Federal Highway Administration
400 Seventh St., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20590
February 5, 2007
Refer to: HSSD/SS-145
Mr. Terry Bell
21 Manor Drive
Grove City, PA 16127
Dear Mr. Bell :
Thank you for your mail correspondence of September 22, 2006, requesting the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) acceptance of your company's FundaflexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support system for use on the National Highway System (NHS). Accompanying your letter was a report on testing of this roadside hardware conducted by the Texas Transportation Institute and test videos. You requested that we find it acceptable for use on the National Highway System under the provisions of National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Report 350 "Recommended Procedures for the Safety Performance Evaluation of Highway Features."
Sign supports should meet the guidelines contained in the NCHRP Report 350, "Recommended Procedures for the Safety Performance Evaluation of Highway Features". The FHWA Memorandum "Action: Identifying Acceptable Highway Safety Features" of July 25, 1997, provides further guidance on crash testing of sign and luminaire supports.
The Steel City Partners Sign Support system consists of 2 in. (50.8 mm) diameter schedule
40 pipe. Three set screws in the proprietary base assembly are tightened to 35 ft-lbs
(4.84 kg-m). The base assembly consists of a casting with three set screws with a center cable passing through a dust boot, top steel plate, power section (PUR/Cellasto), and anchored below the bottom steel plate. In nuisance type impacts, the power section is designed to elastically collapse and then return the sign support to the vertical position.
Test article installations
In the test installations a 36 inch (914 mm) metal stop sign was mounted at 7 ft (2.1 m) to the bottom of the sign.
For the low speed test (NCHRP 350 Test Level 3-60), a single sign was erected with the sign panel facing the impacting vehicle and being struck by the left quarter point of the impacting vehicle.
For the high speed test (NCHRP 350 Test Level 3-61), the first sign was installed facing the impacting vehicle and being struck by the right quarter point of the impacting vehicle while the second sign installation was 15 ft and 28 in. (5.28 m) offset from the first sign installation to be impacted by the opposite quarter point of the impacting vehicle. The sign panel of the second sign was turned 90 degrees.
Full-scale automobile testing which included the NCHRP report 350 Test 3-60 (low-speed test) and the NCHRP Report 350 Test 3-61 (high speed test) was conducted on your company's FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support system. The complete device as tested is shown in the Enclosure 1.
The NCHRP Report 350 test 3-60 involved an 820 kg passenger car (820C) impacting the FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support head-on with the left quarter point of the vehicle aligned with the centerline of the mailbox column at impact speed and angle of 34.9 km/h and 0.3 degrees, respectively.
The NCHRP Report 350 tests 3-61 involved an 820 kg passenger car (820C) impacting the FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support head-on with the right quarter point of the vehicle aligned with the centerline of the FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support at impact speed and angle of 100.5 km/h and 0 degrees, respectively.
You also conducted an additional test which involved the same 820C vehicle impacting the FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign offset 15 ft and 28 in. (5.28 m) back from the NCHRP Report 350 tests 3-61 sign installation (as described above). It was expected to impact the left quarter point of the impacting vehicle at 90 degrees angle. Due to the effect of the first impact, the actual impact in this test occurred at a nominal impact speed of 92.1 km/h and at the point somewhat shifted to the left of the left quarter point of the vehicle. While this test could not qualify as the NCHRP 350 test 3-61, it was not required for your sign support as a system with symmetrical breakaway mechanism.
In the NCHRP Report 350 Test 3-60 (low-speed test), your company's FundaFlexTM MA60 Mark II Sign Support system activated by yielding to the vehicle. No detached elements, fragments, or other debris was present to penetrate, or to show potential for penetrating the occupant compartment or to present hazard to others in the area. No occupant compartment deformation occurred. The vehicle remained upright during and after the collision event. Occupant risk factors were within the preferred limits. Summary of test results is provided in Enclosure 2.
In the NCHRP Report 350 Test 3-61 (high speed test), your company's FundaFlexTM MA60 Mark II Sign Support system activated by pulling out of the base. Both first and second sign supports pulled out of the bases and rode along with the vehicle. This was not the manner in which the device was intended to activate, however the excess of the designed "flex" of the system is acceptable in a high speed test. The pulled out sign supports did not penetrate nor show potential for penetrating the occupant compartment, nor did they present undue hazard to others in the area. Maximum occupant compartment deformation was caused by the second sign support installation and measured 2.2 in. (56 mm) in the roof area. The vehicle remained upright during and after the impact. Occupant risk factors were within the required limits. Summary of test results is provided in Enclosure 2.
The results of testing met the FHWA requirements and, therefore, the FundaFlexTM MA60 MarkII Sign Support system described above and shown in the enclosed drawings for reference is acceptable for use as the NCHRP Report 350 Test Level 3 device on the NHS, when selected by the contracting authority, subject to the provisions of Title 23, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 635.411 as they pertain to proprietary products.
Please note the following standard provisions that apply to the FHWA letters of acceptance:
/original signed by /
John R. Baxter, P.E.
Director, Office of Safety Design
Office of Safety
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