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/ Categories: ATSSA, Infrastructure

ATSSA asks DOTs for support during tightening of raw materials market

ATSSA President & CEO Stacy Tetschner sent a letter today to directors of state departments of transportation (DOTs) on behalf of the roadway safety infrastructure industry as it struggles with a tightening of the raw materials market.

“Currently, the availability of several key raw materials has tightened in the market from several factors including reduced production from COVID‐19 plant shutdowns and the extreme weather events in the Midwest/Texas in February,” Tetscher says in the letter. “This tightening of raw materials is impacting metals and petroleum‐based products used in the roadway safety industry, including aluminum, steel, plastic, and pavement marking and high friction surface treatment resins.”

He notes that the shrinking supply of these materials has a direct effect on the roadway safety infrastructure industry. Specifically, he said it could “impact the availability of pavement markings; signs; traffic control devices including drums, barricades, channelizers, cones, and delineators posts; steel which may include guardrail, cable barriers, and other positive protection/work zone safety devices; and electrical components of message signs, arrow boards, speed trailers, and portable traffic signals.”

Tetschner asks the DOT directors to “provide flexibility on liquidated damages provisions within your contracts for all of these products due to the lack of availability and the severe delay in international product which resulted from the current unforeseeable, extreme circumstances.”

He also asks for consideration of “price supports on selected projects that have been affected by dramatic volatility in raw materials pricing” noting that no one in the industry foresaw the “short‐ term radical increase.”

Tetschner could not offer a timeframe on when the issues would resolve but emphasized ATSSA’s commitment to working with DOTs to reduce injuries and save lives as they work toward zero deaths on the nation’s roadways.

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