Date: March 2011
Creator: Bligh, Roger P. & Menges, Wanda L.
Description: The Texas T101 bridge rail is widely used in the state of Texas. Previous testing demonstrated its ability to contain and redirect passenger cars and a 20,000-lb school bus. Based on this testing, the Federal Highway Administration accepted the T101 bridge rail as an NCHRP Report 350 TL-3 barrier. However, its impact performance with pickup trucks was never evaluated. Under research project 0-5526, Impact Performance of Roadside Safety Appurtenances, researchers conducted a performance assessment of Texas roadside safety devices to help evaluate the impact of adopting the new AASHTO Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH) guidelines on current hardware. Testing and evaluation of the T101 bridge rail was recommended as a high priority. This recommendation was based primarily on the absence of pickup truck testing on the system, and concerns that the 27-inch rail height may not be compatible with pickup trucks and SUVs under design impact conditions. The T101 bridge rail did not meet MASH evaluation criteria for test 3-11. The vehicle overturned after losing contact with the barrier.
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