Return to Patent Page





PolyTechnic SoftWare Associates (PSA) introduced a new concept in transforming highway signal, telephone, traffic, and light poles into crashworthy poles.

For example, the typical; light pole shown in Figure 1 on the left is modified by adding a Shear coupler at the base as shown in the Figure 2 on the right.

This patent pending Shear Coupler installed at the base of the pole is illustrated in Figure 2. The hexagon plates of the shear coupler are held together by 8 edge caps, compressed and held in place by a pre-stressed steel binding strap.

Figure 1: Highway Light Pole

Figure 2: Installed Shear Coupler at pole base

Excessive lateral forces, such as a vehicle impact, stretch and fail the pre-stressed steel strap causing the coupler to explode as shown in Figure 3.

Advantages of the Shear Coupling
Clearly the most important aspect of the Shear Coupling is
improved cost effective crashworthness.

Applicable to new pole installations as well as a retrofit
for current poles at high risk or which have been damaged.

Utilizing the Coupling for vulnerable poles, thus eliminating
the need of protective guard rails, may prove cost effective.

The Shear Coupling is Omni-directional.

All components are either easy to manufacture or are easy modifications
of existing materials.

The Shear Coupling consists of reusable components. Reinstalling
a damaged pole requires no expensive parts from the manufacturer, saving
both time and money.

Once installed, de-masting and re-setting may prove cost effective for
inspecting or maintaining poles.

In the event of a vehicle collision, the damage to the pole and specifically
the base, is reduced or eliminated.

The reduced repair cost, reduced damage to the impacting vehicle, and reduced
injury, could have a significant influence upon insurance liability and
litigation considerations.

You are invited to review the details of...The Break-Away Pole Design Concept and Report. It is a rather extensive report and is available in PDF form from the follwing link...Break Away Pole.pdf.