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Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Stop Lines in Increasing the Safety of Stop-Controlled Intersections

Image from PresentationStatus:  Complete
Report Date:  08/03/2020


The most common roadway geometry is the two-way stop-controlled intersection, with the stop sign the most common traffic control. Although not required, a stop line — a 12- to 24-inch white line indicating where drivers should stop — is often paired with a stop sign. Stop lines are relatively inexpensive safety additions, and citizens frequently request them at intersections with frequent stopping violations. However, local agencies may have hundreds of such intersections, and at approximately $1,000 for annual maintenance, stop line upkeep can become a sizable expense. This project investigated whether stop lines provide a quantifiable safety benefit. Two comprehensive studies concluded that installing stop lines doesn’t directly correlate to improved traffic safety. Local agency traffic engineers may want to reconsider where to invest the dollars they currently spend on stop lines and their maintenance.

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