The National Academies

NCHRP 14-12 [Completed]

Highway Maintenance Quality Assurance

  Project Data
Funds: $325,241
Research Agency: ERES Consultants, Inc.
Principal Investigator: A. Russell Romine and Marshall Stivers
Effective Date: 3/1/1995
Completion Date: 7/31/1998

The research project produced an implementation manual that contains guidance for highway agencies in the development and application of a maintenance quality assurance (QA) program. A quality assurance program not only is intended to assure the quality of accomplished work, but ultimately helps provide acceptable and uniform levels of service throughout the highway system based on agency goals or objectives. The manual will be of great interest to maintenance engineers and to top managers and administrators of highway agencies.

Highway agencies spend large sums of money to maintain their facilities, and assuring the quality of the products of these investments is important to an effective and efficient highway-maintenance program. Quality assurance programs have to be capable of detecting insufficient maintenance efforts, poor material performance, and incorrect procedures when evaluating end-product performance. In their development and application, highway-maintenance QA programs must be integrated with other management-information systems and quality programs to derive mutual benefits.

Under NCHRP Project 14-12, "Highway Maintenance Quality Assurance," ERES Consultants, Inc., prepared guidance for developing and implementing a QA program for maintenance of highway facilities. In mid 1997, the basic research contract was completed and the agency's final research report made available as NCHRP Web Document 8.

An implementation manual was also developed and subsequently used in six workshops conducted by ERES across the country in early 1998. The six workshops took place in conjunction with cooperating state departments of transportation (DOTs) in Dubuque, Iowa; Lake Havasu City, Arizona; Bristol, Virginia; Galveston, Texas; Kansas City, Missouri; and Portland, Oregon. The assistance provided by the state DOTs was critical to the success of the workshops and was greatly appreciated by ERES and the NCHRP. The workshops were well received and provided input for further refinements to the manual. The version published as NCHRP Report 422, "Maintenance QA Program Implementation Manual," incorporates the knowledge gained through these efforts.

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