Pa. Turnpike layoffs, Iowa looking at project delays, Ohio crews struck roadside, and more

The following is a roundup of industry news we nearly missed over the past few days

June 05, 2020 / 2 minutes
Pa. Turnpike layoffs, Iowa looking at project delays, Ohio crews struck roadside, and more
Photo source: Dylan Miller via wallpaperflare

The Pennsylvania Turnpike is laying off 500 fare collectors as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, turning to a cashless, all-electronic tolling system permanently. This decision was unanimously approved by Turnpike commissioners. “I deeply regret that we have reached this point, but the world has been irrevocably changed by the global pandemic,” said PTC CEO Mark P. Compton. “This pandemic had a much greater impact than anyone could have foreseen. The PA Turnpike has not been spared from COVID-19.”

The full story can be found here.

The Iowa DOT is facing a new and potentially grim reality as regards its road project schedule. The state delay some road projects over the next five years, a decision being sourced to the fact that motorists are traveling less, which has reduced gas tax payments used for construction. Some projects have already been delayed a full year by a sharp increase in construction costs last year, according to the state.

The full story can be found here.

The Michigan DOT is using a new piece of technology to help assess underwater bridge damage. MDOT, in partnership with the Great Lakes Engineering Firm, are using EMILY, a small unmanned boat, to inspect what cannot be seen with the naked eye. EMILY uses cameras and sonar technology to see what is under the water. It i presently being deployed below U.S. 10. over the Tittabawassee River in Sanford.

The full story can be found here.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order this week directing agencies to look for ways to speed up building of highways and other major projects by scaling back environmental reviews, invoking special powers he has under the coronavirus emergency. In separate action, the Environmental Protection Agency formally proposed overhauling how the agency evaluates new rules on air pollutants, a move critics say will make it tougher to enact limits on dangerous and climate-changing emissions in the future.

The full story can be found here.

Finally, on an sad note, it has been reported that motorists have struck five Ohio DOT road crews working roadside in the span of eight days. Two of those crashes have resulted in ODOT workers being injured.

The full story can be found here.

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