Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

April 24, 2014

Orange barrels on a highway

Unauthorized signs and objects not allowed on state highway rights of way

ST CLOUD, Minn. -- The Minnesota Department of Transportation reminds citizens that placing unauthorized signs and other objects on state highway rights of way is illegal and can be dangerous.

"As the weather warms, we usually see a significant increase in advertising signs and items for sale placed illegally along state roadways," said Mark Renn, MnDOT's roadway regulations supervisor in St. Cloud.

rightofwayPlacing signs or objects in highway rights of way is a misdemeanor violation with a maximum $1,000 fine and/or 90 days in jail. Highway rights of way include driving lanes, shoulders, ditches, clear zones and sight corners at intersections.
State law also says that items may not be placed on private property outside of the right of way limits but in proximity to a roadway without consent of the landowner.

"Illegally placed signs and objects can distract and restrict the visibility of drivers in many situations, especially at intersections," said Rich Munch, MnDOT's roadway regulations supervisor in the Baxter. “They are also a hazard to legal users of the right of way, including people using ATVs and crews working on utilities.”

MnDOT crews will remove all signs within the right of way without notice.

Larger objects often placed illegally in the right of way include automobiles,  boats and motors, campers, travel trailers, produce stands and large hay bales. These objects are extremely hazardous if a vehicle runs off the road and strikes it.

For information regarding roadway regulations, right of way boundaries, or where to find removed materials, please contact the MnDOT office in St. Cloud at 320-223-6522, toll free 1-800-657-3961; or the Baxter headquarters at 218-828-5777 or toll free at 1-800-657-3971.

For real-time travel information anywhere in Minnesota, visit www.511mn.org.

Pay ATTENTION. Slow down in WORKZONES. Graphic