The Importance of Crash Cushion Transition Pieces/Bridge Shoes

In the quest for enhanced road safety, every component plays a critical role. Among these, crash cushion transition pieces are vital yet often overlooked elements that ensure the effective performance of crash cushion systems. This blog post delves into the significance, function, and benefits of crash cushion transition pieces, highlighting their essential role in creating safer road environments, shielding the fixed obstacle in reverse direction vehicle impacts.

Transitions by themselves are not specifically approved by state DOTs – it is incumbent on the manufacturer of the crash cushion to develop test and pass a transition piece between a fixed obstacle (i.e bridge abutment) to the crash cushion to prevent potential snag points.

Delta Bridge Shoe Transition

The Bridge Shoe transition panel for the Delta Intelligent Crash Cushion

The TrafFix Devices Bridge Shoe for the Delta Intelligent Crash Cushion incorporates a modified Thrie Beam profile, only 30″ long compared to other solutions that are 3-5′ long. This reduction in size means a reduction in weight, making it easier to handle, and requiring less manpower for installation. Being smaller and lighter reduces installation time thus reducing worker exposure.

Typical transitions require block-outs or other reinforcing to provide resistance support to the transition. The Delta Bridge Shoe has no such requirement.

This is due to the design and engineering that went into its creation, the sloped ridges enable deflection in the instance of a reverse direction impact. Reinforced steel provides the structural integrity required to meet and pass the MASH testing standards at TL-2 and TL-3, and reduces the possibility of vehicle snagging at the fixed obstacle, the reinforced redirected plate does exactly that, redirect the vehicle.

Where as typical Thrie Beam is designed to flatten out and crush as it is impacted, what we at TrafFix Devices have done is take that absorption and turned into redirective capabilities. It may seem counterintuitive to redirect a vehicle back into the traffic flow, however it is the safer option when compared to forcing a complete and absolute stop at a fixed obstacle.

Key Functions of the TDI Bridge Shoe

  1. Seamless Integration: Transition pieces provide a seamless link between crash cushions and fixed obstacles or safety systems such as concrete barriers. This integration is crucial for ensuring that vehicles are safely redirected or decelerated during an impact minimizing the risk of secondary impacts or vehicle rollover.
  2. Energy Redirection/Absorption: By securely connecting crash cushions to other safety barriers, transition pieces help distribute and absorb the energy generated during a collision.
  3. Structural Stability: Transition pieces enhance the structural stability of crash cushion systems. They ensure that the crash cushions remain firmly in place during an impact, preventing displacement or detachment that could compromise the safety of the entire system.

At TrafFix Devices, we are committed to providing innovative and reliable safety solutions, including high-quality crash cushion transition pieces. Our products are designed to meet the highest standards of safety and performance, ensuring that every journey is a safe one. For more information on our range of crash cushion transition pieces and other road safety products, visit our website

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