Creators of Safe and Innovative Infrastructure Solutions

Importance of Protecting Wildlife During Construction

Construction often involves creative solutions to protect indigenous and protected wildlife. When possible, construction can be scheduled to avoid certain key events important to maintaining the species. Some examples of this that our company has dealt with in the recent past were:

  • Scheduled several construction activities to limit activities within 1,500 of the entrance to hibernacula of Indiana bats between November 15 and March 31 each year.
  • Avoided in stream construction work during the months of February through June to avoid impacts to anadromous fish species, who migrate from the ocean to spawn in freshwaters.
  • Avoidance of any in-stream activities from March 15th to July 1st due to the presence of endangered longnose sucker fish, as well as notifying the fish and wildlife commission prior to any in stream activity outside of the banned period, so that they would conduct a fish survey in the stream to assure that construction activities could proceed.

 

Another method of protection of endangered species is to design ways to monitor and work around the species. Some examples of this were:

  • Utilized full-time subcontractors to observe and protect timber rattlesnakes and turtles which are protected under NJ law. They monitored the roadways and job site to find any protected species and relocate it nearby. The rattlesnakes were heat seeking and were often on the roadways in the day time. Before any vehicular or equipment travel, they would patrol the road. They also examined equipment after sitting overnight to make sure no snakes had crawled into take advantage of the engine heat from the previous day’s usage.
  • Installed a fish baffle matrix to allow for the passage of fish in a stream while we worked.
  • Utilized a trestle to access the construction on a bridge to avoid disturbances to the Roanoke Logperch fish and the red-cockaded woodpecker.

Our workers and work plan help maintain both the objectives of protection of wildlife and delivering a project on time to our clients.

Poll: US voters agree on need for infrastructure investment

Excerpts from Construction Dive By Kim Slowey

According to an Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) national poll of almost 2,000 registered voters released Tuesday, the majority of Americans — regardless of political affiliation — believe U.S. highway, bridge and energy grid infrastructure is in dire need of repair.

Additional findings from the AEM poll:

  • Respondents believe that state (76%), federal (72%) and local (70%) governments should be doing more to improve infrastructure.
  • Nearly half (46%) of respondents believe U.S. infrastructure has deteriorated over the last five years, and 49% said it is the federal government’s duty to fund the necessary repairs.

The American Road and Transportation Builders Association reported earlier this year that in 2015, nearly 10% of the nation’s 600,000 bridges were structurally deficient, and the USDOT said there was a 21-year, $115 billion backlog for bridge repairs as long as the country invested in them at its current pace.

In another report, the American Society of Civil Engineers said in May that the U.S. will lose 2.5 million jobs and $4 trillion in gross domestic product over the next decade if it can’t overcome the impending $1.44 trillion deficit in infrastructure funding. The ASCE said surface transportation (highways, transit) needs the most investment and that if the U.S. doesn’t figure out a way to meet that need, the funding shortfall could grow to as much as $5.18 trillion by 2040.

To read the full article visit Construction Dive.

College interns benefit from real-life experience, while i+iconUSA benefits from new ideas

Excerpts from an article in The Daily American:

Madison Bungard, a college junior majoring in civil engineering who is a second rotation intern on Fay’s US 219 New Highway Construction project, said the Buffalo Creek beam installation was the most interesting thing she’s witnessed this summer.

“Definitely, the beam erection was the coolest thing,” Bungard said. “It beats whatever my friends are doing.”

Buffalo Creek Bridge is the highest and longest bridge on the project. It will be 1,100 feet long and 220 feet high with five spans. It is located between Crossroad School Road and Fogletown Road near Garrett.

Bungard wanted to work on the Route 219 project because she is from Meyersdale. The four-lane, 11-mile highway is being built between Meyersdale and Somerset. “I wrote a comment on the Fay website that I was from the area and was majoring in civil engineering, and they contacted me,” she said.

Last summer, she worked on thermal integrity profiling of caissons. A caisson is a retaining structure used in bridges. The metal caissons used in the Buffalo Creek Bridge weigh about 9,000 pounds each and are then filled with concrete. “Because caissons are large and concrete is hot, we have to monitor the temperature to ensure the quality of the project,” she said.

Professionals in the field said it is important for students to learn on the job. Michelle Olszewski, project manager for Fay, said the company hires at least five interns each summer. “It is important to have interns to prepare the next generation of people to come into the field,” she said. “We are happy to have them. It adds value to the company.”

To read the full article visit The Daily American.

AGC Calls for Better Safety Measures as New Data Shows 39% of Road Contractors Suffered Car Crashes in Work Zones

Construction Officials Urge Summer Travel Motorists to Stay Alert While Driving through Work Zones, Noting Highway Workers are at Risk while Drivers and Passengers are Even More Likely to Be Hurt or Killed 

Thirty-nine percent of highway contractors reported that motor vehicles had crashed into their construction work zones during the past year, according to the results of a new highway work zone study conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America.  Association officials urged summer travel motorists to stay alert while driving through work zones, noting that highway workers are in danger and drivers and passengers face an even higher risk of being hurt or killed in work zone crashes.

Forty-four percent of contractors who reported work zone crashes on their projects said that motor vehicle operators or passengers were injured, and 12 percent of those crashes involved a driver or passenger fatality.  Highway work zone crashes also pose a significant risk for construction workers. 18 percent of work zone crashes injure construction workers and 6 percent of those crashes kill them.

The work zone safety study was based on a nationwide survey of over 800 highway construction firms. Click here to view the national, regional and state highway construction zone survey results.

 

Article from: https://www.agc.org/news/2016/05/24/construction-group-calls-better-safety-measures-new-data-shows-39-percent-road#sthash.4ujjnQmI.dpuf

Safety Week 2016

As part of our vision to be “creators of safe and innovative infrastructure solutions”, i+iconUSA sponsored Safety Week 2016. Safety will continue to be our focus every day, at work and at home. We encourage everyone to follow safety precautions and have safety “top-of-mind”.