New York Authorities Approve Innovative Road Plate Cover

Leading innovator and manufacturer of site safety equipment Oxford Plastics has had its Oxford LowPro road plate covers approved by New York authorities.

The Oxford LowPro 23/05 Road Plate has been designed and developed by the U.K. company to comply with HS20-44 standards and has been successfully trialed in one of the most taxing construction environments in the United States.

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The New York Department of Transportation needed a solution to noise pollution caused by steel plates used in urban areas.

Peter Creighton, Business Development Director for Oxford Plastics said: “The metal plates being used within New York City can cause major noise pollution problems as they have a ‘rocking effect’ and cause a lot of noise as traffic passes over it. In built-up areas, such as in Manhattan, the sound reverberates and causes major complaints by residents and business owners.

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“The steel plates are around 1 in. in thickness and are very heavy and difficult to maneuver. Once they heard about the Oxford LowPro Road Plate range, they asked us for a demonstration to show the features and benefits of the product. After the initial demonstration, the product was then put through a very stringent and very long process of testing and a number of field trials over multiple years, which resulted in the Department of Transportation concluding that the product met the standards required to be deployed on New York City streets and it would be the solution to their ongoing noise pollution issues. After a 30-day public consultation they issued a notice of adoption which allows composite plates to be used to cover open restorations or excavations.

“After many years of testing, refinement and raising awareness, we’re proud to finally have the Oxford LowPro Road Plates approved by the New York Department of Transport. The LowPro range being an engineered alternative to steel plates, not only solving all issues found with traditional road plates, but reducing fines, saving time and reducing carbon emissions.”

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The Oxford LowPro 23/05 road plate system is a heavy-duty modular road plate system made up of linking plates, meaning it’s suitable for 97,000lbs vehicles over a 48” trench.

Each section of these road plates weighs 145lbs, which is far lighter than a steel plate, and is easier to maneuver with the EasiLift handles, using a team of two workers, rather than expensive powered heavy lifting equipment. Therefore the road plates can be carried and installed by hand in minutes. Underneath the Oxford LowPro 23/05 are two sets of lateral locks: these locks drop into place when the road plate is installed on the trench.

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The locks sit within the trench on either side to prevent lateral movement. The Oxford LowPro 23/05 road plate is currently used in residential areas, on roadways and utility sites partially because of its noise dampening edges. The patented Oxford LowPro feature reduces noise by absorbing sound, as the rubber-edges are far softer than steel – eliminating that harsh, loud clang when traffic drives over the top.

Oxford Plastics’ composite road plate is also more eco-friendly than the traditional steel plate. Specifically, with steel plates contractors need to use cold patch as a ramp. This cold patch leaches oil when it rains, which then travels into storm drains and then local water bodies.

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The Oxford LowPro 23/05 traffic plates have ramped edges, and they can be anchored into place. They can also be transported with far smaller vehicles than steel plates, and installed without powered heavy lifting equipment.

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