Mid-America Transportation Center


Date of this Version


Document Type



Report # MATC-KU: 261 Final Report 25-1121-0001-261


2010 Copyright of Mid-America Transportation Center


The purpose of this research was to compare the attention-getting characteristics, movements and vertical displacements of several portable, reusable rumble strips. The attention-getting characteristics and displacement were measured after passes of a fully loaded heavy truck and a passenger vehicle. Sound and vibration tests revealed that the portable plastic rumble strips were more effective on cars than trucks for generating in-vehicle vibration and increasing in-vehicle sound levels. Further, they were generally better able to match the characteristics of the tested permanent rumble strip compared to the adhesive rumble strips, and that this was also true for the configurations that contained less than six portable plastic rumble strips. The configurations with four plastic rumble strips were found to be sufficient enough to generate similar vibration and sound levels for either heavy trucks or passenger cars. If the vibration generated by the permanent strips is considered as the standard performance, these configurations could be implemented in short-term work zones and provide similar results to permanent rumble strips. The movement and vertical displacement test results revealed that the earlier generations of plastic rumble strips did not perform as well as the fourth generation especially at 60 mph (96.6 km/hr). The steel rumble strips also hold some promise; however, the structural integrity of the steel rumble strips is an issue that needs to be addressed.