Within the past year, I was tasked with the electrical design of installing 15 dynamic message signs (DMS) for the Greater New Orleans Expressway Commission, more commonly known as “The Causeway.” As the project begins to come to a close, the GNOEC has learned of a case in Iowa where placing interesting messages on a roadway sign may assist in getting drivers to pay attention, and effectively lowering the rate of traffic incidents. I’m not familiar enough with traffic studies or measures to minimize distracted driving to comment on whether or not it’s a good idea. Regardless, the sign messaging has started over the Easter Holidays.
Within a week or two, the following sign was displayed.( Please disregard the power lines in front of the sign.)
By this time, the local news station wrote an article on the signs and asked the general public that they’re welcome to forward any potential message for continuing the message themes. It will be amusing to see how this story continues to develop, as it all started with a design team figuring on how to install, power, and communicate to a dozen signs located across 25+ miles of concrete bridge. One of the better joys of design work is seeing the final product built and working as intended. Regardless of the message being displayed, an engineer can proudly say “operating as intended.”