Big Bear, CA, April, 6, 2016 – The California Department of Transportation plans to begin work on April 11 to install a ‘thrie beam guardrail’ for the State Route 18 Median Project between Sierra Way, at the base of the mountain, and State Route 138, also known as Crestline Cutoff. The project was put into motion when a higher than average number of cross over collisions occurred on this section of the route.
Caltrans began working with the communities of Crestline and Lake Arrowhead two years ago regarding the installation of a concrete median barrier. During those discussions it was decided that there would be hydrology issues with water and ice runoff if a solid concrete median was installed. It was determined that a ‘thrie beam guardrail’ would mitigate some of those issues in addition to minimizing future maintenance and repairs.
The guardrail installation, scheduled to begin on Monday, will require the left lane, or one of two lanes, closed in both directions of SR 18 in two mile increments during work hours, Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The construction is expected to last approximately 3.5 months, depending on weather. Traffic impacts are expected to be minimal but motorists are advised to add a little extra commute time to avoid any unforeseen delays.
Caltrans and the California Highway Patrol want to inform the public that the speed limit will be reduced within the project limits from 55 MPH to 45 MPH to enhance safety for the workers and motorists. This change will be effective 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Construction zone speed limit signs will be placed approximately every 1.5 miles. Be advised that traffic citations within construction zones can be subject to double fines.
Caltrans worked closely with law enforcement and emergency responders to determine ten strategic access points along the nine-mile stretch where the guardrail will be placed. Five animal crossing locations have also been designed into the project. The work is expected to be complete by December 2016 (weather permitting).