The overhead structures will be examined beginning today by inspectors from Collins Engineers, who may perform inspections over lanes that are open to traffic. Collins anticipates completing inspections on the northbound side of the interstate by Friday, Feb. 12.
Crews plan to then move inspections to the southbound side of I-465 between 71st Street (Exit 21) and US 36/Rockville Road (Exit 13) the week of Feb. 22 through Feb. 26.
Inspections over traffic
INDOT first hired Collins, a consultant with 30 years of sign structure inspection experience, in 2009 to inspect 700 structures. INDOT has signed a new contract with Collins to inspect all 3,700 structures by 2021 for $970,000 per year.
To perform inspections over traffic without a lane closure, the inspector may either mount the structure by climbing it from the shoulder or gain access through a bucket truck that is positioned off the travel lanes. While the inspector is on the structure, his or her equipment is tethered so that nothing can fall or drop below. The inspector will be fully tied-off to the structure by using a double lanyard system. This method of keeping the inspector and all of the equipment tethered ensures that the inspector and traffic beneath will remain safe.
This method of inspection eliminates the risks inherent to closing traffic lanes, especially when the traffic-control devices are being set up and taken down. The inspections can be performed more quickly and cost efficiently by reducing the time and expense of traffic control operations.