Functional register of safety barriers

An objective correlation between the actual dangerousness of the road and the actual functionality of the safety barriers

AISICO, which for over thirty years has been engaged in study and research to make roads and infrastructure safer and more reliable, has developed a procedure called the ‘functional register of barriers’ to establish an objective correlation between the actual danger of the road and the actual functionality of the safety barriers.

The functional register of barriers makes it possible to plan the correct maintenance or adaptation of existing safety barriers, and to minimise the consequences in the event of a swerving vehicle, optimising resources so that action is taken only where it is actually necessary. The procedure makes it possible not only to have a “virtual” classification of the barriers based on the level of containment and the presumed essential characteristics and the presumed date of installation and reference standards, but also to assess, through a series of objective parameters and the parameterisation of the installed devices to the criteria in force, the state of preservation and functionality of the devices in operation along the network, in order to identify the sections identified as most dangerous.

The functional register of barriers consists of several distinct, interrelated phases:

  • Census of existing barriers, carried out by means of a High Performance Vehicle, able to provide a snapshot of the status of installed devices in terms of type location and characteristics
  • Verification of the state of preservation and correct installation of existing devices, carried out through a careful inspection of the installation sites
  • Verification of the functionality of the barriers installed by checking the supports for the barriers, both on the work of art (tightness of the kerbs) and on the ground or embankment, through the performance of dynamic tests necessary to assess the pile/ground interaction
  • Classification of the most critical sections identified using proprietary software that determines, from the relative defect indices, the degree of dangerousness of the infrastructure inspected in relation to the restraint devices and the priorities for intervention
  • Verification of the restraint capacity of the installed devices and parameterisation to the mandatory criteria according to the year of production and installation
  • Determination of the restraint devices to be installed in accordance with Art. 6 of DM 2367/2004 as amended and design choice for the definition of the performance characteristics of the devices to be adopted, the level of restraint and the standardised operating width

The creation of the functional register of barriers makes it possible, not only to know the real condition of the installed devices, but also to carry out a comparison with respect to the current standards, both in terms of compliance with them and in terms of performance, through the evaluation of the performance of the support and reparameterization.

In this case, it is possible to make an objective assessment of the real danger of the installed protection systems and the priorities for intervention, allowing costs and resources to be saved, but at the same time, increasing safety for users.