Patent application title: COLLAPSIBLE AND STACKABLE ROADWAY CONSTRUCTION BARRIER
George Davis (Orange City, FL, US)
Evan Taylor (Indianapolis, IN, US)
IPC8 Class: AE01F1302FI
116 63 P
Class name: Signals and indicators street traffic portable
Publication date: 2009-01-29
Patent application number: 20090025627
A portable roadway construction barrier comprising vertically telescoping
sections which allow the barrier to be expanded for use or collapsed for
storage and transport. The sections are held in the expanded position
using locking devices formed at the junctions between the sections. The
uppermost section may comprise a handle to facilitate transport and the
collapse or expansion of the barrier. The base section may include a
recess to allow efficient stacking of multiple barriers in the collapsed
1. A portable roadway construction barrier comprising:a plurality of
vertically telescoping hollow sections; anda hollow base section;wherein
the horizontal perimeters of the vertically telescoping hollow sections
comprise substantially the same geometric shape; andwherein the
vertically telescoping hollow sections are horizontally sized to be
collapsible into the hollow base section.
2. The barrier of claim 1, wherein:each vertically telescoping hollow section is held in an extended position by a locking device.
3. The barrier of claim 2,wherein the locking device comprises:a protrusion on the outer surface of the lower portion of each vertically telescoping hollow section; anda complimentary indentation on the inner surface of the upper portion of an adjacent vertically hollow telescoping section or the hollow base section; andwherein the protrusion and indentation are nested together by a horizontal force to maintain the vertically telescoping hollow section in a vertically extended position.
4. The barrier of claim 3,wherein the protrusion and indentation comprise mutually nesting curvatures.
5. The barrier of claim 1, wherein the geometric shape is a circle.
6. The barrier of claim 1, wherein the geometric shape is a polygon.
7. The barrier of claim 1,wherein the base section comprises a thickened lower perimeter portion.
8. The barrier of claim 1, wherein the uppermost vertically telescoping hollow section further comprises a substantially horizontal lid portion.
9. The barrier of claim 8, wherein said lid portion further comprising a handle portion.
10. The barrier of claim 9, wherein the base section of the barrier comprises a bottom portion; said bottom portion further comprising a recess for receiving an upper portion of a lower adjacent nested barrier; said recess formed to prevent relative horizontal movement between the barrier and the lower adjacent nested barrier.
11. The barrier of claim 10, wherein said recess is formed to receive the handle portion of a lower adjacent nested barrier.
12. The barrier of claim 9, wherein said handle portion further comprises holes for mounting lighting fixtures to said handle portion.
13. The barrier of claim 9, wherein said handle portion further comprises openings for mounting warning flags.
14. The barrier of claim 1, wherein the vertically telescoping hollow sections are sized with decreasing outer perimeters from the lowermost vertically telescoping hollow section to the uppermost vertically telescoping hollow section; said lowermost vertically telescoping hollow section having an outer perimeter smaller than the inner perimeter of said hollow base section.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO PRIOR APPLICATION
This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/942,683, filed Jun. 8, 2007, entitled COLLAPSIBLE STACKABLE HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION BARRIER, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.
TECHNICAL FIELD OF THE INVENTION
The present invention generally relates to portable barrier devices and, more particularly, to a collapsible and stackable roadway construction barrier.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
The design and use of so-called traffic drums or traffic barrels is well-known in the art and comprise a familiar sight on the nation's roadways, particularly in construction areas where it is desired to control traffic access to particular areas. Such barriers, or channelizers as they are sometimes called, are generally formed of impact-resistant plastic and are typically configured as tiered drums having a base that is wider than the top of the drum in order to enhance stability. Additionally, the bottom of the barrier is typically weighted in order to keep the barrier in place once it has been placed by the construction or safety crew.
A drawback to the prior art barrier design is that it is bulky and occupies a considerable amount of space when being stored and transported. This presents increased costs and logistical problems for both the storage of the barriers between uses, as well as the transport and installation of the barriers at the location where it is desired to control traffic. There is therefore a need for improvements in this area.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
Accordingly, a portable roadway construction barrier is disclosed, comprising a plurality of vertically telescoping hollow sections; and a hollow base section; wherein the horizontal perimeters of the vertically telescoping hollow sections comprise substantially the same geometric shape; and wherein the vertically telescoping hollow sections are horizontally sized to be collapsible into the hollow base section.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1A is a cross-sectional view of a construction barrier according to one embodiment shown in the expanded state.
FIG. 1B is a cross-sectional view of the barrier of FIG. 1A shown in the collapsed state.
FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of a portion of the barrier of FIG. 1A, illustrated in a magnified view.
FIG. 3 is a partial top plan view of the barrier of FIG. 1A.
FIG. 4A is a perspective view of the barrier of FIG. 1A shown in the expanded state.
FIG. 4B is a perspective view of the barrier of FIG. 1A shown in the collapsed state.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
For the purposes of promoting an understanding of the principles of the invention, reference will now be made to the embodiment illustrated in the drawings and specific language will be used to describe the same. It will nevertheless be understood that no limitation of the scope of the invention is thereby intended, and alterations and modifications in the illustrated device, and further applications of the principles of the invention as illustrated therein are herein contemplated as would normally occur to one skilled in the art to which the invention relates.
A first embodiment collapsible and stackable roadway construction barrier is illustrated in FIGS. 1A and 4A and indicated generally at 10. Barrier 10 is constructed of separate sections 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20 that have interior and exterior diameters that allow the various sections to nest with one another as shown. The present disclosure comprehends any suitable dimensions (both absolute and relative between the various portions) for the barrier 10. Although the barrier 10 is illustrated as having five sections 12-20, the present disclosure comprehends barriers which have more or fewer sections.
Top section 12 includes a closed lid portion, to which is affixed a handle 22 having an opening 24 formed therein and functioning as a carry handle for the barrier 10. Handle 22 is also used for expanding and collapsing the barrier 10, as explained hereinbelow. In the first embodiment, the opening 24 is sized to be easily grasped by workers wearing gloves. The handle 22 includes light mount holes 26 that allow lights to be mounted to the barrier 10 for versatile lighting options. As shown in FIG. 3, the handle 22 additionally includes flag mount slots 27 that allow flags to be mounted to the barrier 10 for versatile flagging options.
In the first embodiment, each section 12-20 of barrier 10 is formed to have a generally circular cross-section, but other cross-sectional shapes are also comprehended in other embodiments. The base section 20 may include a thickened circumferential outer rim 28 that increases both the diameter and the weight of the base 20, thereby enhancing the stability of the barrier 10 and tending to keep the barrier 10 in an upright position despite wind loading and other forces that may be applied to the barrier 10. The base section 20 also includes a recess 30 formed in the central section thereof, which allows room to receive the handle 22 of an adjacent barrier 10 when stacked, as described in greater detail hereinbelow.
At each junction between adjacent sections 12-20, there are formed locking devices in the form of complementary circumferential protrusions and indentations which allow the sections to be releasably locked together, as shown in FIG. 2. As one non-limiting example, a portion of the intersection between sections 12 and 14 is illustrated, showing a protrusion 32 formed circumferentially into the outer surface 33 of section 12 and a corresponding indentation 34 formed circumferentially on the inner surface 35 of section 14. Each of the sections 12-20 will have at least one such locking device between adjacent sections. Provision of multiple locking devices between adjacent sections is also comprehended by the present disclosure. In addition to a continuous protrusion and indentation around the circumference of the sections 12-20, the present disclosure contemplates that the locking device can be implemented as individual protrusions and indentations placed at various points around the circumference of the sections 12-20. The protrusions 32 and indentations 34 are sized so as to naturally nest with one another when brought into mutual alignment. Although FIG. 2 shows the protrusion 32 and indentation 34 as mutually nesting curvatures, the present disclosure contemplates that the other shapes may be used to implement the locking device.
With continuing reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, the barrier 10 may be collapsed from its extended position by simply applying enough downward pressure on its top surface (typically by pressing on the handle 22) to force the protrusions 32 to disengage from the associated indentations 34. In the first embodiment, a force of approximately 4 to 6 lbs is required to accomplish this. Further downward pressure will cause the sections 12-20 to nest substantially completely as shown in the FIGS. 1B and 4B. Expansion of the collapsed barrier 10 is accomplished by the reverse operation, namely applying a pulling force to the handle 22 in the upward direction until the protrusions 32 engage their associated indentations 34, at which point the barrier sections 12-20 will lock in their expanded positions as shown in FIGS. 1A and 4A.
When in the collapsed state, the barrier 10 occupies approximately one-fifth the volumetric space of the prior art barriers. Storage, handling and transport of the barrier 10 are therefore greatly facilitated in relation to the prior art barriers. Furthermore, the collapsed barrier 10 may be stacked on top of other such barriers 10, since the handle 22 will nest inside the recess 30 of the barrier 10 above. This further facilitates efficient storage, handling and transport of the barrier 10.
The barrier 10 may be formed from any suitable material and by any suitable manufacturing process. The first embodiment barrier 10 is manufactured by the spinning of plastic fibers. High volumes of the barriers 10 may be cost-effectively manufactured from molds using injection molding techniques as is known in the art. The barriers 10 can be made to any size, shape and design required by the relevant regulatory body, such as the U.S. Department of Transportation. Optionally, the surface of barrier 10 may have reflective bands formed therearound in order to make them more visible to vehicles at night. Such reflective bands may be formed using Scotchlite® (Retroreflective Sheeting (available from 3M®, St. Paul, Minn.).
While the invention has been illustrated and described in detail in the drawings and foregoing description, the same is to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, it being understood that only the preferred embodiment has been shown and described and that all changes and modifications that come within the spirit of the invention are desired to be protected.
Patent applications in class Portable
Patent applications in all subclasses Portable