The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has released a report evaluating the early stages of the "safety edge" shoulder treatment rollout that the agency is advocating nationwide. Click here to view the report.
According to the California Asphalt Pavement Association (CalAPA), the report's findings offer only limited justification for the sloped pavement edge treatment the FHWA is championing as a way to reduce traffic accidents on rural roads. The report's authors concede there is not yet enough data to draw firm conclusions.
Implementation of the safety edge has been uneven across the country, says CalAPA. Caltrans has said it will implement the treatment and has developed draft specification language.
The concept of having a pavement edge that slopes at a 30-degree angle, rather than a 90-degree angle, is intended to provide motorists who veer off the roadway a smooth transition back on to the pavement, thus avoiding head-on collisions caused by over-correcting.
For more information on safety edge, click here.