Safety - Adopt-A-Highway program

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Safety requirements | Safety alerts | Safety education

Three volunteers wearing yellow safety vests walking along  Highway 164.The Adopt-A-Highway program emphasizes safety. Volunteers are encouraged to a​dhere to safety best practices. Information about safety best practices is outlined in WisDOT's safety video and safety brochure.

We strongly encourage all participants to watch the video and be familiar with roadside safety concerns. It is important to be very careful when working on the roadsides.

WisDOT's Adopt-A-Highway program manages volunteer efforts to clean up roadside areas throughout the 11,800 mile state highway system. Community efforts to clean up local and county roadways outside of the state system may also benefit from reviewing these safety materials.

Safety Video


Safety Brochure

Safety guidelines for volunteers - How to stay safe while helping clean up Wisconsin's roads

Safety requirements

  • A portable "people working" sign provided by WisDOT must mark both ends of your highway segment.
  • Each volunteer must wear a high visibility safety vest while working and must review the safety training video Adopt-A-Highway Safety Tips video.
  • Each group must provide one adult supervisor for every five or six volunteers.
  • All volunteers must be at least 11 years old or in 6th grade for work along two lane highways.
  • Groups do not work in dangerous areas like medians, roundabouts, bridges, or steep slopes.
  • Volunteers are encouraged to wear pants and long sleeved shirts.

Safety alerts

In an effort to continue to keep Adopt-A-Highway volunteers informed. Safety alerts will occasionally be issued and are posted here for historical reference and education.

Safety education

Specific information regarding specific safety topics. As a volunteer you should be aware of these safety concerns. For more information, view Adopt-A-Highway Clean up hazards page.

Two volunteers wearing safety vests work along WIS 53.Hazardous materials

Hazardous waste found along our highways can pose potential dangers for Adopt-A-Highway volunteers.

Materials that should never be picked up:

  • Meth lab waste
  • Abandoned barrels
  • Bottles or containers with liquid
  • Dead animals

Outdoor hazards

Working on roadsides can present many natural hazards one may not be familiar with.