Title:
PORTABLE TRAFFIC MARKER
United States Patent 3851616


Abstract:
A portable traffic marker characterized by a horizontal road-engaging base member and a vertical standard normally extending upwardly from the base. The standard is operatively connected to the base member by a plurality of peripherally spaced and radially extending elastic cords. The base is relatively heavy and is capable of remaining in a stable condition on the ground even under high wind conditions or when run over by a moving vehicle. The resilient connection between the base and standard permits the latter to readily move between its normal upright or vertical position downwardly to a generally horizontal position when acted upon by outside forces, and without effecting movement of the base.



Inventors:
BROWN W
Application Number:
05/394402
Publication Date:
12/03/1974
Filing Date:
09/04/1973
Assignee:
BROWN W,US
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
40/612, 116/63P, 248/158, 404/10
International Classes:
E01F9/012; E01F9/627; (IPC1-7): E01F9/10
Field of Search:
116/63R,63P,63PC 40
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3016035Signal device1962-01-09Asbury
2800099Inflated marker1957-07-23Baker
1687790Display appliance1928-10-16Powers



Primary Examiner:
Myracle, Jerry W.
Assistant Examiner:
Yasich, Daniel M.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Zimmerman, Harris
Claims:
I claim

1. A portable traffic marker including a relatively flat ground-engaging base member having a central opening extending vertically therein, a separate vertical standard disposed centrally of said central opening and extending upwardly therefrom, a plate-like member secured to said standard adjacent the lower end thereof, a plurality of resiliently extensible means connected to and extending under tension from the periphery of the central opening of said base member to the lower end of said standard to support said standard above the ground, whereby said standard may be deflected by a moving object from said vertical position to an inclined position relative to said base member and restored to said vertical position.

2. A marker as set forth in claim 1 in which said resiliently extensible means include a plurality of elastic cord members extending radially outwardly from said standard to said periphery of said central opening.

3. A member as set forth in claim 2 in which said standard is of a hollow conical configuration.

4. A member as set forth in claim 2 including said elastic cord members being attached to said plate-like member.

5. A member as set forth in claim 4, including a plurality of rigid elements disposed within said base member around said opening, said elastic cord members being attached to said elements and extending into said opening generally normal to said standard and being attached to peripherally spaced portions of said plate-like member.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Traffic markers or traffic delineators of the portable type have been generally accepted for the temporary routing or diverting of vehicular traffic. Most commonly, such devices include a ground-engaging base and a standard formed integrally with and extending upwardly from the base. Usually, the standard is of hollow conical configuration whereby a plurality of devices may be vertically nested or stacked for storage and the like. However, in other instances, the standard may merely comprise a tubular member. In either case, the integral nature of the base and standard frequently results in the entire device being overturned when hit by a vehicle or under high wind conditions, in both situations, the primary overturning force is directed normal to the standard or parallel to the base.

In my co-pending application for patent, Ser. No. 342,814, filed Mar. 19, 1973, now U.S. Pat. Ser. No. 3,809,007 and entitled Portable Traffic Delineator, a device is disclosed which is particularly effective in resisting overturning under wind conditions, but the application did not address itself to the common problem of unseating or overturning when struck by a vehicle. Even if the device is made dimensionally stable so that it will return to an upright position after being overturned, it will usually be laterally displaced after being struck, so that it no longer can function as a lane marker or divider.

It is accordingly a primary object of the present invention to provide a portable traffic marker which will remain in a desired location on the ground even under windy conditions, or even after being hit or run over by a vehicle.

A further object of the invention is to provide a portable marker as above described in which the standard portion is formed separately of the base portion, and resilient means interconnect such portions in such manner as to permit pivotal movement of the standard about a plurality of horizontal axes adjacent the base.

THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the portable traffic marker of the present invention, the phantom lines representing positions of the standard when acted upon by an outside force.

FIG. 2 is a portional cross-sectional view of the base, the lower portion of the standard, and the connection between the same.

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of a portion of the structure shown in FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view similar to FIG. 1, but illustrating a modified form of the invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

The main embodiment of the invention is best disclosed in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 of the drawing and generally includes a base 6, a standard 8, and a resilient means 10 interconnecting the standard to the base. The base as shown has a rectangular configuration, but other shapes such as round, rectangular, etc. could be employed if desired. Base 6 is provided with a central opening 12 and is of sufficient thickness to be form-retaining, and of sufficient weight to remain generally fixed in the location where it is placed. If desired, the base may be constructed with apertures as discussed in the aforesaid copending application, but since such apertures and their associated tubular elements form no independent part of the present invention, they are not shown in the present drawing. The base may be formed of rubber, neoprene or suitable plastic, but preferably has sufficient resiliency to be slightly deformable when run over by a vehicle.

The standard 8 is shown as a length of hollow plastic tubing having a side wall 14 and a bottom end wall 16, the latter being releasably connected to a lower plate 18 by any suitable means, such as the bolt arrangement shown in FIG. 2. The standard extends vertically upwardly from the central axis of base opening 12 and is resiliently supported in such position by the resilient means 10, best illustrated in FIG. 3 of the drawing. Plate 18 is provided with four equally spaced apertures 22 through which a cord 24 may be threaded to define four radially extending loop portions 26. Such loop portions are releasably engaged with hooks 28 carried on the inner distal end portions of elastic cord means 30 whose radially outermost portions are secured to portions 32 of a rigid frame, the latter being inserted within and suitably secured to the base 6.

It should be understood that the elastic cords 30 could extend from the frame 32 directly to the plate 18, but it has been found that with the arrangement shown, if the standard is damaged and requires replacement, it is very easy to release the hooks 28 and put a new standard on the assembly either with or without replacement of plate 18 and cord 24. It should also be understood that in place of the elastic cords 24, other resilient means such as a tension spring could be used.

Frame 32 is here illustrated as an annular ring which may be inserted into the base through a bottom opening annular groove 34 formed in the lower surface of the base. A peripheral groove 36 communicates with the opening 12 for passage of the cord 30 from the ring or frame into the opening and towards the standard.

The foregoing arrangement results in a unit which will remain fixed or stationary even when hit by a vehicle. As shown in FIG. 1, if the standard is hit, it will merely pivot downwardly against the pressure of the cords 30, and when the force is removed, the cords will return the standard to its normal upright position.

FIG. 4 illustrates a modified form of the invention in which the standard takes the form of a typical hollow plastic cone 42 to permit a degree of vertical stacking of a number of units. The lower end 44 of the cone must be open if stacking is to occur and consequently the cords 46 are attached to peripherally spaced portions of the outer surface of the cone adjacent the lower end thereof. The cord arrangement can otherwise be the same as discussed in connection with FIG. 3, or merely comprise elastic cords interconnecting the cone and ring 32.

In both embodiments it will be noted that the lower end of the standard is located above the lower surface 50 of the base. This permits the aforesaid pivotal movement of the standard about an infinite number of horizontal axes located in the plane of the frame or ring, with the outer edges of the lower end of the standard capable of movement within the opening 12 without interference from the road surface on which the base is positioned .