Spring 2015 Vol. 23, No. 2

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Pavements and Bridges

Timber bridge safety inspections improve with new techniques and equipment
New advanced inspection techniques and equipment are now available. The technologies include stress wave timing to locate and define areas of decay non-invasively, and resistance micro-drilling to confirm and quantify bridge element decay.

The shipping news: Freight issues in Minnesota
At the 19th annual TERRA Pavement Conference, Maureen Jensen discussed issues related to freight shipment in Minnesota, such as Bakken oil, weight restrictions, and rough pavements.

Three views of pavement management
The TERRA Pavement Conference on February 12 included three presentations on pavement and asset management—one with the view from MnDOT, one from counties, and one from cities.

TERRA conference materials online
Presentation slides are available from the Transportation Engineering and Road Research Alliance (TERRA) Pavement Conference.

Pavement stripping and patching: What causes stripping under chip seals?
For many years, paving engineers have had a problem with deterioration of the pavement layer underneath chip seals, just two or three years after application. Tom Wood of MnDOT explained the issue in a presentation at the APWA – Minnesota Chapter 2014 Fall Workshop.

LRRB Update

OPERA spotlight: Expanded polypropylene rings for manhole grade adjustment
Eden Prairie installed new polypropylene plastic manhole rings in its town center. These rings are lighter and more durable than concrete and offer more versatility than hard plastic rings.

New tool measures impact of heavy trucks
City and county engineers can use the new analysis method and corresponding spreadsheet tool to calculate the impact of heavy vehicles on asphalt roads.

LRRB's YouTube channel
The LRRB now has its own YouTube channel. Videos are designed to educate the public and provide training to local transportation practitioners.

Safety

Reducing fatal crashes on U.S. 14
MnDOT and law enforcement agencies are taking major steps to lower the abnormally high number of fatal crashes on one stretch of U.S. Highway 14 in southern Minnesota. So far, the results are significant. This was the topic of one session at the 2014 Toward Zero Deaths Conference.

Flagging handbook, video teach how to stay safe in work zones
The Minnesota Flagging Handbook, updated by MnDOT in 2014, covers equipment, flagging position, flagging situations, procedures, nighttime flagging, flagging at intersections, and proper conduct.

Communications

Workplace professionalism: make it a daily part of your life
Public works professionals play a vital role in keeping communities running smoothly and safely. According to Jim Grube, one of the most important parts of this work is dealing with the public and doing so in an ethical manner. He made his remarks in a presentation at the APWA – Minnesota Chapter 2014 Fall Workshop.

Awards and Honors

And the awards went to …
Congratulations to the recipients of annual awards from the American Public Works Association – Minnesota Chapter, Minnesota County Engineers Association, City Engineers Association of Minnesota, Transportation Engineering and Road Research Alliance.

Steering committee update
Minnesota LTAP welcomes three new members and thanks departing members for their service.

Workshops and Training

Sign up for new online training courses on sign, culvert maintenance and management
Minnesota LTAP is excited to announce the launch of two new online courses: Sign Maintenance and Management for Local Agencies, and Culvert Installation and Maintenance for Local Agencies.

Demo Day around the corner
The Minnesota Roadway Maintenance Training and Demo Day will be held this year on May 13 at the Dakota County Technical College in Rosemount.

Information Services

The Shelf
Recent publications from various sources

Snow fence cost-benefit tool now online
The Snow Fence Cost-Benefit Web Tool allows transportation agencies to calculate the amount they can pay private landowners to establish a living snow fence or to leave standing corn rows or other structures such as hay bales or silage bags to reduce blowing snow on sensitive highways.