Why Are Cat’s Eyes Different Colors and What Do They Mean?


Have you ever driven at night and realized that sometimes cat’s eyes or highway studs are different colors?

Well, the reflective units that help us stay safe while driving at night come in different colors to communicate different things.


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Reflective stud colors serve a real purpose – and can really help when visibility is poor on unlit sections or in heavy fog.

They have been around since the 1930s and the details of how they work are set out in Rule 132 of the Highway Code.

There are five colors: red, green, blue, white and amber.

The most common lights you will see will be the standard white as they mark the lanes or the middle of a road. On a regular three-lane highway, you’ll see two rows of them.

Amber cat’s eyes appear on the other side of the road to mark the central reservation – and to prevent you from mindlessly changing lanes to the right.

In contrast, red lights indicate the left edge of the road – before hitting barriers or drifting onto the hard shoulder.

Green indicates a junction joins or leaves a freeway, while blue is used for emergency services.

You will find white studs between the lanes of expressways or highways.

In addition to the different colors, the embossed studs also help give drivers an audible and sensory reminder to stay in their lane. Rumble strips are used next to them to do the same.

Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research at IAM RoadSmart, said: “Reflective road studs can be a lifesaver in fog and reduced visibility as they can give you vital additional information you may need. need to stay in bad weather. Unfortunately, the most common studs we see are the yellows strewn along the many construction sites on our highways and trunk roads.

“They can change all the time, so it’s important to stay alert and make sure you’re on the right track.”


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