Safety improvements made on highway near AEDC

Billy Clemons adds a sticker to the end of a section of guardrail to improve visibility of the hardware as he and a crew install new guardrails along Wattendorf Memorial Highway at Arnold Air Force Base, Tenn., Jan. 27, 2021. Guardrails were added to areas where the shoulder drops off and at bridge ends to increase safety for motorists. (U.S. Air Force photo by Jill Pickett)

In an effort to improve safety for motorists traveling on Wattendorf Memorial Highway, guardrails are being installed in the vicinity of steep shoulders and bridges.

The initial project involves 12 sites where guardrails are to be installed from the intersection with Interstate 24 to Arnold Air Force Base Gate No. 2. The Base Civil Engineering Branch of Arnold Engineering Development Complex, headquartered at Arnold AFB., in the future hopes to expand the guardrail project in the direction of Tullahoma to cover the entirety of Wattendorf Memorial Highway.

“Many drivers have had accidents that have taken them all the way to the wood lines,” said Oscar Portillo, project manager. “We hope by installing these guardrails it will improve safety and prevent this from happening.”

The work on the highway also includes the installation of traversable head walls with grates at six culverts. In addition to the safety improvement, this work will improve the storm water flow.

Another project will build on these safety improvements by installing centerline reflectors along the highway. Once temperatures become consistently warm, the reflectors will be installed.

“At the forefront of capital improvement projects, our goals in TSD (Test Support Division) are to maximize safety, and this project represents just that – safe driving conditions on our highways,” Portillo said.

The Base Civil Engineering team asks motorists to drive cautiously, slowing down while passing work areas.

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