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RULE §25.2Load Limits on County Roads and Bridges

(a) Purpose. Transportation Code, §621.301, provides that a county may establish load limits for any county road or bridge only with the concurrence of the department. This section prescribes the policies and procedures governing department concurrence with a proposed county load limit.

(b) Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this section, will have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

  (1) Calculations--Computations of the load limit of a road or bridge in accordance with accepted engineering principles.

  (2) Department--The Texas Department of Transportation.

  (3) District engineer--The chief administrative officer of a district in which the county resides.

  (4) Engineer--A person who is licensed by the Texas Board of Professional Engineers to engage in the practice of engineering in this state.

  (5) Executive director--The executive director of the department or the executive director's designee not below the level of deputy executive director.

  (6) Load limits--Maximum loads a road or bridge can safely carry.

(c) Load limit for a bridge pursuant to department inspection. If the department inspects a county bridge and notifies the commissioners court that the bridge qualifies for a lower load limit under 23 C.F.R. Part 650, Subpart C, a load limit established consistent with the department's notification is deemed to have the department's concurrence. The department's notification shall serve as evidence of concurrence.

(d) County revision to load limit.

  (1) Request.

    (A) If a county determines that the load limit of a county bridge should be different than the load limit supported by a department inspection, the county shall submit the proposed load limit to the district engineer.

    (B) If a county determines that the load limit of a county road should be changed, the county shall submit the proposed change in load limit to the district engineer.

  (2) Required documentation. A request for a load limit shall be accompanied by supporting documentation that is sealed by an engineer and that includes at a minimum:

    (A) calculations supporting the proposed limit;

    (B) for a bridge, a structural evaluation report documenting the condition; and

    (C) for a road, a full-depth pavement structural analysis and a pavement visual distress condition evaluation.

  (3) Concurrence.

    (A) The district engineer will concur with the proposed load limit if the district engineer determines that the submitted documentation and calculations are based on accepted engineering principles.

    (B) The district engineer will, in writing, concur or not concur within 30 calendar days.

    (C) If the department does not indicate concurrence or nonconcurrence in writing within 30 calendar days of receipt by the department of a request that included all required documentation, the proposed load limit shall be deemed concurred with by the department. The department may review the load limit and withdraw this concurrence at any time by providing written notification to the county.

  (4) Appeal. A county may appeal the decision of the district engineer by submitting a written request, along with the required documentation, to the executive director. The executive director will review the request and determine if department concurrence will be granted. The executive director's decision is final.

Source Note: The provisions of this §25.2 adopted to be effective December 5, 2001, 26 TexReg 9916

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