San Francisco

Caltrans Explains Reason for Jagged Lane Stripes on Hwy. 101

If you’ve driven on Highway 101 in the Bay Area, you’ve probably seen jagged lane stripes that stretch from San Francisco to the South Bay. Now, Caltrans is responding to drivers confused about what happened.

Caltrans said that over a year ago, Hwy. 101 lanes stopped being painted on, but were switched to adhesive strips and some were installed a few days after wet weather.

"There was a layer of moisture that came up to the surface of the asphalt and as we were doing our lane striping with the new technologies we're using, that moisture created a layer between the adhesive and the ground, so it wasn't sticking as normally as it should," said Victor Gauthier from Caltrans.

He added that the stripes slightly peeled off when big rigs drove over them and now, they’ve realized there must be five dry days before new ones can be added.

"This is somewhat new," he said. "So I wouldn't necessarily say something went wrong, this is more so a lesson that we're learning."

Arash Rowshan is a software engineer who moved to San Jose last week and worries the effect they may have on self-driving cars.

"You can easily fool a self-driving car if the lines are out of place or they are jagged," Rowshan said.

Work to restripe the lanes of Hwy. 101 began Monday from the San Francisco line, all the way to Gilroy and it’ll take the contractor through the end of the month to finish.

"They should fix that because it's hard for drivers to see," said Yan Meng from Santa Clara. "It's dangerous at night."

Caltrans said the stripes are still under warranty, so the repairs won’t cost taxpayers anything.

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