Bitumen surfacing: Ensure quality of work
Voice of The Reader

Bitumen surfacing: Ensure quality of work

March 29, 2023

Sir,

Recently in Saraswathipuram the works related to much-needed and delayed bitumen surfacing were done on 5th Cross, 3rd Cross and 2nd Cross of the locality. I was able to inspect all the three Cross Roads and also observed the work being done. Since both 5th Cross and 3rd Cross form the bus routes, two inches thick bitumen surfacing has been laid and in the 2nd Cross which is not a bus route only one inch thick bitumen surfacing has been done.

As far as the composition of the bitumen mix, I am not aware whether required quantity of quarry dust has been added to the mix. Also it is crucial to keep the temperature of  the bitumen mix as per specification to ensure proper compaction up to the end of compaction during rolling effort. Normally it should be around 120 degrees at the time of laying to ensure that it retains sufficient heat till the completion of compaction. 

It is also necessary that the speed of rolling should not exceed 5km/hr, as the Indian Roads Congress (IRC) specification normally specify that the roads must last for at least five years with some cosmetic maintenance.  All the three Cross Roads in my perception reveal that inadequate attention has been paid for the compaction leading to potholes etc., requiring heavy annual maintenance which could have been avoided.

I observed that the cleaning of surface was being done even as tack coat was being done, instead of attending to it thoroughly earlier to ensure quality of the work.

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I also observed that even as the work on laying bitumen was being done people were driving their vehicles. It is necessary that arrangements may be  made by barricading the stretch to avoid the vehicles. These observations are made to ensure that the work is done with due care in the future.

– H.R. Bapu Satyanarayana, Saraswathipuram, 24.3.2023

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