MDOT SHA Employs New Pavement Technology To Enhance Vehicle Traction
Road crews apply high friction surface coating.
Employing the latest technological innovation, MDOT SHA is piloting a new pavement treatment process proven to enhance vehicle traction and reduce crashes, particularly on curves. The $1.1 million High Friction Surface Treatment (HFST) pilot project is underway. Featured as part of Federal Highway Administration's "Everyday Counts" initiative, the surface treatment has reduced crashes in three different trial projects: by a whopping 100 percent in Pennsylvania, 90 percent in Kentucky and 57 percent in South Carolina.
A more economical and efficient alternative to reconstruction or major rehabilitation, HFST increases roadway friction, which provides vehicle traction on pavement surfaces. The greater the surface friction, the more control drivers have of their vehicles, which is especially important in wet conditions.
Engineers are using data to drive decisions on deployment of this innovation, targeting specific interchanges with major curves in Baltimore, Anne Arundel and Frederick counties. MDOT SHA has completed the application at the I-695 (Baltimore Beltway)/MD 295 (Baltimore-Washington Parkway) interchange, as well as the westbound US 15/US 340 ramp to southbound US 15 and the MD 75 (Green Valley Road)/Ed McClain Road intersection in Frederick County. Crews are applying the coating at the I-97/MD 100 interchange. These ramps and interchanges have a history of drivers losing control and hitting guardrail or other objects. The new surface will help motorists maintain control and reduce the crash rate at these locations.