The National Academies

NCHRP Synthesis 20-05/Topic 49-15 [New]

Summary of Practice for Automated Pavement Condition Surveys
[ NCHRP 20-05 (Synthesis of Information Related to Highway Practices) ]

  Project Data
Funds: $45,000
Staff Responsibility: Jo Allen Gause
Fiscal Year: 2017

Tentative Scope

Pavement condition data is a critical component of all pavement management systems. The accuracy and validity of pavement condition data is crucial to many activities conducted by highway and local agencies. Pavement condition data is used, for example, to assess existing and future pavement condition, establish budget needs and evaluate budget impacts, support asset management, and select projects for pavement maintenance and rehabilitation. The new federal transportation bill (National Performance Management Measures; Assessing Pavement Condition for the National Highway Performance Program and Bridge Condition for the National Highway Performance Program) is performance-based and agencies will be required to report pavement condition of highways on the National Highway System (NHS). Pavement condition reporting will include the International Roughness Index (IRI), rut depth, and percent cracking for flexible pavements, IRI, percent cracking, and faulting for jointed concrete pavements, and IRI and percent cracking for continuously reinforced concrete pavements.

The new bill requires agencies to report pavement condition based on 0.1 mile intervals. This interval of data reporting can only be effectively achieved using automated pavement condition data collection systems. Manual ratings are very impractical and labor intensive for collecting pavement condition at 0.1 mile intervals. Several agencies have implemented automated pavement data collection for several years now. It is important to learn from their experience and the improvements in the process over the years. This will be very beneficial to states that are just moving into automated pavement data collection or states with limited experience.

The objective of this synthesis is to document agency practices, challenges, and success in conducting automated pavement condition data collection surveys. The study is intended to showcase successful practices, integration of automated data collection into pavement management systems, and efforts needed for reporting pavement condition according to the new federal transportation bill.

Information to be collected, but not limited to, includes:

• Pavement distress types collected using 2-D and 3-D technology.
• Post processing requirements (data and images).
• Service provider and highway agency quality control, acceptance, and independent assurance procedures.
• Acceptance and verification of data accuracy and repeatability (2-D and 3-D technology).
• Quality management plans.
• Data storage and archiving requirements.

Information will be collected through literature review, a survey of state departments of transportation and Canadian provincial transportation agencies DOT, and selected follow up interviews for case examples.
• AFD10, Standing Committee on Pavement Management Systems.
• AFD20, Standing Committee on Pavement Monitoring and Evaluation.
• Applicable AASHTO and ASTM Standards.
• Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) Field Manual.
• Federal Highway Administration, Summary of State Pavement Data Collection Practices – September 2015. Accessed 1.24.2017 - https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pavement/management/practices201509.pdf
• Flintsch, G. and K. K. McGhee. 2009. NCHRP Synthesis 401: Quality Management of Pavement Condition Data Collection. Transportation Research Board, Washington, DC.
• McGhee, K. H. 2004. NCHRP Synthesis 334: Automated Pavement Distress Collection Techniques. Transportation Research Board, Washington, DC.
• Pierce, L. M., G. McGovern, and K. A. Zimmerman. 2013. Practical Guide for Quality Management of Pavement Condition Data Collection. Federal Highway Administration, Washington, DC.
• Timm, D. H. and J. M. McQueen. 2004. A Study of Manual vs. Automated Pavement Condition Surveys. Alabama Department of Transportation, Montgomery, AL.

TRB Staff
Jo Allen Gause
Phone: 202-334-3826
Email: jagause@nas.edu

Meeting Dates
First Panel:  November 2, 2017, Washington, DC
Teleconference with Consultant:
Second Panel:

Topic Panel
Bouzid Choubane, Florida DOT
Dulce Rufino Feldman, California DOT
Thomas J. Kazmierowski, Golder Associates Ltd.
Michael Mariotti, New York State DOT
Magdy Y. Mikhail, Texas DOT
John Senger, Illinois DOT
Yichang "James" Tsai, Georgia Institute of Technology
Andrew J. Mergenmeier, Federal Highway Administration
Larry Wiser, Federal Highway Administration
Matthew Hardy, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
Amir N. Hanna, Transportation Research Board
Stephen F. Maher, Transportation Research Board
Thomas Palmerlee, Transportation Research Board

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