Mississippi Department of Transportation Information on Highway Memorials
• MDOT’s mission is to promote safety for people traveling and working on Mississippi Highways. Removing and preventing distractions to the    traveling public and placing safety enhancements such as rumble strips, cable rail, lighting, etc., assists MDOT in providing a safe highway system.
• Blocking or parking on the Right of Way is a safety violation. Any area remotely close to a highway is an extremely dangerous location.
• Distracted driving has become one of the biggest threats to motorists and highway workers today.
• In the last decade, Mississippi has averaged over 780 deaths a year as a result of traffic crashes. Over this same time period, the occurrence of distractions (radios, cell phones, environmental, etc.) being a factor in traffic crashes has increased nationwide. Memorial activity adds another distraction which could seriously injure or kill another motorist. MDOT’s mission is to provide the safest transportation network possible for all road users.
• The shoulder of a highway is to be used during emergencies only as required by Rule 941-7501-09001, “Rules, Regulations and Ordinances Governing the Use of State Highways of Mississippi,” adopted by the Transportation Commission via the powers described in Section 65-1-8 Mississippi Code (See No. 11) and the Code of Federal Regulations.
• MDOT is charged with maintaining the right of way free of encroachments to enable motorists to recover when leaving the roadway. This is required by the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). If MDOT does not keep the right of way free of encroachments, we risk losing federal funds. Not only are memorials a hazard for vehicles leaving the roadway but vehicles parked along the roadside to erect and/or maintain a memorial creates an unsafe condition for motorists and those stopping on the roadside.
• There are many alternatives to highway memorials. One is the “ADOPT-A-HIGHWAY” program. You can find more information on the program at www.GoMDOT.com.
• MDOT is asking everyone to refrain from placing memorials on the side of Mississippi Highways in the Right of Way and has developed procedures for the removal and storage of existing memorials. To inquire about a memorial that has been removed, please contact your local MDOT District Office. For more information, contact MDOT Public Affairs at 601-359-7074.