Originally created 06/14/06

Weigh station waits for OK



A new and improved westbound weighing station on Interstate 20 has only touch-up work and a final inspection remaining.

The station, which is similar in technology to its eastbound counterpart that opened in June 2005, should be operating by end of this month, said Scott Stephens, the Georgia Department of Transportation's Augusta-area engineer.

"It's just worked out to be a real good project, and we're proud of the results,'' Mr. Stephens said.

He said the project was completed on time and within budget.

Work on the two weigh stations began in September 2003 and cost $13.2 million.

Mr. Stephens said the new stations should make travel safer on I-20 by ensuring that large trucks are checked for their proper weight.

New equipment at the stations includes a scanner above I-20's lanes that checks for pre-certified trucks, allowing them to continue traveling without having to stop.

"It's got an automated vehicle-identification system,'' Mr. Stephens said.

"This is a system that allows truckers to be pre-certified or pre-weighed, and they can bypass the weigh station exclusively because they've already had a pre-certified load."

The stations have some other new equipment, too.

The westbound station has a new truck-inspection storage facility, "where they can actually inspect the undercarriage of the trucks, and it's a closer inspection," Mr. Stephens said.

The on-ramps leading to the stations have been extended to allow more trucks onto the ramp, helping prevent backups on the interstate.

Mr. Stephens said he is now trying to set up a final inspection of the westbound station within the next two weeks with regional and state DOT officials and the Federal Highway Administration.

Once that's completed, the station will be ready for operation, he said.

Reach Preston Sparks at (706) 868-1222, ext. 115, or preston.sparks@augustachronicle.com.

WHAT'S NEXT:

A westbound weigh station on Interstate 20 is waiting for its final inspection by the Federal Highway Administration and regional and state departments of transportation.