Highways and bridges are truly the arteries of nation, keeping its economic life humming along. Unfortunately, they are now in a state of neglect, which has a number of dangerous consequences. Bridge and highway collapses underscore the urgency of infrastructure repair and upgrade projects. Essential equipment like shoring systems and road composite mats ensure the safety of workers and the successful completion of important projects.
Aging infrastructure poses safety risks
Most of the nation?s transportation infrastructure dates back at least 40 or 50 years. There are around 607,380 bridges, with an average age of 42 years. Studies have found that one in nine is structurally deficient. Such structures pose real threats to the safety of travelers, yet around 200 million trips are made each day across such deficient bridges in the largest 102 metropolitan areas.
Infrastructure repair will take a considerable financial commitment. To repair the deficient bridges by 2028, an annual investment of $20.5 billion is needed according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). Current spending, at $12.8 billion annually, is inadequate.
Construction safety is crucial to any project
Infrastructure repair projects must follow OSHA safety guidelines to ensure the safety of workers and the integrity of the structures. Safety measures like shoring systems, temporary roads and road composite mats have to be in place before work can even begin. Further, excavation shoring requirements include testing for atmospheric hazards like toxic fumes and gases when the trenches are over 4 feet deep.
Shoring can be of two types, using timber or aluminum hydraulic. Trench boxes may be used along with sloping and benching. Using the right equipment can help ensure the safety of workers, worksites and travelers. Temporary roads made with road composite mats provide stable access to the site.
Temporary roads provide safe access
Temporary road construction is necessary for work and staging areas. Road composite mats can be used in any soil conditions and provide a stable surface. They can be used to move heavy equipment, provide access across wetlands, and to provide an stable work surface, even in the most rugged and wet conditions.
Composite road mats measure 8 x 14 feet and weigh 1,050 lb. A single truckload is sufficient to build a road that is 14 feet wide and 250 feet long. They reduce mud and dust, are antiskid and outperform wooden mats. They can be placed and aligned using forklifts and excavators, and require little site preparation. With road composite mats, the site can be quickly restored to its original condition.
Highway repair and regarded are essential infrastructure projects. Having the necessary equipment and structures in place can ensure the overall safety and success of the project. Temporary roads, shoring systems and road composite mats all create a safe work site for essential repair and upgrade projects to be completed.