(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT) northwest region is reminding drivers not to follow too closely behind line-painting equipment as operations have started for the season.

The six-county region — including Crawford, Erie, Forest, Mercer, Warren and Venango counties — owns two paint trucks to paint more than 7,761 miles of lines each year.

According to a release, the equipment is scheduled to complete line-painting operations throughout the region in the coming months, as weather permits, starting with the interstates.

Motorists who encounter a line-painting operation should follow these guidelines:

  • Stay back at least 500 feet from the equipment;
  • Don’t drive on wet paint lines;
  • Don’t pass the trucks in a paint train;
  • Be patient as the paint truck will pull over periodically to let traffic pass.

Weather conditions often affect how quickly line paint will dry. The release states that under ideal temperatures and humidity, the average time for the paint to dry is 90 to 120 seconds. During the early spring and late fall, it can take several more minutes for the paint to completely dry.

Drivers are responsible to operate their vehicles within the roadway lines and follow all warning and advisory signage. Additional information on the statewide line painting effort is available on PennDOT’s website.