Data compiled by state officials is proving that cable barriers aid in reducing interstate fatalities, and travelers on I-20 will soon be safer.
"The letting date is planned for July 10 for District 4 for the I-20 Median for Bossier and Webster Parish," said Ron Watts, Department of Transportation and Development Project Engineer.
The actual start date will likely be after Labor Day, according to Watts.
"After July 10, approximately two weeks will be allowed to find a contractor, then another two weeks to execute the contract between DOTD and the contractor," Watts said. "Next, will be approximately 30 days assembling period that will allow the contractor to gather materials necessary for the job."
The barrier will extend from the Bossier Parish line by the Industrial Drive bridge past I-220 overpass and back toward Webster Parish line to Bienville Parish line, according to Watts, with Webster Parish having 16.16 miles of barrier cables installed.
"The project will start off with putting a lot of dirt in the median to have it (median) flat," Watts said. "It will also have a three foot mowing pad, with having a foot and a half on either side of the barrier rails."
Anticipated costs, according to Watts, are $4.2 million dollars and 230 working days are allowed for the construction of the Webster and Bossier barrier rails.
"I estimate six to eight months," Watts said.
Lane closures are not expected during the travel peak time, however, Watts expects there will be lane closures during single inside lane during work hours.
According to DOTD, contributing factors of roadway departure crashes often include loss of control, misjudging a curve or attempting to avoid animals.
Forty-four percent of all fatal crashes and nearly one-third of serious injury crashes involve leaving the roadway.
The cable barrier rails show a substantial reduction and prevention in fatal and disabling crashes when compared to concrete and guardrail median barriers, according to the Federal Highway Administration.