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Thursday , 22 February 2024

“We need to eliminate dangerous road safety products”

In what way have your products been enhancing road safety?

Road safety has come a long way in the last ten years. From being literally non existent a few years ago, it is now a part of nearly every road project. I feel that road safety still has a long way to go in our country though. At Frontier Polymers which entered the field of road safety products in 2001, we have always strived to manufacture safer products made of plastic. Our objective has been to replace existing crude and extremely dangerous iron, wooden and other materials used for road safety with those made from recyclable plastic and rubber.

What are the unique features of your safety products?

We design our products keeping in mind their functions. Firstly, since the products are meant for outdoor applications, they need to be UV stabilised. Polymer selection plays a very important role here. Next, the colours need to be vibrant and non-fading which catch the eye. The emphasis is also on reducing or eliminating the sharp edges or corners on the products, if any. Last but not the least, the products need to exhibit good reflectivity at night.

Different categories of our products have different features. For example, our new range of road barriers is meant for easy set up and allows the user to be able to connect them in a very short span of time. These barriers not only give a 100% wall effect but also allow the user to follow a curved road without any breakage in the barrier chain. Due to its unique interlocking, the commuter is able to take a U-turn by quickly removing one barrier out of the chain.

Another example is of our Bullnose Crash Impact Barriers. Besides being made from high impact resistant polymer, their strength is further enhanced by the use of expanded polyethylene layer. Together with the water ballast this product has saved numerous lives. At toll plazas, these barriers are the first point of impact in case of an errant high speed collision. The plastic barriers absorb the impact and slow down the vehicle before it strikes the concrete.

What kind of important road products does the country lack in road safety?

We still have many miles to go. Firstly we need to have respect for human life. We need to eliminate all so-called dangerous road safety products like iron barricades from the roads. These products pose a great threat to human life and look ugly as well. More emphasis needs to be given to road engineering and design. A most bizarre aspect is not having foot over bridges for pedestrians next to metro stations coming up in large towns. In this case, you are forcing people to cross the road and become targets for oncoming traffic.

Night time reflectivity needs to be implemented much better. No construction should be allowed on roads without proper barricading and reflective tapes. People working on the roads need to wear reflective high visibility clothing.

Also contractors working on road projects should not be allowed to continue if they do not follow proper road safety standards.

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