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Drivers say I-15 lane stripes in Utah County are confusing

By KSL.com | Posted - Dec. 3, 2010 at 11:52 a.m.



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UTAH COUNTY -- UDOT is warning drivers to pay extra attention on Interstate 15 between Lehi and American Fork. Construction and snowy weather have caused the lines on the freeway to fade.

Commuters have been calling and e-mailing UDOT saying the road has turned extra dangerous since it's hard to tell which lane is which.

With construction on I-15 in Utah County, crews have needed to shift lanes and mark those lanes with temporary striping between Lehi Main Street and Pioneer Crossing in American Fork.

The problem is the paint doesn't last forever and the snowy weather has made it hard for the paint to stick.

"Being temporary paint, this time of year, the temperature and the elements take a bigger toll on it than when it's nice and dry and warm. We have been trying to look at it, get out there," UDOT's Scott Thompson said. "So we have been trying to look at it, get out there and refresh it when we can while we are doing other construction work as well. We've been looking to do this mostly at night and we have to have good dry conditions and warm enough temperatures to make it happen and that's been a little tougher this time of year."

Therese Spence from Lehi says she's an already cautious driver, but she has to be extra cautious now because the lanes have faded away.

She said, "I'm driving, I'm confused. I'm like, OK wait, I'm not in the lane. And I can tell that the other people are pretty much doing the same thing. So everybody's hitting the brakes, and it's nuts."

UDOT says crews continually check the paint for fading; in fact, they were out Thursday night re-striping some areas.

UDOT says it will use permanent paint when construction is finished. In the meantime, drivers are encouraged to take it slow and pay attention.

Thompson says they encourage people to call and e-mail them when they notice problems such as faded lanes and pot holes to give them a heads up of potential problems.

If you do plan on traveling through Utah County this weekend, you may want to avoid Interstate 15.

Saturday night, both directions of the interstate will close at the American Fork 500 east interchange. The full closure takes effect from 11 p.m. to as late as 11:30 a.m. Sunday. Lane restrictions will begin an hour before.

Drivers will have to detour through the on- and off-ramps while crews demolish the old overpass.

As early as next week, UDOT will be performing avalanche control testing in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons that will require temporary closures.

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Story compiled with contributions from Anne Forester and rjeppesen@ksl.com

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