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HF 2687

as introduced - 87th Legislature (2011 - 2012) Posted on 03/13/2012 11:51am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Bill Text Versions

Engrossments
Introduction Posted on 03/05/2012

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to transportation; regulating bridge inspections; amending Minnesota
Statutes 2010, sections 165.01; 165.03; repealing Minnesota Rules, parts
8810.9000; 8810.9100; 8810.9200; 8810.9300; 8810.9400; 8810.9500;
8810.9600; 8810.9700.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2010, section 165.01, is amended to read:


165.01 DEFINITIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Scope.

For the purposes of this chapter, the terms defined in this
section and section 160.02 have the meanings given them.

Subd. 2.

AASHTO manual.

deleted text begin "AASHTO manual" means the Manual for Condition
Evaluation of Bridges, published by the American Association of State Highway and
Transportation Officials.
deleted text end new text begin "The Manual for Bridge Evaluation," published by the American
Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, is incorporated by reference.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Bridge. new text end

new text begin "Bridge" is defined as a structure, including supports erected over
a depression or an obstruction, such as water, a highway, or a railway, having a track or
passageway for carrying traffic or other moving loads, and having an opening measured
horizontally along the center of the roadway of ten feet or more between undercopings
of abutments, between spring line of arches, or between extreme ends of openings for
multiple boxes. Bridge also includes multiple pipes where the clear distance between
openings is less than one-half of the smaller contiguous opening. This definition of a
bridge includes only those railroad and pedestrian bridges over a public highway or street.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin National Bridge Inspection Standards (NBIS). new text end

new text begin "NBIS" means standards
established by the Federal Highway Administration in Code of Federal Regulations, title
23, part 650, subpart C, incorporated by reference.
new text end

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2010, section 165.03, is amended to read:


165.03 STRENGTH OF BRIDGE; INSPECTION.

Subdivision 1.

Standards generally.

Each bridge, including a privately owned
bridge, must conform to the strength, width, clearance, and safety standards imposed
by the commissioner for the connecting highway or street. This subdivision applies to
a bridge that is constructed after August 1, 1989, on any public highway or street. The
bridge must have sufficient strength to support with safety the maximum vehicle weights
allowed under sections 169.822 to 169.829 and must have the minimum width specified
in section 165.04, subdivision 3.

Subd. 1a.

Inspection.

(a) Each bridge must be inspected annually, unless a longer
interval not to exceed deleted text begintwo yearsdeleted text endnew text begin 24 monthsnew text end for bridges or deleted text beginfour yearsdeleted text endnew text begin 48 monthsnew text end for bridges
classified as culverts is authorized by the commissioner. The commissioner's authorization
must be based on factors including, but not limited to, the age and condition of the
bridge, the rate of deterioration of the bridge, the type of structure, the susceptibility of
the bridge to failure, and the characteristics of traffic on the bridge. The commissioner
may require interim inspections at intervals of less than one year on bridges that are
posted, bridges subjected to extreme scour conditions, bridges subject to significant
substructure movement or settlement, and for other reasons as specified or inferred in the
AASHTO manual.

new text begin (b) Additional requirements apply to structures meeting the NBIS definition of
a bridge:
new text end

new text begin (1) Underwater structural elements must be inspected at regular intervals not to
exceed 60 months. The commissioner may require inspections at intervals of less than
60 months on certain underwater structural elements based on factors including, but not
limited to, construction material, the environment, age, the scour characteristics, the
condition rating from past inspections, and any known deficiencies.
new text end

new text begin (2) Fracture critical members, or FCMs, must receive a hands-on fracture critical
inspection at intervals not to exceed 24 months. The commissioner may require
inspections at intervals of less than 24 months on certain FCMs based on factors including,
but not limited to, age, the traffic characteristics, and any known deficiencies.
new text end

new text begin (3) The commissioner may establish criteria to determine the level and frequency of
these inspections. If warranted by special circumstances, the commissioner retains the
authority to determine the inspection type and required inspection frequency for any
bridge on the state inventory.
new text end

deleted text begin (b)deleted text endnew text begin (c)new text end The thoroughness of each inspection depends on such factors as age, traffic
characteristics, state of maintenance, and known deficiencies. The evaluation of these
factors is the responsibility of the engineer assigned the responsibility for inspection as
defined by deleted text beginrule adopted bydeleted text end the commissioner of transportation.

Subd. 2.

Inspection and inventory responsibilities; rules; forms.

new text begin (a) The
commissioner of transportation will adopt the National Bridge Inspection Standards
(NBIS) established by the Federal Highway Administration in Code of Federal
Regulations, title 23, part 650, subpart C, or its successor documents for structures
meeting the NBIS definition of a bridge. The commissioner shall establish inspection and
inventory standards for structures defined as bridges by section 165.01, subdivision 3.
new text end

deleted text begin (a)deleted text endnew text begin (b)new text end The commissioner of transportation shall adopt official inventory and bridge
inspection report forms for use in making bridge inspections by the owners or highway
authorities specified by this subdivision. Inspections must be made at regular intervals,
not to exceed deleted text begintwo years for bridges and not to exceed four years for culvertsdeleted text endnew text begin the intervals
outlined in subdivision 1a
new text end, by the following owner or official:

(1) the commissioner of transportation for all bridges located wholly or partially
within or over the right-of-way of a state trunk highway;

(2) the county highway engineer for all bridges located wholly or partially within or
over the right-of-way of any county or town road, or any street within a municipality that
does not have a city engineer regularly employed;

(3) the city engineer for all bridges located wholly or partially within or over the
right-of-way of any street located within or along municipal limits;

(4) the commissioner of transportation in case of a toll bridge that is used by the
general public and that is not inspected and certified under subdivision 6; provided, that
the commissioner of transportation may assess the owner for the costs of the inspection;

(5) the owner of a bridge over a public highway or street or that carries a roadway
designated for public use by a public authority, if not required to be inventoried and
inspected under clause (1), (2), (3), or (4).

deleted text begin (b)deleted text endnew text begin (c)new text end The commissioner of transportation shall prescribe the deleted text beginstandards for bridge
inspection and inventory by rules
deleted text endnew text begin inspection and inventory procedures required to
administer the bridge inspection program in Minnesota and has the authority to establish
and publish standards that describe the inspection and inventory requirements to ensure
compliance with paragraph (a)
new text end. The owner or highway authority shall inspect and
inventory in accordance with these standards and furnish the commissioner with such data
as may be necessary to maintain a central inventory.

Subd. 3.

County inventory and inspection records and reports.

The county
engineer shall maintain a complete inventory record of all bridges as set forth in
subdivision 2, paragraph deleted text begin(a)deleted text endnew text begin (b)new text end, clause (2), with the inspection reports thereof, and shall
certify annually to the commissioner, as prescribed by the commissioner, that inspections
have been made at regular intervals, not to exceed deleted text begintwo years for bridges and not to
exceed four years for culverts
deleted text endnew text begin the intervals outlined in subdivision 1anew text end. A report of the
inspections must be filed annually, on or before February 15 of each year, with the county
auditor or town clerk, or the governing body of the municipality. The report must contain
recommendations for the correction of or legal posting of load limits on any bridge or
structure that is found to be understrength or unsafe.

Subd. 4.

Municipal inventory and inspection records and reports.

The
city engineer shall maintain a complete inventory record of all bridges as set forth in
subdivision 2, paragraph deleted text begin(a)deleted text endnew text begin (b)new text end, clause (3), with the inspection reports thereof, and shall
certify annually to the commissioner, as prescribed by the commissioner, that inspections
have been made at regular intervals, not to exceed deleted text begintwo years for bridges and not to exceed
four years for culverts
deleted text endnew text begin the intervals outlined in subdivision 1anew text end. A report of the inspections
must be filed annually, on or before February 15 of each year, with the governing body of
the municipality. The report must contain recommendations for the correction of or legal
posting of load limits on any bridge or structure that is found to be understrength or unsafe.

Subd. 5.

Agreement.

Agreements may be made among the various units of
governments, or between governmental units and qualified engineering personnel to
carry out the responsibilities for the bridge inspections and reports, as established by
subdivision 2.

Subd. 6.

Other bridges.

The owner of a toll bridge and the owner of a bridge
described in subdivision 2, paragraph deleted text begin(a)deleted text endnew text begin (b)new text end, clause (5), shall certify to the commissioner,
as prescribed by the commissioner, that inspections of the bridge new text beginor culvert new text endhave been
made at regular intervals, not to exceed deleted text begintwo years for bridges and not to exceed four years
for culverts
deleted text endnew text begin the intervals outlined in subdivision 1anew text end. The certification must be accompanied
by a report of the inspection. The report must contain recommendations for the correction
of or legal posting of load limitations if the bridge is found to be understrength or unsafe.

new text begin Subd. 6a. new text end

new text begin Bridge load rating and posting. new text end

new text begin (a) The term "posting" means the
placement of regulatory signs at a bridge indicating the safe load carrying capacity of
the bridge.
new text end

new text begin (b) Each structure required to be inspected by subdivision 2, paragraph (a), must be
load rated to determine its safe load carrying capacity, and this rating must be reported
on a structure inventory sheet form provided by the commissioner of transportation. A
structure must be rerated when it is determined that a significant change has occurred in
the condition of the structure or due to additional dead load placed on the structure since
the last load rating. Load ratings must be reviewed and the structure rerated if necessary
when the allowable legal load using the structure is increased. Changes in the load rating
of a bridge must be indicated on the structure inventory sheet form.
new text end

new text begin (c) Where it is determined that the maximum legal load under state law exceeds
the load permitted on the structure under the operating rating stress level assigned, the
bridge must be posted. Posting signs as adopted by the commissioner shall be used for
the posting. The owner or highway authority shall post the bridge in accordance with the
posted load assigned by the commissioner.
new text end

Subd. 7.

Department of Natural Resources bridge.

(a) Notwithstanding
subdivision 2, the commissioners of transportation and natural resources shall negotiate a
memorandum of understanding that governs the inspection of bridges owned, operated,
or maintained by the commissioner of natural resources.

(b) The memorandum of understanding must provide for:

(1) the inspection and inventory of bridges subject to federal law or regulations;

(2) the frequency of inspection of bridges described in deleted text beginparagraph (a)deleted text endnew text begin subdivision
1a
new text end; and

(3) who may perform inspections required under the memorandum of understanding.

Subd. 8.

Biennial report on bridge inspection quality assurance.

By February
1 of each odd-numbered year, the commissioner shall submit a report electronically to
the members of the senate and house of representatives committees with jurisdiction over
transportation policy and finance concerning quality assurance for bridge inspections.
At a minimum, the report must:

(1) summarize the bridge inspection quality assurance and quality control procedures
used in Minnesota;

(2) identify any substantive changes to quality assurance and quality control
procedures made in the previous two years;

(3) summarize and provide a briefing on findings from bridge inspection quality
reviews performed in the previous two years;

(4) identify actions taken and planned in response to findings from bridge inspection
quality reviews performed in the previous two years;

(5) summarize the results of any bridge inspection compliance review by the Federal
Highway Administration; and

(6) identify actions in response to the Federal Highway Administration compliance
review taken by the department in order to reach full compliance.

Sec. 3. new text begin RULES REPEALER; BRIDGE INSPECTION AND INVENTORY.
new text end

new text begin Minnesota Rules, parts 8810.9000; 8810.9100; 8810.9200; 8810.9300; 8810.9400;
8810.9500; 8810.9600; and 8810.9700,
new text end new text begin are repealed.
new text end