Mark Taylor
[email protected]
Construction on a long awaited cable barrier system on K-10 Highway will start in August, commissioners were told on July 12.
“It has been estimated that cable median barriers can reduce fatal crashes by 90 percent,” said Ed Eilert, commission chairman.
The Kansas Department of Transportation last week awarded a $1.5 million contract to the Gray Beal Construction company to install the cable barriers.
The cable barriers will be installed in areas most prone to crossover accidents.
About 2.3 miles of cable barrier will be installed near Eudora, and another 2 miles of cable barrier will be installed near the K-10 and K-7 junction.
In 2005, a 5-year-old child was killed when an impaired driver cross the median and struck the vehicle the child was riding in.
The barriers were recommended by the K-10 Committee, which was established by Gov. Sam Brownback in response to the fatality.
According to Wikipedia, cable barriers have been around since the early 1960s, but grew in popularity in the early 1990s.
Wikidepia also states  that cable barriers are “a type of roadside or median barrier. It consists of steel wire ropes mounted on weak posts. As is the case with any roadside barrier, its primary purpose is to prevent a vehicle from leaving the traveled way and striking a fixed object or terrain feature that is less forgiving than itself.
“Also similar to most roadside barriers, cable barriers function by capturing and/or redirecting the errant vehicle.”