Corus Construction & Engineering Products (CEP) has secured a £250,000 contract to supply its innovative Vetex Highway Safety Barriers for two major UK highways projects - Weymouth Relief Road and the A1073 from Spalding to Eye - providing drivers with the highest levels of protection.
The Vetex system has been developed by Corus to maintain high levels of containment and unparalleled safety performance, whilst also reducing the number of system components by 90 per cent to significantly improve installation times - key factors influencing the specification of the system for both schemes.
Safety performance was a key criteria when it came to specifying the barrier system for the 'A1073 Spalding to Eye Improvement Scheme' - a joint initiative between Lincolnshire County and Peterborough City Councils. A strategic link between Lincolnshire and Eastern England, the A1073 is heavily used by freight lorries as well as commuters and, due to the narrowness of the existing road, its accident rate is in excess of the national average.
Vetex will also play a key role in the successful delivery of the new £87.4 million Weymouth Relief Road. Due to be installed autumn 2009, the safety barriers will form part of a single carriageway road, incorporating a crawler lane, linking the A354 Manor Roundabout near Radipole to the A354 at the top of the Ridgeway Hill.
Ian Davey, Corus Vetex Infrastructure Account Manager, comments: "Utilising vehicle component experience and simulation technology, approaches which have previously remained the exclusive domain of car design, Corus has been able to develop an updated Vetex system that out performs the old one whilst removing the need for routine tensioning. Both clients on these projects were quick to recognise the benefits this creates because as well as contributing massive maintenance savings, they also recognised that the improved installation times would reduce the amount of time road workers are exposed to traffic whilst also minimising lane closures and the associated traffic delays."
Reducing the number of Vetex system components enables the space between each post to be increased significantly, meaning that fewer posts have to be installed and fewer foundations dug. Combine wider post spacing with beams up to 5m long and the result is that distance is covered efficiently with fewer lap joints to reduce installation time dramatically.
The steel used to create Vetex has also been galvanized to help protect against the elements and again significantly reduces the amount of routine maintenance required, providing excellent whole life value.
Davey continues: "Any solution to improve road safety must be tested to an 'Impact Severity Level' - grade A being the best a C the worst. All of the Corus Vetex Barrier Systems have achieved an A rating, and so specification of these products gives real piece of mind to the Highways Agency involved in monitoring Britain's roads, and to drivers who want to be assured of safety on highways."