Road barriers, which come in many different forms, protect drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists from potential dangers, including other drivers. The barriers can also help with traffic and crowd control. Road barriers could protect road construction workers, direct people in a parking area, and more. Let us tell you about the different types of road barriers.
When choosing the type of barrier for your needs, your first job is to determine how to set up a safe environment to minimize the risk of accidents and incidents by using physical barriers and visual cues.
Types of Road Barriers
Some traffic situations might require nothing more than cones, while others need concrete barriers. Pedestrian situations are best handled with other types of road barriers, such as wire-rope barriers and plastic pedestrian barriers.
One of the most recognized traffic control devices is the traffic cone. They come in various weights and heights depending on what you need them for. Traffic cones are easily movable and flexible. While they don’t usually deter pedestrians, they will deter traffic, so you can use them to temporarily direct traffic. However, if workers are present, the cones will not stop a speeder, so it’s best to use them in conjunction with a flagger.
You can also use traffic cones to warn people of dangers such as deep potholes, sinkholes, bumps, or even broken-down vehicles. Traffic cones can also warn pedestrians of potential dangers, such as a lifted or broken walkway. You can add weights to the cones to ensure they aren’t blown over by the wind or easily knocked over by traffic.
Plastic Pedestrian Barriers
If you need to direct low-speed traffic and pedestrians, you can always use traditional plastic barriers, often referred to as pedestrian barriers or Jersey barriers. The barriers are easy to move and install, and you can link them together to create a continuous wall.
Plastic pedestrian barriers are great for separating traffic and pedestrians when you have street events or when you need to direct large crowds at special events. You can also use them on construction sites to direct traffic onto the shoulder when construction equipment operators must use part of the open lane.
You can also fill plastic pedestrian barriers with water to reduce the risk of them being pushed out of the way by traffic or blown over by the wind. They are easy to transport and take only one person to set them up.
Wire Rope Barriers
Sometimes referred to as cable barriers, wire rope barriers are an inexpensive way to keep vehicles in the proper right-of-way. You often see them along highways or on secondary roads with steep drop-offs. Wire rope barriers are also easy to keep up as they are made of high-tensile steel and have been hot-tipped galvanized to help with corrosion control. The rope barriers consist of metal posts with three to four cables mounted on the posts.
Wire rope barriers are less expensive than other strong barriers but just as effective, if not better. When a vehicle hits the metal ropes, the ropes absorb the energy from the impact and stop the vehicle. These types of road barriers has several advantages in addition to the lower cost, including:
- Space between the posts can be adjusted from 6.3 feet o 32.6 feet.
- The tension on the cable can also be adjusted from 2,000 pounds to 9,000 pounds.
- Wire ropes absorb most of the energy created when a vehicle hits the wire rope barrier.
- The wire ropes and the metal posts have anti-rust, anti-aging, and anti-corrosion properties, so they last longer.
When you have a low-traffic situation, A-frame barriers are a cost-effective way to direct traffic. The A-frame barrier has two sets of legs shaped like the letter A with a horizontal board across them. The board has reflectors or reflective material on it. A-frame barriers are lightweight and easy to put in place. However, because they are so light, they are not suitable for high-traffic areas.
A-frame barriers are also good for directing pedestrians and bicyclists or for warning of potholes, cracked or broken sidewalks, newly paved parking lot sections, and construction zones in heavily traveled pedestrian areas, such as sidewalks and walkways.
While not really a barrier, delineator tubes can be used as a barrier to traffic if you set up several of them in a row. They are generally used to warn pedestrians and vehicles of a dangerous area. They are high enough for someone in a vehicle to see them and have bright neon colors that catch the eye.
They are great for blocking off areas of parking garages and lots or lining the edge of roads to warn people that it’s not safe to drive past a certain point. When you have slow-moving traffic, they can also be used to direct traffic, such as in a lane change situation where traffic is already at a slow rate of speed.
Longitudinal Channelizing Devices
Sometimes referred to as LCDs, longitudinal channelizing devices are an option to concrete barriers. They are made of polyethylene and use water as a ballast. They come in several sizes and shapes and are less damaging to vehicles than concrete barriers. You can link several together to make a long line of barriers to protect a construction site. Most longitudinal channelizing devices are bright orange, which makes them easy to see.
Use them in construction, to force traffic to change lanes on highways, or to keep pedestrians in a line when dealing with crowd control. Since they are ballasted with water, they are difficult for pedestrians to push out of the way.
The best deterrent to traffic entering a construction site is concrete barriers. They are best used when working on long-term construction projects near traffic traveling at higher speeds. Nothing can protect construction workers as well as concrete barriers.
When you have a long-term construction project, such as adding new lanes or building new roads, you can string several concrete barriers together to significantly minimize the risk of traffic entering the construction site or large equipment accidentally entering the roadway.
Carolina Traffic Devices Can Help with Your Traffic and Crowd Control Needs
When you need different types of road barriers and/or pedestrian barriers, contact Carolina Traffic Devices, contact us – let us know how we can help – Carolina Traffic Devices.