In an ideal world, all road maintenance would be carried out while the road was entirely closed to traffic. While road closure may be desirable, it often isn't a practical option even when you need to dig holes or trenches across the road. If you need to keep the road open for traffic while there is an open trench across the road, then the most practical option is to use road plates. Road plates are, exactly as the name suggests, plates that are placed across a trench to bridge the gap and enable traffic to pass safely over the trench and continue on their journey. Road plates are available in a huge variety of shapes and sizes, each with their own special characteristics and features. Identifying the right road plates for you will take a little thought. Here are the primary questions you must answer before you make your choice.
What size of road plate do you need?
The size of the road plate is obviously going to be of great importance. You will need to think about both the length and the width of the plate required to span the trench. The length needed should be simple to determine—just make sure that you can safely cover the widest trench you will dig. The width will be determined by how much of the trench you need to cover. It's important that you don't just think about the width of vehicles but also the safety of workers on the site. Leaving part of the trench uncovered could constitute a significant health and safety risk. Along with the width and length, you must also consider the thickness of the plate. The thickness of the plate is related to the weight which the plate will be required to bear. A road plate that will only ever be required to bear pedestrian traffic could be quite thin, but a plate that will be exposed to a constant flow of heavy plant or fast-moving traffic must be much thicker. If you aren't sure which plate you need, then explain your requirements to the hiring company and be guided by their experience.
What coating should you use?
Road plates can be supplied with a range of coatings for different applications. You might consider titanium carbide or an anti-skid surface such as resin encapsulated aggregate which is popular on road plates that will be used on the highway. Anti-slip coatings can have advantages for personnel as well as for vehicular traffic since they enable them to move easily around the site without endangering themselves. You could opt for a coating which is applied to the surface of the plate or a textured surface to improve the grip on the plate. Whatever you decide, you must be sure that your chosen road plates will be safe for everyone who will use them throughout the duration of your project.
For more information, get in touch with a company such as GSS Hire.