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L & L Panel Discussion Follow Up from PennDOT

The following questions were posed to Gary Modi (Representing Secretary Al Biehler) at the January 22nd, 2010 Alliance of Bikers Aimed Toward Education (ABATE) meeting. Responses to these questions have been provided.
1. Why is Tar & Chip used on roadways?
Rich Stirling, Bur. Of Municipal Services,, (717) 783-3721
a. Alternatives such as these must be used to extend life of pavements until proper resurfacing can be utilized. Repaving of entire system (See Figure 1) with asphalt overlay is not financially possible. Oil and Chip does aid in pavement preservation by sealing the roadway and keeping the moisture out, as well as increasing the skid resistance on roads that may be slick. It is also cheap compared to other pavement preservation methods.

2. Who is responsible for determining acceptable depth (high or low) that manholes can be placed at in regards to pavement?
West - Garth D. Bridenbaugh, P.E.,, (814)-696-7194
East - Joe Robinson, P.E., (717) 787-4794
a. According to RC-39M note 6 on sheet 5 of 6, it states “locate top of frame or adjustment riser 3 (1/8”) below the top of roadway surface. This is not so much a tolerance, but a specific target without tolerances. Also, In Pub. 408, Section 409 it states “adjacent to flush curbs, gutters, and other abutting structures, place the wearing course mixture uniformly higher so that after compaction the finished surface is slightly above the edge of the abutting structure.” In Pub. 408, Section 606 for manhole grade adjustments it states “construct the structure walls to the required elevation, as specified in Section 605.3, conforming to the type of construction and dimensions of the existing structure.”, which would then take you back to the 1/8” target in RC-39M
b. The inspector in charge of the paving operation should be the enforcer of policies to ensure compliance. With that said, often this is very difficult to achieve with changes in cross slope, and variability in paving depths to achieve good drainage, etc. Risers are typically uniform in depth and depending on the cross slope change during paving or the inadequacy of the original slope on the manhole, things can get tricky.
c. The basic tenant of the RCs is that they are for new construction. They are adapted for use in all types of projects from overlays to 3R to full reconstruction. Thus, it is first up to the designer to insure all the pieces fit together during the design phase. You need to have all the elevations and quantities and everything in place so that the contractor can build it right. Next, it is up to the contractor to not only build it as per plan, but to work with the Department to do what needs done to do it right the first time. Also, the inspectors have a huge role to see that it is built as per plan but then to do the proper adjustments and fine tuning of the plans to also do it right the first time.
d. Manhole adjustments due to paving are accomplished through a variety of means. Generally speaking the Department has the contractor perform the grade adjustments in most cases with a 0606 item. In some cases the utility may actually perform the grade adjustments. Each District’s Utility Unit sets this up on a project by project basis and often it may be addressed in a special provision in the contract.
e. Below is an example from a special provision in a project where the contractor will perform the adjustments via 0606 item but the utility will provide the material:
The Altoona City Authority has sewer lines and manholes throughout the project. Coordinate operations with the utility to assure facilities are located prior to milling operations. Secure adjustment risers that are removed following milling operations. Preserve manhole locations prior to paving, and place risers as paving operation advances. Altoona City Authority will provide a variety of adjustment risers in the event they are needed. Return unused material to the ACA. Coordinate schedules, providing sufficient notice of operations for utility to react. Use caution when placing guiderail. Locate facility and adjust as needed to avoid conflict. Five (5) calendar days required.

3. What happens to 1-800-Fix-Roads requests that are on non-PennDOT/Local roads?
(Report Road Hazards, see page 4.)
a. The callers are forwarded to the appropriate borough/township
b. These requests are investigated and forwarded to the appropriate borough/township

Christopher B. Speese
Highway Safety Engineering Section Manager

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