In Noticias

In the $1.24 million multi-county safety improvement project, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation (ODOT) hopes to reduce the number of run-off-the-road collisions on curves in six counties: Rogers, Mayes, Sequoyah, LeFlore, Lincoln and Tulsa, by applying an innovative surface treatment that gives drivers more traction on tight curves and in wet conditions.

The curve safety project will allow ODOT to install curve advisory signs, LED blinking lights, lowered-speed limit signs, guard rails and HFST along a stretch of US-259 that passes through the Kiamichi Mountains. The project will also benefit drivers in Sequoyah County.

What is HFST?

High Friction Surface Treatments are pavement-surfacing systems with exceptional skid resistant properties not typically provided by conventional materials. In spots where extra friction is needed, such as steep grades, sharp curves or places that see heavy braking, an epoxy-resin binds a layer of the rough mineral aggregate calcined bauxite to the roadway surface. The treatment creates a durable surface that retains its grip and skid-resistant properties for up to eight years on Oklahoma roads.

The technology was brought to Oklahoma by the State Innovation Council (STIC), a task force that meets quarterly to bring together transportation stakeholders to evaluate innovations and spearhead their deployment in the state. Innovation council members learned of HFST through the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Every Day Counts (EDC) program, which encourages deployment of innovative underutilized innovations that shorten project delivery, enhance roadway safety, reduce traffic congestion and improve environmental sustainability.

High Friction Surface Treatment (HFST) in Oklahoma

Oklahoma began using HFST in 2013, when members of the STIC saw an opportunity to address a particularly challenging stretch of roadway on a horizontal curve in northeast Oklahoma with this cost-effective treatment.

Two of the original three sites on SH-20 in Mayes County are slated for re-application under the new curve safety plan, which is consistent with anticipated treatment life.

An Oklahoma Success Story By the Numbers

After applying HFST to three curves in Mayes County in 2011-2013, ODOT applied HFST on three high volume roadway sections of I-40 and I-44 in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area in 2015.

To measure the performance and lifespan of HFST on Oklahoma roads, ODOT Field Services Manager Bryan Cooper conducted visual monitoring of pavement condition at all six HFST sites. Cooper analyzed ODOT skid-friction data and collaborated with Oklahoma State University (OSU) professors Kelvin Wang and Qiang Joshua Li to secure grip data on the sites.

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