Line painting fiasco explained to District of Barriere council

Report presented to mayor and council at Aug. 17, regular meeting

Dustin Doherty, Roads, Parks and Bylaw Enforcement Coordinator for the District of Barriere presented the following report at the regular council meeting last Monday.

“Planning for this service began in 2015 where it was decided to carry over money slotted for pavement marking from the sewer collections project until spring 2016.

“This made sense because otherwise we would have had them painted late in the season and lines would have only been painted on the patches of new pavement.

“It was estimated that 8000 meters of line along with majority of our other pavement markings would be significantly faded and require painting. Based on previous line painting invoices, it was estimated that we would be able to address this need with the $3,360.00 carried over from last year and an additional estimated $6,140.00 which formed the 2016 budget of $9,500.00.

“With regard to design, the decision was made to reduce our total line inventory by 21.6 per cent (5.2km) by going to a single centre line on Barriere Town Road and Barriere Lakes Road rather than a double centerline, which is unfitting in purpose and essentially a waste of money. A double centerline is generally only ever used on numbered, arterial highways in high speed zones to prohibit all passing regardless if it is safe to do so.

“Basically if you’ve ever passed a backhoe, bicycle, Toolcat or vehicle stopped on the road you could have been issued a fine from the RCMP.

“Single centerline is the standard in most municipalities including Kamloops. Victoria Street could be used as an example. Also it allows us to expand the pedestrian area on the east side of the road by eight inches.

“The four-way stop intersection was also re-designed to utilize parallel line cross walks rather than zebra stripe cross walks. zebra stripe cross walks are typically only used for crossings not controlled by signal or stop signs.

“In February of 2016 we began requesting quotes with the stipulation that lines would be done using a truck. JDV Lot Restoration Inc. indicated that they did have a truck and submitted a quote of $8,000 for the work. This was clearly the best price with the next closest coming in at $11,767.41. JDV met all other requirements (WCB, etc.) so we penciled them in to do the work in the spring.

“Once spring arrived and a timeline for sweeping was known, a more detailed list of markings and maps were created showing all locations where pavement marking would occur. The contractor was given the maps along with some specifications for placement and alignment and booked for the first week of May.

“On May 3, 2016 JDV indicated they would not be able to do the work due to major equipment failure on their line painting truck.

“The next lowest bid contractor was contacted soon after with the hope that they would still be available to do the work. They indicated that they could but that itwould not likely be for another month.

“We accepted the inconvenience since it was short notice and asked them to let us know when they could fit us in. On June 13, 2016 the contractor indicated that they still were too busy (mostly due to all the rain we’ve had) to do the work at that time and that it looked like it would still be a few weeks.

“We phoned them a week later and were informed that it may be another month before they could get to us.

“By this time it was getting too late in the season to push the maintenance back any further and the next available contractors quote was $18,701 after taxes, which would not have been justifiable even ifwe had the budget for it.

“JDV was then contacted and they were asked if there was any way they could still do the work while maintaining an acceptable level of quality (acceptable being that lines would be painted within one inch of proper alignment and placement). The contractor indicated that he was confident that he could maintain that level of quality as long as he was the one operating the walk-behind machine and he said that he would be.

“JDV arrived on site on July 12, 2016 and began with stop bars and other markings and this is all we expected to see for that day. That evening, the crew decided to go the extra mile with the hope of impressing their boss and began painting line to get ahead of schedule. This clearly had the opposite effect since the lines that were painted were far from acceptable.

“On the morning of July 13, photos were taken of the lines and the contractor was contacted to find out what happened. He expressed that his crew had no instruction to start painting line, that he agreed the lines were of a very poor quality and said he would be fixing them right away.

“While JDV repaired their work, we got on the phone with a reputable paving contractor who we’ve worked with before and asked if they did road marking and if not could they recommend someone, and they did.

“The contractor they recommended also did not have trucks and appeared to be set up the same as JDV. To change contractors at this point would have involved drafting a new set of maps defining the scope of work to be done including any overlap with the other contractors work, layout responsibilities, specifications and acceptable standards for alignment, time for the contractor to draft quotes and for us to review them, meetings with the contractor to answer questions and view the job, collecting proof of WCB and liability insurance, requesting and processing purchase of business license and scheduling a time for the work to be done.

“This would certainly spark a greater conflict with JDV with an added potential of ending up in conflict with two contractors since the potential for squiggly lines exists in both.

“Now with the owner of JDV back on site to run the line marker it seemed fair to allow him to show his ability to run his own equipment. A few lines were established on the north end of Barriere Town Road to the bridge.

“The lines were within the acceptable one inch of proper alignment and therefore it seemed appropriate to allow them to finish the job.

“Acceptable lines were painted on Dunn Lake Road and Barriere Lakes Road and majority of Barriere Town Road, but again mistakes were made that had to be repaired with some having to be repaired twice. The contractor was sent lists of deficiencies with photos and was expected to continue doing repairs until all lines and markings had proper alignment and placement.

“The contractor did complete all repairs we had listed. The end result was that all lines had proper alignment ensuring that when they are painted over with a truck in the future they will end up straight and in the right place. This does not discount the fact that 30 per cent of the lines had to be repaired leaving behind an unsightly black mark and for this damage a value must be associated and deducted from any payment.

“The breakdown for this is as follows:

“Total quoted price $8,000. Advance paid to JDV $4,000. Value of other markings (33 stop bars, six x-walks, turn arrow, handicap stall) $2,643. Value of total line length if paid in full (9,000 meters) $5,357. Value of all blacked out lines (30.2 per cent of total line length or 2,720 meters) $1,779.80 plus an additional 10 per cent deduction for damages/mess. Total line value (after deductions) $3,577.20. Total combined value for lines and other markings (after deductions) $6,220.20. Remaining value owed to JDV (after deductions) $2,220.

“Basically we will not pay a dime for any line that had to be re-done regardless of repair work, plus an additional 10 per cent from the value of the repaired lines will be deducted from the total value of the job for damages. The total amount to be paid to JDV Lot Restoration Inc. is $6,220.20.

“This is a fair payment for the service since they did repair all deficiencies that they were asked, in the manor expected, and all other work was completed to the agreed upon standard.

“With regard to future planning for this maintenance activity, only reputable contractors with suitable line painting trucks will be considered when selecting a contractor for the service, and it will likely be recommended that the budget for this maintenance be increased to ensure that all costs can be covered. Contractors will also be booked well in advance with alternative contractors identified.”

At this point Doherty recommended that council accept his report for information and approve the final payment to JDV Lot Restoration Inc. as described above.

Discussion took place as councillors asked questions of Doherty.

Councillor Fortin produced photographs of where the lines are still 3.5 inches from the accepted one inch required and asked why this had not been rectified.

Doherty answered, “Acceptable alignment is king when there are no fog lines.  I had to make a judgement call.  If that was for me I would be happy with that.”

Both Councillor Stamer and Fortin questioned as to the fact the new lines are already fading as is the black seal coating that is covering up the mistakes.

Doherty answered, “That’s why I added the extra 10 per cent. We can go to seal coat again but it is not the best.”

Discussion also took place about line painting for next year and how to go about it. Councillor Stamer  stated that if the last paragraph of the report would be adhered to next year he would vote in favour of the recommendation.

When the vote was called in favour was; Mayor Smith, Councillors Stamer, Kibble and Fennell.  Opposed was Councillor Fortin.   Councillors Sabyan and Paula wee not in attendance.