Talk:643.3 Policy, Standards and Regulations

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We are having difficulty with utility contractors in D4 over the language found in the second paragraph under 643.3.1.1 "Applications for Permits" which I believe needs to be reconsidered. We are doing work zone awareness training with contractors in our district and trying to emphasize safety, proper work zone setup, and following the permitting processes. We are wrestling over the definitions of "work duration" and what exactly constitutes an emergency. In 616.11 "Work Zone Duration" we define "Emergency Operations" as:

"Emergency operations include unplanned work occupying a location up to 15 minutes. Within MoDOT, these operations consist of the initial response to and repair/removal of safety concerns as defined by Response Priority 1 items (refer to the MoDOT's Incident Response Plan)."

If you want to read concerning our Incident Response Plan priorities, go here:


In short, an "unplanned" 15 minute or less activity to remove safety hazards from the roadway. If the work requires longer activity, you better be mobilizing additional temporary traffic control measures to accommodate.

If "emergency operations" that are "unplanned" still require permits (even if after the fact), then certainly "planned" maintenance operations in the clear zone should.

In some ways, its a matter of perspective - because utility contractors tell us that these activities are emergencies to them, but not to us.

We have been encouraging them to setup proper workzones for any work in the right of way and to follow permit processes. The language in this section opens pandoras box with the utility companies.

The language says they don't need permits for any work outside the ditchline that involves spot excavation. If they don't need permits, then we don't know who is out there doing what, so it the right of way is not restored it will be more difficult to address who is responsible.

I'd like to converse with someone concerning how this language is written. We are encouraging our stakeholder to become familiar with the EPG and its provisions, but this second paragraph is causing problems. I can be reached at 816-622-0415 to explain further.

Sam Masters: Your comments will be reviewed by district utility engineers so appropriate "clarifying" wording can be added to the EPG. This will probably take a few weeks. Then the "new" guidance make require Level 2 approval before it is added to the EPG. Thank you for the thoughtful comments.