SafeSite Facilities | Which Safety Barrier Works, for City Road Works?

Article Posted on: December 19, 2017

Ask the person on the street what they know about Multi-Application Safety System (MASS) barriers and they’d probably look at you blankly. Show them a photo of MASS barriers and they’ll know exactly what you’re talking about … because it’s one of the most popular barrier systems for roadside construction in the UK.

But why should MASS barriers be the safety barrier, regularly appearing along our urban routes as roadworks and roadside construction take place in busy built-up areas? One of the big reasons for the system’s UK-wide popularity is that it has a proven track record as being fit for purpose across a whole range of purposes  …

All-around the barrier protection

MASS barriers are ideal on busy roadsides because they literally offer protection on all sides of the barrier:

  • Pedestrians – protecting pedestrians from debris, distraction and danger; guiding pedestrians away vehicle thoroughfares and construction areas.
  • Vehicles – protecting vehicles from construction areas; guiding vehicles through contraflow and reduced speed areas.
  • Workforce – protecting site staff and the workforce from traffic and debris thrown up by the traffic.

Imagine needing to set up a barrier system to close off a traffic lane in central London, to keep all road users and pedestrians safe? With MASS barriers it’s possible to do this with minimal disruption but maximum effectiveness for the job in hand.

Robust and durable, ideal for urban roadsides

MASS barrier system offers an innovative design which makes it highly robust and durable – perfect for urban roadsides where conditions are extreme. The two section system offers:

  • Galvanised steel construction;
  • Hot dipped, powder coated finish;
  • Sectional design, to allow varied deployment options;
  • 48kg weight per individual barrier section;
  • Linking system to offer anti-vandal stability and security;
  • Wind resistant – against location and weather wind-factors, as well as wind-effect of busy traffic areas.

These superior design features mean a long, reliable life-span, to minimise risk across a range of roadside and environmental hazards.

Superior safety

One of the reasons MASS barriers are so commonly seen in areas of city road works is that their superior safety isn’t just achieved through the materials they’re constructed from, but through thoroughly tested design features:

  • Crash tested to European standards, and full T2 W5 levels.
  • Roll-on, roll-off stability – the base is designed so that the weight of any vehicle making impact with is actually used to stabilise the barrier itself, keeping the vehicle on the right side of the barrier.
  • The high visibility colours available maximise visibility in all weathers and environments and also make MASS the ideal barrier for traffic guidance – ideal in busy cities where contraflow systems and diversions need to be clearly visible and running smoothly in all weathers – especially at peak times.
  • Anti-vandalism design which makes interference with barrier runs very difficult – something that can’t be said when using traffic cones to delineate construction space or to guide diverted traffic.

Compatible features to enhance adaptability, safety, protection and privacy

The system is also highly popular because it’s extremely versatile and can be adapted to provide effective barrier protection in a range of situations, through the extensive range of compatible features MASS systems offer, such as:

  • Anti-climb fencing, which can be attached to make the barriers tall and tricky to climb, providing a robust separation between pedestrians and road traffic.
  • Screens and hoarding panels, attached as top sections to the barriers for site privacy and to avoid distraction for road users, as necessary.
  • Gate sections, allowing vehicular and pedestrian access to be incorporated into barrier runs.
  • High visibility signage options to help identification of zones and provide high-visibility at-a-glance information.

As well as offering additional features, the MASS barrier design incorporates an innovative linking system which uses vertical pins. This system facilitates robust performance in-situ, but easy installation, dismantling and repositioning as the site is developed and phases of work progress.

For a comparison between Water-Filled, Concrete and MASS Barriers visit the SafeSite Facilities Knowledge Base.

Maximum convenience with minimum disruption

It’s the combination of the factors that MASS barrier systems can be set up quickly, are easily repositioned to minimise any disruption caused during installation or reconfigurement, and also offer a highly durable construction with a long life-use, that make MASS barriers one of the most cost-effective safety barrier options in use on UK roadways.

And when it comes to roadways, the convenience offered is vital. With MASS barriers, anchorage is achieved via terminal sections, using steel buffer with sandbag filling for additional stability, so no coring, drilling or concreting is necessary – literally, there’s no need to dig up the road just to make the road safe for roadside construction to take place.

This non-permanent fixing feature, along with the vertical linkage and modular design of the barriers also means they can be flexibly deployed to accommodate 90o bends. This allows the barriers to be used for optimum safety in all types of roadside construction situations, including curves and bends and major road reconstruction.

Complete adaptability

MASS barriers aren’t just completely flexible across the number of deployment options and site situations they’re useful for, but also in the ways they can be obtained for use.

Barrier bases can be purchased or hired, with additional option to obtain bases and top sections separately – ideal if you know you’re going to need base sections regularly, but different top sections might be needed across a range of projects.  Investing in the bases might be cost-effective for multiple uses, but hiring in the different fencing panels as you need them can give you maximum value and options for use – another reason why MASS barriers are the barrier of choice for city road works.

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