Last year’s Convention drew more than 3,700 roadway safety professionals from across the globe and more than 220 exhibitors for what is the largest exposition of its kind in North America.
NPRO offers visitors a glimpse at some of the latest innovations in the roadway safety infrastructure industry. The products submitted as part of the NPRO are comprised of a wide range of devices designed to save lives on our nation’s roadways.
“The products for this year’s New Products Rollout include items designed to protect roadway workers, motorists and pedestrians, which reflects the diverse challenges tackled by this industry,” said ATSSA Manager of Innovation & Technical Services Melodie Matout. “It’s always fascinating to see the products on view for the NPRO and the ways they can help advance roadway safety.”
The New Products Rollout presentations take place Feb. 5 on the exhibit floor of the Traffic Expo. NPRO participants, which represent companies from the U.S. and Canada, will be available to discuss their products and will have videos explaining them on display in the exhibit area devoted to NPRO.
A panel of judges from departments of transportation (DOTs) from throughout the country will judge the products to determine the winner of ATSSA’s annual Innovation Award and up to three honorable mentions. Products selected for recognition will be announced Feb. 6 during ATSSA’s Circle of Innovation, which is attended by transportation agency officials and industry decision makers from across the country.
Participants and products for the 2024 New Products Rollout are:
Product: Flowell– Flowell is an interactive and dynamic light-emitting road marking system that boosts the awareness of both drivers and pedestrians. Light-emitting road markings enhance the safety of all users by addressing the right signal to the right user at the right time. Flowell works around the clock, significantly enhancing the visibility of markings both at night and when overcast. Flowell panels are equally visible during the day when activated. Effectiveness and impact on drivers is high, with notably better compliance in priority rules signage along with increased awareness and a reduction in risky behavior.
Product: Model 400 ADA Audible Information Device– The Model 400 ADA is an audible information device that can be mounted on various safety devices and barricades. Users can easily record and program up to a 60 second custom message with built-in microphone and speaker. When routes are blocked or there are alternate crossings, these units provide positive guidance for the visually impaired by offering necessary audible information. The recorded message will play any time someone walks within 15 feet of the device. The volume will automatically adjust depending on the ambient noise level in the surrounding area.
Product: Smart POD® – SmartPOD® is a non-sacrificial, fully re-directive, non-gating, bi-directional, tested to MASH-16 for Test Level 3 impact attenuator. Use it to help protect motorists from hazards in both permanent and temporary work zone locations. It transitions to wide hazards and attaches to most types of median and roadside barriers. Slightly tapered from front to rear, this allows the side panel sections to nest over the next section, minimizing stress and damage. During impacts, panels move freely past each other and do not become wedged when the system is compressed. It is delivered fully assembled on a skid frame for quick and easy installation.
Product: Zonebloc+– ZoneBloc+ is a portable concrete barrier system with standard and minimum deflection options. ZoneBloc+® is designed to minimize impact to the traveling public while offering a supreme level of protection. With a base width of only 11 3/4 inches, the compact design is effective on projects where space is restricted. Its 40-foot standard unit is optimal for deployment and accelerates the installation process when compared to traditional concrete barriers. ZoneBloc+’s narrow footprint results in a lightweight configuration, which allows 280 feet to be hauled on one flatbed truck.
Product: LifeMark 300– LifeMark® automated re-striping systems are designed to control the re-striping of pavement markings without a rear operator. The LM 300 efficiently, accurately and securely re-stripe road markings requiring maintenance. As the striping truck travels along the road, the sophisticated AI-driven camera and geospatial technology swiftly pinpoint the markings’ location, start and stop points, as well as their colors. Utilizing this real-time data, the robotic system adjusts the carriage and spray guns to the appropriate positions, ensuring precise activation and deactivation of the selected gun. Consequently, the outdated markings are entirely repainted to their original state.
Product: pi-Cone– This lighting kit attaches to a standard 28-inch traffic cone. Once applied, the light is permanently attached and illuminates the cone internally. The set of 10 lamps is linked via radio and coordinates a sequential or simultaneous flashing pattern. The lamps will flash for 14-28 hours depending upon battery option and will recharge as a stack of 10 cones. The cones flash automatically in a sequential pattern. The kit snaps onto the standard JBC 10-pound, 28-inch cone. Alternative cones will be available in the future. Pi-Lit does not sell the cone.
Product: MMAX® Extended Season Area Markings– MMAX® Extended Season Area Markings are a preferential lane treatment system combining methyl methacrylate (MMA) resins with hardwearing aggregate and colorfast pigments to deliver an extremely durable, nonslip, highly visible and color-stable area marking that can be applied year-round. This product can be used to delineate bike lanes, bus lanes or other specialty applications. This innovation offers the widest temperature application range in the market – 35 to150 degrees Fahrenheit pavement temperatures – enabling daytime applications of MMA area markings in the summer and enhancing safety for vulnerable road users (VRUs) year-round by improving road visibility and skid-resistance.
Product: Parakeet AID– The Parakeet™ is an audible information device (AID) designed for custom messaging with a built-in speaker and microphone. When roads and sidewalks are closed, Parakeet allows for up to 60 seconds of pre-recorded instructions to the alternate path for visually impaired pedestrians. The device recording is motion activated, responding to pedestrians as they approach. This motion detection is customizable, allowing for longer or shorter fields of detection as needed. Additionally, the built-in microphone automatically adjusts its decibel level based on surrounding noise throughout the day.
Product: Rover – for RAPTOR TPRS Handling Machine– RAPTOR Rover is designed specifically for the transport of RAPTOR RoadQuake Handling Machine and mounts to the back of the operating vehicle rather than the front. With RAPTOR Rover, more work vehicles are now compatible for automated Temporary Portable Rumble Strips (TPRS) use, protecting the crew and making its work more efficient. With a weight-distribution hitch, it can be pulled by a vehicle as small as a ½-ton pickup. It has solar panels and batteries to support the use of the RAPTOR and an optional arrow panel. The batteries are charged through the truck’s standard 7-blade RV plug. RAPTOR is controlled using the same remote and wireless monitors, whether installed on the front of a truck or on ROVER.
Product: Electra– Electra is an operator-driven, truck-mounted mobile robotic pavement marking system. Its precise geo-location capabilities allow users to quickly find and mark centerline positions and record exact locations of existing markings. Electra accurately and precisely marks standard intersections, turn pockets, crosswalks, stop bars, arrows, bike markings, sharrows, markings for preferential lanes such as “Bus Only,” accessible parking, EVs, adjustable school legends, custom words and more. The operator-driven vehicle is built around a standard industrial grade IP67-rated robot arm mounted on a Ford F-550 super-duty chassis. Electra uses a familiar double-acting spray head with standard tips. The industrial grade airless paint compressor with Bluetooth-enabled data logger handles nominal paint pressures of up to 3,000 psi. A rugged on-board control computer is preloaded with RoadPrintz custom software. An intuitive 15-inch touchscreen allows workers to create markings from the safety of the truck cab.
Product: SpanPath Modular Elevated Pathway – SpanPath is a modular elevated pathway system that provides a new and innovative solution to improve pedestrian safety, accessibility and mobility. The SpanPath system can be used to avoid pedestrian detours while helping promote compliance with accessibility guidelines such as Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG). The SpanPath system may be placed over an existing pathway between construction or maintenance activities to ensure the pathway remains accessible and in service. It has been designed in accordance with the AASHTO Pedestrian Bridge Design Specifications to ensure compliance with federal loading and deflection requirements.
Product: Fold-Down Aluminum Stake Fence – Traffic Pro Beds recently replaced steel stake fencing with aluminum fold-down stake fencing as a standard feature on all our beds. Aluminum fencing reduces weight by about 30%. The lightweight fencing reduces worker fatigue and strain. The fold-down feature and swing gates provide easy access to multiple locations on the bed as well as access to the boxes that hold traffic signs for easy loading and unloading from the front or rear of the bed.
Product: Halo Light – For nighttime traffic control operations, the Halo Light system is invaluable for establishing a highly visible line that delineates the working area around a truck where personnel may be present. The line also directs the attention of drivers away from the truck and workers.
Product: Employee Safety Unit (ESU) and Cone Drive System– A key feature of the Traffic Pro Bed is the personnel bucket with safety restraint system (SRS). Use of the SRS makes the operator compliant with Section 5(a)(1) of the OSHA Act, which requires employees working on the back of a moving vehicle to be restrained against possible impact and ejection. An integral part of the system includes the cone drive system, which moves cones toward the operator for easy access in setting cones in a work zone. The cone drive and PB system eliminates one additional worker from the back of the truck, thus reducing liability and lowering cost.
Product: The Last Line of Defense – As a result of a customer request, Traffic Pro Beds designed and built our first TPB with an attenuator. This product is not intended to be a crash truck, but rather the last line of defense when a motorist passes a crash truck in a work zone and moves back into the restricted lane causing impact with the cone truck. The cone truck, equipped with an attenuator, adds a second layer of safety to work crews while permitting the flexibility to use the truck for its intended purpose.
Product: Dual Mounted Variable Message Sign (VMS)/Arrow Board – Traffic Pro Beds engineered a device for a customer that permits use of both an arrow board and a message board on the same truck. The device utilizes an electric motor driven hydraulic lift system that employs a rear facing message board and front facing arrow board. This device was requested to provide greater flexibility in lane closure operations and other scenarios that may require one sign versus the other. The device is mounted behind the cab in a stowed position and hydraulically moved into position when deployed.
Product: VizMarkPavement Marking Enhancement– TAPCO’s VizMark™ Pavement Marking Enhancement illuminates pavement markings at night to increase roadway safety for all. Illuminated pavement markings help increase visibility and recognition distance to alert motorists of the correct stop and/or yield locations. When a TAPCO intelligent warning system is activated, the VizMark™ Pavement Marking Enhancement is triggered to project a light onto the pavement marking(s). The projected light helps increase the distance the pavement marking can be seen and helps motorists identify the correct stop and/or yield locations. The VizMark™ is designed to be mounted onto traffic poles (12-15 feet tall) without additional overhang into roadways. VizMark™ also shields the light beam from bleeding into opposing lanes of traffic. The design of VizMark™ allows the community to specifically choose which pavement markings are illuminated.
Product: QUASH Crash Cushion– The QUASH is the first MASH tested anchorless non-redirective crash cushion designed to safeguard a wide range of barriers, including movable barriers. Designed for simplicity using a minimal number of components, it offers easy handling, installation and maintenance. The overall design and J-Slot technology increases safety by reducing the window of worker exposure to live traffic. Cold weather testing, a first in the industry, will also properly guide usage of such devices in below-freezing conditions.