Various new work zone traffic control devices are currently being used or considered for use in work zones throughout the State of Texas. The impact performance of plastic drum, sign and flashing unit assemblies was evaluated in the report, with particular interest on the effect of the weight of the ballast and the performance of the devices under glancing impact conditions. A total of 14 crash tests were conducted under the study. The plastic drum, sign and flashing unit assemblies all performed satisfactorily in either head-on or glancing impacts, snapping free of the base readily upon impact and either flipped over or to the side of the vehicle or stayed with the vehicle. The separated drum assemblies did not penetrate or intrude into the occupant compartment or constitute a hazard to adjacent traffic or to the workers. There was no appreciable difference in impact performance among the different ballast weights within the range of 25 to 75 pounds. Since plastic drums ballasted at 50 pounds have been found to be blown over or moved by air disturbances generated by passing traffic, the use of 75-pound ballast weights appear to be the logical choice.
Publication Date: October 1990
Topics: Evaluation and Assessment; Temporary Traffic Control; Traffic Control Devices