Have you seen a thin blue line on your city streets? Here is the meaning

Ksenia Novikova
Apr 24, 2018
09:58 P.M.
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People from Maryland, New Jersey, and a few other cities in the U.S. have been seen a thin blue line on the streets and don’t know what it means.


According to Faith Tap, Rick Meehan is the one to blame – or congratulate. Meehan is the Mayor of Ocean City, a place that has been recognized by Trip Advisor for having one of the best beaches in the U.S.

Apart from the beautiful sand and clear waters, there is also an aspect that makes Ocean City’s beaches outstand: the safety that visitors feel in the community. The city’s police department has worked untiringly to accomplish that

As a result, Meehan decided to do something unconventional to ‘memorialize’ all those fallen police officers that gave their lives to make Ocean City a safe place.  


Instead of creating a memorial or a sign to honor them, Meehan painted a thin blue line between the two yellow road divider lines on Maryland’s 65th street. Following that blue line will lead people to the Ocean City Police Department’s headquarters.

Since that way to honor officers is both unique and low-budget, more people around New Jersey have done the same. Congressman Andy Harris showed his support in a public letter released in December 2016.

‘During these turbulent times, perhaps more than ever, it is imperative that we show support for our law enforcement officers. Your initiative to paint this ‘thin blue line' does just that.’


Congressman Andy Harris, Faith Tap, March 17, 2017.


A couple of people, including the members of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), believe that the initiative is dangerous. They issued letters to all the towns in New Jersey that painted blue lines on their streets showing their concern.

They pointed out that the already existing yellow lines are supposed to control traffic. Altering them by painting a blue one might cause confusion, accidents, and fatalities.

Even though it violates the code 3A.06 of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways, Meehan opted to ignore the FHWA and keep painting the blue lines, and the community supports Meehan's decision.