5 Types of Highway Barrier for Work Zone Safety


With a weight of 4,000 lbs or more per segment, traditional concrete Jersey Barrier requires heavy equipment to install, reconfigure, and remove at the end of a project. Commonly cited challenges of Concrete Jersey Barrier or K-Rail include installation/removal time & cost, safety risks of installation/removal in live traffic, and impracticality for short term and short duration projects.

Innovative types of highway barrier such as Mobile Barriers, Movable, & Temporary Barriers are enabling managers to accelerate highway projects, physically separate moving traffic and workers, minimize workzone footprints, and provide practical cost effective work zone safety. Benefits vary by product and application. For example, California research found a cost benefit for Mobile Barriers of $1.9 million per year, per barrier. 14 Commonly cited benefits of using Positive Protection include:

  • Safeguarding Workers Against Intrusions
  • Reducing Project Duration & Cost
  • Maximizing Roadway Capacity
  • Increasing Productivity with Onboard Tools and Supplies
  • Increasing Efficiency/Saving Time
  • Increasing Employee Retention
  • Decreasing Liability, and Damages
  • Reducing Risk and Exposure to Dangers of Live Work Zone

Highly Mobile Barrier


Mobile Barriers MBT-1® is a highly mobile traffic barrier system for incident response & work zone safety. The mobility of the MBT-1® allows rapid work zone setup/removal and enables managers to reduce project duration & cost, schedule around peak traffic hours, and minimize roadway & highway congestion.

The versatile MBT-1® integrates equipment & supplies for comprehensive on-site logistics with 85,000 lbs (38500 kg) GVWR carry capacity, integrated crane & heavy lifting capabilities, generator, high lumen work lights, TMA, electronic signage, and more. Tested and accepted under NCHRP 350 & MASH for TL-2 and TL-3 usage.

Highly Mobile Barrier


Mobile Barriers MBT-1® is a highly mobile traffic barrier system for incident response & work zone safety. The mobility of the MBT-1® allows rapid work zone setup/removal and enables managers to reduce project duration & cost, schedule around peak traffic hours, and minimize roadway & highway congestion.

The versatile MBT-1® integrates equipment & supplies for comprehensive on-site logistics with 85,000 lbs (38500 kg) GVWR carry capacity, integrated crane & heavy lifting capabilities, generator, high lumen work lights, TMA, electronic signage, and more. Tested and accepted under NCHRP 350 & MASH for TL-2 and TL-3 usage.


Moveable Barrier - Concrete


Lindsay Transportation Solutions QMB Zipper: The Road Zipper System is designed to increase capacity and reduce congestion by making more efficient use of new or existing roadways & highways. This technology is used for managed lanes and construction applications to create safe, dynamic highways that offer real-time roadway reconfiguration while maintaining positive barrier protection between lanes. The Road Zipper System can be used to move barrier from one side of a lane to the other to create work space and reopen lanes again to restore capacity.


Moveable Barrier - Steel


Trinity Highway's Vulcan® moveable steel barrier is comprised of lightweight, galvanized steel segments that offers real-time roadway reconfiguration. It is tested to NCHRP Report 350 Test Level 3 and Test Level 4, and EN1317 H2 and N2 specifications. The Vulcan® Moveable Barrier is designed for easier movement with the Vulcan® Transfer Attachment (VTA) when connected to a skid steer or front end loader. The VTA is also designed to help the operator work from either side of the barrier.

Example of movable steel barrier.

Moveable Barrier - Steel


Trinity Highway's Vulcan® moveable steel barrier is comprised of lightweight, galvanized steel segments that offers real-time roadway reconfiguration. It is tested to NCHRP Report 350 Test Level 3 and Test Level 4, and EN1317 H2 and N2 specifications. The Vulcan® Moveable Barrier is designed for easier movement with the Vulcan® Transfer Attachment (VTA) when connected to a skid steer or front end loader. The VTA is also designed to help the operator work from either side of the barrier.


An example of temporary steel barrier.

Temporary Steel Barrier


Hill & Smith Zoneguard® temporary steel barrier, offers the road construction industry a revolutionary temporary barrier solution that provides superior protection. A cost-effective alternative to traditional concrete barrier, Zoneguard’s lightweight configuration allows 750 feet to be hauled on one truck and up to 1500 feet to be installed in one hour. Zoneguard’s low weight does not affect its performance, as it meets both NCHRP 350 (TL-3 & TL-4) and MASH (TL-3) crash test standards.

Temporary Steel Barrier


Hill & Smith Zoneguard® temporary steel barrier, offers the road construction industry a revolutionary temporary barrier solution that provides superior protection. A cost-effective alternative to traditional concrete barrier, Zoneguard’s lightweight configuration allows 750 feet to be hauled on one truck and up to 1500 feet to be installed in one hour. Zoneguard’s low weight does not affect its performance, as it meets both NCHRP 350 (TL-3 & TL-4) and MASH (TL-3) crash test standards.


Traditional Temporary Concrete Barrier (TCB)


Traditional concrete K-rail or Jersey Barrier is generally considered a device for use on Long-Term Projects. With a weight of 4,000 lbs or more, concrete Jersey Barrier requires heavy equipment to install, rearrange, and remove. Commonly cited challenges of using concrete Jersey Barrier include installation/removal time & cost, safety risks of installation/removal in live traffic, and impracticality for Short-Term and Short-Duration Projects and/or where it is desirable to reopen lanes and relieve congestion for rush hour highway traffic.

Concrete Jersey Barrier Installation

Traditional Temporary Concrete Barrier (TCB)


Traditional concrete K-rail or Jersey Barrier is generally considered a device for use on Long-Term Projects. With a weight of 4,000 lbs or more, concrete Jersey Barrier requires heavy equipment to install, rearrange, and remove. Commonly cited challenges of using concrete Jersey Barrier include installation/removal time & cost, safety risks of installation/removal in live traffic, and impracticality for Short-Term and Short-Duration Projects and/or where it is desirable to reopen lanes and relieve congestion for rush hour highway traffic.

Introductory Quote

"We have the technology and 'know how' to build our roadway system to anticipate user error. It can be designed, constructed, equipped, and operated to forgive the errant user and protect the innocent victim."


"We have the technology and 'know how' to build our roadway system to anticipate user error. It can be designed, constructed, equipped, and operated to forgive the errant user and protect the innocent victim."

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