Tool for Estimating the Deflection of Temporary Traffic Barriers with Reduced Impact Angles

Temporary traffic barriers are used to separate adjacent vehicular traffic from construction workers, work zone activity, opposing traffic, and other conditions. When errant vehicles impact temporary traffic barriers that are not anchored, the barriers can deflect (including barrier displacement and deformation) from a few inches to several feet. Workers and equipment are restricted from occupying the area behind temporary traffic barriers to avoid potential impacts with moving barriers. However, providing a clear, offset non-work zone behind temporary traffic barriers constricts the already limited work area and adds project costs. Temporary traffic barriers must be crash tested to the same criteria (typically 25-degree impact angles and 62 mph impact speed) as other roadside devices per the Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH). However, in instances where temporary traffic control barriers are deployed, roadway widths are often narrowed, which could result in reduced vehicular impact angles. Also, where temporary traffic barriers are deployed, speed limits may vary significantly from MASH crash test speeds. Research is needed to develop a tool for estimating expected temporary traffic barrier deflection that considers impact angle, speed, and other factors so practitioners can determine appropriate and reasonable offset zones. While previous researchers have approached this problem by reviewing encroachment data, those studies are believed to have had limited success. Thus, modeling and evaluation are needed for potential crash scenarios involving temporary traffic barriers to estimate deflection behaviors for various roadway widths and speeds. The research objective is to develop a tool to estimate the deflection behavior of freestanding temporary traffic barrier systems resulting from reduced impact angles based on site conditions.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $400000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 22-62

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Turner, Anne-Marie

  • Start Date: 20240416
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01888642
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 22-62
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Jul 25 2023 8:24AM