Thirteen states have decided that they need to remove controversial guardrails from highways. These guardrails have heads with end caps, which some say can cause more damage in collisions.
The end cap, called the X-LITE guardrail head, was approved for use in 2011 by the Federal Highway Administration. They’re in several states, including Georgia and Tennessee. The problem is that they’re now faulted with causing serious injuries and deaths in crashes. The rails can go through vehicles and injure passengers and drivers.
In one crash, a man hit the guardrail head-on. He hit the end cap, which then ripped through his vehicle and killed him. Eleven similar cases have happened in states with these parts installed.
Virginia is one state that already stopped installing and using X-LITES. The state removed them from the Department of Transportation-approved products list. Missouri and Tennessee have done the same. Georgia still has them, but only 300 of 32,000 guardrails are equipped with the X-LITE. The state has also removed them from its approved products, so no more will be installed.
The company that produces the guardrail ends doesn’t believe the X-LITES should be blamed. Lindsay Transportation Solutions believes that no equipment designed for road safety can prevent injuries in each crash when a driver doesn’t stay on the road. It claims that the X-LITE passed all safety and crash tests required by the government to meet federal standards.
If you get into a crash with an X-LITE and suffer injuries or lose a loved one, you may be in a position to file a wrongful death or personal injury claim.
Source: Fox 5 Atlanta, “Thirteen states are removing controversial guardrail heads,” Dale Russell, March 01, 2018