WYDOT considers safety nets for truckers

Oct 24, 2013

Wyoming’s Department of Transportation is planning to install a pair of CatchNET systems on Teton Pass, west of Wilson.

 CatchNET systems are sets of metal netting which bring runaway vehicles to a safe stop.

 The only CatchNET currently installed in Wyoming has proved successful. The six drivers who've used it walked away from the incidents unharmed, while those who didn't died or were seriously injured.  

But WyoDOT spokeswoman Stephanie Harsha says convincing truckers that the nets work can be challenging.

 “The issue that I think most drivers have” said Harsha, “is when they do see this, it’s very scary for them to look over and only see two concrete barriers with cables going across.”

 Harsha says the catch-net system is inspired by technology used to stop planes on air-craft-carriers. They're able to catch even the heaviest vehicles moving at 90 miles an hour.

 Together, the new nets will cost around 3-and-a-quarter million dollars. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2015.