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FHWA Home / Safety / Roadway Departure / Safety Eligibility Letter

Safety Eligibility Letter B-246

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U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration

1200 New Jersey Ave. S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20590

March 11, 20 14

Reply Refer To: HSST/B-246

Mr. Barry Stephens
Trinity Highway Products, LLC
3617 Cincinnati Avenue
Rocklin, CA. 95765

Dear Mr. Stephens:

This letter is in response to your request for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to
review a roadside safety system for eligibility for reimbursement under the Federal-aid highway
program.

Name of system: Retro-Rail™, MASH
Type of system: Longitudinal Barrier
Test Level: AASHTO MASH TL3
Testing conducted by: E-Tech Testing Services, Inc.
Task Force 13 Designator: SGR48
Date of request: October 30, 2013
Date of completed package: November 30, 2013

Decision:
The following device is eligible, with details provided in the form which is attached as an
integral part of this letter:

Based on a review of crash test results you submitted certifying the device described herein
meets the crash test and evaluation criteria of the American Association of State Highway and
Transportation Officials' Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH), the device is eligible
for reimbursement under the Federal-aid highway program. Eligibility for reimbursement under
the Federal-aid highway program does not establish approval or endorsement by the FHW A for
any particular purpose or use.

The FHWA, the Department of Transportation, and the United States Government do not
endorse products or services and the issuance of a reimbursement eligibility letter is not an
endorsement of any product or service.

Requirements
To be found eligible for Federal-aid funding, roadside safety devices should meet the crash test
and evaluation criteria contained in the American Association of State Highway and
Transportation Officials' Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH).

Description
The device and supporting documentation are described in the attached form.

Summary and Standard Provisions
Therefore, the system described and detailed in the attached form is eligible for reimbursement and may be installed under the range of conditions tested. Please note the following standard provisions that apply to FHW A eligibility letters:

 

Sincerely yours,

/* Signature of Michael S. Griffith*/
Michael S. Griffith
Director, Office of Safety Technologies
Office of Safety

Enclosures

Request for Federal Aid Reimbursement Eligibility
Of Highway Safety Hardware

Submitter Date of Request: October 30, 2013   Selected Radio Button New   Unselected Radio Button  Resubmission
Name: Barry Stephens Signature: /s/ Barry Stephens
Company: Trinity Highway Products, LLC
Address: 3617 Cincinnati Ave, Rocklin, CA 95765
Country: USA
To: Michael S. Griffith, Director
FHWA, Office of Safety Technologies

I request the following devices be considered eligible for reimbursement under the Federal-aid highway program.

System Type Submission Type Device Name/Variant Testing Criterion Test Level
'B': Barriers (Roadside, Median, Bridge Railings) Seleted Radio Button Physical Crash Testing
Radio Button FEA & V&V Analysis
Retro-Rail™ AASHTO MASH TL3

By submitting this request for review and evaluation by the Federal Highway Administration, I certify that the product(s) was (were) tested in conformity with the AASHTO Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware and that the evaluation results meet the appropriate evaluation criteria in the MASH.

Identification of the individual or organization responsible for the product:

Contact Name: Barry Stephens Same as Submitter ☒
Company Name: Trinity Highway Products, LLC Same as Submitter ☒
Address: 3617 Cincinnati Ave, Rocklin, CA 95765 Same as Submitter ☒
Country: USA Same as Submitter ☒

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

New Hardware

The Retro-Rail™ System has been crash tested and found to successfully meet MASH Test Level3 impact criteria when properly attached to structurally-sound, "Strong-Post" Guardrail, with a rail height of 25" to 29", [Reference- 2009 American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Publication; Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH)]. Height is measured to the top of the rail from a horizontal tangent projected out from the top of an adjacent roadway. The following types of Strong-Post Guardrail have been evaluated and are deemed suitable for retrofitting with the Retro-Rail™ System:

  • SGR04c - Steel Post/ Wood Blockout.
  • SGR04b - Wood Post/ Wood Blockout.
  • SGR04c - Steel Post/ Plastic or Composite Blockout (Similar to King Block®, width 1 05mm[4.0"] height 355mm [14.0"]), depth 185mm [7.3")).

The Retro-Rail™ System consists of two Cable End Brackets, a single 3/4" (19 mm) galvanized wire rope running the length of the installation, and numerous Cable Mid Brackets supporting the wire rope ˜ 6" (1 52 mm) above the top of the rail. Cable Mid Brackets are installed every 12'-6" (1,905 mm), using standard guardrail splice locations. The Cable End Brackets and Mid Brackets maximize use of existing holes in the rail for attachment, minimizing the need to drill additional holes.

The Cable End Bracket consists of inner and outer galvanized components that "sandwich" a guardrail splice at the termination points of the Retro-Rail™. The Cable End Brackets are designed to work with the rail to resist normal and impact Retro-Rail™ Cable tension. The top of the Cable End Brackets are fitted with a steel tube that accommodates the threaded end of the Cable. The Cable End Bracket design is universal, allowing a single component to be installed at either end of the system.

The Cable Mid Brackets incorporate an "engineered cable retention slot" intended to allow the Cable to float freely within the bracket. During Guardrail impacts, the Bracket is designed to bend rearward, which facilitates release of the Cable. This "release" transfers a significant portion of the impact vehicle's lateral impact energy Into the tensioned Retro-Rail™ Cable. The Cable Mid Bracket is designed to maintain standard wire rope tension when installed on guardrail with concave radii of 100' or greater. If the Bracket experiences significant longitudinal loading during Impacts, It is designed to bend and lay flat on top of the rail, reducing vehicle snagging.

The Cable is 3/4" 3 x 7 galvanized wire rope with threaded cable ends. It is pre-stretched at the factory. During the Retro-Rail™ installation, the Cable is tensioned to ˜ 3500 pounds (dependent on the ambient temperature at the time of the installation).

A combined MASH Test Level3 Guardrail Level3 Guardrail & End Terminal system can be created by attaching one of the above NCHRP 350 Retro-Rail™-fitted Strong-Post Guardrails immediately downstream from a MASH, TL-3-accepted End Terminal.

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CRASH TESTING

A brief description of each crash test and its result:

Required Test Number Narrative Description Evaluation Results
3-10 (1100C)

Two MASH 3-10 tests were successfully completed on the Retro- Rail™ System, Test 01-D289-Q02 and 01-Q289-Q04. Both installations used Steel Posts/ Routed Wood Blockouts on 6'-3" centers, 13-½" long 12 Ga W-Beam Guardrail with the top edge 25" above grade and the Retro-Rail™ System attached above and tensioned. Test 01-0289-002 impact occurred 48" downstream of Post #19, L/2. This location was selected because it is believed to be "worst case". Impact would create the greatest snag potential between the post and vehicle and create the greatest likelihood of W-Beam rupture. Test 01-0289-D04 impact occurred 12" downstream of post #3 to establish system Beginning Length of Need (BLON).

PASS
3-11 (2270P)

Four MASH 3-11 tests were successfully completed on the Retro- Rail™ System, Test 01-0289-001 and 01-0289-003 installations used Steel Posts/ Routed Wood Blockouts on 6'-3" centers, 13'-6½" long 12 Ga W-Beam Guardrail with the top edge 25" above grade and the Retro-Rail™ System attached above and tensioned. Test 01-0289-001 impact occurred 48" downstream of Post #19, L/2. This location was selected because it is believed to be "worst case". Impact would create the greatest snag potential between the post and vehicle and create the greatest likelihood of W-Beam rupture. Test 01-0289-003 impact occurred 12" downstream of post #3 to establish system Beginning Length of Need (BLON). Tests 01-0289-005 and 01-0289-006 were conducted to further evaluate Post/ Blockout combinations: Wood Post/ Blackout and Steel Post/ Composite Blockout respectively. To create the worst case scenario for these Post and Blockout combinations, the impact occurred 48" downstream of Post #19, L/2. This impact would create the greatest snag potential between the post and vehicle and create the greatest likelihood of W-Beam rupture.

WAIVER REQUEST
3-20 (1100C) At this time the intended use of the Retro-Rail™ System is not to improve impact performance in transitioning from semi-rigid to rigid barrier. Instead, replacement of this transition area may be required to reach acceptable performance levels. The Retro-Rail™ System has been designed to attach to various Transition types and heights. WAIVER REQUESTED
3-21 (2270P) See comments above (Required Test Number 3-20 (11 00C) WAIVER REQUESTED

Full Scale Crash Testing was done in compliance with MASH by the following accredited crash test laboratory (cite the laboratory's accreditation status as noted in the crash test reports.):

Laboratory Name: E-Tech Testing Services, Inc.
Laboratory Contact: John F. LaTurner Same as Submitter ☐
Address: 3617B Cincinnati Ave, Rocklin, CA 95765 Same as Submitter ☐
Country: USA Same as Submitter ☒
Accreditation Certificate
Number and Date:
A2LA, Mechanical #0989.01, November 30, 2013

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ATTACHMENTS

Attach to this form:

  1. 1) A copy of the full test report, video, and a Test Data Summary Sheet for each test conducted in support of this request.
  2. 2) A drawing or drawings of the device(s) that conform to the Task Force-13 Drawing Specifications [Hardware Guide Drawing Standards]. For proprietary products, a single isometric line drawing is usually acceptable to illustrate the product, with detailed specifications, intended use, and contact information provided on the reverse. Additional drawings (not in TF-13 format) showing details that are key to understanding the performance of the device should also be submitted to facilitate our review.

FHWA Official Business Only:

Eligibility Letter AASHTO TF13 Key Words
Number Date Designator
B-246 February 18, 2014 SGR48

MASH TL3, Retrofit Strong-Post Guardrail, Cable End Brackets, Mid Brackets.

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Diagram: Retro-Rail™ System

Page 2 of Retro-Rail™ System

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Diagram: Figure 1. Summary of Results - Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-002

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation MASH Test 3-10 at L2
   Test No. 01 -0289-002
   Date 10/4/12
Test Article
   Type Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrai1 225 ft (68.6 m)
overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height
with 200 ft (61 m) Retro-Rail
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¼ (19 mm) 3 × galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 1100C
   Model 2004 Kia Rio
   Mass
      Curb 2354 lb (1068 kg)
      Test inertial 2414 lb (1095) kg
      Dummy N/A
      Gross Static 2414 lb (1095) kg
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 63.9 mi/h (102.9 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity (kJ)e 58.9 ft-kip (79.8 KJ)
Exit conditions
Speed (km/h) 33.6 mi/h (54 km/h)
Angle (deg - veh. e.g.) 20
Occupant Risk Values
Impact Velocity (m/s)
x-direction 19.2 ft/s (5.8 m/s)
y-direction 23.0 ft/s (7.0 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
x-direction 12.0
y-direction 9.6
European Committee for Normalization (CEN) Values
THIV 19.6 mi/h (31.5 km/h)
PHD (g's) 14.0
ASI 1.2
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)
Maximum Roll Angle 8.1
Maximum Pitch Angle -4.1
Maximum Yaw Angle -80.5
Test Article Deflections (m)
Dynamic
Permanent

20 in. (0.5 m)
12 in. (0.3 m)

Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact) Exterior
VDS LFQ03
CDC HLFEW3
Interior
VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation Negligible

Figure 1. Summary of Results - Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-002

Diagram: Figure 6. Summary of Results - Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-004

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation NCHRP 350 Test 3-30 at BLON
   Test No. 01-0289-004
   Date 01-09-13
Test Article
   Type Trinity Highway Products, LLC Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrail 212.5 ft (64.8 m) overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height with 200 ft (661.0 m) Retro-Rail and 50 ft (15.2 m) upstream ET Plus End Terminal anchor.
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¾ in. (19 mm) 3 × 7 galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring AASHTO Strong Soil, compacted and well drained
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 1100C
   Model 2500 Kia Rio
   Mass (kg)
      Curb 2351 lb (1066.5 kg)
      Test inertial 2399 lb (1088 kg)
      Dummy 7165 lb (5 kg)
      Gross Static 1994
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 60.0 mi/h (96.5 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity 51.5 ft-kip (69.8 kJ)
Exit conditions
    Speed (km/h) 44.7 mi/h (72 km/h)
    Angle (deg) 10
Occupant Risk Values
    Impact Velocity (m/s)
        x-direction 13.3 ft/s (4.0 m/s)
        y-direction 22.2 ft/s 6.8 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
        x-direction 6.2
        y-direction 9.3
European Committee for Normalization (CEN) Values
    THIV 17.6 mi/h (28.4 km/h)
    PHD (g's) 10.6
    ASI 1.2
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)
    Maximum Roll Angle -3.3
    Maximum Pitch Angle 3.1
    Maximum Yaw Angle 36.9
Test Article Deflections (m)

Dynamic
Permanent
15 in. (0.4 m)
12 in. (0.3 m)
Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact)
    Exterior
    VDC LFQ-3
    CDC 11LFEW3
Interior
VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation (mm) Negligible

Figure 6. Summary Results - Retro-Rail Test 0l-0289-004

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Diagram: Figure 11. Summary of Res ults- Rctro-Rail Test 01-0289-001

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation MASH Test 3-11 at L/2
   Test No. 01-0289-001
   Date 09-21-12
Test Article
   Type Trinity Highway Products, LLC
Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrail 225 ft (68.6 m) overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height with 200 ft (61.0 m) Retro-Rail,
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¾ in. (19 mm) 3 × 7 galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring AASHTO Strong Soil, compacted and well drained
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 2270P
   Model 2006 Dodge Ram Pickup
   Mass (kg)
      Curb 5046 lb (2289 kg)
      Test inertial 4996 lb (2266 kg)
      Dummy N/A
      Gross Static 4496 lb (2266 kg)
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 61.3 mi/h (98.8 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity 112.0 ft-kip (151.9 kJ)
Exit conditions
    Speed (km/h) 42.3 mi/h (68 km/h)
    Angle (deg) -2
Occupant Risk Values
    Impact Velocity (m/s)
        x-direction 15.6 ft/s (4.7 m/s)
        y-direction 15.7 ft/s (48 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
        x-direction 8.1
        y-direction 6.5
European Committee for Normalization (CEN) Values
    THIV 14.2 mi/h (22.9 km/h)
    PHD (g's) 10.2
    ASI 0.6
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)
    Maximum Roll Angle 31.3
    Maximum Pitch Angle -6.7
    Maximum Yaw Angle -29.9
Test Article Deflections (m)

Dynamic
Permanent
43 in. (1.1 m)
30 in. (0.8 m)
Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact)
    Exterior
    VDC LFQ-2
    CDC 11LFEW2
Interior
VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation (mm) Negligible

Diagram: Figure 16 Summary of Results - Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-003

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation MASH Test 3-11 at BLON
   Test No. 01-0289-003
   Date 12-11-12
Test Article
   Type Trinity Highway Products, LLC
Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrail 212.5 ft (64.8 m) overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height with 200 ft (61.0 m) Retro-Rail,
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¾ in. (19 mm) 3 × 7 galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring AASHTO Strong Soil, compacted and well drained
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 2270P
   Model 2006 Dodge Ram Pickup
   Mass (kg)
      Curb 5046 lb (2289 kg)
      Test inertial 4996 lb (2266 kg)
      Dummy N/A
      Gross Static 4496 lb (2266 kg)
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 61.3 mi/h (98.8 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity 112.0 ft-kip (151.9 kJ)
Exit conditions
    Speed (km/h) 42.3 mi/h (68 km/h)
    Angle (deg) -2
Occupant Risk Values  
    Impact Velocity (m/s)
        x-direction 15.6 ft/s (4.7 m/s)
        y-direction 15.7 ft/s (48 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
        x-direction 8.1
        y-direction 6.5
European Committee for Normalization (CEN) Values  
    THIV 14.2 mi/h (22.9 km/h)
    PHD (g's) 10.2
    ASI 0.6
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)  
    Maximum Roll Angle 31.3
    Maximum Pitch Angle -6.7
    Maximum Yaw Angle -29.9
Test Article Deflections (m)

Dynamic
Permanent
43 in. (1.1 m)
30 in. (0.8 m)
Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact)
    Exterior
    VDC LFQ-2
    CDC 11LFEW2
Interior
VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation (mm) Negligible

Figure 16. Summary of Results- Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-003

Diagram: Figure 21. Summary of Results-Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-005

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation MASH Test 3-11
   Test No. 01-0289-005
   Date 7/24/13
Test Article
   Type Trinity Highway Products, LLC
Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrail 225 ft (68.6 m) overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height with 200 ft (61.0 m) Retro-Rail,
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¾ in. (19 mm) 3 × 7 galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring AASHTO Strong Soil, compacted and well drained
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 2270P
   Model 2007 Chevrolet Pickup
   Mass (kg)
      Curb 5337 lb (2241 kg)
      Test inertial 5062 lb (2296 kg)
      Dummy N/A
      Gross Static 5062 lb (2296 kg)
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 61.2 mi/h (98.5 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity 113.1 ft-kip (153.4 kJ)
Exit conditions
    Speed (km/h) 49.1 mi/h (79.0 km/h)
    Angle (deg) 4
Occupant Risk Values  
    Impact Velocity (m/s)
        x-direction 8.5 ft/s (2.6 m/s)
        y-direction 11.3 ft/s (3.4 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
        x-direction 5.1
        y-direction 3.6
European Committee for Normalization (EN) Values
    THIV 9.4 mi/h (15.2 km/h)
    PHD (g's) 5.1
    ASI 0.4
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)  
    Maximum Roll Angle 28.1
    Maximum Pitch Angle -8.2
    Maximum Yaw Angle 111.9
Test Article Deflections (m)

Dynamic
Permanent
67 in. (1.7 m)
35 in. (0.9 m)
Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact)
    Exterior
    VDC LFQ-3
    CDC 11LFEW3
Interior
VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation (mm) Negligible

Figure 21. Summary of Results - Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-005

Diagram: Figure 26. Summary of Results- Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-006

General Information
   Test Agency E-TECH Testing Services, Inc
   Test Designation MASH Test 3-11
   Test No. 01-0289-006
   Date 08/16/13
Test Article
   Type Trinity Highway Products, LLC
Retro-Rail System
   Installation Length SGR04c Guardrail 225 ft (68.6 m) overall at 25 in. (635 mm) top height with 200 ft (61.0 m) Retro-Rail,
   Material of key elements Retro-Rail Cable ¾ in. (19 mm) 3 × 7 galvanized, End and Mid Brackets galvanized steel
      Foundation and Anchoring AASHTO Strong Soil, compacted and well drained
Test Vehicle
   Type Production Model
   Designation 2270P
   Model 2007 Chevrolet Pickup
   Mass (kg)
      Curb 5337 lb (2241 kg)
      Test inertial 5062 lb (2296 kg)
      Dummy N/A
      Gross Static 5062 lb (2296 kg)
Impact Conditions
   Speed (km/h)e 61.2 mi/h (98.5 km/h)
   Angle (deg) 25
   Impact Severity 113.1 ft-kip (153.4 kJ)
Exit conditions
    Speed (km/h) 1.9 mi/h (3.0 km/h)
    Angle (deg) -4
Occupant Risk Values
    Impact Velocity (m/s)
        x-direction 17.2 ft/s (5.3 m/s)
        y-direction 12.8 ft/s (3.9 m/s)
Ridedown Acceleration (g's)
        x-direction 9.6
        y-direction 8.4
European Committee for Normalization (EN) Values
    THIV 14.1 mi/h (22.7 km/h)
    PHD (g's) 12.6
    ASI 0.7
Post-Impact Vehicular Behavior (deg - rate gyro)
    Maximum Roll Angle 36,4
    Maximum Pitch Angle 9.0
    Maximum Yaw Angle 28.3
Test Article Deflections (m)
    Dynamic
    Permanent
75 in. (1.9 m)
47 in. (1.2 m)
Vehicle Damage (Primary Impact)
    Exterior
    VDC LFQ-3
    CDC 11LFEW3
Interior
    VCDI NS0000000
Maximum Deformation (mm) Negligible

Figure 26. Summary of Results- Retro-Rail Test 01-0289-006

Page last modified on January 17, 2013.
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