CASE STUDY

Emergency Relief – Landslides and Road Damage Evaluations

As part of its recovery efforts, PRHTA has divided the highways and roads of Puerto Rico into regions and units for the preparation of the Technical Reports, and resulting PS&E’s for the repairs of landslides caused by Hurricane Maria.  Klein Engineering, PSC is working as a Prime Consultant with roads located in the following municipalities: Aibonito, Ciales, Guayama, Naguabo, Toa Baja, Utuado, and Villalba.

A total of fourteen sites have been assigned to our firm, which have been divided into three (3) groups: A, B, and C.  Technical reports required the presentation of three (3) alternatives for permanent repairs and the recommendation of a preferred alternative.  KEPSC has completed final plans for all sites.  The work for this project is mostly located in mountainous areas of Puerto Rico, where safety considerations, especially roadway departures, are a key aspect of design.

The Challenge

A total of fourteen sites were assigned to our firm, which were divided into three (3) groups: A, B, and C.  Technical reports required the presentation of three (3) alternatives for permanent repairs and the recommendation of a preferred alternative.  Upon concurrence by PRHTA and FHWA of the recommended alternative for repair of each site, final PS&E’s will be prepared.  KEPSC had to evaluate landslides and road damage quickly and efficiently to comply with the Emergency Relief Program.

How we helped

Klein Engineering, PSC submitted the technical reports for for all sites, with context-sensitive alternatives for repairs that will provide cost-effective and safe permanent repairs.  Furthermore, for this Emergency Relief Project, KEPSC used Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) to fulfill site reconnaissance, site inspection, and preliminary earthwork volume calculations, among other assessments.

UAS increased KEPSC’s ability to provide to partners and clients a full picture of the tasks involved to ensure precision in decision-making. This was essential to ensure proper resource allocation and to reduce risks with this emergency project of short duration and of immediate necessity.

Results

The recommendations presented by the KEPSC team have been accepted by PRHTA and FHWA, and final design is currently underway for the repairs of landslides suffered by the assigned roads.  The permanent repair of the landslides will be paramount for the safety and accessibility of residents and visitors who travel on the subject roads.  The use of innovative technologies like UAS to evaluate sites helped KEPSC work efficiently and quickly in this short-term duration emergency relief project.

Emergency Relief - Landslides and Road Damage Evaluations 2
Emergency Relief - Landslides and Road Damage Evaluations 1