Jersey barriers (1969)

Barnhart barnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Tue Aug 23 19:11:38 UTC 2005

>From the Barnhart New-Words Concordance:

Jersey barrier
  or Jersey Barrier
  or jersey barrier
  or New Jersey barrier         DC Vol. 6.1

>From the Barnhart Dictionary Companion:

Jersey barrier, Also written Jersey Barrier or jersey barrier.  Sometimes
called New Jersey barrier.

<snip, snip>

earliest quote (at time of publication 1991) = 1977.

American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on Tuesday, August 23,
2005 at 2:58 PM -0500 wrote:
>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Poster:       bapopik at AOL.COM
>Subject:      Jersey barriers (1969)
>OED doesn't have "Jersey barriers." Is it in DARE? Anybody got a good
>date for it? Other names for it?
>Gotta go to something tonight--no time!
>The squat concrete barriers, known as Jersey barriers, for the state
>where they were first used on highways, have become common sights in
>front of many Downtown buildings. Many government and private buildings
>have used them in an apparent attempt to stop car bombings in the wake of
>Jersey barrier
>>From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
>A Jersey barrier was originally developed to divide multiple lanes on a
>highway by the state of New Jersey in the United States. A Jersey barrier
>stands 3?5 feet tall and is made of poured concrete. Their widespread use
>on the highway has led to many other uses as a general barrier. They are
>also known as K-rails (especially when used temporarily during roadway
>construction) or traffic dividers.
>In the State of New Jersey the term "Jersey barrier" is rarely utilized.
>Residents, government agencies, and road traffic and media reports on
>radio and television (including stations located in New York City and
>Philadelphia) usually use the term "traffic divider".
>The older barrier system of guard rails or guide rails did not prevent
>traffic from entering on-coming traffic.
>  New Jersey Median Barrier History
>The New Jersey Median Barrier is the tapered concrete barrier that is
>used in many narrow highway medians, to prevent vehicle crossovers into
>oncoming traffic.
>Sources: A report from the Transportation Research Board, National
>Research Council. The report is called NCHRP Synthesis 244, "Guardrail
>and Median Barrier Crashworthiness", published in 1997. Chapter 5 is
>about concrete median barriers.
>A quote from the text, "Although it is not clear exactly when or where
>the first concrete median barriers were used, concrete median barriers
>were used in the mid-1940s on US-99 on the descent from the Tehachapi
>Mountains in the central valley south of Bakersfield, California. This
>first generation of concrete barriers was developed to (a) minimize the
>number of out-of-control trucks penetrating the barrier, and (b)
>eliminate the need for costly and dangerous median barrier maintenance in
>high-accident locations with narrow medians -- concerns that are as valid
>today as they were 50 years ago".
>The first concrete median barrier used in New Jersey was installed in
>1955, and it was only 18 inches tall. It looked like a low vertical wall
>with a curb on each side. Operational problems were observed, the shape
>was changed, and the height was increased to 24 inches, and to 32 inches
>in 1959. The commonly seen shape came into being then. Basically, going
>upward, the first 2 inches from the pavement rises vertically, the next
>10 inches rises at a 55-degree angle, and the remainder at an 84-degree
>angle (as measured from horizontal).
>New Jersey did not use crash-testing to develop the barrier. The state
>highway department observed the accident results of its barrier
>installations, and evolved the shape of the barrier. Both New Jersey and
>California continued experimenting in the early 1960s, and the New Jersey
>barrier was widely adopted by California; they installed 132 miles by
>1972 and 680 miles by 1988. The barrier's use has expanded to nearly
>every state since then.
>Actually there are six different concrete median barrier designs,
>although the New Jersey barrier is the most-used design. It should also
>be mentioned that these same shapes are commonly used on single-faced
>roadside barriers, such as bridge parapets, tops of retaining walls in
>fill sections, and barriers against rock cuts.
>Harbor Freeway Will Test Concrete Divider; Chain-Link Fence Repairs
>Caused Jams So Experiment Is Being Tried on 3-Mile Stretch
>LEE DYE. Los Angeles Times (1886-Current File). Los Angeles, Calif.: Mar
>2, 1969. p. B1 (1 page)
>Concrete Barriers Will Go Up on Freeways; New Freeway Barriers to Go Up
>MARTY COREN. Los Angeles Times (1886-Current File). Los Angeles, Calif.:
>Aug 9, 1971. p. A1 (2 pages)
>PREVENT CROSSOVER CRASHES; Concrete Median Barriers Proving Freeway
>Lifesaver Concrete Barriers Cut Fatalities on Freeways FREEWAY SAFETY
>RAY HEBERT. Los Angeles Times (1886-Current File). Los Angeles, Calif.:
>Nov 12, 1972. p. 1 (3 pages)

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