New Findings of the Road Quality Audit: Presumably Falsified Documentation, Substandard and Cheaper Building Materials

Date

2019 08 14

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The ongoing road quality audit carried out by the Lithuanian Road Administration under the Ministry of Transport and Communications (the Road Administration) has revealed new details of some contractors‘ abusive conduct.


It has been found out that some contractors had falsified documentation in order to relax requirements and to use lower quality building materials. Moreover, part of the contractors avoid admitting responsibility for malicious performance and refuse to cooperate and repair defects, submit false laboratory test findings and delay processes.


Mr Rokas Masiulis, Acting Minister of Transport and Communications, said that the performed road quality audit has revealed high-scale abuse on the Lithuanian roads. It would be unfair to state that all contractors were malevolent. There were companies which admitted and corrected their mistakes. However, there are still some complicated cases where contractors are trying not only to conceal their malignant behaviour, but are looking for the protection of top-level decision-makers. In this case our task is to maintain high principles. These are our roads, our national funds and the society must demand responsibility and get all the answers.


According to Mr Vitalijus Andrejevas, Director of the Road Administration, a lot of work has been done in order to compare the requirements set in the tender documentation and those in the technical projects. It was found out that in certain cases such tender documentation requirements were reduced at the expense of quality.


The defects identified on the road sections where contractors cooperate will be repaired until the end of 2019. On other road sections, where contractors refuse to cooperate and delay processes, defects will be remedied next year.


Contractors have been introduced to the audit findings and recommended defect repair methods. Some contractors are ready to cooperate and provide information. They also agree to repair the identified defects. The good examples might be the companies Panevėžio keliai and Kauno tiltai,  which have already paved a new asphalt layer on the defected road sections. JSC Alkesta has agreed to extend a warranty period and to continue further monitoring of the defected section; JSC Žemaitijos keliai and the company Eurovia Lietuva have also agreed to check the whole road section and to take necessary measures.


However, there are bad examples where contractors not only refuse to repair damages, but they also delay processes and refuse to provide information, cooperate and ignore factual circumstances. Among these, JSC Fegda, JSC YIT Lietuva (former JSC Lemminkainen Lietuva), JSC Kamesta, JSC Šiaulių plentas could be enumerated.


In 2018, on the initiative of the Ministry of Transport and Communications, 33 various roads were audited and almost 90 per cent of them did not meet the set quality requirements. The extent of the violations on eighteen roads was such that they have been beyond acceptable limits of commissioning. The audited roads were constructed and reconstructed in the period of 2008–2017.