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VTrans Will No Longer Install Suspect Guardrails

Vermont is putting a hold on the use of a potentially faulty guardrail component that some other states have deemed a safety hazard.

As VPR reported Monday:

The concern is that a change in the design of the terminus of the guard rail has caused these products to malfunction. Instead of cushioning the blow of a car, these products break apart and become "bayonets" that penetrate the body of the car.

And Thursday, the Vermont Agency of Transportation announced that “the Agency’s Guardrail Committee” (which is, apparently, an actual government committee) has opted to remove the product from VTrans’ approved product list.

That means that none of Trinity ET-Plus products will be installed along Vermont’s roads until there’s a clearer answer on their safety.

Rich Tetreault, the chief engineer for the Agency of Transportation, said the state won’t be removing any of the ET-Plus products right now.

The Agency’s Guardrail Committee met today and though there is no data to suggest the guardrail end treatment is not performing as intended, the Committee has recommended to me that the Agency remove the ET-Plus from the Agency’s Approved Product list and terminate any future installations of the guardrail end treatment until the recently mandated FHWA testing by Trinity is completed. The FHWA representative abstained from the Committee vote recognizing this is solely a State decision and the federal government has its own course of action underway. I support this recommended action and will execute it beginning today.

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