VDOT prepared if road paint supply runs out

By Gene Petriello - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Just as millions of people get ready to hit the road to travel this summer, a possible nationwide shortage of road paint is causing some people to be worried about their safety on the road.

The two supplies used for the paint is running out. Unlike most states though, VDOT does have a backup plan in place if the road paint dries up.

But the problem is it will cost more, compounding an already thin budget.

From normal wear and tear, Sharon Roberts is noticing the lines on the roads are slowly fading away.

"It can definitely be improved than it is right now because some of the lines you can't see good especially at night and when it rains," says Roberts.

Luckily for Sharon, a possible nationwide shortage of road paint shouldn't hamper that effort here in Virginia.

"Motorists and residents of Virginia need not be concerned there will be no stripes on the highway or not knowing the difference between the lanes," says Taya Jarman with VDOT.

VODT says Virginia is one of only three states to have a backup plan if the paint runs out. The state has a list of approved materials that crews can use. "They will be more expensive. We are hoping we don't have to tap into that budget," adds Jarman.

That budget is the maintenance fund, which is already taking a hit back of the bad economy. But at this point, the state isn't tapping into that fund just yet.

The possibly nationwide shortage does come at a bad time though. Right now, this is the height of the construction season, where lanes are repaved and the paint is necessary.

Despite that, VDOT says there will no delay in any of the projects on the books right now.

"That's because we still have enough paint on hand expecting to get us through this season," says Jarman.

Meanwhile, drivers like Sharon are hoping it stays that way too. "A lot of people are complaining about the money that is being spent now. But, on the other hand, they need to go ahead and spend the money so everybody can be safe on the roads."

We are told, from VDOT, the potential problem should only last for 90 days.

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