Bridge and Other Significant Highway Structures Inspection

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As of 1 January 2018 bridge inspections for NZTA can only be carried out by those who have passed this course or who have obtained an exemption from NZTA Lead Advisor Structures.

Bridges and Other Significant Highway Structures are critical components of the New Zealand Roading Network. Failure to inspect and identify any defects correctly could potentially result in dramatic damage and/or loss of life.

This is a new NZTA endorsed and certified course designed to ensure the correct requirements are met for the inspection of bridges and other significant highway structures. The course will cover in depth the requirements outlined in NZTA policy Document S6 ‘Bridges and Other Significant Highway Structures Inspection Policy’.

Completion of this course will require practical Inspection assessment of the course material on Day 2.


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2 day course.

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Dave Charters

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$1,050.00 + GST (Maximum number of attendees for this course is 10)

Attendees will receive a copy of the Inspection Manual for Highway Structures – Inspectors Handbook and a Crack Gauge to keep after the course.

Participants need to wear hi-vis clothing, safety boots and wet weather gear if required.

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Topics include

Day one:

  • Course Introduction. Purpose of inspection. Definition of Structures
  • Inspection policy – NZTA S6 2015
  • The role of the different parties, Inspector and Bridge Inspection Engineer
  • Types of inspection. Focus on General and Principal Inspections. Responsibility for Structure Inspection
  • Routine Surveillance Inspections
  • Special Inspections
  • Effect of environment – intervention guidelines
  • Planning the inspection round
  • The inspection form – standard form from NZTA S6
  • Importance of recognising when more detailed study is required
  • Equipment. Camera, ladder, calipers, steel rule etc
  • Optimising the inspection process – adding value. Spotting loading plaques and recording
  • Reporting and Records overview
  • Safety
  • Systematic Approach of the Inspection procedures
  • Elements, Causes of Deterioration and Identification and Logging of defects in reinforced concrete
  • Problem with and Identification and logging of defects in steel structures
  • Problems with timber structures
  • Procedure for drilling timber structures to identify concealed decay
  • Hardware. Joints, bearings, holding down bolts, seismic restraints, service supports. Typical problems and logging of defects
  • Approaches, Foundations and Waterways - typical problems and logging defects
  • Specialist inspections/advice for particular structure types such as steel structure


Day two:


INSPECTION - Structures of different types will be inspected as a group along with utilising the latest inspection results from the NZTA Regional Bridge Consultant.


ASSESSMENT - Each delegate will inspect a structure and be assessed on an individual basis. Attendees will be split up to provide integrity of assessment.


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On completion of this course participants will

  • Understand the principles of bridge and other highway structure inspection
  • Carry out bridge and highway structure inspections under supervision
  • Gain an understanding of administration and management systems
  • Follow NZ Transport Agency Policy to inspect structures and identify defects
  • Detect potential instances of bridge failure
  • Identify where more detailed or specialist inspection or technical advice is required
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Who should attend

Engineers and inspectors with responsibility for inspecting and determining maintenance requirements for both State Highway and Local Authority bridging. 

New and experienced bridge inspectors, engineers, technical staff and asset managers wishing to upgrade their knowledge.

All attendees need to be familiar with NZTA S6 and bridge inspection terminology prior to attending this course.  

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