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Symbols on the road - important information for drivers


Design and use of road marking symbols in the roadway -simulator test


The aim of the study is to determine which shape of the road marking symbol that gives sufficient legibility. To make the symbol legible, it must be extended along the road. However, for practical reasons this extension must be kept within reasonable limits. Which extension is needed for optimal legibility?

In order to answer this question, symbols of different design will be tested in the simulator. In addition to finding the appropriate design, driver behavior with and without a road marking symbol with the appropriate design, as well as with the design used today, will be tested.



Symbols are an important complement to the road signs as they are located in the driver's line of sight which makes it easy to take in the relevant information. Road marking materials, as well as application technique, have been improved during the last years. This fact, along with revised regulations allowing the use of road marking symbols, has led to a growing interest in the use of such symbols.


Today, different designs of symbols are used in different countries. It is a need to present a guideline for design to be used in the national regulations.


Two questions are to be answered in the study:

1. How much must the symbol be extended in the observation direction in order to have sufficient legibility?

2. Can road marking symbols improve driver behaviour and understanding of speed?


In order to answer the second question a previously implemented road will be used complemented with a new road marking symbol for speed limit.



Project manager: Göran Nilsson, SVMF

 Project partners: SVMF, SRA, VTI

Project period:   January 2013 - June 2014

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