NCHRP Report 350

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IMPORTANT INFORMATION: NEW Sign Post Specifications!

The MUTCD Section 2A-19, which is the national standard used for all roads open to public travel states, “Ground mounted sign supports shall be breakaway, yielding, or shielded with a longitudinal barrier or crash cushion if within the clear zone.”

The United States Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration has released a new publication “Safer Sign Supports: Are Yours Breakaway Yet?” to help define terms and new requirements in section 2A-19 of the MUTCD.

The publication includes the following information:

Breakaway Sign Posts are Required.

Rigid objects close to a roadway can become deadly hazards when struck by a vehicle that strays off the pavement. Supports for road signs, frequently placed close to the roadway, are hazards if they are not designed, manufactured, and constructed to break away upon impact.

What does breakaway mean?

Breakaway sign supports include components “than when struck by a vehicle, (sign supports) separate from the base and are knocked ahead of or up and over the errant vehicle.”

How will this be implemented?

FHWA realized that no agency can inventory, inspect, design, and replace non-breakaway sign supports overnight. The easiest way to accomplish this is to begin using breakaway supports when installing new signs or replacing damaged supports. All non-breakaway sign supports within the clear zone of areas posted at 50 mph or greater shall be replaced by January 2013.”

More information on these guidelines can be found here at:

 

SOLUTION: SNAP’n SAFE™ Breakaway Devices

Designovations, Inc. now offers new technology with the SNAP’n SAFE™ Breakaway Devices. Using a vehicle specified in the existing Report 350, this new technology meets and exceeds the more stringent damage levels contained in the updated NCHRP Report 350 specifications for ground mounted sign supports.

The SNAP’n SAFE Breakaway Devices have been approved for use through the United States Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration. Please see their website http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/roadway_dept/road_hardware/listing.cfm to view the acceptance letters.

  • HSA-10/SS-120 Dated April 1, 2004
  • HSA-10/SS-123 Dated April 1, 2004
  • HSA-10/SS-136 Dated March 9, 2006
  • HSSD/SS-123, amendment 1 Dated February 28, 2007
  • HSSD/SS-146 Dated March 16, 2007
  • HSSD/SS-146, addendum Dated July 1, 2009
  • HSSD/SS-156 Dated December 6, 2007

Features and Benefits

  • Cost Savings – Install or repair sign posts in half the time with one person.
  • Roads are Safer – The sign post will no longer strike and penetrate the windshield or roof of a vehicle during a collision.
  • No anchors to repair, limits crew exposure to traffic and reduced liability.

VEHICLES INVOLVED IN SINGLE VEHICLE CRASHES WHERE THE MOST HARMFUL EVENT WAS VEHICLE STRIKING HIGHWAY OR TRAFFIC SIGN POST BY YEAR AND CRASH SEVERITY FATALITY ANALYSIS REPORTING SYSTEM (FARS) 2004-2007 FINAL AND 2008 ARF / GENERAL ESTIMATES SYSTEM
(GES) 2004-2008

Year Fatal Crash Severity
Injury
Property
Damage
Only
All Crashes
2004 100 57,782 135,833 193,715
2005 88 61,962 148,766 210,816
2006 116 57,036 122,341 179,493
2007 125 54,054 143,647 197,825
2008 138 52,301 141,201 193,640
Total 567 283,135 691,787 975,489

Fatalities: Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) 2000-2004 Final & 2005 Annual Report File (ARF) Injuries: General Estimates System (GES) 2000-2005

NOTE: The injury and property damage numbers are not actual counts, but estimates of the actual counts. The estimates are calculated from data obtained from a nationally representative sample of crashes collected through NHTSA’s General Estimates System (GES).

Estimates should be rounded to the nearest 1,000. Estimates less than 500 indicate that the sample size was too small to produce a meaningful estimate and should be rounded to 0.

This report was generated by NCSA’s Information Services Team, DRID; CATS# 2009.01040; VEH_MEVENT.SAS; LS; 01/04/2010 2:29 PM