Union Government Introduces Guidelines to Ensure Bitumen Quality in Road Construction

The Indian central government has introduced stringent quality regulations in response to ongoing concerns regarding the distribution of counterfeit bitumen products throughout the nation.

The Ministry for Road Transport and Highways, under the Union Government, has released comprehensive inspection guidelines aimed at enhancing the quality and grading of road tar. According to government officials, selecting the appropriate bituminous binder grade for a specific section of the National Highway, taking into account factors such as current load capacity, environmental conditions, and rainfall, and ensuring the quality of the bituminous binder during the construction process is crucial for the longevity of flexible road surfaces.

These guidelines will also apply to the Kerala Public Works Department (PWD). However, PWD sources have indicated that implementing the entire set of new regulations may not be feasible in the state. For instance, the new rules mandate the construction of large tanks adjacent to the mixing plant. Yet, constructing such tanks may not be economically viable for small-scale contractors in Kerala, who typically handle road construction projects covering shorter distances, often less than ten kilometers. Conversely, contractors engaged in the construction of national highways spanning 80-90 kilometers or more will be required to comply with the mandatory tank construction directive.

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