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How to Determine Highway Guardrails System?



A Highway Guardrails system is always put through performance tests before it is actually installed along a roadway. The performance of the system is assessed through crash tests that are done in a controlled environment.


Safety professionals use certain criteria to determine whether the Highway Guardrails system meets standards.


The Highway Guardrails face test is used to determine if a car is directed back onto a roadway when it meets the rail.


The end treatment tests are then conducted by having a vehicle strike the rail dead-on and also at an angle. This will determine if the system is properly absorbing energy from a vehicle.


For head-on impacts, the end treatment should absorb most of the energy so that the Highway Guardrails can gate or extrude, and the vehicle can pass through.


This will slow the vehicle down as it passes behind the Highway Guardrails, allowing it to come to rest with minimal damage.


The tests used to test a Highway Guardrails system are usually conducted at about 60 MPH, so it is important to understand that if a vehicle hits the guardrail at higher speeds, the system may not operate properly.


Very high speeds are especially troubling because Highway Guardrails systems are simply not meant to accommodate vehicles traveling far above posted speed limits.


The faster the vehicle is going when it strikes the guardrail, the more damage might occur because the energy demonstrated is so much more.


Even a Highway Guardrails system that is working at peak performance can only absorb so much energy.



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