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jump to last post 1-8 of 8 discussions (31 posts)

What are guard rails for?

  1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
    The Examiner-1posted 3 years ago

    What are guard rails for?

    I heard that they are illegal. All cars have to do is go above a certain speed, not too much above the limit, and it destroys the rail. If the rail gets through the car to the driver or any passenger, which is likely, then they are injured - severely.

  2. Rod Marsden profile image74
    Rod Marsdenposted 3 years ago

    At best guard rails are indicators of where not to venture. You want to drive your car through a guard rail? I say good luck to you. Where I live guard rails let drivers know to keep on the road, especially when not to do so means sailing off a cliff. At a railway crossing there are guard rails. Sure, smash into one and drive around it and meet up with a train going 60 mph or more weighing 500 tons or more. Chances of your survival? Probably not that great.

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      If you are going fast enough then it does not stop you and if it is metal/steel then it harms you. How about if they make them out of dirt? That would stop about 80% - 90%, if not 100, of people without hurting them - at least not as bad as metal.

    2. Rod Marsden profile image74
      Rod Marsdenposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      They are there as a warning, not stop you physically. If you are stupid enough to smash into one in order to play tag with a train you're likely to wind up dead anyway. The same goes for smashing through a barrier in order to drive over a cliff.

    3. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Suppose that your brakes have gone out, or something similar, and you cannot stop. I think that something like two piles of sandbags would be better and do less harm than guard rails, and may be cheaper.

    4. Rod Marsden profile image74
      Rod Marsdenposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Who knows? You would have to put the sandbags to the test. But sandbags won't stop idiots doing their thing. And sandbags won't show up well enough at night to be a warning.

    5. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Of course they would test them. If they can build the pile deep enough it would stop everyone and not harm them, at least not as much. the outside would be made different so they could paint them or something.

    6. Rod Marsden profile image74
      Rod Marsdenposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Others have come up with the notion that ordinary sandbags would disintegrate with rain and wind after a while and need replacing too often. Glow in the dark sandbags might be too distracting and cause accidents. Reflectors on guard rails are fine.

    7. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this
  3. bethperry profile image92
    bethperryposted 3 years ago

    I can think of a couple of purposes for them: 1. if placed above a hill and a driver strikes one, they will slow down the vehicle during the inevitable plunge down the embankment and 2. they soften the impact for people, animals, homes and other structures in the line of collision.

    Even considering a few drivers and passengers have experienced guard rails razing through their vehicles, pedestrians deserve some measure of protection in the likelihood there is some accident on the highway.

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Sure, above the hill it slows a vehicle down due to it losing momentum on the way up. I agree with each of these Beth but they were talking about the ones on our main roads and highways. They were already saying 'illegal in places but still had them.

  4. CWanamaker profile image98
    CWanamakerposted 3 years ago

    Guard rails are meant to prevent vehicles from going over steep shoulders or drop offs next to the pavement.  They work both as a visual barrier and a physical barrier.  In most instances guard rails are designed to crumble and fail at certain levels of force.  If they were too rigid it could cause even more injury to the driver because it would be like hitting a concrete wall.

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      That is why they started removing them and making them illegal. Driving too slow they were like hitting concrete and there were many injuries; too fast and they crumbled and you died. I believe that dirt/sand would work better;only fast rigs might .

    2. CWanamaker profile image98
      CWanamakerposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Yeah that's true.  That's why research engineers are constantly working on building better ones that solve the problems you mention.

  5. Link10103 profile image74
    Link10103posted 3 years ago

    As someone who bikes to work four times a week and has a long section of road that people speed like mad on, i am sure it will do my paranoia wonders to know the guardrail i thought was at least somewhat useful is essentially worthless.

    Especially considering how I almost get hit by idiots on a daily basis since no one knows what a stop signs looks like.

    This question is evil....

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      There are main supports for the rail which stick up, right? Bike riders, and other travelers without cars, get harmed on those - besides other areas of the rail. What do you think of dirt/sand in their place?

    2. Rochelle Frank profile image95
      Rochelle Frankposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Dirt and sand are temporary as barriers, not very effective and easily washed away.

    3. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Maybe somehow they can be kept from washing away. Such as a new type of sand bags.

    4. Link10103 profile image74
      Link10103posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      No idea how they would permanently implement them, but i would imagine it would be safer and cheaper to do

    5. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Link10103,
      They are always trying to improve and re-invent things these days and the rails are already illegal in some areas. So who knows?

  6. Edward J. Palumbo profile image84
    Edward J. Palumboposted 3 years ago

    Guard rails provide a visual limit and an assist in maintaining the roadway in poor conditions. Not many are designed to bear the entire weight of a passenger vehicle or the impact of a sharply angled impact. In some cases, they are the difference between expensive body & fender work and a fatal motor vehicle accident. Yes, guard rails have been part of the problem when struck at the most unfortunate angle but. more often than not, have saved the lives of motorists who've fallen asleep at the wheel, succumbed to a momentary distraction, or slipped on wet or icy roads. At times, when acting as a divider, they've prevented a crossover into oncoming lanes thus limiting those injuries and fatalities. I would rather see the road equipped with them than designed without them.

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Transportation of any type, people are injured by guard rails. Suppose they replaced them with something better which does the same job but does not injure as bad.

  7. Jackie Lynnley profile image89
    Jackie Lynnleyposted 3 years ago

    They could maybe stop a car veering off the road unaware? I agree many mountainous areas need them! As a child I was terrified places we traveled and we knew of cars that plunged to their death but today they have been made safe with guard rails.

    1. Rod Marsden profile image74
      Rod Marsdenposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I agree.

    2. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Yes but they removed old & put in new and stopped them for these reasons:
      http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/gdot-sti … er-/nhwSq/
      http://www.wsbtv.com/ap/ap/georgia/geor … llation/nh

    3. Faith Reaper profile image87
      Faith Reaperposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, I agree, as we have plenty of guard rails up and down the Interstate on my commute, as there are so many deep ravines.  Cars have veered off plenty before the guard rails were put up.  I am thankful with this time change that they are there.

    4. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Faith,
      Just above your I posted a comment with links to news sites about how they removed old rails to put in new ones and stopped - they show why.

  8. tirelesstraveler profile image81
    tirelesstravelerposted 3 years ago

    Mostly they show where the road goes.  Very helpful at night.  Most guard rails aren't of much substance.  We are looking for a new commute car and the safety specs for the very efficient cars are sad. The average car or motorcycle doesn't sustain much damage from guard rail contact.  We have a lot of experience with that kind of thing lately sad

    1. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      The thing is they are replacing old ones with new ones which are killing -not speeders, just normal people- so they delayed installing them. It was on the news. http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/gdot-sti … er-/nhwSq/

    2. tirelesstraveler profile image81
      tirelesstravelerposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Holy Cow, I've never seen such a think.  It looks like a kitchen mandolin.

    3. The Examiner-1 profile image73
      The Examiner-1posted 3 years agoin reply to this

      What does a "kitchen mandolin" look like? The mandolins I know, the cars would bounce off of the strings.

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