Cumberland Barrier, Inc. is a small Vietnam Veteran owned company in Springboro, Ohio. Cumberland designs and manufactures the MEDIAN RESPONDER GATE (MRG). The MRG creates an opening in the concrete median barrier wall on divided highways. The MRG lowers wirelessly in less than 10 seconds, making it ideal for emergency responders to quickly reach the other side of the highway, shortening response time.
How Cumberland Barrier Started
The MRG was born from the owner and developer’s personal experience. The owner arrived at an interstate highway accident only moments after it occurred. Several people were injured with one in excruciating pain from a compound fracture. In a short time, approaching sirens signaled that help was on the way. The relief was short-lived however. The responders were on the other side of a concrete barrier wall and drove past the accident scene searching for a place to turn around. Questions of “Why did they leave?”, came from the injured. Sirens from the responders waned until they could no longer be heard. The wall extended for miles to the next interchange. After several minutes, sirens could again be heard in the distance. Except now, they were fighting their way through traffic snarled from the accident. Additional time was added to the response.
No emergency access through concrete median barriers is a huge negative to public safety. Emergency median access is commonly provided through every median situation except concrete median barrier wall. Further investigation revealed that in most cases, emergency median crossovers that were originally built with the interstate systems have been eliminated with the installation of concrete median barrier. Hundreds of emergency crossovers have been eliminated across the country.
While the incident described above only caused a very painful injury, it’s only common sense that additional time saved reaching accident victims could also be lifesaving. Cumberland’s owner, a Civil Engineer, decided to develop a gate that operated easily enough and fast enough that emergency responders could use it. The MRG was created and tested to meet Federal Highway Administration approval.