Crash Cushions Bring Layer of Safety to Interstates

Oct. 25, 2021

In 2020, roadway deaths increased, even though the number of miles driven by Americans decreased, according to a National Safety Council report. Departments of Transportation are looking for ways to reverse this trend for 2021 and beyond. 

One solution: the REACT M system—a redirective, non-gating crash cushion that consists of six high-density polyethylene cylinders per unit attached to a steel backup and base-track assembly. 

The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) is in the midst of a design-build interchange modification on I-75 at I-24 under the direction of general contractor C.W. Matthews Contracting Co. TDOT selected the REACT M system, which recently received Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) eligibility, to bring an added layer of safety to the project. Site-Safe, LLC distributed and oversaw the installation of the REACT M in March.

The REACT M is tested to MASH 16 Test Level 3. It includes a self-contained backup structure that is designed to resist movement during head-on and side impacts and can protect hazards up to 30-in. wide. The system has shown self-restoring characteristics when impacted within MASH 16 crash test standards.

C. David Rich, president of Site-Safe located in Leitchfield, Kentucky, says, “The first version of the REACT (REACT 350) was invented at Vanderbilt University in Nashville and accepted by FHWA, both in 1995. It is only fitting that the latest version of the REACT (REACT M) had its first install in Tennessee, the state where it all started. With the recent FHWA eligibility, we now expect to see many more REACT M installations in both permanent and work-zone applications throughout the U.S.”

Editor's Note: Scranton Gillette Communications and the SGC Infrastructure Group are not liable for the accuracy, efficacy and validity of the claims made in this piece. The views expressed in this content do not reflect the position of the Roads & Bridges' Editorial Team.