What to Know About the Start of the Michigan Striping Season

Apr 10, 2015


It seems we need to start getting used to record breaking winters here in Michigan. Last year we had 75 consecutive days of below freezing temperatures, beating the 72-day record from the late 70’s. Ironwood and Manistique had their lowest recorded temperature in 113 and 86 years of measurement, respectively. Munising had *only* the second coldest in over a hundred years. The National Weather Service (NWS) office in Marquette recorded an average temperature of 7.5 degrees, breaking the record set way back in 1963. It has also lasted the longest, with the last sub-zero high recorded on February 27, also beating a record from the mid 60’s.

While some say this year’s winter hasn’t been as bad, the numbers are still quite spectacular. According to the NWS, Metro Detroit recorded zero degrees last week, breaking the record of 2 degrees recorded 114 years ago. It’s also no less than the sixth record low recorded this past few weeks. Snows of an inch an hour were recorded in Grand Rapids, while Ann Arbor beat last year’s February snowfall record and almost beat the record for coldest February.

That being said, the seasons are starting to change, as signaled by the start of daylight savings (interestingly enough, a bill has been proposed to opt Michigan out of daylight savings due to increased chance of accidents and heart attacks, and an increase rather than decrease in energy consumption). While this transition period has and continues to bring us some really messy weather, the time has come to prepare for spring. For those who plan to build or already run a commercial structure, this may well mean re-striping your parking lot.

Have you paid attention to your pavement?

The harsh weather conditions of yesterday and the clear skies of tomorrow means it’s just about the perfect time to stripe your pavement. The extreme cold, snow, ice, rain, and other such factors as accidents and snow chains means your stripes have taken a major beating – you may just not notice it right away since you see it every day.

The lowly parking lot can often be taken for granted as a waste of otherwise income-generating space, but let’s not forget that most customers would just go elsewhere if they can’t find a spot to park. Its appearance is also every bit as important as the rest of your property, and makes a subtle but real impression on all potential clients.

Not to mention that there exist government regulations on the design, execution and upkeep of such road safety elements. As the Department of Transportation points out, “in addition to signs and signals, pavement markings communicate to drivers where to position their vehicles, warn about upcoming conditions, and indicate where passing is allowed.” These are just as important on your property as they are on public roads, and you can in fact be held liable for accidents and inconveniences caused by improper application of pavement markings.

What to consider

The first thing to consider is the layout. Every parking lot is like a fingerprint – no two are really exactly the same. There can also be an infinite variety of layouts for the same space. Traffic flow, safety barriers, and avoiding blind turns are all important. Maximizing the space also goes without saying, but has to be balanced with aesthetics. There are also very specific guidelines that need to be followed in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), such as how many of what types of special parking slots you need to have, including their dimensions, depending on the size of your parking lot.

The striping itself is a very precise and meticulous undertaking, requiring the right techniques and equipment to pull off perfectly. Even such minor factors as a previously broken leg or an unfortunately timed sneeze can wreak havoc on your lines.

Call in the professionals

For a job like this, call in the experts. At Industrial Commercial Striping, our project manager has over 30 years of expertise in Michigan striping, including layout, execution and code compliance. We use only the best and latest equipment and materials to give you the most bang for your buck while making sure everything gets done on time, hassle-free. Fill out our online form for a free quote or call us at 1-877-361-440 today!

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