Road Safety News
 

New surfacing system is ideal for cycleways

Wednesday 29th October 2014

A new road surfacing system has been developed to provide “bright colour-fast skid resistant demarcation” for cycleways, bus lanes, traffic calming and other highway applications.

Developed by WJ Linkline Group, WeatherGrip™ is a cold applied coloured surfacing system which meets TfL’s specification for shared use of cycleways and has been used on London’s cycle superhighways.

WeatherGrip™ is described as “highly durable under vehicular or pedestrian traffic” which “makes it especially suitable for areas subjected to high wear and stress through braking forces”. It can be installed in reflective or non-reflective options and levels of skid resistance can be modified to suit the required application. WeatherGrip™ is quick and easy to apply and treated areas can be typically open for use within one hour.

WJ Linkline Group is a member of TfL’s fleet operator recognition scheme (FORS) and all vehicles and operatives involved in the application of WeatherGrip™ operate in full compliance with the scheme.

Launched in 2008, FORS is an industry led accreditation scheme which helps fleet operators improve operational performance and safety. FORS has recently received a Prince Michael International Road Safety Award for its contribution to improving fleet and freight safety across the UK.

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Sorry for the delayed response. Mr Ewing has been busy (and still is)managing an ever increasing workload for specialist road safety markings.

It is true works orders for small quantities are expensive / impractical and that's were LA's with stretched budgets lose out in so many disciplines of Highway Maintenance

To proffer a long term solution and deliver value. A starting point would be for LA to specify MMA technology to the manufacturer of the metal type manhole covers or utility provider in tenders. LA could also specify MMA for all traffic calming and delineation specifically requesting all manhole covers on sites to be surfaced are also treated at the same time(but would be most effective when new). MMA like all other surface coatings requires a sound substrate but at least it is durable, colour fast and will give some protection to the underlying surface as well. Resurfacing and applying MMA onto the new surface would give the best longevity and value but then its down to budget and priority. If LA's cannot afford to resurface then MMA becomes one of the better and most cost effective maintenance solutions. Hope that helps
Larry Walsh WJ Group Stoke

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I mentioned the Local Authorities only, due to the fact that they are generally owners of the highways or responsible for their upkeep. All services must report to them for work done or to be done and an authority can advise a service repair as and when necessary. And under the Highways Act 1980 they, as with any owner of a highway, have a legal responsibility for the maintenance and safety of those roads within their areas. That includes any work done by any of the services, including manhole covers. I am sure Mr Ewing can tell us that if a contract were possible then they would work with the LA on suitable pricing.
bob craven Lancs

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This is also interesting but I would make the following comments.

The cost is also of interest, though typically the “call out charge” makes it uneconomic for small areas. Most cycle lanes incorporate the edge of the carriageway and if budgets are limited it is preferable to spend the money on re-levelling the gullies and resurfacing the new cycle lane rather than laying a coloured material over a surface full of defects.

Most manhole covers belong to utility companies, not Local Authorities, and so they are the ones that need to be petitioned to change their practices. Fortunately there are far fewer of them than there are Councils. Rather than treat existing covers, MAG support their replacement with composite material covers as they don’t have the same polishing or theft problems as metal ones and have a longer service life.
Mark, Caerphilly

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+1

Sounds superb. What is the relative cost per square metre compared to a conventional skid resistant surface that is in common use?
Mark - Wiltshire

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+4

Thank you Douglas for that brill answer, I wasn't expecting a company response. Can I then ask if this covering can be applied to manhole covers particularly at junctions and on bends to make them more tractable in the wet for two wheeled vehicles.

There are to my knowledge two manufacturers doing this and they are having a little but limited success in some southern areas. I have mentioned to them some concerns re colour. What's the use in painting a manhole cover grey to match the surrounding tarmac as it blends in, particularly in the rain? A motorcyclist would be unable to know that it was skid resistant and safe to ride over and therefore avoid it like the plague. Unless it was easily identified as being skid resistant by being coloured green or red or blue, or indeed like shellgrip. Would you not agree and would you advise authorities to commit to a standard colour and would that covering be the same price as grey or black?

Perhaps you can persuade authorities to consider its usage in this way and to make motorcycling and cycling even safer. I would like authorities to know the answer.
bob craven Lancs

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+7

Hi Bob, many thanks for the question.
The simple answer is yes. WeatherGrip can be applied in any colour including white and with beads is highly reflective. MMA is being used more and more in high stress areas, particularly roundabouts. The benefit WeatherGrip has over some of the other MMA systems is that it reduces the issue of the MMA polishing after continued wear. It is a two coat application with bauxite encapsulated between the two layers giving high SRV which are maintained for longer through the life of the product.

On the idea that it should be used everywhere, well as much as I might like it the honest answer is that thermoplastic in the majority of situations, environments and seasons is the most versatile and cost effective solution. For coloured demarcation and high stress areas WeatherGrip and MMA are without doubt a great solution and offer good life cycle gains. The other benefit it has over traditional demarcation systems is its UV colour stability and its ability to be reflective.
Douglas Ewing, WJ Specialist Markings Business Manager

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+3

Looks good to me. Asthetically pleasing. Do they make it in white and can it replace all the white lines and roundabouts etc that are dangerously slippery when wet? I remember as a child going to the local baths, there was a coloured non-slip edging paint used to aid one entering and not slipping in. I still wonder why this product had not been used on white lines on our streets.
bob craven Lancs

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+13