Botts’ Dots, after a half-century, will disappear from freeways, highways – Orange County Register
CalTrans officials said that they’ll probably start removing Botts’ Dots later this year. Here’s a dot on the northbound 57 freeway in Orange. (Photo by Bill Alkofer,Orange County Register/SCNG)
Botts Dots are not facing a sunny side up. They’re technologically being left behind by new standards. Here are a few dots on display in the CalTrans maintenance yard in in Orange, CA on Thursday, May 11, 2017. (Photo by Bill Alkofer,Orange County Register/SCNG)
Botts’ dots are named after Dr. Elbert Dysart Botts, a California Department of Transportation engineer credited with overseeing the research that led to the development of the markers. (Photo courtesy Caltrans)
CalTrans maintenance supervisor Gaspar Inzunza says we’ll be seing fewer and fewer Botts Dots on the freeways. Botts dots are facing an uncertain future as they’re technologically left behind by new standards. Gaspar works in the CalTrans maintenance yard in Orange, CA on Thursday, May 11, 2017. (Photo by Bill Alkofer,Orange County Register/SCNG)
Botts’ Dots – the raised, rumbly markers between lanes on California’s highways and freeways – are on their way out, with Caltrans saying it will no longer maintain or install them.
Named after Elbert Dysart Botts, the Caltrans engineer credited with the 1950s research that led to their creation, the dots spread across the nation as a way to stripe lanes.
The dots later become known for a different benefit: The powerful feedback when driving over them that could snap awake sleepy motorists.
But Caltrans is now taking a different route. After a half-century, federal transportation officials are encouraging California to dump them. Critics say the ceramic buttons aren’t reflective, don’t really help that much, mess up autonomous cars and don’t last very long.
“It’s an older technology that’s getting phased out,” said Gaspar Inzunza, a Caltrans maintenance supervisor in Orange County. “Having a newer technology completely…