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This editon is the ninth of a series that focus on the implementaton actvites
of EVERY DAY COUNTS (EDC) in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Intelligent Compacton On the Go in Puerto Rico
and the US Virgin Islands

Message from the Director 2
Intelligent Compacton On the Go in
Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands
8th CicloDa at Ponce 5
Wake up! You are driving! 6-8
Puerto Rico PR-2 GRS-IBS Showcase 8-9
Third Research-to-Practce Symposium at
United States Virgin Islands
UPRM fnest represent at the 2014 TRB
Annual Conventon in Washington, D.C.
Third Anniversary of Decade of Acton for
Road Safety in Puerto Rico
Know your Instructor: Ivete Cruzado 14
PR LTAP Center Staf Featurete:
Grisel Villarrubia
The Puerto Rico Transportaton Technology Transfer Center is part of a network of 58 Centers through the United States that
comprises the Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP) and the Tribal Technical Assistance Program (TTAP), which enable local
governments, countries and cites to improve their roads and bridges by supplying them with a variety of training programs, an
informaton clearinghouse, new and existng technology updates, personalized technical assistance, and newsleters.
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in a joint venture with
the Puerto Rico Transportation Technology Transfer Center and the
Puerto Rico Highway and Transportation Authority (PRHTA), held an
Intelligent Compaction (IC) Data Management Workshop in two
different locations in the Caribbean, first at the College of Engineers
and Land Surveyors of Puerto Rico (CIAPR, as a Spanish acronym) and
later in the United States Virgin Islands (USVI). This Workshop, is part
of the national Every Day Counts (EDC) initiative. The One-day
seminar was followed by an equipment demonstration (in PR only) on
a local project located on state highway PR-2, near the municipality of
Vega Baja. These activities were brought to the Island in an effort to
jump-start the implementation process of Intelligent Compaction in
the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
Contnued in page 3

Newsleter of the Puerto Rico Transportaton Technology Transfer Center
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagez Campus
Puerto Rico LTAP
Volume 28, Number 1, 2014
Welcome! Best regards to all our readers in our first edition of El Puente Newsletter for 2014. For 28
years, El Puente has been an important tool used by the Center to transfer and share emerging
technologies and innovative research initiatives related to transportation, with emphasis on road safety,
workforce development and management of the built road infrastructure.
The feature article highlights the activities associated with the historical workshop and demonstration of
Intelligent Compaction (IC) in Puerto Rico. Dr. George Chang, P.E., from the FHWA research team, Resansils
representatve, Jonathan Scrocchi, Antonio Tony Nieves, from the FHWA in Washington DC, and Maribel
Prez, FHWA, PR Division, Highway Engineer and EDC Coordinator, all discussed the importance of the
implementaton of IC in Puerto Rico and the use of the VEDA sofware to insure a beter quality and
productve road pavement compacton process.
The second article recounts the well-known 8
annual Ponce CicloDa, a day to promote bike safety and
biking as an alternate way of transportation and a space to ride freely around the majestic southern city.
The third article raises awareness of drowsy driving and the risks, testimonies, statistics and suggestions
to avoid an undesired incident. Like alcohol, sleepiness while driving slows down reaction time, decreasing
awareness, impairing judgment and increasing risk of crashing. The article also uncovers the lack of
legislation on the Island against sleep-deprived drivers and how Puerto Ricos handling the situation with
small but effective road safety implementations.
The fourth article of this edition is a Hctor Laureano, P.E., PRHTA and Daiel Alzamora, P.E., FHWA,
review of Regional Summits held by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the American
Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) disclosing the innovative technology of
Geosythetic Reinforced Soil/Integrated Bridge Systems (GRS).
The fifth article announces the future and Third Research-to-Practice Symposium at United States Virgin
Islands and its renowned keynote speakers including Mrs. Donna M. Christensen, Congresswoman for the
US House of Representatives and Christa Von Hillebrandt-Andrade, the first woman to manage the NOAA
National Service Caribbean Tsunami Warning Program.
The sixth article recounts the UPRMs finest students representing at the 2014 TRB Annual Convention in
Washington, D.C. and the Undergraduate and Graduate research projects they have all worked for said
event. The last and seventh article in this edition reviews the Decade of Acton (DOA) for Road Safety 2011
- 2020s third anniversary in educatng the public on road safety in the Island, and its mission on eradicatng
fatalites on the road caused by drunk driving, by organizing and partcipatng in diferent actvites from
May 5 9, 2014. The series of actvites intend to exhort the publics commitment to road safety in order
to make this change and transformaton to a beter road safety culture possible.
Also in this edition, the PR LTAP family recognizes Dr. Ivette Cruzado for her excellence in training
municipal and state transportation officials. The collaboration of Dr. Cruzado with the Puerto Rico LTAP
Center started in 2012, as an instructor of the seminar program, when she offered the seminar titled
Influence of Human Factors in the Design and Placement of Traffic Signs.
For the first time, El Puente Newsletter will showcase one of PR LTAPs family member in every issue.
Grisel Villarrubia, is an experienced PR LTAP Office Administrator. Her involvement in the success of
seminar programs and other technology transfer activities for the past 11 years as Training Coordinator can
be attributed in part to the excellent administrative skills, professionalism, and work has made her a
valuable resource to the PR LTAP Center.
The electronic version of El Puente Newsletter is available at You can contact us
directly to submit technical articles for the Newsletter of interest to municipalities oriented to
transportation with emphasis on road safety, workforce development and management of the built
I hope that the selection of these articles in this first edition of Newsletter El Puente for 2014 are of
benefit to our readers and other professionals in local transportation agencies in the 78 municipalities of
Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Benjamn Colucci Ros

Intelligent Compacton on the go in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands
selected for this demonstration. The contractor
milled 2.5in of asphalt and replaced it with 2.5 in of
Warm Mix Asphalt (WMA). The IC roller used was
the 12-ton HAMM-HD120 Vibrating Thunder Roller.
Furthermore, any roller can be upgraded to an IC
roller by adding an IC Retrofit Kit.
IC Retrofit Kit Components
The components of
the retrofit kit are a
screen mounted
within the cabin and
easily accessible by
the operator,
accelerometer (for mounting on the front drum of
the roller), and an infrared thermometer (for
mounting on the front of the roller). The rollers
high precision positioning system (HPPS) used was a
GPS located via an antenna that was mounted on
the canopy of the roller.
VEDA Software
The VEDA software is used for post-processing of the
data collected by the roller and is an essential tool
for agencies and contractors for viewing and
analyzing IC data. Key features of the software
include reports, statistics, graphics, rollers passes,
roller frequencies, amplitudes, speed, and many
other parameters.

Approximately 50 attendees participated in the
historic workshop, including DOT Construction
Engineers, Quality Control (QC) and Assurance (QA)
personnel, consultants with expertise in writing
technical specification, asphalt paving managers,
superintendents, IC roller vendors and dealers, GPS
vendors, and earthworks managers. During the first
day of the workshop, attendees were familiarized
with the intelligent compaction technologies,
fundamentals, and the VEDA software as an
essential tool for post-processing IC data.
Intelligent Compaction Defined
Intelligent Compaction (IC) is an equipment-based
technology for better quality control that results in
longer pavement life. IC machines have vibratory
rollers with accelerometers mounted on the axel of
the drum with a high precision positioning systems,
infra-red temperature sensors (for asphalt), and
onboard computers that can display color-coded
maps in real-time to track roller passes, asphalt
surface temperatures, and stiffness of the
compacted materials.
Intelligent Compaction Demonstration
The Intelligent Compaction Demonstration took
place on the eastbound lanes of PR-2 main road,
between the state route PR-689 and PR-16 road
intersection, near the municipality of Vega Baja. The
main goal was to demonstrate the capabilities of
the technology and how it could be used to improve
pavement quality. A 100m-road segment was
Source: Antonio Tony Nieves, PE
Source: FHWA
Source: Antonio Tony Nieves, PE
Source: Antonio Tony Nieves, PE
Source: Antonio Tony Nieves, PE
However, Intelligent Compaction cannot be
achieved without a proper asphalt mix to work on.
The mix used on the job site had a 0.5in. (12.5mm)
maximum aggregate size at a 260F production
temperature. The Warm Mix Asphalt used that
afternoon came from Mayagez Better Roads Plant
#33, about 40km from the job site. When we
started all our implementation efforts in IC we
started saying IC could be used for hot mix asphalt,
but very quickly learned that you can use it in warm
mix asphalt, super pave, or hot mix, so now were
saying IC can be implemented on asphalt
pavements, period, stated Nieves. The FHWA has
been leading a national effort to advance the IC
technology to improve compaction quality of
materials such as soils, aggregates, and asphalt
IC Future in Puerto Rico
Nieves also elaborated on ICs future in Puerto Rico.
I am hoping that a public-private partnership is
developed, to develop the specifications that will
finally be used to implement IC in the
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. It is extremely
important that all sectors have a complete buy-in for
IC to successfully be implemented anywhere.
Puerto Rico has made a huge leap forward today to
accomplish that.
As for future projects, Maribel Prez, FHWA, PR
Division, added, IC is going to be an excellent tool
for quality control, to improve pavements and the
overall quality of them and help the contractors to
accelerate their process. Prez also announced
that there trying to put together a pilot project
using IC by the end of the year.
The 2013 spring edition of El Puente Newsletter
(Volume 27, Number 1) provides a wider scope of
Intelligent Compaction technology. For further
information or inquiries about IC, please do not
hesitate in contacting Eng. Antonio Nieves at, or access:
Author: Antonio Nieves, P.E
Observations from the Participants
According to Resansils representative, Jonathan
Scrocchi, the cost for a retrofit kit ranges around
$45,000 per unit depending on the option selected
for the high precision positioning system (HPPS).
These retrofit kits can fit any HAMM roller and the
HAMM software is user-friendly for both engineers
and non-engineers alike. Furthermore, Scrocchi
added that the IC computer/monitor shows the
operator exactly what hes doing, as hes doing it,
where he has or not been. This real-time feedback
is essential to a successful implementation of IC.
He added, it is very important to have the
operator understand and know how to use the
roller and read the data as hes working on the job
site. Troubleshooting and a 3-Day Hands on
Training is included in HAMMs package.
Dr. George Chang, P.E., from the FHWA research
team, was the main presenter of the IC technology
that afternoon. According to the on-site
contractor, the total amount of passes required for
compaction was four (4) passes. Dr. Chang, later
confirmed through analysis of the data that only
three (3) passes where needed to completely
compact the job mix. When asked to elaborate on
Stiffness vs Density, Dr. Chang went on stating,
density and stiffness are two different quantities,
but they relate to each other within a high
temperature range, from 200F to 230F as a
breakdown temperature range. The laydown
temperature was around 230F this afternoon.
Antonio Tony Nieves, FHWA in Washington DC
(National Team Lead for the Implementation of IC),
added that the wide acceptance from, not only
the contractors, but also the PRHTA, obviously the
UPRM, and LTAP Center alike, was the mayor
contribution in having a very successful workshop
and demonstration, right here in Vega Baja, which
was really important because people were actually
able to see the machine doing the job, as well as
asking questions about the technology was
extremely helpful.
Source: Antonio Tony Nieves, PE
Intelligent Compacton on the go in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands
Source: Antonio Nieves

CicloDa at Ponce
Hundreds of cyclists from Ponce and all over Puerto
Rico gathered this past March 9
, 2014 in the
Municipality of Ponce to celebrate the 8
CicloDa, event that provides citzens a space to ride
bikes freely through the streets.
As usual, the
Municipality of
Ponce temporarily
closed some of the
public roads to
make possible a
safe and family
environment for
all the partcipants and spectators, while
encouraging the use of bicycles as an alternatve
mode of transportaton. Days prior to the event,
Avenida Hostos became a pilot project for bicycle
facilites in Puerto Rico when green-colored bike
lanes and bike boxes were added. A bike box is a
designated and marked area at a signalized
intersecton that places bicycles at the front of the
queue. They locate cyclists in the view of drivers
and allow them enter and clear the intersecton
ahead of motor vehicles.
Registraton started
at 7:00 A.M. and free
t-shirts were given
out to the frst 300
people to register.
Cyclists lef from La
Guancha at 9:00 in
the morning towards
the Town Hall to
which they arrived
around 10:00 A.M.
The route extended
from La Guancha to Santago de Caballeros
Avenue, passing by the historic community Playa
Ponce, followed by Hostos Avenue in directon to
Marina Street up to the Plaza Las Delicias. The
cyclists could enjoy and relax in many oases located
along the actvity route for refreshments or rest.
Some actvites were held in La Guancha to the
sound of live music such as aerobics, Zumba, Tai-
Chi, bike riding for blind people, actvites for
children, cycle and trafc safety workshops, Bici
Escuela and the South Integrated Transportaton
System (SITRAS, by its Spanish acronym) projects. In
Paseo Amor surrounding the Town Hall, Taek
Wondo and Bici Taller clinics were ofered, as well
as an Antque and Classic Bike Showcase.
The event was also a call for No More Cyclist
Fatalites on Public Roadways, and many public
fgures atended, including the Honorable Mayor
Mara Mayita Melndez Alteri. With this event,
we make a special call so there are no more cyclist
fatalites. We must be aware and be responsible
while driving. We all have the right to ride bicycles
for transportaton, exercise, and even recreaton. For
this reason, we have an orientaton booth of the
project CicloRutas, that we are developing with the
purpose of giving back the bicycle its space in the
street as an alternatve and primary mode of
transportaton. We invite all the citzens and visitors
of other municipalites to bring their bicycles and join
us to pedal in an atempt to re-establish the use of
bicycles as an alternatve transportaton system, she
held in a press release.
Besides enjoying outdoor actvites, the opportunity
of having such an event was used to instruct the
citzens and visitors about the project CicloRutas of
the South Integrated Transportaton System (SITRAS,
by its Spanish acronym), work made possible by a
collaboraton between the University of Puerto Rico
Mayagez Campus and the Architecture School of the
Pontfcal Catholic University of Puerto Rico. This
project includes the partcipaton of Arch. Ricardo
Miranda, Dr. Benjamin Colucci, and the Civil
Engineering student David Soto. It consists of the
planning, and design and implementaton of bicycle
routes in the Municipality of Ponce, especially in the
Hostos Avenue and Las Amricas Avenue. This
project is part of David Soto's proposal for the Dwight
D. Eisenhower Transportaton Fellowship.
Source: David Soto
Source: David Soto
Source: David Soto
Source: David Soto
As the United
Natons Decade
of Acton for
Road Safety
its third
anniversary in promotng road safety on the Island,
the Puerto Rico Transportaton Technology Transfer
Center joins the cause by bringing awareness to the
risks of drowsy driving with statstcs, testmonies
and suggestons to avoid a possible tragedy.
Drivers, passengers, and pedestrians of all ages are
all at risks of injury or death due to drowsy driving.
Sleepiness and driving is a dangerous combinaton.
Pedestrians and cyclist, short of reactng quickly at
all tmes, are very limited on how to respond to a
sleep-deprived driver. Drowsiness impairs driving
skills even if drivers manage to stay awake.
According to the Natonal Sleep Foundaton, society
is aware of the dangers of drinking and driving but,
do not realize that drowsy driving afects driving
performance and can be just as fatal. Like alcohol,
sleepiness slows reacton tme, decreasing
awareness, impairing judgment and increasing risk
of crashing. Being awake for 18 hours is equal to a
blood alcohol concentraton (BAC) of 0.08%, which
is legally drunk. However, many people cannot tell
if or when they are about to fall asleep. And if
sleepiness comes on while driving, many say to
themselves, I can handle this, Ill be fne.
It is uncertain to determine the cause of a fatal
crash, where drowsy driving is suspected. However,
there are number of clues that indicate a person fell
asleep while driving at a crash site, that usually links
a single vehicle going of the road with no evidence
of skid marks, breaking or any other evasive
maneuvers to prevent the crash.
Unfortunately, most incidents caused by drowsy
driving are unknown or underreported. Unlike
alcohol-related crashes, no blood, breath, or other
objectve test for sleepiness behind the wheel
currently exists that investgators could give to a
driver at the scene of a crash. This makes police
training in identfying drowsiness as a crash factor
very difcult.
Drowsy Driving U.S. Statstcs
According to the Natonal Highway Trafc Safety
Administraton (NHTSA), 2.5% of fatal motor
vehicle accidents and 2.0% of non-fatal accidents
involve drowsy driving, estmatng that 100,000
police-reported crashes are the direct result of
driver fatgue each year. Through 2009 and 2010,
the U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services Centers for Disease Control and
Preventon (CDC) analyzed data (95% CIs) from a
questonnaire about insufcient sleep by the
Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).
Reports of people falling asleep while driving, state
a patern among adults who reported sleeping less
than six (6) hours per day, snoring or
unintentonally falling asleep during the day.
The study was held in 19 states and the District of
Columbia (DC), where, among the 147,075
respondents, 4.2% reported having fallen asleep
while driving at least one tme during the previous
Men (5.3%) were more likely to report drowsy
driving than women (3.2%).
Drowsy driving reports also showed a
decrease with age, from >4.9% among adults
aged 1844 years to 1.7% among those older
tan 65 years, where 55% of drowsy driving
crashes are caused by drivers less than 25
years old.
Non-Hispanics whites (3.2%) were less likely to
report drowsy driving than other racial/ethnic
groups (6.1% for non-Hispanic blacks and 5.9%
for Hispanics).

In additon to the dangers of driving under the
infuence of fatgue, several states are considering
legislaton that would allow police to charge
drowsy drivers with criminal negligence if they
injure or kill someone while driving if they have not
had adequate sleep. According to data from
Australia, England, Finland, and other European
natons, all of who have more consistent on crash
reportng procedures than the U.S., drowsy driving
represents 10 to 30 percent of all crashes.

Wake up! You are driving!
Source: ambrozinio / Shutterstock

In 2009, Dr. Lissete Jimnez, Puerto Rican
neurologist and specialist on the science of sleep,
stated that there is a tendency from many
industrialized countries and United States states,
of legislatng and criminalizing as reckless driving,
falling asleep while driving a vehicle. A New
Jersey law (Maggies Law) states that a driver that
causes an accident, by falling asleep afer being
awake for 24 hours, could be charged with
vehicular homicide. Laws in many states intend to
prevent these types of accidents with very severe
sentencing. A bus driver got sentenced to 7 years
in the state of Florida for killing seven and injuring
ten kids.
Puerto Ricos Legislaton and Statstcs
On the other hand, to this day, there is not one
ofcial statstc or law in Puerto Rico regarding this
mater, to a point where there is not a single
opton for drowsy driving on a police incident
report. Thus, there is litle to no police training in
identfying drowsiness as a crash factor.
According to Jimnez, the problem turns into a
vicious circle: if there is no recogniton of a
problem, there wont be any funds allocated to
atend it. She fnds that the widespread ignorance
on this mater, many tmes gets extenuated into
other reasons such a low blood sugar instead of
drowsy driving.
The lack of regulaton and statstcs on this mater
has not stopped incidents from occurring.
According to the acclaimed entrepreneur from the
Municipality of Mayagez, ngel Luis Rosas, this
tendency became a reality 15 years ago when his
brother, Ricardo Rosas Collazo, went unscathed
afer falling asleep at the wheel at the age of 62
afer leaving an actvity at night. Furthermore,
according to 2007s Bureau of Transit director,
Rolando Rodrguez, there is no way to determine
how many fatal accidents have occurred from
sleep-deprived drivers, in regards to a horrifc
fatal accident near de Coco-Cola factory in the
Municipality of Bayamn. It could be a factor,
but there is no way to measure that in the
statstc, how many have been for that reason, he
declared insistng that is speculatve to make that
afrmaton, unless there is a survivor that states
it. He contnued to encourage drowsy drivers to
use the available rest stops across state highways or
emergency shoulders. Consistent with this dreadful
situaton, Puerto Ricos House Senator Gilberto
Rodrguez from the
Popular Democratc Party
(PPD, as its Spanish
acronyms) at the age of
38 fell asleep behind the
wheel while transitng a
state road though the Las
Maras Municipality this
past November (2013).
He mentoned that the
incident occurred on a
Friday morning at 1:00
A.M. afer being awake
for 18 hours, and on his
way to San Juan, where
he dosed of through a
straight sector of the
road and impacted a
concrete electrical post.
I would not want this to
happen to anyone while drowsy driving one loses
the noton of reality, when in fact one is really
sleeping, he stated. As a public ofcer, he also
suggested the implementaton of rumble strips on
state highways and roads, as well as road refectve
beacons between lanes and on shoulders for a
brighter and illuminated trip. In some states, like
Utah, road signs alert drivers to pull over and rest.
Who is at Risk?
Those at most risk for drowsy driving include
commercial drivers, persons with hectc night or
long work shifs, drivers with untreated sleep
disorders or are on sedatng medicatons, and
anyone who does not get adequate sleep. There are
many underlying causes of sleepiness, fatgue or
drowsy driving including sleep loss from restricton
or too litle sleep, interrupton or fragmented sleep;
chronic sleep debt; circadian factors associated with
driving paterns or work schedules; undiagnosed or
untreated sleep disorders; tme spent on a task; the
use of sedatng medicatons; and the consumpton
of alcohol when already tred. Any of these factors
or a combinaton of any of them can greatly increase
the possibility or risk of a drowsiness related crash.
Wake up! You are driving!
Source: RBR Construction
Source: Philkon Konstantin
Wake up! You are driving!
On December 2010, Puerto Rico Highway and
Transportaton Authority (PRHTA) joined other
stakeholders in the frst Every Day Counts (EDC)
Summit held in Atlanta, Georgia. For the
implementaton of EDC initatves, Federal Highway
Administraton (FHWA) partnered with the
American Associaton of State Highway and
Transportaton Ofcials (AASHTO) to host 10
Regional Summits.
Among the innovatve technologies promoted in
these Summits was Geosythetc Reinforced Soil
Integrated Bridge Systems (GRS IBS). During the
summit, PRHTA commited to implement this
technology and identfed two twin bridges (1121
and 1122) within the Natonal Highway System
(NHS) in which this technology would be
Bridges No. 1121 and No. 1122 are located in PR-2,
which is part of the NHS, and were constructed in
1970. The state highway PR-2 facilitates the
movement of people and consumer goods
between the municipalites of Mayaguez and
Ponce, the biggest economic gears of the west and
south region respectvely. Both structures were
showing deterioraton on the superstructure and it
was decided to replace them.
The replacement of the bridges using GRS IBS
technology was submited for funding
consideraton under the Innovatve Bridge
Research and Deployment (IBRD) Program
sponsored by FHWA and a $370,000 grant was
awarded for the constructon of the project.
Although they are the second project constructed
in the NHS system, bridges No. 1121/1122 are the
ones with the highest ADT constructed up untl
today (43,000 AADT).
Warning Signs, Preventon and Recommendatons
The best way drivers can prevent drowsy driving is
to avoid getng behind the wheel while sleepy and
learn the warning signs of drowsy driving. Some
warning signs to watch out for that indicates
sleepiness are:
Frequent blinking, long blinks and head
Having trouble keeping your eyes focused or
blurry vision
Daydreaming at length and constant yawning
Drifing from your lane or on the shoulder
Suddenly realizing you are at a certain point on
your route and you dont recall passing familiar
Recommendatons and countermeasures:
Staying overnight and not pushing yourself
beyond your limits
Not driving at all and using public transit
Pull over to a safe spot and sleep (studies
suggest a 20 minute nap can fully revive most
Drink two (2) cups of cofee or other
cafeinated beverage like Green or Black Tea.
Get adequate sleep (7-9 hours)
Schedule proper breaks (about every 100 miles
or 2 hours during long trips)
Arrange for a travel companion or friend
IMPORTANT NOTE: There is no evidence that
opening car windows, stopping to stretch or
turning up the radio prevents drowsy driving
Every driver has the responsibility of making the
roads safer by not adding to the problem of
impaired sleep-deprived driving. For further
informaton or inquiries about drowsy driving
consequences and suggestons, please do not
hesitate in accessing

Sources: El Nuevo Da, Primera Hora, CDC

Puerto Rico PR-2 GRS-IBS Showcase
Source: Hctor Laureano, PE

Puerto Rico PR-2 GRS-IBS Showcase
It is the highest priority for the Puerto Rico
Highway and Transportaton Authority to develop
projects using the most innovatve technologies
available to reduce the impact to the users and the
probability of injuries during the constructon
process, said Hctor R. Laureano, Bridge Program
Manager for the PRHTA. The GRS IBS technology
helps us accomplish that by using constructon
techniques that are much more faster than
conventonal methods and as a result the public
and the constructon personnel are exposed
signifcantly less tme to the hazards associated
with any constructon actvity, he added.
For the design of the GRS IBS, the PRHTA modifed
an Excel spreadsheet provided by the FHWA for
the preliminary design of the GRS-IBS structure.
The PRHTA Structural Design Ofce personnel,
later on modifed the original spreadsheet version
to add and adjust some aspects that were omited.
Some of the modifcatons made were: User
Interface, Seismic Criteria, Minimum Anchor
Length Criteria (L
), High Strength Integratng Zone
Reinforcements and External Stability Criteria.
PRHTA also developed Special Provision 983
Geosynthetc Reinforced Soil Integrated Bridge
Bridge 1121 will be instrumented with optc
pressure cells and geosynthetc fber sensors to
measure vertcal pressure and forces/strains
The project is currently actve and the
replacement of bridge 1122 has been completed
with GRS IBS. The structure is open to trafc. The
replacement of bridge 1121 is being performed at
this tme.
A Puerto Rico PR-2 GRS-IBS Showcase was held on
April 30, 2014 during the replacement of bridge
1121. The purpose of the Showcase was to invite all
major stakeholders that could be benefted from
the technology and expose them the constructon
process, one that is extremely simple and fast.
Among the stakeholders invited were: designers,
contractors, PRHTA staf, FHWA staf, academia,
and regional Public Works representatves.
The showcase was held at Pichis Hotel and
Conventon Center in Municipality of Guayanilla and
at the project site. During the morning session,
various presenters shared the technology to the
partcipants. The topics presented were design,
constructon, instrumentaton, inspecton and
maintenance of GRS IBS abutments. In the
afernoon, the partcipants had the opportunity to
visit the project and watch the constructon
Among the presenters for the Showcase were:
Daniel Alzamora, FHWA Resource Center; Hctor R.
Laureano, PRHTA Bridge Program Manager; Yaritza
Cordero, PRHTA Project Administrator; Jos R.
Rodriguez, PRHTA Designer; Claudio Torres, Tamrio
General Contractor, and Jos Muoz,
Instrumentaton Sub-contractor.

Authors: Hctor Laureano, P.E; Daniel Alzamora, P.E; FHWA
Source: Hctor Laureano, PE
Source: Daniel Alzamora, PE
The Virgin Islands Department of Public Works
(VIDPW) and the Puerto Rico Local Technical
Assistant Program (PR-LTAP) are coordinatng the
Third Research-to-Practce Symposium on the
Implementaton of Every Day Counts 2 (EDC)
Initatves in the USVI. The symposium will be
complimented with three (3) strategies in
implementaton process, as part of the EDC2
initatves, namely High Fricton Surface (HFS),
Trafc Incident Management (TIM) and
Intersecton Interchange Geometrics (IIG), as well
as a technical feld trip to a Roundabout, Centerline
Road, St. John. The symposium will be held at the
University of Virgin Islands on June 17-19, 2014,
with the partcipaton of natonal experts as
keynote speakers from the public and private
sector, and local contractors.
It is a huge honor to have as keynote speaker the
US House of Representatves, Congresswoman
Donna M. Christensen during the Symposiums
Welcome and Opening Remarks. As an honorary
invite, Ms. Christa Von Hillebrandt-Andrade, the
frst woman to become Manager of the NOAA
Natonal Service Caribbean Tsunami Warning
Program will be representng the
Intergovernmental Coordinaton Group on
Tsunamis and Other Coastal Hazards Warning
System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions
during the Trafc Incident Management (TIM)
session. The Symposium will also count with the
presence of another honorary guest Mr. Elton
Lewis, Director of the Virgin Islands Territorial
Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA). These
three honorary guests will be among other
exceptonal professionals and speakers that will be
representng the local, state and federal
government during this symposium.
During the three-day symposium, the partcipants
will beneft in the latest technologies associated
with these initatves, success stories, lessons
learned and practcal guidelines to assist USVI
Department of Public Works Ofcials in the
implementaton of these initatves in the existng
and proposed highway network. The speakers
representng the public and private sector as well as
the academia will prepare outstanding technical
presentatons associated with all these innovatve
initatves that will have a long lastng technical
This symposium will demonstrate the importance of
implementng these three EDC Initatves to assist
transportaton agencies in their mission in providing
safe and smooth roads, while at the same tme
acceleratng project delivery and protectng the
The next generaton of EDC Initatves must
contnue their commitment to innovaton,
imaginaton, inventon and ingenuity, to achieve the
goal to promote safety, infrastructure
management, workforce development and
excellence in transportaton.

Third Research-to-Practce Symposium at United States Virgin Islands
Source: FHWA HFS
Source: FHWA IIG

In January of this
year, the 93

Annual Meetng of
the Transportaton
Research Board
(TRB) was held in
Washington, D.C.,
where more than 12,000 transportaton
professionals atended. In additon to the
professional partcipaton, a delegaton of seven (7)
students from the University of Puerto Rico
Mayagez Campus (UPRM), accompanied by Dr.
Benjamin Colucci, Director of the Puerto Rico
Transportaton Technology Transfer Center and Dr.
Alberto M. Figueroa Medina, Director of the
DDETFP-HSI program at UPRM, joined to the
Over 70 countries worldwide partcipate at TRB to
share new research fndings related to
transportaton. In the conference, over 4500
presentatons in 800 diferent technical sessions
and workshops are demonstrated and exhibited.
This year, the spotlight theme was Celebratng Our
Legacy, Antcipatng Our Future, which 30 sessions
and workshops were focused on this partcular
theme including performance measurement,
automated driving and connected vehicles,
extreme weather events, and big data.
The Dwight David Eisenhower Transportaton
Fellowship Program for Hispanic Serving
Insttutons (DDETFP-HSI) of the Federal Highway
Administraton (FHWA) sponsored the UPRM
students partcipaton at TRB. Said Fellowship
Program covers the travel costs to the conventon,
provides research assistantships and enables
students to partcipate in the summer internship
program between Purdue University, to both
undergrad and doctoral students. Among the
students who partcipated in this program include
Carlos Calero, Dafne Valle, and Carlos Gavira at
Doctoral level, as well as Omar Lazo, David Soto,
Alexander Molano, and John Matos at an
Undergraduate level. This delegaton shared and
exchanged research ideas with partcipants from
around the globe and had the opportunity to atend
several technical conferences and poster sessions as
well as exhibitons associated to transportaton
products and services.
As part of the Scholarship Program, Carlos Calero, a
Columbian natonal, presented his research on
Geometric Design in Two-Lane rural roads,
partcularly in taking into consideraton vertcal
factors behaviors, such as slopes, that could afect
the roads design and its consistency.
Similarly, Daphne Valle presented her research on
Pedestrian Safety Innovaton Tendency, where she
documented pedestrian data in the Mayagez
Region. The data demonstrated that out of the total
roadside accidents, 29% was due to pedestrian
accidents in this region, where the state road PR-2 is
considered the most dangerous road for
Omar Lazo, a Peruvian natve, studied satsfacton
measures from residents of the Cuchilla Sector in
Mayagez. He canvased residents concerns in
regards to transportaton in the area, where senior
citzens compose 18% (2010 Census) of the sectors
populaton and are the most concerned with this
topic as they dont count with the means or services
that atend to their needs.
The last doctoral student, Carlos Gavira, also a
Columbian natve, presented his research Rapid
Structural Assessment of Bridge Structures
Subjected to Severe Earthquakes on the efects of
seismic actvites on bridge structures. He intended
to fnd a quick methodology to evaluate these
UPRM fnest represent at the 2014 TRB Annual Conventon in Washington, D.C.
Source: David Soto
Source: David Soto
Source: David Soto
As the United Natons Decade of Acton (DOA) for
Road Safety 2011- 2020 commemorates its third
anniversary in educatng the public on road safety
on the Island, the Puerto Rico Local Technical
Assistant Program (PR-LTAP) foments the DOAs
mission of eradicatng fatal casualtes on the road
caused by drunk driving by organizing and
partcipatng in diferent actvites from May 5 9,
2014. The series of actvites intend to exhort the
publics commitment to road safety in order to
make this change and transformaton to a beter
road safety culture possible.
The World Health Organizaton (WHO) has
reported almost 1.3 million fatalites and over 50
million injuries annually in road infrastructures,
making road safety a worldwide issue. Alcohol
exponental consumpton has reached to an
epidemic level, turning into a public health
concern, while afectng the public in some way or
other, from a socioeconomic or any other social or
human concern. In Puerto Rico, 40% of all fatal
collisions in public roads are associated to
alcoholic intoxicaton and excess velocity, where
young adults between 15 and 30 years old are
identfed as the most afected.
Therefore, the DOA and LTAPs commitment
centers on a transformable educaton. The
transformaton should begin at home, to build
awareness on the importance of following road
safety laws and promotng collision preventon.
The Transportaton Research Board in a joint
venture with government agencies, MAPFRE
Foundaton, educatonal programs like FIESTA
Colegial, public and private schools, and
universites alike are key players in getng the
message across by achieving law amendments, the
creaton of innovatve educatonal programs,
promote public and private educatonal seminars,
and improve medical services that could help save
lives on the road.
Some of the actvites that will be held throughout
the 3
DOA Anniversary in Puerto Rico will be the
lightng in yellow, in recogniton of relatves and
victms of road accidents, of emblematc building
throughout Puerto Rico such as the Mayagez
Medical Center and Town Hall, Jos De Diego
Tower Building in the University of Puerto Rico
Mayagez Campus, and the Islands Capitol,
structures without enduring a several days or weeks
Furthermore, undergrad students also presented
their investgatons. Alexander Mulano presented
his research conducted as part of the Summer
Internship Program at Purdue University, in
Comparing Diferent Tests, and how new
technologies are permitng faster results without
sacrifcing safety measurements. Similarly, John
Matos presented his research Variability in quick
electrical testng in concrete samples. These tests
determined concrete porosity, and its susceptbility
in the presence of a chloride ion (salt).
Lastly, David Soto showcased his project
Conceptual Design of On-Street Bike Routes in
Ponce, PR, which consists of evaluatng the
implementaton of protected bike lanes on the
Avenida Hostos and Avenida Las Americas corridors
in Ponce, using NACTO's Urban Bikeway Design
Guide. In additon, cyclist and pedestrian counts
and outreach surveys were led to integrate the
community in the process of implementng a cycling
The DDETFP-HIS Fellowship Program, is an excellent
opportunity to atract the next generaton of
professionals in transportaton, improve
professional careers in transportaton and
encourage students to contnue their studies at an
advanced level.
For more informaton regarding the DDETFP-HIS
access the Department of Civil Engineering and
Surveying webpage and the Annual
Conventon of the TRB webpage at

UPRM at 2014 TRB Annual Conventon
Third Anniversary of Decade of Acton

reiteratng the Senate of Puerto Ricos
commitment to road safety in the Island by
adoptng the moton #6757, which recognizes the
importance and value of this type of initatve.
Additonally, testmonies of impactul Puerto Rican
family stories compiled in the book Ausencia, a
collaboratve publicaton between the MAPFRE
Foundaton, the Lus A. Seeriz Foundaton and
Mothers Agains Drunk Driving (MADD) in Puerto
Rico. Ausencia (a Spanish word for absent), is a
collecton of stories of family members that have
lost a loved one due to drunk drivers in order to
motvate readers to eradicate drinking and driving.
These testmonies gives the reader a look into the
human, familiar and social efects that drinking
irresponsibly can cause on the road. The book
teaches the reader on how overcoming the pain of
losing a loved one can transform the human spirit
to a place where the lef behind gained the
strength needed to share their intmate and
difcult stories with the world.
Furthermore, there will be a series of dedicatons,
acknowledgments and speeches given by
moderators including Mrs. Alida Arizmendi,
Cultural Issues Advisor and Mayor Jos G.
Rodrguez from the Municipality of Mayagez, Mrs.
Iraida Melndez, Vicepresident of Corporate Social
Responsibility and Quality for MAPFRE, Sr. Vctor
Nieves, and Dr. Benjamn Colucci, Puerto Rico
Transportaton Technology Transfer Center
Director. All of them will be promotng road safety
through ideas, strategies and recommendatons.

For further informaton or inquiries about the
Third DOA Anniversary in Puerto Rico and
Ausencias book launch, please do not hesitate
in accessing:

Third Anniversary of Decade of Acton for Road Safety in Puerto Rico
Source: Historias de Ausencia
potental graduate students at PSU in order to help
them understand the responsibilites of being a
graduate student.
In 2009, Dr. Cruzado obtained her PhD in Civil
Engineering from PSU and was reinstated as an
Assistant Professor in the Civil Engineering and
Surveying Department at UPRM.
Dr. Cruzado has worked in research projects from a
wide variety of topics including the evaluaton of
the infrastructure of Luis Muoz Marn
Internatonal Airport, exploring the infuence of
applying the inverted classroom concept in a
transportaton course, and identfying the infuence
of the combinaton of vertcal and horizontal
alignment on drivers speeds. Currently she is
working with the creaton of a computer
applicaton that will record and share accident data
among several agencies in Puerto Rico as well as
the development of a performance tool to monitor
the buses from the Metropolitan Buses Agency
(AMA, by its acronym in Spanish). Dr. Cruzado has
published several artcles on these research
projects and she has worked as a reviewer of
technical papers.
The collaboraton of Dr. Cruzado with the Puerto
Rico LTAP Center started in 2012, as an instructor of
the seminar program, when she ofered the
seminar ttled Infuence of Human Factors in the
Design and Placement of Trafc Signs. The Puerto
Rico LTAP Center recognizes in this frst editon of
the El Puente Newsleter the valuable contributon
and excellence of Dr. Ivete Cruzado as part of the
family of instructors of our Center.
Dr. Ivete Cruzado
was born in Ponce,
Puerto Rico. In
1994 she was
accepted to pursue
her Bachelors
Degree in Civil
Engineering at the
University of Puerto
Rico, Mayaguez
Campus (UPRM). During her college years, she was
a member of the Tau Beta Pi and the student
chapter of the Insttute of Transportaton Engineers
(ITE). She obtained her Bachelor of Science in 1999
and immediately began pursuing a Master of
Science at Michigan State University. In Michigan
State, she was awarded with the Sloan Fellowship.
Afer obtaining her Masters Degree in 2001, Dr.
Cruzado worked at the Polytechnic University of
Puerto Rico during the summer. In August 2001 she
began working as an Instructor in the Civil
Engineering and Surveying Department at UPRM,
her Alma Mater. In 2004 she was accepted in the
Doctoral Program of the Pennsylvania State
University (PSU). Her doctoral thesis, ttled Factors
Afectng Driver Speed Choice along Two-Lane Rural
Highway Transiton Zones, focused on identfying
the highway geometric features that are infuental
on driving speeds along high-to-low speed
transiton zones in rural Pennsylvania.
Besides working on her doctoral research, Dr.
Cruzado also engaged in many studies; several of
them took place in the Thomas D. Larson
Transportaton Insttute. She partcipated in a
research study that explores the consequences of
widening the edge line pavement markings along
horizontal curves. She also organized studies
related to drivers ability to read signs with diferent
background and font colors as well as the type of
illuminaton of the signs.
Dr. Cruzado was also awarded with the Sloan
Fellowship during her PhD pursue as well as the
Carmen E. Turner Fellowship of the Womens
Transportaton Seminar (WTS). She also obtained a
Minor Degree in Statstcs from PSU. In additon,
she was a member, Treasurer, Vice-President, and
President of the Engineering Graduate Student
Council (EGSC). She also ofered seminars to
Know your Instructor: Ivete Cruzado

Mrs. Grisel Villarrubia
Echevarra, natural
from the municipality
of Aguada, started
working at the
Technology Transfer
Center in January
2002, afer obtaining a Bachelors Degree in
Ofce Administraton, from the University of
Puerto Rico at Mayagez. At early years
demonstrated her skills of administratve
assistant working as a journal student at the
Department of Civil Engineering and Surveyors
where she was shaping as a professional of
frst category, for her high responsibility and
sense of quality. Along her professional career
she has obtained several certfcates and
recognitons as part of her professional
development, among them can be highlighted
the Teaching Certfcaton in Business
Educaton through the UPRM Teacher
Preparaton Program. These skills has opened
her other opportunites at the Center where
she has collaborated as an Instructor of the
Centers programs associated to the
Computers Introducton Use. Mrs. Villarudia
has also collaborated with the Centers
Director providing administratve support in
the FHWA Dwight D. Eisenhower
Transportaton Fellowship Program for
Hispanic Serving Insttuton (DDETFP-HSI). This
program provides funds for undergraduate and
graduate students interested in contnuing a

career in the transportaton feld. Also,
Villarubia has been a key element with the
logistc associated to the selecton of the
students, coordinatng the students
fellowships payments, the program actvites
and the travel arrangements of the students to
atend the TRB Annual Meetng that was held
every year on January in Washington, DC.
Mrs. Villarubia also provided administratve
support for the URI/UPRM and PU/UPRM
Summer Transportaton Exchange Program
between the University of Rhode Island,
Purdue University, and the Department of Civil
Engineering and Surveying of the University of
Puerto Rico at Mayagez. Her partcipaton in
the tasks associated with the evaluaton of the
students applicatons that partcipated in this
program during the summer and organizing
program actvites for the students, has been
essental for this programs success. Through
the years, Grisel as everybody in the ofce
calls her, has been noted by her unconditonal
commitment with the director and work team
with a positve attude and a smile, always
willing to give the extra mile when is required.
The family of the Transportaton Technology
Transfer Center recognizes that the success
seminar program and other technology
transfer actvites can be atributed in part to
the excellent work that Mrs. Villarrubia has
been doing in the last eleven (11) years as
Training Coordinator. Her professionalism and
her excellent administratve skills make her a
valuable resource to the PR LTAP Center.
PR LTAP Center Staf Featurete: Grisel Villarrubia
EL PUENTE is published by the Puerto Rico Transportation Technology
Transfer Center located at the Department of Civil Engineering and Surveying
of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagu ez.
University of Puerto Rico at Mayagu ez
Department of Civil Engineering and Surveying
Call Box 9000, Mayagu ez, PR 00681

787.834.6385 PHONE
787.265.5695 FAX

The opinions, fndings or recommendatons expressed in this newsleter are those of the Center Director and Editor and do not necessarily refect the views of the
Federal Highway Administraton, the Puerto Rico Department of Transportaton and Public Works, the Puerto Rico Highway and Transportaton Authority, or the
U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Public Works.
Director & Editor
Benjamn Colucci Ros

Program Administrator
Gisela Gonzlez

Administratve Coordinators
Irmal Franco
Grisel Villarubia

Administratve Assistant
Adlin Santos

Editor Assistants
Christopher J. Surez

Students Interns
Yari Babilonia
Vernica Feliciano
Marivic Hernndez
Carlos D. Fuentes
Anne M. Mndez
EL PUENTE Newsleter
VOL. 28, NO. 01, 2014
PR LTAP Center Staf