This guide is directed at the staff of the Communication Bureaus in charge of the maintenance of paved rural roads. It explains the benefits of sustainable routine maintenance of these roads, and presents how this may be achieved by contracting labor-based routine maintenance teams formed by local people living along the road.
The first chapter presents the different classifications of rural roads, and explains the deterioration process as a result of the influences of traffic and climate. It subsequently introduces the concepts of preventative and corrective road maintenance, and how these can respectively slow down the deterioration process, and to a certain degree restore the original condition of the road. It also explains why the combination of preventative routine maintenance with timely corrective maintenance is the most cost-effective solution to road conservation, at the same time resulting in better overall road conditions throughout the lifespan of the road. The chapter concludes by describing the different levels of road conservation, and how these complement each other.
The second chapter goes into the details of routine road maintenance, describing the different activities involved, the benefits of organizing the maintenance workers in teams, and the tools and equipment required by them. It continues by introducing the timing of the different activities throughout the year and the frequency with which they should be repeated, as well as the productivity rates for each activity, which indicate how much work a single worker can do in one day. These factors are of great importance in determining the amount of workdays required per year for the maintenance of a kilometer of road, or alternatively how many kilometers one worker can maintain. Another very important factor herein are the specific characteristics of each road (topography, traffic, climate, size of the road reserve, etc.), which determine how much work needs to be done for each activity. The subsequent section therefore introduces the concept of road categories, for which standard values for the required workdays per kilometer per year can be established. The chapter ends by presenting the costs and financing of routine maintenance, the modalities to be used in contracting the maintenance teams, and finally the inspection of their work based on performance indicators.
The third and final chapter deals with the creation of the maintenance teams that carry out the routine maintenance of the rural roads. It starts with the selection process, including the different aspects of carrying out a call for candidates, as well as the criteria to be used in selecting the most suitable candidates. The chapter continues by describing the process of training and accompaniment of the maintenance team, including both the technical training as well as the managerial training. The training is described in greater detail in the Training Guidelines for Communication Bureaus in the Training of Routine Road Maintenance Teams and the technical and managerial elements are dealt with in detail in the Technical Manual for Routine Road Maintenance Teams and the Managerial Manual for Routine Road Maintenance Teams, all of which form part of this same document series. Finally, the process for the legal constitution of the team by means of the road maintenance contract is described.
The Annexes provide overview sheets for the different maintenance activities, including the separate tasks to be executed by the maintenance workers. They also contain several sample documents and forms to be used by the Communication Bureaus.
A Chinese version is available here.