As Morning Guy on our @wsdot_traffic Twitter account, I regularly advise drivers to watch their speed, especially on ramps and overpasses which can become slick in inclement weather. Still, every time it rains I watch our traffic cameras and I see vehicles spin out going down a ramp, which isn’t good for the driver or for traffic.
This summer, we’re revamping two ramps in Puget Sound with some of the highest percentages of wet weather related collisions. We will be using a process called high friction surface treatment, which is basically a robust sand-like substance that will be applied to the existing pavement with industrial strength glue to increase traction. The ramps getting the treatment are:
- The 148th Avenue Southeast on-ramp to westbound I-90 in Eastgate interchange in Bellevue
- The eastbound SR 526 on-ramp to southbound I-5 in Everett
|Drivers on the 148th Avenue SE ramp to westbound I-90 will|
benefit from a high friction surface treatment on the ramp
that will help prevent spin-outs in inclement weather.
Drivers shouldn’t notice much difference in driving over the enhanced ramps. The asphalt will look basically the same, there won’t be any additional noise and it shouldn’t feel any different driving over for passenger vehicles or motorcycles.
|WSDOT is adding a high friction surface treatment like|
this to two ramps that have seen a high number
of spin-outs during wet weather.
The ramp in Bellevue will also be closed from 10 p.m. Thursday, June 18, to 5 a.m. Friday, June 19. Drivers should expect a full weekend closure of the ramps starting Friday night, June 19, until 5 a.m. Monday, June 22. Crews plan to get both ramps finished in just one weekend. However, the work is weather dependent and could get pushed back.
The treatment won’t completely eliminate collisions on these ramps – it’s still up to drivers to recognize and adjust to roadway conditions – but it will go a long way in improving safety in those areas.