Forest Service manual Alaska Region (Region 10)

Download 46.27 Kb.
Size46.27 Kb.


Page of

Forest Service manual

Alaska Region (Region 10)

Juneau, Alaska

fsm 7700 – transportation system
chapteR 7730 – operation and maintenance
Supplement No.: R-10 7700-2004-1
Effective Date: November 22, 2004
Duration: This supplement is effective until superseded or removed.

Approved: /s/ Jacqueline Myers (for)


Regional Forester

Date Approved: 12/11/2004

Posting Instructions: Supplements are numbered consecutively by title number and calendar year. Post by document; remove the entire document and replace it with this supplement. Retain this transmittal as the first page(s) of this document. The last supplement to this title was 7700-99-1 to FSM 7710.

New Document


12 Pages

Superseded Document(s) by Issuance Number and Effective Date

7730 (7700-96-1, 5/17/96)

12 Pages

This supplement converts the format and style of this chapter to the new FSM template using the agency’s current corporate word processing software. Where chapters were previously organized into more than one document, they are now merged into one chapter whenever possible.
Although some minor typographical and technical errors have been corrected, this supplement contains no changes to the substantive direction in this chapter.


7731.04b - Forest Supervisors

6. Inspect and where necessary perform structural analyses to determine appropriate loading and use criteria for retaining walls, log transfer facilities, and other transportation structures.
Where trail bridges have particularly unique conditions of use that appear to justify rating or posting criteria other than that presented in Region 10 supplement to FSM 7736.2, submit alternative posting criteria and supporting rationale for approval by the Director of Engineering and Aviation Management.

7731.13 - Traffic Control on Specifically Authorized Roads

Forest Supervisors are responsible for traffic management on Forest Development Roads, including off-road vehicles (ORV's) and over-snow vehicles.

The goal for over-snow vehicles is to minimize the conflicts of mixed use according to the following priorities:

1. Provide separate facilities.

2. Separate use periods.

3. Manage concurrent use.

Avoid taking any actions that would deviate from State Statutes. Traffic on Forest Development Roads is subject to State traffic laws where applicable, except when in conflict with the rules established under 36 CFR Part 261. Enforcement of traffic laws and licensing should be handled by the Alaska Department of Public Safety.
The Alaska Driver's Manual states that every person who operates a motor vehicle on Alaska streets, highways, or other public property must have a valid Alaska driver's license or permit. This should be enforceable by the State of Alaska Department of Safety. The Forest Service can enforce ORV regulations and State laws covered by an order.
The Forest Service has the authority to allow snowmobile/ATV use under Alaska Public Safety Regulations 13 AAC 02.455 (a)(2) and (3): 1/

1/ Alaska Public Safety regulation restricts snowmobile/ORV use on a roadway, shoulder, or a highway (13 ACC 02.455).

"(2) When use of the highway by other motor vehicles is impossible because of snow or ice accumulation or other natural conditions or when the highway is posted or otherwise designated as being open to travel by off-highway vehicles;

(3) When highway driving is authorized by an authority having jurisdiction over the highway, but only in accordance with restrictions which may be imposed by that authority with regard to highway use."
Roads may be designated for separate use periods such as season, weekday/weekend, or day/night. Notify the public of the locations, effective dates, and duration that roads may or may not be used. Provide appropriate signs.
Because of the potential for accidents as a result of authorizing snowmobile or ATV use, the safety of snowmobile users and other traffic must be an important consideration in determining whether to grant authorization for use and under what circumstances. Reduce the chance for claims by informing the public of the rules and regulations and properly signing for traffic expected.
Refer to FSM 7731.14 for procedures to follow when issuing the Forest Supervisor's orders.

7731.14 – Orders

The Code of Federal Regulations (36 CFR 212.7(a)(2)(i)) establishes the maximum load limits, lengths, widths, and heights for vehicles using the Forest Development Road System as State Highway load limits. The mechanism for establishing higher or lower limits by an order according to 36 CFR 261 is also included in the CFR.

By order shown in 7731.14 - Exhibit 01, the maximum loads for the Region are established in conformance with 36 CFR 212.7(a)(2)(i) and 36 CFR 261.54(d). By the order, the traditional use of heavy loaded vehicles with a center-to-center width between the tires on an axle of a nominal 6 feet (measured center front tire to center front tire) used for timber hauling, mining, road construction, and timber harvest equipment is in conformance with the CFR requirements (See 7731.14 - Exhibit 02). The width description provides a direct field measurement for identifying the wider trucks requiring a permit.
The use of heavy loaded vehicles on easements granted to cost share cooperators and on easement grants from the State of Alaska also requires that the upper limits be established. Each Forest Supervisor should reduce these maximum limitations on selected roads and groups of roads as needed by the issuance of appropriate orders and the posting of weight limits on bridges.
By the order, there are no maximum height or length limitations on vehicles on Forest Development Roads. Width limitations are established, both on overall width of the truck and load, and in the setting of a maximum width between tires on an axle for trucks. Forest Supervisors have full authority to establish lower maximums, if needed, by issuing a road order and posting the limits.
Maximum vehicle width is the widest part of the vehicles and/or load, measured from the furthest extent on each side of the vehicle. The maximum vehicle width is limited to 14 feet. This width will protect essential safety provisions on bridges, the guardrails, and bridge object markers. It will also protect other users of the road. The limit is based on the clearance on current standard of bridges and the bridge object markers (road hazard signs) required to be maintained at the end of guardrails on bridges. Reduced widths may be needed on specific roads or bridges. The Forest Supervisor has full authority to establish lower limits if needed.
The order is specific to the Forest Development Road System. Forest highways, state highways, and roads under the jurisdiction of other agencies are not included. State highway maximum limits are applicable on roads other than Forest Development Roads unless there is a specific agreement providing for higher maximums. Posted limits are maximum allowable on a road.
The State highway load limits and number of axles required to carry the load will normally be the practical load limitation on those Forest Development Roads that are tributary only to the State Highway System. Practicality may dictate reliance on the State's enforcement of limits on State highways rather than establishing Forest Service limits to match State load limits.
The road order is to be posted in all Supervisor's Offices and Ranger District Offices with other applicable road orders. Additional posting should be made as needed including the posting of load limits at bridges.

1. Exhibits to the Order R-10-96-01. Section 2 of the Order notes exhibits to the order. Forest Supervisors should include a listing and mapping of included roads and/or trails. The listing and mapping should be separate for sections A, B, and C if they differ.

Exhibits referencing traffic (Section 2, B.) should list the types of traffic. For example, when the intent is to exclude commercial traffic use the wording similar to the following:
The following commercial traffic is prohibited:
Shuttle bus or shuttle vehicle service

Motorized vehicle tours or package trips

Hiking tours

Bicycle tours

Horseback riding tours

Photography tours

General sightseeing tours

Other tours


(Attachment Example)

(Name of Forest)

(Name of District)

(Purpose of Attachment, i.e., Seasonal Closure)
Pursuant to Regional Forester Order No. R-10-96-01, (Prohibited vehicle and/or traffic) is prohibited when posted on the following (Roads and/or trails) during the time period specified:
Approx. (Period of Closure)

Road/Trail NameNumber Termini Miles From To
Provide the information as indicated here

Approved at (Location), Alaska, this ______ day of ____________, 199_ .


Forest Supervisor

2. Permits to Exceed Limits Set in the Order. Limitations in the order may be exceeded by a written permit issued by a Forest Officer. Contractors, timber sale purchasers, or cost share cooperators are not authorized to exceed the maximum limits established by the order unless an explicit permit to exceed the maximum limit is issued by a Forest Officer.
See FSH 7709.59, Chapter 20, section 24 for road use permitting processes.

a. Maximum Weight. The maximum weights in the road order may be exceeded with issuance of a written permit for each occurrence of an overweight load. Permits to exceed the maximum weight must be noted and copies provided to the staff responsible for road operations and maintenance. There are limits on the number of times and extent of excess load that bridges can be overloaded safely. Issue overweight permits only on a case-by-case basis.

b. Maximum Height or Length. If a Forest Supervisor establishes limits for maximum height or length, permits are required for vehicles exceeding the maximum limits for height or length. Consider special safety measures that may be effective to prevent accidents to other traffic on the road before issuing permits.

c. Maximum Vehicle Width. Written permits may be issued by Forest Officers for vehicles to exceed the width limit. These written permits should be issued on a case-by-case basis. Special provisions may be needed such as signing, pilot cars, flagging, or other measures to assure risk, exposure, and potential consequences are at acceptable levels.

3. The Relationship of the Order to Easements. In general, the Forest Service does not grant easements which would not be subject to this order. The Forest Service obtains easements that in some cases contain a right of use. Orders are generally not applicable on easements reserved under Section 17(b) for roads existing at the time of conveyance, except for those closing the road or appurtenance or safety reasons.

4. Orders on Easements from Alaska Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Policy for the regulation of roads on easement grants obtained from the Alaska Department of Natural Resources is as follows:

Closures and orders issued for roads and trails on easement grants (R-10 Supplement to FSM 5460.1) obtained from DNR must be in accordance with and for the purposes specified in the easement document. Any closure or order limiting usage of a road or trail crossing State lands for which an easement grant has been obtained will be forwarded to the District Manager, State of Alaska, Division of Land and Water Management.
It is generally not appropriate to install road or trail closures issued for land management purposes on State lands. The closures should be located on the National Forest at locations which will not limit the public's access to State lands. Orders and closures (particularly temporary closures) to protect public safety or protect the Government's investment in the facility are appropriate and are included within the easement grant terms.
Posting a warning at intersections that a closure is in effect on National Forest lands (0.X miles ahead) will avoid delaying or misinforming the public.

7731.16 – Permits

Require permits for commercial use of all Forest development roads. Require a road use permit when commercial users are transporting both National Forest products and commercial products on Forest development roads.

Do not charge for road use permits (Form FS-7700-41) for hauling of non-Federal commercial products or other commercial use on National Forest Roads when the user's share of total maintenance is incidental ($1000 or less annually). Calculate commensurate shares as described in FSH 7709.58.
The Forest Supervisor may delegate authority to issue Road Use Permits when the user's share of maintenance is incidental and period of use is less than one year, provided appropriate procedures have been established to:

1. Determine incidental use using the Forest commensurate share values.

2. Provide timely coordination with maintenance management.
Snow removal on roads under Forest Service jurisdiction must be authorized through a road use permit, contract agreement (such as a timber sale contract), or other written permit. Include equipment and operation requirements in the permit for safety, and protection of the road surface and other physical features from damage during snow removal.

7731.22 - Principles of Investment Sharing

Use of Forest development roads for removal of commercial products from ANSCA selection lands requires sharing of cost in the road.

7731.23 - Appropriateness of Investment Sharing

If the amount to be borne by user(s) is estimated to be at least $1,000, investment sharing is feasible.

7731.3 – Enforcement

Require investment sharing in the road system by users of Forest development roads for commercial hauling of non-Federal products commodities, or materials when feasible. Performance of offsetting work by the cost-sharing party (ies) is generally preferred as the method of payment.

7731.42 - Accident Surveillance

All known reportable motor vehicle accidents occurring on Forest Development Roads open to public travel will be identified and inventoried. Identification of accidents involving Forest Service employees shall be accomplished by using procedures in FSM 6730. For accidents not involving Forest Service employees, initial identification should be made to the Forest

Supervisor or assigned responsible staff person. Initial identification should include date of accident, road number, and milepost of road segment. The assigned staff person should obtain additional details on each accident identified by contacting the investigating State or local officials.


7732.22 - Maintenance by Commercial Users

Maintenance costs should be shared with non-Federal commercial haulers or users when the estimated amount to be borne by the user will be at least $100 for the users' anticipated use.

7732.23 - Maintenance by Local Authorities

23 U.S.C. 101 defines the following:

"The term 'Forest Highway' means a forest road under the jurisdiction of and maintained by a public authority and open to public travel."
"...jurisdiction of...a public authority..." is when one or more of the following has occurred:

1. Easements or special use permits have been granted to and accepted by a public road authority such as the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT/PF) for operation of the road as a highway.

2. A contractor of the Federal Highway Administration has begun work and the contract specifically requires the contractor to assume maintenance and operation of the road during the contract period.

3. The Alaska DOT/PF has accepted the construction work performed by Federal Highway Administration Contractor under the provisions of a Memorandum of Understanding.

4. A public road agency is exercising jurisdiction and maintaining the roadway. There may not have been a formal agreement establishing the jurisdiction.
The Forest Service can no longer exercise control nor regulate the use of roads when under the jurisdiction of a public authority.


7733.04c - Forest Supervisors

4. An inventory of accident locations shall be maintained on each Forest. As a minimum, the inventory shall include the accident report and documentation of an accident surveillance and analyses performed (FSM 7731.13).
Records shall be kept on the Forest for 5 years. A stick-pin map should be maintained as a visual display of the Forest vehicle accident history. Consideration should be given to assigning a color or code to identify the type of accident or reference an accident report.


7736.04c - Regional Staff Directors for Engineering Activities

3. Provide Regional assistance in the inspection, structural analyses, and operation of transportation structures.

7736.2 - Technical Inspections

Apply the requirements of this section to retaining walls, timber transfer facilities, and other transportation structures.

7736.51 - Rating Bridges

Follow the guidelines of R-10 supplements to FSH 7709.56b for all structural load ratings of highway structures.

Determine the allowable load carrying capacity of trail bridges in accordance with appropriate pedestrian, stock, or trail vehicle loading consistent with the design guidelines of the current edition of AASHTO Standard specifications, Uniform Building Code, or other recognized design standard authority.

7736.52 - Posting Bridges

Post highway structures for reduced loading in accordance with FSH 7709.56b as supplemented for R-10 special loads.

Close or immediately repair all trail bridges that are inadequate to support the following loads at Operating Stress levels, (33 percent increase above basic allowable stress).

1. A concentrated load of 400 pounds placed anywhere on the structure.

2. A uniform load of 85 psf placed anywhere over 30 percent of the span for bridges less than 40 feet long.
3. A uniform load of 60 psf placed anywhere over 30 percent of the span for bridges over 40 feet long.
Post trail bridges for an appropriate reduced load (maximum number of people, stock, number, or size of trail vehicles) for all bridges that are inadequate to support the following loads at Operating Stress level.

1. A pedestrian load of 800 pounds placed over 6 foot of deck length anywhere on the span.

2. A uniform load of 85 psf placed anywhere over 50 percent of the span for bridges over 40 feet long.

3. A uniform load of 60 psf placed anywhere over 50 percent of the span for bridges over 40 feet long.

4. Any reasonable assumption of stock or vehicle loading.

Carefully consider the problems associated with enforcement of use restrictions. Where stock or vehicle use is anticipated, prohibit all use when the structure is inadequate to support any reasonable assumption of loading. If a pack string is reasonable and the bridge can support only two animals--close to all stock traffic.

7731.14 - EXHIBIT 01
ORDER NO. R-10-96-01




1. Pursuant to Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Subpart B, Section 261.50(a)(b), the following is prohibited on National Forest Development roads and trails located within Alaska:
A. Using a road for commercial hauling. 36 CFR 261.54(c).
B. Operating a vehicle carelessly, recklessly, or without regard for the rights or safety of other persons or in a manner or at a speed that would endanger or be likely to endanger any person or property. 36 CFR 261.54(f).
2. The following is prohibited on National Forest Development roads and trails when identified on attached exhibits of this order:
A. Using any type of vehicle specified in the exhibit. 36 CFR 261.54(a), 36 CFR 261.55(b).
B. Use by any type of traffic specified in the exhibit. 36 CFR 261.54(b), 36 CFR 261.55(c).
C. Operating a vehicle in violation of a posted speed, load, weight, height, length, width, or other posted limitations. 36 CFR 261.54(d).
Pursuant to 36 CFR 261.50(e), the following are exempt from this order:
1. Any Federal, State, or local officer, or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty.
2. Person engaging in an act otherwise prohibited by this order, who has a permit, or easement specifically authorizing the act.
This order supersedes all previous Regional Forester and Forest Supervisor orders pertaining to 36 CFR 261.54(a),(b),(c),(d), and (f) and 36 CFR 261.55(c).
These prohibitions are in addition to the general prohibitions in 36 CFR, Part 261.
Done at Juneau, Alaska, this 17 day of May 1996.
/s/ Kimberly Evart Bown for


Regional Forester
Violation of this prohibition is punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000 or imprisonment for not more than 6 months or both. Title 16 U.S.C., Section 551 and Title 18 U.S.C., Section 3571 as amended December 7, 1987.

7731.14 - EXHIBIT 02




Pursuant to Regional Order R-10-96-1, Forest Development Roads and Trails, operating a motor vehicle or mobile equipment on a Forest Development Road in excess of the following limits is prohibited unless a permit has been issued:
Vehicle/Equipment Maximum Axle Load Total GVW
Wheeled vehicle with a center-to-center spacing between the tires on an axle of greater than a nominal 6 feet (2 meter) width.
Two-axle vehicle 56,000 pounds 52 tons
Three-axle vehicle 56,000 pounds 72 tons
Five-axle vehicle

- wheel base not less 37,000 pounds 80 tons

than 37.5 feet

Tracked equipment Average 2,000 pounds per square foot track

pressure. (Standard USFS L90 Log Loader,

90 ton on two 15 X 3 foot tracks).

A lower load limit can be established by an order of the Forest Supervisor.
B. There is no height or length limitation for vehicles operating on a Forest Development Road. A smaller limit can be established by an order of a Forest Supervisor.
C. Vehicle width in excess of 14 feet on Forest Development Roads is prohibited unless an order or over-width restriction permit has been issued by the Forest Supervisor or their designated acting.
/s/ Kimberly Evart Bown for


Regional Forester


Download 46.27 Kb.

Share with your friends:

The database is protected by copyright © 2023
send message

    Main page