Election Season is Here: Unauthorized Signs in the ROW

By August 1, 2022Articles

Another election season is here which means we are already seeing political signs popping up like bunnies along the road.

Signs of any kind should not be placed in the road right-of-way. These unauthorized signs can become safety hazards by:

  • Blocking sight distance at public road intersections
  • Distracting drivers from seeing important safety signs like a stop sign
  • Becoming projectiles if accidentally run over by a mower or other roadside maintenance equipment

The road right-of-way width varies by road. On most two-lane county roads, the right-of-way is approximately 66 feet wide, but it can be more than 120 feet wide. When in doubt, it is a safe assumption that the road right-of-way extends at least to the far side of sidewalks, ditches or utility poles (if present).

The Washtenaw County Road Commission has the right to remove any authorized sign from the road right-of-way on county public roads. If WCRC removes an unauthorized sign, it will not be returned to the owner and will be destroyed. Click here to read WCRC’s Sign Removal Policy.

While WCRC does not have the resources to remove every unauthorized sign from the road right-of-way, WCRC staff will prioritize removing signs that are a safety hazard, are attached to road signs or are in the way of upcoming maintenance.

If you believe a sign along the road is a safety hazard, click here to submit a service request or download the WCRC Fix It App.