High Friction Surfacing

Enhancing Road Safety

“High friction surfacing (HFS) provides highway engineers with one of the most effective road safety surfacing measures. SWARCO Road Marking Systems provide high friction surfacing solutions specifically designed for the welfare of road users”. 

Molly Hardy, Development Chemist, SWARCO Road Marking Systems

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Enhanced Road Safety with HFS

High friction surfacing also known as anti-skid is one of the most effective road safety surfacing measures to decrease accidents while also increasing user safety. Designed specifically to reduce braking distances and skidding, high friction surfacing is proven to reduce accidents and save lives. (Source: RSTA UK)

Explore Hot and Cold Applied HFS

The SWARCO Road Marking Systems portfolio offers both hot and cold applied solutions, while the hot applied method can be proven more efficient, heavy duty equipment is required. Cold applied high friction surfacing can be applied without the need for heavy duty machinery.

Hot Applied

Hot applied HFS involves heating a modified thermoplastic binder to a high temperature. The heated binder is then mixed with high-quality calcined bauxite aggregate, the product is then spread across the road surface using a hand applied road marking shoe.

Source: RTSA & ADEPT


  • Provides excellent bond strength to the road surface
  • Highly durable and resistant, suitable for high-traffic areas
  • Faster curing time, allowing for quicker road reopening

Cold Applied

Cold applied HFS can be achieved through several different solutions including epoxy-based resins and methyl methacrylate (MMA) resins. The resin is applied using a squeegee and then the calcined bauxite aggregate is brushed evenly across the surface.

Source: RTSA & ADEPT


  • Safer application, as it does not involve heating materials
  • Reduced energy consumption during application
  • Offers a smoother finish compared to hot applied HFS

Areas of Application

Industry studies have demonstrated the direct link between Type 1 high friction surfacing and the level of incident reductions. (Source: RSTA UK)
The systems are most frequently used in accident black spots, junction approaches, pedestrian crossings, sharp bends and highway slip roads.

HFS on Highways

HFS is used on highways to increase the skid resistance (grip) of the road surface. By improving vehicle traction, the risk of accidents is reduced, especially at high speeds and in adverse weather conditions. This contributes to a safer driving environment on busy road sections.

HFS on Junctions

Skid resistance is especially important at junctions, where vehicles frequently slow down and accelerate, to reduce the risk of rear-end and side collisions. HFS helps to improve the grip of tires on the road surface, resulting in increased safety for all road users at these dangerous locations.

HFS on Pedestrian Crossings

Pedestrian crosswalks are areas where the safety of pedestrians and other vulnerable road users is of great importance. Applying HFS to these markings increases skid resistance, which helps vehicles stop in time and allows pedestrians to cross the street safely.

HFS on Traffic Calm Zones

In traffic-calmed zones, such as residential areas, play streets or school zones, HFS is used to increase the safety of residents, especially children. The increased skid resistance ensures that vehicles travel more slowly and in a more controlled manner, which minimizes the risk of accidents in these areas.

Advantages at a Glance

Improved Skid Resistance

High Friction Surfacing improves road surface skid resistance, creating traction for vehicles in adverse weather. This reduces accidents, especially in intersections, curves, and pedestrian crossings.


Over 35% Accident Reduction Rate

High Friction Surfacing enhances road safety by improving skid resistance. This enables better braking, control, and accident prevention for all road users, including motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians.

Increased Durability and Longevity

High Friction Surfacing withstands traffic, weather, and wear, preserving road markings. This extends durability, reduces maintenance, and saves costs for road maintenance.

Versatility and Applicability Due to Customization

High Friction Surfacing enhances skid resistance on diverse road surfaces and layouts. It's adaptable for highways, streets, intersections, ramps, and more, meeting specific location needs. This flexibility empowers authorities and companies to enhance safety as needed.

Quick Installation with Rapid Curing

Quick installation and rapid curing minimize road closures, improving traffic flow with cost savings and enhanced safety. This speeds up project completion and offers worker safety in changing weather.