SPR 2013 Prime KTC: Safety Edge Performance

  • Fisher, Jonathan (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


This research will observe asphalt construction utilizing several different Safety Edge technologies, and monitor multiple aspects of construction and performance related to each technology. These observations will provide Kentucky Transportation Cabinet personnel the necessary information for decision-making regarding appropriate changes to asphalt construction specifications. The Safety Edge is a paving detail that consolidates the pavement edge into a30-degree angle to mitigate pavement-edge drop-offs, offering drivers that leave the roadway a safe transition back to the road. However, even the smallest change in construction can have significant ramifications throughout the construction process. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has solicited the Kentucky Transportation Center to consider the effects of incorporating the Safety Edge in future construction. Consideration would attempt to quantify increases in construction costs and improvements in roadway safety. In addition, in situ properties such as density and permeability would be evaluated in order to develop methods for control and acceptance of the finished product. The Safety Edge is a simple but extremely effective solution that can help save lives by allowing drivers who drift off highways to return to the road safely. Instead of a vertical drop-off, the Safety Edge consolidates the edge of the pavement at 30 degrees. Research has shown this "transition from on-roadway surface to shoulder and back is so smooth it defies assignment of any degree of severity". The Safety Edge provides a strong, durable transition for all vehicles. Even at higher speeds, vehicles can return to the paved road smoothly and easily. By including the Safety Edge detail while paving, this countermeasure can be implemented at a very low cost. The Safety Edge could provide a more durable pavement edge that could reduce edge raveling. The goal of this research is to accelerate the use of the Safety Edge technology, working with KYTC to develop specifications and possibly adopt this pavement edge treatment as a standard practice on all applicable new and resurfacing asphalt pavement projects.
Effective start/end date7/1/126/30/13


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