July 28, 1997
Refer to: HNG-14/SS-77
Mr. Brad Corral
Chicago Heights Steel
P.O. Box 129
Chicago Heights, Illinois 60411
Dear. Mr. Corral:
This is in Response to Mr. Mark Grangers's November 11, 1996, letter to Mr. Seppo I. Sillan requesting Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) acceptance of the EZE-Erect breakaway support system using Grade 9 bolts. We apologize for the delay in answering this request.
During the crash testing the EZE-Erect system performed by having the bolts break as designed or by the stubs pulling entirely out of the ground (in some weak-soil tests). From a review of crash tests of spliced-post designs similar to the EZE-Erect design, but incorporating Grade 9 bolts, we have concluded that using Grade 9 Bolts in the EZE-Erect system would not degrade the breakaway performance of the system. Therefore, the EZE-Erect system using Grade 9 splice bolts is acceptable for use on the National Highway System if requested by a State, subject to the conditions in our October 17, 1996 letter to Franklin Industries, copy enclosed. We should point out that our original acceptance for the EZE-Erect system was limited to "…the range of conditions tested." Our records indicate that the anchor stubs used in the tests did not exceed 1220 mm, with 100 mm of the stubs extending above the ground line.
We understand that although that patent for the EZE-Erect system may no longer be in effect, the "EZE-Erect" name would still be a registered trademark of Franklin Steel-Franklin Industries.
Dwight A. Horne
Federal-Aid and Design Division
Geometric and Roadside Design Acceptance Letter SS-77