This web utility is a content management system for luminaire supports. The web utility allows full viewing, submission, management, and reporting services to its users and the general public. The luminaire support systems shown in this guide are included here for review and informational purposes.

An index for the luminaire support guide is shown at upper left. Users may browse a list of all the systems in the guide or search for particular systems based on several pre-defined search criteria. Contact information for people and organizations that have submitted materials are shown in the contacts section. Some useful links and background information are shown in the Links and About sections respectively.

In general, all the luminaire support systems included in this Guide have been successfully crash tested according to NCHRP Report 350 or MASH and comply with the AASHTO Standard Specification for Structural Supports for Highway Signs, Luminaires and Traffic Signals. A link to the appropriate FHWA approval letter or memorandum is included in the index listing for each system but users may want to refer to the FHWA website for the most current information on a particular system.

Some materials require third-party software to view the files. Files with the PDF extension require the free Adobe Acrobat. AutoCAD files can be viewed with the free DWG Viewer or the free ModelPress software. Most video files should be readable by commonly installed software like the Windows Media Player or RealPlayer although sometimes a free driver might be required. Photographs are generally stored as JPG files which should be compatible with most web browsers.

User's Tutorial

A DRAFT User's Tutorial is available in PDF format from this link. The tutorial provides guidance on how to navigate and use the On-Line Guide to Luminaire Supports. It discusses the general layout of the Guide, the nomenclature for naming luminaire support systems and their components, and instuctions on how to use the Guide for finding luminaire systems.


The luminiaire support structures in this Guide meet the AASHTO Standard Specification for Structural Supports for Highway Signs, Luminaires and Traffic Signals and the FHWA eligible requirements for use on federally funded projects. The information page for each luminaire support system configuration provides the system manufacturer, luminaire base manufacturer, FHWA eligibility letter number, material type, base type, test specification, crash test level, mounting height, type of arm, arm length, bolt-circle diameter, and pole dimensions. Also included on the information page are the system drawings, photographs, and links to the detailed component pages for each individual component of the system. The Guide does not currently contain all FHWA approved systems. The materials included in the Guide are provided by the manufacturers and, to date, includes luminaire support systems corresponding to nine FHWA Approval Letters, (i.e., LS- 15, LS-23, LS-27, LS-29, LS-45, LS-55, LS-64, LS-65 and LS-66).

Crash Testing

All roadside safety devices, including luminaire supports, installed on Federal-Aid Projects are required to meet the current crash test requirements adopted by the Federal Highway Administration. The first crash test procedures were documented in the 1985 AASHTO Standard Specifications for Structural Supports for Highway Signs, Luminaires, and Traffic Signals. The test criteria for luminaire supports were essentially unchanged in the 1993 NCHRP Report 350 crash test procedures and thus all luminaire testing done between 1985 and 1993 was considered acceptable under NCHRP Report 350. The current crash test guidelines were published in the AASHTO 2009 Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH).

Until the acceptance of MASH the test criteria were based on "stub height" and vehicle velocity change and could be determined via pendulum testing. The most significant differences in the new MASH test procedures are that windshield damage and roof crush have been added to the acceptance criteria, which requires testing with the 5,000- lb pickup, but maintains test and velocity change evaluation criteria for the small car equivalent to that adopted in 1985. Roof crush under MASH test is limited to three inches maximum.

Overview of Drawings and Specifications

This Guide contains drawings and specifications for luminaire support systems and their components. Each system and component has been assigned a unique designator, such as SLC99. Every effort has been made to assure the correctness of the drawings and specifications at the time of publication, but a designer wishing to use details in this Guide should contact the system or component manufacturers directly to verify the geometric and structural adequacy of the design.


Dimensions in the drawings are given in both inches and millimeters, with the millimeter measurement in brackets. For example, a height of 30 inches (762 millimeters) is labeled as 30 [760]. In general, unit conversions and rounding conform to the recommendations of AASHTO R1-91.

How to Submit Data for Inclusion in the Guide

A DRAFT Data Submission Guide is available in PDF format from this link. This document provides a checklist for the submittal process; guidance for entering data into the Data Entry Form ; guidance for submitting data, drawings and photos for components; and guidance for creating and submitting drawings and photos for luminaire support systems.