Section 3: Traffic Control Plan (TCP)

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Construction or Work Phase Requirements

Each work zone should have designated Contractor and Department representatives charged with the responsibility of managing work zone safety.

The District Responsible Person (DRP) will:

  • make routine inspections to determine if project traffic control is in compliance with the plans and specifications and the Texas Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (TMUTCD), and the Compliant Work Zone Traffic Control Device List;
  • ensure formal inspections are conducted using Form 599, "Traffic Control Devices Inspection Checklist";
  • notify the Contractor of discrepancies at the time of inspection or by the end of the next business day;
  • have authority to halt work until applicable or remedial safety measures are taken;
  • report changes needed to the Area or Project Engineer;
  • document any major changes to the TCP;
  • assist in work zone accident reviews; and
  • coordinate with and assist the Public Information (PI) Office with information required for implementation of PI strategies for which the Contractor is not responsible.

In accordance with the Contract, the Contractor Responsible Person (CRP) will:

  • upon notification take immediate corrective action for Priority 1 deficiencies and take corrective actions for Priority 2 deficiencies within 7 calendar days of notification
  • be accessible by phone and able to respond to emergencies 24 hours per day and have employees able to take corrective measures within 30 minutes,
  • report traffic control device deficiencies to the DRP,
  • assist the DRP in conducting traffic control device inspections,
  • report corrections of traffic control device deficiencies to the DRP, and
  • make all reasonable efforts to promptly contact the Engineer if a critical situation arises that may require a change in traffic control.

The District Traffic Control Coordinator (TCC) will:

  • accompany the DRP on the initial project inspection and
  • perform quarterly inspections accompanied by the DRP, if possible.
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Phase Change Inspections and Documentation

The DRP will perform an inspection of traffic control in the field immediately after:

  • initial traffic control installation,
  • traffic alignment changes, and
  • implementation of major traffic control phases.

Document these detailed inspections by photograph, video, Traffic Control Devices Inspection Checklist (Form 599), memorandum, or other media.

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Formal Inspections and Procedures

The DRP will perform formal inspections of all traffic control devices twice a month at approximately 2-week intervals. Conduct at least one of these inspections at night as soon as possible after the initial set-up for projects with overnight traffic control. Provide the CRP the opportunity to accompany Department staff on these inspections.

Tailor formal inspections to be in compliance with the Contract documents. These inspections may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Traffic control devices must be effective, clearly visible, clean, and consistent with the TCP.
  • Reflectivity and color characteristics of all traffic control devices must be as specified. Nighttime color of all signs must show the same shape and similar color both day and night.
  • Cleanliness and position of all traffic control devices must be maintained to ensure the devices perform as intended.
  • Traffic markings on the pavement surface must provide adequate guidance to motorists throughout the work zone. Non-applicable markings must be removed. Obliterated pavement markings must not stand out or cause confusion to motorists.
  • Work zone and existing permanent signs must be properly covered when the sign message is not currently applicable, and signs must not provide conflicting information.
  • Traffic control devices must convey consistent messages to motorists. For example, if the right lane is closed, the advance warning signs, striping, channelizing devices, and arrow boards must be consistent with that situation.

Deficiencies must be corrected at the time of inspection or as soon as possible.

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Formal Inspection Documentation

Document compliance and deficiencies on Form 599 in accordance with the instructions on the reverse side of the form.

All project information at the top of Form 599, including any deficiencies and recommended corrective actions, may be completed by hand or electronically at the time of inspection.

To use electronic copies of the completed Form 599 as the record copy, all fields must be completed electronically. This includes the signatures of both the Department representative and the Contractor. If an electronic version is the record copy, it must be stored in a separate file named "Project Number - Form 599."

If electronic signatures cannot be generated to "sign" Form 599 as the record copy, a printed hard copy or handwritten original must be signed and dated. Complete and file the signed and dated original following the instructions on the back of the form.

Regardless of format, verify both sides of Form 599 have been completed.

Once the inspection is complete, the CRP must sign and date Form 599. Provide a signed copy to inform the Contractor of corrective action needed. As the Contractor corrects deficiencies, document on the original form the completion date and time for each, and initial the verification section.

Informal Inspections and Procedures

Immediately upon completion of Form 599, file the form and related documentation separate from the project files in a folder boldly labeled "DO NOT DISCLOSE - EXCEPTED FROM DISCLOSURE BY 23 U.S.C. 409." Maintain separation by filing the folder at the District or the area office. Destroy copies of the form.

Immediately forward requests for copies of the form to the Office of General Counsel (OGC) with copies of all completed Contract forms for the affected Contract(s). The Department must seek a ruling from the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) on each request for copies of Form 599. Failure to seek an OAG ruling may result in required disclosure of information that federal law requires the Department to protect as a condition of Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) funding.

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TCP Change Documentation

With the exception of Contractor-proposed changes, the Department is responsible for the design of the TCP and approval of any modifications. The Contractor is responsible for implementing and maintaining the TCP. Provide the Contractor with a copy of any revisions to the TCP.

Prior to or immediately after implementation, document changes that alter the original TCP shown in the plans or the sign and traffic control design requirements. The documentation requirements generally apply to project-specific TCPs and changes to the requirements of non-project-specific TCP standards; minor adjustments to meet practical placement requirements in the field do not necessarily require documentation. Place the documented changes to the TCP with the plans or in the Contract files, as appropriate, and provide copies to the Department inspector and the CRP.

Changes to TCP plans sheets, sketches, and marked up copies of plan sheets are under the direct supervision of an Engineer and require signing, sealing, and dating. The Engineer's written field instructions for the TCP changes require the Engineer's professional engineer (PE) designation and the date.

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