DOTD Cable Barriers

IMPORTANCE OF CABLE BARRIERS

Cable barriers are a safety feature designed to deflect a vehicle that enters the median, keeping it from potentially crossing over into oncoming traffic. They are designed to absorb the impact of the collision and hold a vehicle in the median, not pushing the vehicle back into traffic.

Cable barriers are an innovative and cost-effective solution to prevent head-on collisions that usually result in fatalities. They help to prevent collisions by deflecting vehicles that veer into the median and by stopping them from crossing over into oncoming traffic.

As of February 2021, DOTD has installed approximately 530 miles of cable barriers throughout the state at an investment of approximately $80 million.
  • I-10: East Baton Rouge, St. John, Ascension, St. James, Orleans, Jefferson, West Baton Rouge, Iberville, Calcasieu, Jefferson Davis, and St. Tammany parishes
  • I-12: St. Tammany and Tangipahoa parishes
  • I-20: Bossier, Webster, Caddo Bienville, Lincoln, Ouachita, Madison and Richland parishes
  • I-310: St. Charles parish
  • I-55: Tangipahoa parish
  • I-610: Orleans parish
  • I-59: St. Tammany parish
  • I-49: Caddo, Avoyelles, Evangeline and Rapides parishes
  • LA 8: Vernon parish
  • LA 3132: Caddo I-220: Caddo and Bossier parishes
  • US 190: Lafourche, Terrebonne, and St. Tammany parishes

There are currently another 125 miles under construction along the I-49, I-10, and I-12 corridors.

Our goal is to complete the installation of cable barriers along our entire interstate system by the end of 2022.

In the end, nearly 706 miles of cable barriers will be installed across the following LA, US and Interstate systems:

  • I-10 and I-12
  • I-20 corridor
  • I-49 corridor
  • I-55 and I-59
  • I-210
  • I-220
  • I-310
  • I-610
  • US 90 and US 190
  • LA 8 and LA 3132

To accomplish this goal, DOTD will use a combination of federal and state funding, with the majority being federal funding.

Although cable barriers have been used since the 1960s, it was not until the 1980s that some State DOTs started implementing a modified cable rail as a median barrier.

HISTORY OF CABLE BARRIERS IN LOUISIANA

The need for a cable barrier system arose from the 2006 legislative session when a resolution was passed to look into the feasibility of installing this safety feature.

As part of a pilot study, the first two areas to receive cable median barriers were along the entire length of I-12 in St. Tammany Parish (32 miles) and along the entire length of I-10 in St. James Parish (6.8 miles). Project costs were $5.3 million and $1.3 million respectively. I-12 barriers were completed in fall 2009 and I-10 barriers were completed in late 2008.

DOTD performs analyses on all interstates throughout Louisiana to determine where cable median barriers would be most beneficial in preventing crossover collisions. The criteria used are number of vehicles crossing the median per mile.

The cable barrier system is a testament to DOTD’s commitment to safety. Since the first set of cable barriers were installed in late 2008, there have been no incidents of vehicles breaking through the barriers and crossing the median.


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