Toward a risk framework in prioritizing ancillary transportation assets for management.
Boadi, Richard S.
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A growing number of transportation agencies have begun to manage selected ancillary transportation assets systematically--culverts, guardrails, pavement markings, sidewalks and curbs, street lighting, traffic signals, traffic signs, utilities and manholes, earth retaining structures, and environmental mitigation features. Given prevailing budget limitations, several agencies are interested in prioritizing these assets for inclusion in their existing management systems. This paper discusses critical elements of a framework for assessing the risks, benefits and costs of incorporating ancillary assets in existing Transportation Asset Management programs. The paper reviews some basic elements of a risk theory, examines risk applications in transportation asset management, water mains, and storm water management, and identifies the basic elements of a risk-benefit-cost framework for prioritizing ancillary assets for management. These elements can be used as a basis for developing a decision analysis framework to make a business case for the formal management of ancillary transportation assets and to prioritize them for inclusion in existing Transportation Asset Management programs. Using these elements, we have developed a risk ranking model that can be used by transportation officials to prioritize their ancillary asset classes for management. A demonstration of the model is presented in this paper to show its effectiveness. The study concludes that tracking and documentation of ancillary transportation asset failures would help agencies better understand the risks associated with failure. Tracking and documenting the failures of ancillary transportation assets would also help in identifying trends/probability of failure as well as quantifying the consequences associated with these failures. Such information could also be used to estimate risk factors to prioritize individual asset classes for inclusion in existing management systems.