Civil and Environmental Engineering



Ronald K. Faller

Date of this Version



Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 1890, TRB, National Research Council, Washington, D.C., 2004, pp. 19–33.


Development, testing, and evaluation of the Midwest Guardrail System were continued from the original research started in 2000. This new strong-post W-beam guardrail system provides increased safety for impacts with higher-center-of-mass vehicles. Additional design variations of the new system included stiffened versions using reduced (half and quarter) post spacings as well as a standard guardrail design configured with a concrete curb 152 mm (6 in.) high. All full-scale vehicle crash tests were successfully performed in accordance with the Test Level 3 requirements specified in NCHRP Report 350: Recommended Procedures for the Safety Performance Evaluation of Highway Features. The research study also included dynamic bogie testing on steel posts placed at various embedment depths and computer simulation modeling with BARRIER VII to analyze and predict dynamic guardrail performance. Recommendations for the placement of the original Midwest Guardrail System as well as its stiffened variations were also made.