|Publication number||US3847497 A|
|Publication date||Nov 12, 1974|
|Filing date||Oct 17, 1972|
|Priority date||Oct 17, 1972|
|Publication number||US 3847497 A, US 3847497A, US-A-3847497, US3847497 A, US3847497A|
|Original Assignee||Guillory P|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (9), Referenced by (14), Classifications (19)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
Guillory, Sr. I
1 1 HIGHWAY SAFETY FIN  Inventor: Perry Gene Guillory, Sr., RT. 2, Box
6l-C, Orange, Tex. 77630 22 Filed: Oct. 17, 1972 21 Appl. No.1 298,393
 US. Cl 404/10, 116/28 A, ZOO/61.41  Int. Cl E0lf 9/00  Field of Search 404/10; 116/28 A;
ZOO/61.41, 61.42, 61.43, 61.44
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,085,074 6/1937 Boyles 404/10 X 2,200,570 5/1940 Zint 200/6l.41 X 2,274,019 '2/1942 ZOO/61.41 2,464,365 3/1949 116/28 A 2,658,967 11/1953 ZOO/61.41 2,706,462 4/1955 Evans r l 116/28 R 3,180,950 4/1965 Jacobsen ZOO/61.41 3,236,960 2/1966 Larson ZOO/61.41 3,623,286 11/1971 Parduhn 404/10 X Nov. 12, 1974 Primary Examiner-Nile C. Byers. Jr. Attorney, Agent, or FirmCushman, Darby & Cushman  ABSTRACT A highway safety fin having a horizontally protruding rod-shaped portion which extends into the edge of a roadway at an angle oblique to the direction of flow of the traffic. The rod portion is attached to or is integral with a flexible member which in turn is attached to or integral with a support member for holding the rod in its proper position. The flexible member allows the rod to move out of the way of a vehicle when it has been impacted and then return to its original position. The support member is attached to a mounting member by means of a breakaway weld which allows the rod to be severed from its mounting when impacted too severely. The mounting member provides a means for securing the highway safety fin along the edge of a roadway.
8 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures HIGHWAY SAFETY FIN l. Field of the Invention This invention relates to a device for audibly signaling to the driver of a vehicle that he is dangerously close to the edge of a highway.
2. Prior Art Several means have been devised for signaling to a driver both visually and audibly that he is approaching some danger whether it be the edge of a road, a curb, a driveway, or a building.
In regards to the visual means for marking the boundaries or edges of roadways the most common types are similar to those shown in the P. C. Doyle U.S. Pat. No. 2,096,275 and the J. L. Dekorte U.S. Pat. No. 3,279,133. Such devices are implanted in the ground along the edge of a roadway so as to provide a marker visible from a moving automobile. In addition, such devices are generally attached to a flexible means to allow the marker to be moved from its normal position when impacted by a vehicle and then returned to that position by the flexible means without damage to the marker.
Such visual devices, however, do not always provide adequate signaling means since the drivers attention may be attracted to other things along the highway, such as oncoming vehicles. As a result of such distractions a driver may miss seeing a visual signaling device and run off the road and thereby be placed in a hazardous situation.
In regard to audible signaling devices, they are generally intended for uses involving slow moving vehicles whereby the audible signaling device attracts the drivers attention to a curb or building, as in the F. J. Aves U.S. Pat. No. 2,464,365 and the A. L. Matschke, .Ir. U.S. Pat. No. 2,658,967. Such devices are unsuitable when high speed traffice is involved because they would not provide adequate warning to the driver since the time in which he has to respond to any danger signal is decreased considerably with an increase in vehicle velocity. These audible devices are also generally provided with a flexible means to allow the device to be moved out of the way when impacted by'a vehicle and then return to its original position without being damaged. I
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention overcomes the abovedescribed difficulties by providing a means whereby a high speed vehicle moving along a roadway is adequately warned by audible signal means of his dangerously close proximity to the edge of the roadway, and if the vehicle strikes the signal means too severely it is provided with a safety breakaway weld to prevent injury to the vehicle or cause loss of control by the driver.
a vehicle. Attached to the flexible means or against a part of the protruding means is a support means for supporting the protruding means in a horizontal position oblique to the traffic flow along the edge of the roadway. This support means is in turn attached to a means for mounting the highway safety fin along the edge of the roadway. The means for attachment between the support means and mounting means being critical in that it provides a mechanism whereby if the safety fin is impacted too severely the protruding means and the flexible means will break away from the mounting means to prevent damage to a vehicle or cause the driver to lose control.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing a series of an embodiment of the invention installed along the edge of a roadway.
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary side elevation viewof an embodiment of the invention positioned in a curb along a roadway.
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of a portion of a multi-lane roadway showing the positioning ofthe safetyfin in relation to the flow of traffic.
FIG. 4 is a side plan view of another embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 5 is a side plan view of a further embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 6 is a side plan the invention.
FIG. 7 is a side plan view of a further embodiment of the invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS I Referring to FIG. 2, an embodiment of the invention is shown with a horizontally protruding rod l0attach ed to a sideways flexing coil spring 12 which in turn is attached to an end 13 of support rod 14. At an opposite end 15 is attached a screw-type mountingmember 18 secured to support rod 14 by a breakaway weld 16. The safety fin can be mounted in a curb 20 by use of alead cinch anchor24 or similar device in which the ,mounting member 18 may be removably secured.
The horizontally protruding rod l0can be welded or soldered to the spring 12 if materials which lend themselves to this type of attachment are used; otherwise a view of a further embodiment of threaded or friction fit-type attachment wouldbe suitable. The same type of attachment means can beus ed to attach the spring 12 to the support rod 14. The breakaway weld 16 is such that if the horizontalrod is severely impacted by a vehicle the weld will fracture and release the horizontal rod 16, spring 12 and support rod 14 so that the vehicle will not bedamagedor the driver will not be caused to lose control by striking the safety fin.
The mounting member 18 although here shown .has a threaded fastener type canbe-of any suitable means for removably mountingthesafety fin alongthe edge portion of a roadway so that when the safety fin is broken away at .the weld 16 it may easily be replaced with a new safety fin.
Referring to FIG. 3 a multiplicity of highway safety.
positioned parallel to'each other at an angle oblique to the direction of the flow of traffic along the side of the roadway where they are to provide the warning. The outer edge portions of the roadway 28 and 30, here shown as the soft shoulder of the road, might also be a curb or other common abutment or structure adjacent to the road portion of a roadway. The safety fins are shown imbedded in concrete forms 31 secured in the soft shoulder along the roadway.
The highway Safety fins positioned on the center strip of the roadway 32 may be secured in a similar manner to those along an edge portion, but in FIG. 3 are shown secured to posts 33 which are positioned along the center strip 32 of the roadway to prevent traffic from crossing the center strip. Between the posts 33 a cable or fence 35 is generally attached to provide additional means of preventing a vehicle from crossing the center strip 32 and in some instances, as will be seen from further embodiments described herein, the safety fins may be attached to such a fence.
Referring now to FIG. 4, in which is shown another embodiment of the invention, mainly differing from the previously described embodiment in the flexible por: tion 12 which allows the horizontal portion 10 to be displaced when impacted by a vehicle. In this embodiment the flexible means as well as the horizontally protruding member and the support member are portions of a rod preferably made of spring steel designed so as to allow the safety fin to flexibly yield under the ordinary impact of a vehicle. However, the safety breakaway weld 16 is also provided to prevent the vehicle from possible damage as previously described.
FIG. 5 shows yet another embodiment of the invention differing from the previous embodiments in that the flexible means 12 which allows the safety fin to move when impacted by a vehicle is a portion of a rod which is coiled to provide the flexing movement re quired. As in the embodiment shown in FIG. 4, the horizontally protruding member '10 and the support member 14 are also portions of the same rod and are attached to the mounting member 18 by the breakaway weld 16.
FIG. 6 shows a further embodiment of the invention different from the previous embodiment in that it is designed to be attached to an upright post 33 or fence portion 35 of aguard rail along a roadway. A horizontally protruding member'10 is provided and is attached to a flexible spring 12 which in turn is attached to a support member 14 to position the horizontally protruding member 10 in a horizontal position above the roadway as with those embodiments previously described. The breakaway welds 16 are provided to attach the support member 14 to themounting member 18. In this embodiment the mounting member '18 is attached to a post or a fence by threaded fasteners 34 or other suitable means depending on'the material and shape of the post or fence to which it is to be attached. An additional difference of this embodiment from those previ- I ously describedis that the height of the horizontally protruding rod 10 can be varied. The spring 12 is attached to support member 14 by a threaded fastener 15 andmay be attached at any of the three holes 17 in support member 14. Any number of attachment holes 17 may be provided, here shown as three for the purpose of illustration only.
In'this embodiment the support member 14 is a flat plate 21 with brackets 23 and 25 attached thereto for extending the support member 14 away from the mounting member 18. The mounting member 18 also being a flat plate with holes provided to allow the mounting member to be attached to a post or fence.
FIG. 7 shows a further embodiment of the invention spring 12 by suitable means and is secured to the support member 14 by a nut 36 attached thereto. Additional holes may be provided in support member 14, asdiscussed in the previous embodiment, for raising or lowering the position of the horizontally protruding member relative to the road surface.
Referring now to the manner in which the invention functions, the driver of a vehicle will be warned by an audible signal as he is driving along a roadway if he approaches the edge portion of the road, The wheels of the vehicle or the lower side portion of the body of the vehicle will impact a safety fin on the horizontally protruding portion thereof and thus create an audible sig nal perceptible to thedriver'of the vehicle. The horizontally protruding member will be forced to move out of the path of the vehicle as it is impacted and will be allowed to do so by flexure of the spring attached to one end of it. The opposite end of the spring is attached to the support member which holds the horizontally protruding member and the spring inthe proper position over the roadway.
The vehicle will continue to impact successive safet fins along the edge of the roadway and thus the driver will continue to be warned of the dangerous proximity of the vehicle to the edge of the road until he corrects his path to follow the road surface. After the vehicle has passed a particular safety fin after striking it, it will return to its normal preset positionalong the roadway.
If a vehicle impacts a safety fin too severely due to excessive speed, direct impact on the support member,
variations are possible. All suchvariations as would be obvious to those skilled in this art are intended to be included within the scope of this invention.
What is claimed ,isi g l. A highway safety fin for use along the edge portions of a roadway to provide an'audible signal to warn a driver of a vehicle that he is approaching dangerously close to said edge portion, comprising:
a horizontally protruding rod; 1
a support member having a horizontally protruding portion and a vertically extending portion which are joined together;
a spring means having one endportion secured'to an end of said rod and another endportion secured to said horizontally protruding portion of said support member;
- a mounting member having a threaded tapered bottom end portion integral with a protruding head portion frangeably secured to a bottom end portion of said vertically extending portion of said support member; and
an anchor member made of relatively soft material compared to said mounting member, and disposable within a cavity formed in a hard roadway surface edge portion, and having a central tapered bore mated to said threaded tapered bottom portion of said mounting member so as to securably support said rod adjacent a roadway.
2. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 1, wherein said spring means is a helically coiled spring secured at opposite ends to ends of said horizontally protruding rod and said horizontally protruding portion of said support member.
3. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 1, wherein said spring means is an integral helically coiled portion of said horizontally protruding rod and said support member.
4. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 1, wherein said spring means is a radially curved integral portion of said horizontally protruding rod and said support member.
5. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 1, in combination with the edge portion of a roadway.
6. A highway safety fin for use along an edge portion of a roadway to provide an audible signal to warn a driver of a vehicle that he is approaching dangerously close to said edge portion, comprising: I
a horizontally protruding rod;
a support member comprising a vertically supported flat plate having a plurality of spaced holes;
a fastener member secured within one of said holes and having a horizontally protruding end portion extending beyond a surface of said plate;
spring means having one end portion secured to an end portion of said rod and another end portion secured to said protruding end portion of said fastener member;
a mounting member having a vertical plate portion securable on one side to a post positioned along a roadway and extension members frangeably secured at one end portion to an opposite side of said plate and frangeably secured at an opposite end portion to said flat plate of said support member.
7. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 6, wherein said spring means is a helically coiled spring.
8. A highway safety fin as defined in claim 6, in combination with the'edge portion of a roadway.
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|U.S. Classification||404/10, 116/28.00A, 200/61.41|
|International Classification||E01F9/017, E01F9/07, E01F9/03, E01F9/04, E01F9/011, E01F9/018|
|Cooperative Classification||E01F9/0112, E01F9/076, E01F9/0182, E01F9/03, E01F9/0175|
|European Classification||E01F9/03, E01F9/07D, E01F9/017B, E01F9/018C, E01F9/011B2|