.

D-9. Install additional signing in advance of the Road Work (W20-1) sign where traffic approaching the work zone is queued beyond all advance warning signs. Additional signs may include the Be Prepared To Stop (W3-4) sign, Lane Closed (W20-5 series) signs, Portable Changeable Message Signs (PCMS), or other standard signs as appropriate.

D-10. As a general rule, signs shall be located on the right-hand side of the roadway. On divided highways and one-way highways where it is physically possible, signs should also be placed on the left-hand side of the roadway.

D-11. Attach red Type B flashing lights to all stop signs which are installed on a temporary basis; attach yellow Type B flashing lights to all temporary yield signs.

D-12. Standard orange flags or yellow flashing warning lights may be used in conjunction with warning signs. Practice consistency in application of supplemental flags and/or lights. A single light or up to three flags may be attached to a temporary warning sign. Each warning sign installation in a work zone shall have the same number of flags or lights. Do not block the sign face with flags or lights. White flashing lights are reserved for usage with the Active Work Zone When Flashing (W21-19) sign of Act 229 and in conjunction with stop/slow paddles. Refer to Publication 46, Chapter 6.10, and the MUTCD, Section 6F.83, for guidance on flashing lights.

D-13. Signs specific to an operation (such as mowing or utility work) may be used as an alternative to the Road Work Ahead (W20-1) or Road Work Next XX Miles (G20-1) signs where appropriate. Furthermore the Road Work Next XX miles (G20-1) sign may be used in lieu of the Road Work Ahead (W20-1) sign on any construction or maintenance job two miles or more in length, where traffic is maintained through the job.

D-14. Do not utilize portable sign supports on long term operations where the sign will be displayed for more than 3 consecutive days.

D-15. When distances are posted on temporary traffic control signs with a 'miles' unit of measure, display the distance in terms of whole miles or fractions with denominators of 2, 4, and 8 (For example, 1/2 mile, 1/4 mile, 3/8 mile, etc.) The use of decimals for this purpose is prohibited.

D-16. Stationary warning signs may be omitted for mobile operations if warning signs are mounted on work vehicles, shadow vehicles, or trailers that move along with the operation.