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Old March 26th, 2010, 12:57 AM   #5521
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Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Most rural U.S. Freeways do not have barriers in the median. The median itself is considered wide enough. It usually takes a few accidents before they install them.
Which is odd because just about every stretch of rural interstate in Texas east of I-35 has either cable, guardrail, or full jersey barrier between opposing lanes of traffic.
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Old March 26th, 2010, 01:46 AM   #5522
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Which is odd because just about every stretch of rural interstate in Texas east of I-35 has either cable, guardrail, or full jersey barrier between opposing lanes of traffic.
I noticed this on Interstate 10 from Columbus to Houston. I remember when there was no wire barrier thinking how easy it would be for a fully loaded 18 wheeler to lose control and slam into oncoming traffic. Texas has some busy rural Interstates in the eastern half.
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Old March 26th, 2010, 05:15 PM   #5523
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Yeah apparently a few lives aren't worth spending the extra million dollars, at least not in the U.S.

I've been reading the WSDOT manual, and it is advised that no barriers be used if natural features can stop the car. That's my interpretation of it at least.

It does make sense though. I'd rather crash into bushes than a jersey barrier, although the car would probably be totalled either way.
And of course...

http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/03/26/ken...ex.html?hpt=T1
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Old March 26th, 2010, 08:16 PM   #5524
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Update: There was a median. But it was cable barriers. Kentucky has saw complete failures of cable barriers twice.

There was a fairly wide median on this stretch of highway and obviously it didn't help. The U.S. should just mandate the use of concrete-step barriers or double metal barriers. Cost-cutting often comes at the expense of other factors i.e. safety.
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Old March 26th, 2010, 08:20 PM   #5525
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Update: There was a median. But it was cable barriers. Kentucky has saw complete failures of cable barriers twice.

There was a fairly wide median on this stretch of highway and obviously it didn't help. The U.S. should just mandate the use of concrete-step barriers or double metal barriers. Cost-cutting often comes at the expense of other factors i.e. safety.
The cable barriers I've seen on our highways look so flimsy. Looks like they cannot stop a fully loaded 18 wheeler from barreling through.
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Old March 26th, 2010, 08:23 PM   #5526
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What is with this stretch of I-65 in Kentucky? They had several serious wrecks just north of Bowling Green in the past couple of years.

The funny thing is that I've driven this stretch of road numerous times over the past few years going to and from Chicago, and I can't find any characteristics of the road that make it more dangerous than comparable rural interstates in other states.
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Old March 26th, 2010, 08:40 PM   #5527
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The cable barriers I've seen on our highways look so flimsy. Looks like they cannot stop a fully loaded 18 wheeler from barreling through.
Metal guard rails are also not always capable of this, depending on the angle of impact. With a wider median, the angle of impact can also be larger, resulting in more kinetic energy towards the barrier. For example, a year ago, the left suspension broke of an Italian truck near Venezia (Venice), causing the entire truck to just barreling through the guard rail-median, exploding on the other roadway and killed a number of drivers. 100% safety does not exist.

It actually comes down to a morbid calculation in rural areas; does a fatality justify the expense of millions of dollars worth of barriers in areas with wide medians and low traffic volumes? It's hard to give an answer to that. You would have to calculate how much a human life is worth. I believe it's around $ 2.5 million.
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Old March 27th, 2010, 12:10 AM   #5528
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Metal guard rails are also not always capable of this, depending on the angle of impact. With a wider median, the angle of impact can also be larger, resulting in more kinetic energy towards the barrier. For example, a year ago, the left suspension broke of an Italian truck near Venezia (Venice), causing the entire truck to just barreling through the guard rail-median, exploding on the other roadway and killed a number of drivers. 100% safety does not exist.

It actually comes down to a morbid calculation in rural areas; does a fatality justify the expense of millions of dollars worth of barriers in areas with wide medians and low traffic volumes? It's hard to give an answer to that. You would have to calculate how much a human life is worth. I believe it's around $ 2.5 million.
I guess we can say bottom line is that highways are dangerous. The top load of a truck could fly off and hit oncoming traffic even if there was a concrete barrier.
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Old March 27th, 2010, 01:10 PM   #5529
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Driving is always dangerous.
Nothing in life is a 100% safe, and everyone knows that.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 01:55 AM   #5530
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http://www.youtube.com/user/eluko79#p/u/15/TeClaCprSKA

This is a video of driving I-35 north through Duluth. You get a nice view of Lake Superior before descending and you can see where they capped the interstate to allow better access to the lake shore for the locals (prior to the early 1990s, I-35 ended before reaching downtown... and putting a lid over the freeway was the compromise reached after 30 years of debate).
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Old March 30th, 2010, 01:55 AM   #5531
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NJ 17 Merging with I-287 - Mahwah,NJ

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Entering New York State / Town of Suffern

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I-287 / 87 Interchange

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NJT Suffern Yard

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I-87 North

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Coming up Next : I-87 South , I-87/287
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Last edited by Nexis; April 5th, 2010 at 10:04 PM.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 06:20 PM   #5532
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NY 17 Harrimen Toll Gate

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I-87 South

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NY 17/59 & I-287 Interchange , and Japanese Mountain Restaurant

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Garden State Parkway (thruway Ext)

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End of Thruway Ext Entering New Jersey , Garden State Parkway begins.

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I hope you enjoyed, maybe some more of Saturday or Sunday.

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Last edited by Nexis; April 5th, 2010 at 10:02 PM.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 03:35 AM   #5533
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Ahhhhh, memories of the GSPKWY

I was there last fall, and that huge rest/gas/food plaza between north and southbound lanes was still there....a lot of great memories of those old northeast roads, with their frequent service areas!
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Old March 31st, 2010, 04:47 AM   #5534
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Another guardrail incident. This one looks scary.

http://burien.komonews.com/content/s...ts-more-mayhem
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Old March 31st, 2010, 06:29 AM   #5535
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAWC1506 View Post
Another guardrail incident. This one looks scary.

http://burien.komonews.com/content/s...ts-more-mayhem
God damn.....that doesn't look good.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 08:04 AM   #5536
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This is a seriously strange-looking bridge. Are there others like it?
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Old March 31st, 2010, 08:21 AM   #5537
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Yes there is , upstate along the Thurway and on older freeways in NY state.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 10:26 AM   #5538
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Quote:
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This is a seriously strange-looking bridge. Are there others like it?
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What's strange about it? Those pillars are pretty typical of older bridges in Illinois and Wisconsin.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 11:27 AM   #5539
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Another guardrail incident. This one looks scary.

http://burien.komonews.com/content/s...ts-more-mayhem
Did he slid sidewards into a non-continuous barrier or something? I've never seen something like this. Just yesterday a Hungarian trucker on my local freeway died of an heart attack and crashed the median, but the guard rail prevented the truck from crossing the median.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 10:11 PM   #5540
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Did he slid sidewards into a non-continuous barrier or something? I've never seen something like this. Just yesterday a Hungarian trucker on my local freeway died of an heart attack and crashed the median, but the guard rail prevented the truck from crossing the median.
I'm guessing something like this:



This wouldn't have happen with a concrete barrier, but my guess is that this wouldn't have happened if the guardrail supports were metal instead of wood. What happened here is probably the result of the wooden support breaking, allowing the guardrail to bend around and fold like the diagram shows.

While metal supports may bend, they won't break like wood, as you can see in this picture from the accident scene:

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