FHWA Proposes Inspection Standards for Highway Tunnels

It has added some additional items to its NPRM issued three years ago in response to the latest federal transportation funding law.

The Federal Highway Administration is issuing a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking that lays out the proposed National Tunnel Inspection Standards for highway tunnels on all public roads, including tribally and federally owned ones. While FHWA had proposed standards for this in July 2010, these new ones are revised in light of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) federal transportation funding law signed last summer. It requires the U.S. secretary of Transportation to establish national standards for tunnel inspections.

A national tunnel inventory will be created, and regular, routine inspections of highway tunnels, with a minimum frequency of 24 months, will be required. Required training and a national certification program for tunnel inspectors also are included.

Section 650.509 of the standards says a tunnel inspection program manager must, at a minimum, be a registered Professional Engineer, have 10 years of tunnel or bridge inspection experience, and be a nationally certified tunnel inspector. The team leader would be a registered P.E. and a nationally certified tunnel inspector.

Tunnel owners would be required to notify FHWA within 24 hours of identifying a critical finding and what actions they are taking to resolve or monitor that finding.

FHWA admits in its published document that it has limited data on the number of highway tunnels in the nation, the frequencies at which they are inspected, and the costs associated with the inspections. "The FHWA expects that the overall increase in tunnel inspection costs across the Nation will be modest, as the vast majority of tunnel owners already inspect at the 24-month interval required by the NTIS," it states. "The FHWA does not have any information regarding the cost of fixing critical findings that are uncovered as a result of provisions in this rulemaking. Based on current data, only two tunnel owners, that together own 15 tunnels (bores), would be required to increase their current inspection frequency as a result of the requirements proposed in this SNPRM."

Product Showcase

  • Magid® D-ROC® GPD412 21G Ultra-Thin Polyurethane Palm Coated Work Gloves

    Magid’s 21G line is more than just a 21-gauge glove, it’s a revolutionary knitting technology paired with an advanced selection of innovative fibers to create the ultimate in lightweight cut protection. The latest offering in our 21G line provides ANSI A4 cut resistance with unparalleled dexterity and extreme comfort that no other 21-gauge glove on the market can offer! Read More

  • Glove Guard® Clip

    Safety should never be compromised, especially when it comes to proper glove usage. The Glove Guard® clip enhances safety by encouraging employees to keep their gloves with them at all times. This reduces the risk of accidents and injuries on the job. By ensuring everyone has their gloves readily available, we help promote a culture of safety and efficiency. The Glove Guard® clip is designed to withstand the toughest work environments. Constructed from robust materials made in the USA, it can endure extreme conditions, including harsh weather, and rigorous activities. Read More

  • Safety Knives

    The Safety Knife Company has developed a quality range of safety knives for all industries. Designed so that fingers cannot get to the blades, these knives will safely cut through cardboard, tape, strapping, shrink or plastic wrap or a variety of other packing materials. Because these knives have no exposed blades and only cut cardboard deep, they will not only protect employees against lacerations but they will also save product. The Metal Detectable versions have revolutionary metal detectable polypropylene knife bodies specifically for the food and pharmaceutical industries. This material can be detected and rejected by typical detection machines and is X-ray visible. Read More

Featured

Webinars