Transportation ministry tests line paints for durability. /B.C. GOVERNMENT

New line paints to light highway night

Thicker application withstands winter, glass beads improve reflection

New paint applications are being introduced on B.C. highways to increase visibility and stand up better to the grit and graders of winter.

Lane markers have been disappearing faster since the federal government introduced new environmental standards in 2010 that prevented the use of oil-based paints on highways. And B.C. drivers have noticed the difference.

“Over the four years that I’ve been minister the number one issue raised with me all over the province is line paint, and why does it not stick longer,” Transportation Minister Todd Stone said in an interview.

The ministry tested 18 different paint applications over four seasons in 2015-16, with further testing of the most promising ones this past winter. A “high build” paint, essentially a thicker application that cures well enough to be durable, and a new glass bead mixed with the paint to improve light reflection, are ready to go into use.

Stone said the high build paint has worked well in areas with winter snow conditions, with salt, sand and plowing. It was tested on Highway 97 near Prince George, the Coquihalla Highway near Kamloops and on Highway 7 near Maple Ridge.

The new glass bead formulation with normal paint will be applied first to Highway 14 on Vancouver Island starting in April.

Stone said the glass beads work well in areas with frequent rainfall, but can also be used with the high build paint. The new paints are about 30 per cent more expensive than the paint ministry contractors have been using, and an extra $1 million has been budgeted for line painting this year.

“We expect that they are going to last at least a season, or potentially two seasons longer than the old paint did,” Stone said.

B.C. transportation engineers have concluded the new paints aren’t as tough as the old oil-based paint, which exceeded federal regulations for “volatile organic compounds” from their petroleum components.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

14th anniversary of Kelowna man’s sudden disappearance

Aaron Derbyshire was out with friends on Sept. 30, 2006, and hasn’t been seen since

Be a safe pedestrian: Kelowna RCMP

Mornings are darker and evenings come quicker, so wear bright clothing if you’re taking a walk

Kelowna Rockets alumni Luke Schenn wins Stanley Cup

Schenn is the fifth Rocket alumni in history to hoist the trophy

Netflix star Francesca Farago seen hanging in Kelowna

Farago got her big break as a reality TV star in Netflix’s ‘Too Hot to Handle’ in 2020

Mandatory mask policy coming to Capital News Centre

The new policy comes into effect Oct. 1

B.C.’s top doctor encourages Halloween costumes to include masks

Dr. Bonnie Henry will soon be releasing guidelines on how to safely trick-or-treat this Halloween

Federal child-care plan could help Canada rebound from COVID-induced economic crisis: prof

A $2 billion investment this year could help parents during second wave of pandemic

Okanagan man savours Stanley Cup win

Stacey Roest of Coldstream gets name on trophy as assistant GM for champion Tampa Bay Lightning

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. VOTES 2020: Greens join North Okanagan race

Keli Westgate throws her ‘compost lady’ hat in the ring

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Action demanded over death of First Nations youth in Abbotsford group home

Family and Indigenous organizations push for thorough investigation

B.C. nurses report rise in depression, anxiety, exhaustion due to pandemic

A new UBC study looks into how the COVID-19 response has impacted frontline nurses

Horgan frustrated as Transport Canada mandate for BC Ferry riders returns

Transport Canada reinstates rule that bans passengers from lower decks

Most Read