Driving during inclement weather can be very tricky in Minnesota.  Especially when it is difficult to make out the road markings because of the rain or whatever other precipitation is falling from the sky.

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Rain seems to make the road markings the hardest to see.  Obviously when it snows you can't see anything because the snow covers it up, but that is a whole other issue.

MNDot has identified the issue with road markings when it rains, and is working to solve the issue.

Why does this happen?  The road markings are slightly recessed so that when it snows and the plows go through to clear the road, the markings won't be disturbed.  But, when it rains, the slight recess makes them hard to see.

How are they going to fix the problem?

From KARE 11 through Ethan Peterson who works as a pavement markings and crashworthiness engineer at MnDOT. : 

"The problem with wet weather, when water covers that is that you add another media, another substance that the light has to refract through," Peterson said. "So it changes the path of the light and it doesn't hit your eyes like it should. It disperses and it goes in a different direction, and you just lose the optic altogether."

The fix involves bigger and better beads that reflect better through water too, called wet-reflective materials. 

The problem that usually happens when they fix one issue, is that another one will pop up as a result of the first fix.  So it's an ongoing issue.  Hopefully this will work out.  This project will last for the next 5-10 years.  The roads that have the fix in place will have drivers noticing the markings being a lot brighter at night as the light from headlights will be reflected.

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