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Publication numberUS3759214 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 18, 1973
Filing dateOct 18, 1971
Priority dateOct 18, 1971
Also published asCA950667A1, DE2226794A1
Publication numberUS 3759214 A, US 3759214A, US-A-3759214, US3759214 A, US3759214A
InventorsR Evans, T Stiles, K Ploeger
Original AssigneeRupert Manuf Co Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
One piece triangular signal device
US 3759214 A
Abstract
A collapsible emergency traffic signal device for placing on or near motor vehicles to warn drivers of other motor vehicles to avoid the vehicle and including a support member with a base leg mounted on the support member and a pair of side legs cooperating with the base leg for forming a triangle having reflective material retained on at least one side thereof. One integral hinge connects one leg to one end of another leg and an other integral hinge connects a second leg to said another leg whereby the legs are foldable and movable to a position for storage. At least one brace member extends between the support member and an upper portion of the triangular form for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191 5/1968 Great Britain 116/63 P Evans et al. 1 Sept. 18, 1973 54] ONE PIECE TRIANGULAR SIGNAL DEVICE 1,112,672 5/1968 Great Britain 116/63 P l [75] Inventors: Robert V. Evans, Independence; 1l69589 1/1969 Grea Bmam 116/63 P Thomas sales; Kenneth Primary Examiner Louis J Capozi Pl th B1 f t be of M Springs 0 Att0rney-Claude A. Fishburn et a1. [73] Assignee: Rupert Manufacturing Companv,

Inc., Blue Springs, Mo. [57] ABSTRACT A collapsible emergency traffic signal device for plac- [22] 1971 ing on or near motor vehicles to warn drivers of other [21] Appl. No.1 189,988 motor vehicles to avoid the vehicle and including a support member with a base leg mounted on the support 7 member and a pair of side legs cooperating with the [2%] 116/63 Pbttilflgi base leg for forming a triangle having reflective mate d 63 P rial retained on at least one side thereof. One integral I 1 0 5 l hinge connects one leg to one end of another leg and l an other integral hinge connects a second leg to said another leg whereby the legs are foldable and movable [56] References and to a position for storage. At least one brace member ex- UNITED STATES PATENTS tends between the support member and an upper por- 3,589,328 6/1971 Kiniry 116/63 P tion of the triangular form for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position.

8 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures ONE PIECE TRIANGULAR SIGNAL DEVICE The present invention relates to warning signal devices and more particularly to a collapsible emergency traffic signal device formed of plastic and having reflective material around the periphery thereof wherein the signal device is adapted to be placed on or near motor vehicles to warn drivers of other motor vehicles to avoid the vehicle.

The principle objects of the present invention are: to provide a triangular, collapsible, emergency traflic signal device visible both during hours of day light and dark; to provide such a signal device formed of plastic; to provide such a device with a frame having a fluorescent orange-red color and reflective material on at least one side thereof and positioned adjacent the periphery of the triangular signal device; to provide such a traffic signal device adapted to be placed near stopped motor vehicles and which is effective in warning drivers of other vehicles moving along streets and highways under varying conditions of visiblity; to provide such a collapsible emergency traffic signal device having a support member forming a base or stand which is particularly stable when erected and has a brace member extending between the support member and an upper portion of the triangular signal device; to provide such a triangular signal device of synthetic resin and having a minimum deflection in a high wind, such as less than one inch movement at the top of the triangle in a forty mile per hour wind; to provide such a traffic signal device having material mounted on the support member having a high coefficient of friction to thereby restrict sliding of the signal device in high winds, such as forty miles per hour and higher; to provide such a collapsible emergency traffic signal device having all the component parts thereof connected and which is foldable to a compact unit for storage; to provide such a signal device which can be easily and simply manipulated between collapsed and assembled positions and which is foldable to a compact size for storage, such as in a trunk of a motor vehicle; and to provide such a collapsible emergency traffic signal device which is economical to manufacture, simple to assemble durable in use, convenient to use and store, and particularly well suited for the proposed use.

Other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent from the following description taken in connnection with the accompanying drawings wherein are set forth by way of illustration and example, certain embodiments of this invention.

The drawings constitute a part of this specification and include an exemplary embodiment illustrating various objects and features of the collapsible emergency traffic signal device of the present invention.

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a collapsible emergency traffic signal device embodying features of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the collapsible emergency signal device with portions broken away to better illustrate the component parts.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged end elevational view showing the emergency traffic signal device in a collapsed position for storage.

FIG. 4 is an elevational view of the signal device showing one of the side legs in a position prior to erection.

FIG. 5 is a plan view of the collapsible emergency traffic signal device in an erected position.

FIG. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary transverse sectional view taken on line 6-6, FIG. 1 showing structure for holding reflective material on the emergency traffic signal device.

FIG. 7 is an enlarged fragmentary transverse sectional view taken on line 7-7, FIG. 1 showing an integral hinge member for connecting one side leg of the triangular signal device to a base leg thereof.

Referring more in detail to the drawings:

As required, detailed embodiments of the present invention are disclosed herein, however, it is to be understood that the disclosed embodiments are merely exemplary of the invention which may be embodied in various forms, therefore, specific structural and functional details disclosed herein are not to be interpreted as limiting but as merely a basis for the claims and as a representative basis for teaching one skilled in the art to variously employ the present invention in virtually any appropriate detailed structure.

In the disclosed embodiment of the present invention, the reference numeral 1 generally designates a collapsible emergency traffic signal device for placing on or near motor vehicles (not shown) to warn drivers of other vehicles to avoid the vehicle. The collapsible emergency traffic signal device 1 illustrated is generally a triangle when erected and has an elongated support member 2 with a base leg 3 mounted on the support member 2 and a pair of side legs 4 and 5 cooperating with the base leg 3 for forming the triangle having reflective material 6 on at least one side of the triangle to form a substantially continuous triangular reflective signal. The legs form a rigid structure when erected and are connected together with suitable hinges 7 and 8 connecting opposite end portions of the base leg 3 to respective end portions of the side legs 4 and 5 whereby the side legs 4 and 5 are foldable over and parallel with the base leg 3 and the base leg 3 is movable to a position parallel with the support member 2 for storage. When erected, at least one brace member 9 extends between the support member 2 and an upper portion of the triangular form for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position.

The support member 2 may be of any suitable structure and in the form illustrated is a generally elongated planar or flat member adapted to be positioned substantially parallel with a supporting surface 10 and of sufficient weight to provide stability to the device. It is desirable that the signal device 1 be adapted to resist sliding in high winds, such as forty mile per hour and higher, therefore, the support member 2 has portions 11 and 12 mounted on respective opposite ends thereof and formed of material having a high coefficient of friction, such as rubber or the like.

The base leg 3 is suitably mounted on the support member 2, as later described, for movement between a position substantially parallel with the support mem her 2 for storage and a position substantially normal with the support member 2 for erection of the triangular portion of the signal device 1. It is desirable to provide means cooperating with the support member 2 to provide stability for the signal device 1, therefore, the base leg 3 has support feet 13 and 14 depending from respective opposite end portions 15 and 16 of the base leg 3 to cooperate with the support member 2 for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position. The support feet 13 and 14 are offset laterally in opposite directions from the base leg 3 to increase the stability of the signal device 1 and to engage opposite ends thereof when the base leg 3 is moved to a position substantially parallel with the support member 2.

The illustrated pivotal mounting of the base leg 3 on the support member 2 includes a depending portion 17 intermediate the ends of and extending from the base leg 3 and substantially coplanar therewith. The depending portion 17 has a flange 18 extending laterally outwardly therefrom and engageable with an upper surface of the support member 2. A suitable shaft or pin 19 extends through aligned apertures in the flange 18 and the support member 2 and has suitable fastening members, such as nuts 20 and 21, on respective opposite ends thereof to secure the base leg 3 on the support member 2 for relative lateral or pivotal movement therebetween.

The triangular portion or frame of the signal device 1 is preferably formed of plastic for lightness in weight and economy in production and the triangular frame formed by the base leg 3 and the side legs 4 and have suitable pigment therein to produce an orange-red fluorescent color having a dominant wave length in the range of 590 to 610 millimicrons whereby the signal device 1 is visible during day light or daytime hours.

The side legs 4 and 5 are connected to the base leg 3 in a manner such that the side legs 4 and 5 fold over the base leg 3 to a position adjacent and parallel there with and thereby providing a compacted collapsed position for storage and it is desirable that all the component parts of the triangular portion of the signal device 1 be connected to prevent separation thereof during storage. in the illustrated structure, hinge portions 22 and 23 are formed integral with the end portions and 16 of the base leg 3 and adjacent end portions of the side legs 4 and 5 respectively. The hinge portions 22 and 23 are such that the legs may be folded alongside the base member 3 and in the illustrated structure, the hinge portions have a Ushape and extend laterally outwardly from opposite faces of the end portions 15 and 16 of the base leg 3 and have portions 24 and 25 respectively of reduced thickness to define a fold line therein for movement of the side legs 4 and 5 between a position coplanar with the base leg 3 and a position substantially parallel with and on opposite sides of the base leg 3.

The members may be fastened in an erected position by any suitable means and in the illustrated structure one of the side legs, for example side leg 4, has an integral offset portion 26 adjacent a free end portion thereof with the offset portion being spaced from and substantially parallel with the side leg 4 and having an elongated aperture 27 therein for a purpose later described. The other side leg 5 has an elongated aperture 28 in a free end portion thereof with the apertures 27 and 28 being alignable in the erected position to receive a keeper portion 29 of the brace member 9 which is resiliently engageable within the apertures 27 and 28 in the side legs 4 and 5.

The reflective material 6 is mounted on at least one side of the triangular form upstanding from the support member 2 and is arranged to form an equilateral triangle of reflective members. In the illustrated structure, the signal device 1 has reflective members on both sides thereof and the base leg 3 and the side legs 4 and 5 each have outer edge flanges 30 and 31 extending laterally outwardly from opposite faces thereof and extending the length of the respective leg. Flanges 32 and 33 are substantially parallel with the outer edge flanges 30 and 31 respectively and are positioned intermediate the edges of the respective legs to thereby define a guideway or trough on both sides of each leg to receive the red reflective material 6.

In the illustrated structure, the reflective material 6 is an elongated planar prismatic reflective strip or member for each of the legs 3, 4, and 5 with the reflective strips being formed of glass or plastic material. It is preferable to include a backing on each reflective member or strip, such as stainless steel, aluminum, plastic or the like, which is suitably secured to the back or near side of each reflective member, as by adhesive or being heat sealed thereon, to prevent dirt, dust, or other foreign material from reducing the reflectiveness thereof. The reflective members each extend substantially the length of the respective legs and are positioned in the trough or guideway formed by the outer edge flange 30 and the flange 32 and in the trough formed by the outer edge flange 31 and the flange 33 to thereby form an equilateral triangle of reflective members on each side of the triangular form of the signal device 1 when in the erected position.

The triangular form portion of the signal device 1 is maintained in an upright or upstanding position by the brace member 9 which, in the illustrated structure, extends between adjacent one end portion, for example end portion 11, of the support member 22 and an upper portion of the triangular form. The brace member 9 has one end 34 thereof pivotally mounted on the support member 2, as on a pin 35 extending outwardly from one side edge of the support member 2, for movement between a position substantially parallel with and adjacent the respective side edge of the support member 2, and a position having the keeper portion 29 engaged in the apertures 27 and 28.

The brace member may be flexible cord or the like, extending from bothsides, but the structure illustrated has a keeper portion 29 positioned at the free end of the brace member 9 and the keeper portion 29 has a first portion 36 extending transversely or laterally from the free end of the brace member 9 and having a bend 37 intermediate the ends of the first portion 36. A return portion 38 is integral with the first portion 39 and extends toward the brace member 9 and substantially coplanar with the first portion 36. The return portion 38 and the first portion 36 of the keeper portion 29 are positioned to define an acute angle therebetween whereby inserting the keeper portion 29 through the aligned apertures 27 and 28 urges the return portion 38 and the first portion 36 toward each other to permit the bend 37 to move into the aligned apertures 27 and 28 with portions of the first portion 36 engaging opposite faces of the side legs 4 and 5 and the return portion 38 resiliently maintaining the bend 37 in engagement with one end of the aligned apertures 27 and 28.

In using an emergency traffic signal device constructed as illustrated and described, the device 1 is removed from a suitable storage place, such as the trunk of a motor vehicle, and a suitable retaining member, such as a strap 39, is released to permit the base leg 3 to be pivoted to a position substantially normal or perpendicular to the support member 2 and the side legs 4 and 5 folded or swung outwardly and upwardly by means of the hinge portions 22 and 23 with the free ends thereof in engagement to align the apertures 27 and 28. The brace member 9 is moved to a position to permit the keeper portion 29 thereof to be inserted through the aligned apertures 27 and 28 with the bend 37 engaging one end of said apertures. The reflective signal device 1 is then moved to a position adjacent a stalled or stopped motor vehicle, such as a truck, bus, or a private automobile, and placed with the triangular form substantially normal to the path of travel of oncoming traffic thereby warning drivers of oncoming vehicles of the presence of the stopped or stalled vehicle. It is to be understood that while We have illustrated and described one form of our invention, it is not to be limited to this specific form or arrangement of parts herein described and shown.

What we claim and desire to secure by Letters Patent 1. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device com prising:

'a. an elongated support member;

b. a triangular form mounted on said support member and extending upwardly therefrom, said triangular form being defined by a base leg mounted on said support member and a pair of side legs arranged in coplanar relation and extending upwardly and converging from ends of said base leg to an apex, said side legs having portions adjacent the apex in interengaging relation, means releasably connecting said interengaging leg portions, said base leg and side legs having opposed faces;

c. hinge means connecting end portions of said base leg and respective side legs with hinge axes bisecting the angle between the base leg and the respective side leg for folding said side legs between the coplanar relation and a position substantially parallel with said base leg;

d. reflecting signal members on at least one of said opposed faces of each of said base leg and said side legs of the triangular form and extending substantially the length of said base leg and said side legs to form a triangle of reflective members; and

e. said support member extending generally normal to the plane of said triangular form and having sufficient weight for stability, elongate brace means having an end portion engaging said support member in spaced relation to said triangular form and the other end portion extending to the interengaging portions of the side legs and connected thereto for holding said base leg and said side legs in the coplanar relation to define the triangular form and for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position.

2. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 1 wherein:

a. said base leg is pivotally mounted on said support member for movement between a position substantially parallel with and a position extending substantially normal to said support member wherein said support member has opposed portions extending from the base leg;

b. said elongate brace means for maintaining the triangular form in an upstanding position comprises relatively stiff brace strut extending between adjacent one end of said support member and an upper portion of the triangular form;

c. the brace member and support member being in a plane normal to the plane of the triangular form and has engagement therewith to retain same against relative rotation; and

(1. said base leg has a support foot depending from adjacent each end portion thereof to cooperate with said support member and said brace member to maintain the triangular form in the upstanding position.

3. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 2 wherein:

a. said reflective members are positioned adjacent an outer edge of each said base leg and said side legs and have a width substantially less than the respective legs whereby said legs each extend inwardly of the triangle of reflective members;

b. one of said side legs has an offset portion adjacent a free end portion thereof;

0. the offset portion of said one side leg and a free end portion of the other side leg have alignable apertures therein; and

d. said releasable connecting means is on the brace member with a keeper portion engageable within the apertures in said side legs.

4. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 3 wherein said base leg and said side legs are formed of one piece synthetic resin of an orangered fluorescent color having a dominant wave length in the range of 590 to 610 millimicrons and the reflective members are prismatic with a backing adhered thereto, said backing being next to the respective face of the base leg and side legs.

5. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 4 wherein:

a. said support member is a generally flat member adapted to be substantially parallel with a supporting surface;

b. said base leg is pivotally mounted on said support member for movement between a position substantially parallel with said support member and a position substantially normal to said support member; and

c. said base leg has a support foot depending from adjacent each end portion thereof to cooperate with said support member to maintain the triangular form in the upstanding position.

6. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device comprising:

a. an elongated support member, said support member being a generally flat member adapted to be substantially parallel with a supporting surface, said support member having sufficient weight for stability;

b. a planar base leg pivotally mounted on said support member for movement between a position substantially parallel with said support member and a position substantially normal to said support member wherein support member portions extend from the triangular form in opposed relation;

c. a pair of planar side legs cooperating with said base leg to form an equilateral triangle, said base leg and said side legs each being elongate substantially flat rigid members positioned in coplanar relation, said side legs having overlapping portions adjacent free ends thereof;

d. said base leg and side legs being of synthetic resin and of one piece with hinge means connecting end portions of said base leg and respective adjacent end portions of said side legs with the fold lines bisecting the angle between the base leg and the respective side legs for folding said side legs between the coplanar relation and a position adjacent and substantially parallel with said base leg;

e. means releasably engageable with said overlapping portions adjacent the free end portions of said side legs for holding said side legs and said base leg in the triangular form;

f. elongate prismatic reflective signal members on at least one face of each of said base leg and said side legs of the equilateral triangular form and extending substantially the length of said base leg and said side legs to form an equilateral triangular of reflective material; and

g. brace means extending between said support member and an upper portion of the triangular form for maintaining same in an upstanding position and preventing relative rotation between the triangular form and support member.

7. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 6 wherein:

a. said base leg has a support foot depending from adjacent each end portion thereof and engageable with the supporting surface;

b. said base leg and said side legs each have a pair of spaced ribs extending outwardly from opposite faces thereof to define means for holding elongate reflective members on each face of the triangular form;

c. said hinge means comprises an integral extension of each of the end portions of said base leg and respective adjacent end portions of said legs joined by a portion of reduced thickness to define a fold line adjacent each end of said base leg; and

d. said reflector members are of a width substantially less than a width of the respective base leg and side legs whereby said legs extend inwardly from the reflector members and said hinge means connects the base leg and side legs at said inwardly extending portions.

8. A collapsible emergency traffic signal device as set forth in claim 7 wherein:

a. one of said legs has an offset portion adjacent a free end portion thereof;

b. said offset portion is substantially parallel with said one side leg and engageable with a free end portion of the other side leg;

c. said offset portion and the free end portion of the other side leg have alignable apertures therein; and

cl. said means for holding said base leg and said side legs in the triangular form comprises a keeper portion on one end of said brace means and engageable within the apertures in said side legs.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3589328 *Jul 17, 1969Jun 29, 1971Tri Vec IncSafety signal device
GB1112382A * Title not available
GB1112672A * Title not available
GB1169589A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3970033 *Feb 4, 1974Jul 20, 1976Beatrice Foods CompanyPortable reflector device
US4403565 *Mar 11, 1981Sep 13, 1983Dominion Auto Accessories LimitedEmergency triangular road safety device
US4440104 *Mar 11, 1981Apr 3, 1984Dominion Auto Accessories LimitedEmergency warning device
US4977697 *Jun 1, 1990Dec 18, 1990Genick Raymond MFoldable traffic barrier
US6435762 *Nov 28, 2000Aug 20, 2002Floyd F. MarklingBlow molded barricade
US6857385 *Mar 11, 2003Feb 22, 2005Yi Hui ChenFoldable road warning device
US20120299719 *Nov 29, 2012Chin-Hung WuPortable traffic warning device
CN102086631A *Dec 8, 2010Jun 8, 2011汪少烽LED projection warning device
CN102086631BDec 8, 2010Jan 18, 2012汪少烽LED projection warning device
Classifications
U.S. Classification116/63.00P, 40/903, 116/63.00T
International ClassificationE01F9/015, E01F9/00, E01F9/014, E01F9/016, E01F9/013, E01F9/012, B60Q7/00
Cooperative ClassificationY10S40/903, B60Q7/005
European ClassificationB60Q7/00A