You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Federal Highway Administration Changing Guardrail Review Process

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 5/19/2015 Jason Udy

Following a jury’s verdict that Trinity Industries defrauded the federal government by not disclosing a design change in its ET-Plus guardrail system, the Federal Highway Administration is making changes to its review process for highway guardrails, Bloomberg reports.

Beginning in 2016, the agency will require that manufacturers of guardrails and other roadside devices will not only have to disclose minor revisions, but also put them through the latest safety testing. The revised process is intended to close an existing loophole that didn’t require full testing for minor design changes. Additionally, any mutual financial interests between manufacturers and testing facilitates must be reported.

Guardrail© Provided by MotorTrend Guardrail

Following the jury’s verdict, the Federal Highway Administration required the Texas A&M Transportation Institute to disclose any financial interests related to Trinity Industries’ roadside safety devices. It was discovered that researchers at the college helped invent the ET-Plus and stood to profit from the millions of dollars in sales of the guardrail system.

The Federal Highway Administration required Trinity to retest the ET-Plus based on 1993 guidelines, which it passed, according to the agency. While Trinity asserts that testing should adhere to the standards the guardrail was originally designed for, U.S. lawmakers and Sean Kane, president of Safety Research & Strategies Inc., are pushing for testing based on the latest standards from 2011. The new standards require crash testing with heavier vehicles.

Texas transportation officials and the Federal Highway Administration are currently reviewing crash data in order to decide if the ET-Plus needs further testing.

Our goal is to make our roads, bridges and highways as safe as possible, in part by accelerating the move to the newer crash test criteria,” Gregory Nadeau, the FHWA’s acting administrator, said in a statement.

Source: Bloomberg
Photo Source: Washington State Department of Transportation via Flickr

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from Motor Trend

Loading...

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon