1. A portable barricade useful for restraining crowds comprising a length of multiple-ply webbing having the plies thereof interconnected along the margins to provide a central opening therebetween, a metallic cable extending along the length of the webbing within said opening, said barricade terminating at opposite ends in fastener means, and hand holds disposed at spaced intervals along the length of said webbing, the weight and thickness of said webbing and cable being sufficiently low to permit manual support thereof by said hand holds and being sufficiently flexible to permit coiling of the barricade upon itself to provide a compact package for storage and transportation, each of said hand holds comprising a support loop of a fabric strip having the opposite ends thereof attached to said webbing, said loops being spaced apart at intervals which permit holding adjacent loops by an adult with his arm comfortable extended at waist level.
2. A barricade according to claim 1 wherein said strip ends are sewn to the webbing by stitching on opposite sides of the cable to center the cable therein.
3. A barricade according to claim 1 wherein the hand holds at the opposite ends of the barricade comprise support loops of fabric strips having their opposite ends overlapped criss-cross fashion and stitched to the webbing on both sides of the cable.
4. A barricade according to claim 1 wherein said multiple-ply webbing comprises a nylon fabric made into an integral tubular element as it is fabricated in indeterminate length, the ends of said barricade having the nylon yarns welded together to provide a ravel-proof terminus for the webbing.
5. A barricade according to claim 1 wherein said cable extends beyond the ends of said webbing, and said fastener means comprise fastener elements secured to the projecting ends of said cable.
6. A barricade according to claim 5 wherein each of said fastener elements comprises a combination hook and eyelet having a hook portion and a latch portion with complementary interengaging tips.
7. A portable barricade useful for restraining crowds comprising a length of multiple-ply webbing having the plies thereof interconnected along the margins to provide a central opening therebetween, said barricade terminating at opposite ends in fastener means, and hand holds disposed at spaced intervals along the length of said webbing, each of said hand holds comprising a closed support loop of a fabric strip attached to said webbing, said loops being spaced apart at intervals which permit holding adjacent loops by an adult with his arms comfortably extended at waist level, the weight and thickness of said webbing being sufficiently low to permit manual support thereof by said hand holds and being sufficiently flexible to permit coiling of the barricade upon itself to provide a compact package for storage and transportation.
8. A portable barricade according to claim 7 including a flexible metallic tension member extending along the length of said webbing within said opening.
The present invention relates to portable barricades and has particular application to a portable device for controlling crowds of people.
Prior to the present invention, when it was anticipated that it would be necessary to control crowds of spectators, highway barricades were normally set up to demarcate the lines behind which the crowds were expected to remain. While such barricades were satisfactory to control orderly crowds, it is necessary to plan sufficiently far ahead to erect the barricades and also to provide for removal of the barricades when the crowd has dispersed.
Alternatively, single-strand rope fences are sometimes erected to define the limits for crowds of spectators. Rope fences are not entirely satisfactory as they are easily overlooked and spectators may be injured by their failure to notice the presence of the ropes. Furthermore, ropes must be supported by trees, posts or other supports and the stringing of the ropes may cause abrasions or burns. Furthermore, ropes are subject to being frayed or severed by sharp objects or obstructions.
In either of the foregoing cases, it is necessary to have advance notice of the need for barricade in order to erect the highway barricade or to string the rope fence. Thus there is no convenient portable barricade which may be used to control crowds which gather spontaneously, as for example at the scene of a highway accident or other disaster.
The present invention provides a novel barrier which may be stored in a compact package and carried by public safety personnel, and which may be extended at the site of a crowd and used to effectively control the crowd temporarily, and may then be compacted and stored away for repeated use.
The present invention provides an improved barrier which is readily hand-held by safety personnel on the scene without propensity to injure the safety personnel or the crowds sought to be controlled.
More specifically, the present invention provides a portable barricade which may be coiled for storage and which comprises a length of nylon webbing formed of multiple plies in which a metallic cable is disposed between selected plies, the cable having manually-operated fastening devices at opposite ends which permit the lengths to be connected end-to-end, and the webbing having hand holds or support means disposed at conveniently spaced intervals along its length.
All the objects of the invention are more fully set forth hereinafter with reference to the accompanying drawings:
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary view of a portable barricade made in accordance with the invention showing its use;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary face view with portions broken away illustrating certain structural features of the invention;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the apparatus shown in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken on the lines 4--4 of FIG. 2.
Referring now to the drawings, FIG. 1 illustrates the use of a plurality of portable barricades made in accordance with the present invention. As shown in FIG. 1, a pair of flexible barricades, each designated 10, are connected end-to-end, for example by fasteners 11. The barricades 10 are fabricated in determinate lengths, for example 25 foot lengths, and are provided with suitable fasteners 11 at each end. At spaced locations, along the length of the barricade, intermediate hand holds or support loops 12 are provided, which permit the normal adult to conveniently grasp and support the barricade at waist level when his arms are comfortably extended, as shown in FIG. 1. A terminal hand hold of different configuration is provided at each end as indicated at 13. A suitable spacing between the hand holds 12, 12 and 13 has been found to be 5 feet.
The barricade is designed particularly to be hand-held by personnel on the scene where it is desired to control the crowd. To this end, the hand holds 12 and 13 are of a material which is comfortable to hold and which does not cut into the flesh when it is held for a prolonged period. A suitable material is a 1-inch tape with multiple plies of nylon yarns woven into an integral structure. The length of nylon tape is such as to provide a loop preferably about 20 inches in circumferential extent.
The body 14 of the barricade, as indicated in FIG. 4, is likewise formed of multiple plies of nylon webbing. In the present instance, the multiple plies are interwoven integrally into a unitary structure having an opening between the two face plies thereof. As shown in FIG. 4, the preferred material comprises a double thickness of nylon webbing of approximately three inch width. The face plies of the webbing 15 and 16 are interwoven along their edges for a distance of at least one-half inch in width as indicated at 17 to provide a pocket or opening 18 between the plies 15 and 16. The pocket 18 extends the full length of the body portion 14 of the barrier so as to accommodate therewithin a stranded steel cable 21. The cable 21, as shown in FIG. 2, extends beyond the ends of the body portion 14 and has the fasteners 11 spliced thereon as indicated at 22.
The webbing 14 with the cable 21 therein is of sufficiently light weight to enable persons to comfortably support the same at waist level, as shown in FIG. 1 and is sufficiently flexible to permit the barricade to be coiled upon itself into a compact package for storage and transport. For example, a 25-foot length of the portable barricade of 3 inches width when coiled will conveniently store in a package which is less than 17 inches in diameter and less than 4 inches deep. In this manner it may be carried about in emergency vehicles for use whenever a situation arises which calls for the control of crowds.
Nylon is the preferred material for the woven webbing inasmuch as the webbing may be woven in indeterminate lengths and cut to the desired length by a hot wire cutter which serves not only to separate the nylon webbing at the desired positions but also serves to weld the cut ends of the nylon yarns together to form a ravel-proof terminus for the body portion webbing 14.
As shown in FIG. 2, the intermediate support loops 12 and the terminal hand holds 13 are, in the illustrated embodiment of the invention, sewn to the nylon webbing against one face on opposite sides of the cable 21. The intermediate hand hold strips 12 are attached in simple loops substantially perpendicular to the length of the body portion by stitching in the present instance four lines, two of which extend parallel to the length of the body portion as indicated at 24 and two of which extend parallel to the length of the strip making up the support 12, as indicated at 25. The terminal ends of the hand-holding strip 12 are severed by a hot wire to weld the nylon yarns together at that terminus to provide a ravel-proof terminal for the strips, and these terminal edges are positioned closely adjacent the center of the body portion. In this fashion, the stitching adjacent the terminal edges of the strip 12 which pass through the body portion 14 serve to center the cable 21 within the body portion.
The terminal support loops 13, on the other hand, comprise strips having the opposite ends overlapped and disposed in a criss-cross array adjacent the severed end of the body portion. In this case, one end of the strip 13 is first stitched to the body portion 14 on opposite sides of the cable 21 as indicated at 26 and 27, and thereafter the other end of the strip 13 is stitched to the body portion 14 by stitching indicated at 29 and 30. The stitching 29 and 30 does not pass through the first end, but preferably is confined to the end and the body portion 14, as shown. In this fashion, the stitching serves to center the cable 21 within the body portion 14, and the additional wear occasioned by the fact that the support 13 is adjacent the terminal end of the body portion, is compensated for by the double stitching provided.
The fasteners 11 at the opposite ends of the cable 21 are selected so as to provide a secure linking-up of adjoining ends of the portable barricades. To this end, the fastener comprises a hook portion 33 having a base 34 spliced to the cable 21 and a latch 35 pivoted to the hook adjacent the base at 38 and having a contoured tip 36 which is complementary to the tip end of the hook 37 so as to interengage the resist separation. The pivotal connection at 38 includes a spring element (not shown) biasing the latch 35 into engagement with the hook 33 at the tip ends 36 and 37 and the arrangement is such that the interengagement between the hook and the latch provides a smooth contour which is devoid of projecting parts which may catch and tear clothing or flesh. Thus the fastener 11 is a combination hook and eyelet fastener which may be easily connected to a similar combination hook and eyelet fastener, may be hooked on to an existing cable or other strand, or may be hooked on to a stationary structure so as to firmly anchor one end of the portable barricade. Additionally, the structure of the fastener provides a loop through which a rope may be threaded to provide a short extension of the length of the barricade when desired.
In the illustrated embodiment, the webbing which makes up the body portion 14 has been described as a two-ply integrally-woven structure having an opening between the plies through which a strand of cable 21 is threaded prior to attachment of the hand holds 12 and 13. The integral weaving of the body portion 14 requires the support loops 12 and 13 to be secured externally to the body portion. Alternatively, the body portion may be made of multiple plies of webbing which are woven separately and sewn together, or woven flat and folded along the center line and sewn at one edge, to provide the multiple ply webbing with an opening therein to accommodate the cable. With such webbing, it may be appropriate to anchor the supports 12 and 13 to the body portion internally, i.e. intermediate the plies of the webbing. It also may be desired to incorporate the cable and the supports into the webbing during the fabricating operation, for example where the multiple-ply webbing made tubular by braiding or knitting.
While a particular embodiment of the invention has been illustrated and certain modifications have been described, it is not intended to limit the invention to such disclosure but changes and modifications may be made therein and thereto within the scope of the following claims.