Highway Safety Appurtenances: State-of-the-Art

by Flory J. Tamanini, (F.ASCE), Research Consultant; Energy Absortion Systems, Inc., 1104 Vassar Road, Alexandria, Va. 22314,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1981, Vol. 107, Issue 4, Pg. 385-399

Document Type: Journal Paper


To reduce the horrendous toll on our nation's roadways, (50,000 fatalities per year) highway agencies, researchers, and industries are responding effectively to safety legislation by Congress. Among the many safety initiatives taken was the systematic installation of forgiving appurtenances developed to reduce the 17,000 - 22,000 deaths involved in errant vehicle collisions. Statistical data, for errant vehicle roadway departures and for accident-frequency collisions with the existing roadside obstacles, define the enormity of the problem confronted. Traffic railings and impact attenuators are designed as containment or redirective protective safety appurtenances, or both as the situation requires. Devices are explored that could be installed along our highways and used as temporary systems to protect motorists and workmen during construction and maintenance operations.

Subject Headings: Traffic accidents | Traffic safety | Highways and roads | Safety | Infrastructure construction | Occupational safety | Tolls | Legislation

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