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Author Topic: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs  (Read 329 times)

abqtraveler

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Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« on: August 27, 2019, 11:08:10 PM »

Up until around 2000 the vast majority of states used to use "Road Construction Ahead" signage to alert motorists to an upcoming construction.  Since then, the vast majority of states now use "Road Work Ahead" signage for the same propose, although a few states (notably Illinois, Indiana and Ohio) still use "Road Construction Ahead" signs prior to their construction areas, and there are a few of states that use "Work Zone Ahead" instead of "Road Work Ahead."

Anyone have any insight as to why so many states that used to use "Road Construction Ahead" suddenly transitioned to "Road Work Ahead" or "Work Zone Ahead around the 2000 timeframe?" 
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Big John

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2019, 11:17:18 PM »

That was around when MUTCD changed the verbiage.
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abqtraveler

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2019, 11:30:00 PM »

That was around when MUTCD changed the verbiage.

What would be the rationale for a change in the MUTCD to require "Road Work Ahead" instead of "Road Construction Ahead?"
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dcraig

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2019, 03:18:42 AM »

Probably for the same reason we have STOP signs instead of DESIST signs. It's a simpler word that conveys the same basic meaning. It's also more general. What if the road is not being constructed but is instead being maintained, modified, rehabilitated, cleaned, deconstructed, etc.? Road "work" seems to cover all those categories.
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1995hoo

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2019, 08:12:22 AM »

Virginia traditionally used "Road Under Construction" and "End Construction."
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PHLBOS

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2019, 11:56:02 AM »

That was around when MUTCD changed the verbiage.

What would be the rationale for a change in the MUTCD to require "Road Work Ahead" instead of "Road Construction Ahead?"
It's a simpler word that conveys the same basic meaning. It's also more general. What if the road is not being constructed but is instead being maintained, modified, rehabilitated, cleaned, deconstructed, etc.? Road "work" seems to cover all those categories.
I concur.  The word WORK is more of a catch-all as opposed to the word CONSTRUCTION.  One has to wonder if the word change in the MUTCD was motivated by a legal action that was taken.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2019, 01:13:03 PM by PHLBOS »
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thspfc

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2019, 01:04:45 PM »

In WI it's always end road work. There's also orange "Utility Work Ahead" signs.
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hbelkins

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2019, 02:49:28 PM »

"Work" is smaller than "Construction." That means you can use a bigger font to better catch the attention of drivers.
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Brian556

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2019, 08:40:03 PM »

The word "WORK" has fewer letters than "CONSTRUCTION", therefore it can be read more quickly and easily.

Texas used "WORK" for short term projects (generally those that used more portable sign setups), and CONSTRUCTION for longer-term projects before the change.

Note: I am trained in work zone traffic control
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abqtraveler

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2019, 12:38:03 AM »

The word "WORK" has fewer letters than "CONSTRUCTION", therefore it can be read more quickly and easily.

Texas used "WORK" for short term projects (generally those that used more portable sign setups), and CONSTRUCTION for longer-term projects before the change.

Note: I am trained in work zone traffic control

From what I've seen, North Carolina is one of the states that I know of that uses "Work Zone Ahead," instead of "Road Work Ahead."  Still conveys the same basic message.

Connecticut, strangely enough was one of those states that switched from "Road Construction Ahead" to "Road Work Ahead," even though for every work zone they still to this day post another sign that says "Construction Ahead, Road Use Restricted," sometimes right next to the "Road Work Ahead" sign.  But...Connecticut is the land of strange things so I shouldn't be surprised...
« Last Edit: August 29, 2019, 12:42:15 AM by abqtraveler »
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kphoger

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2019, 02:29:11 PM »

There's also orange "Utility Work Ahead" signs.

Yesterday on my way north up the canal route in Wichita, I saw a crew working on a sign gantry;  they had their bucket truck down on firm ground, reaching up above the level of the viaduct.  Anyway, in advance of the crew they had posted one of those collapsible orange warning signs, and it had a message I'd never seen before:  SIGN INSPECTION AHEAD.
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RobbieL2415

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Re: Road Work Ahead versus Road Construction Ahead signs
« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2019, 10:35:55 PM »

CT is weird because the DOT is legally required to post a specific sign at the beginning of work zones.  It generally reads:

CONSTRUCTION AHEAD
Road use restricted.  State liability limited.
C.G.S #######
Commissioner of Transportation.
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