U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
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Subject: Participation in Engineering Errors Date: July 12, 1963
From: G.M. Williams
Director of Engineering and Operations
To: Mr. August Schofer
Regional Engineer
Hagerstown, Maryland

Reference is made to your April 16 and June 27 memorandums, relative to the above-noted subject.

Your existing policy on this matter, as set forth in your April 21, 1960, memorandum to division engineers, was established with the advice of this office. This policy draws a distinction between engineering errors incorporated into the P.S.&E. approved by Public Roads and engineering errors committed by State personnel during construction operations. Federal participation in the costs of corrective work is allowed in the first instance but is denied in the second. As you indicate, our present thinking is that a more flexible policy would be appropriate in the latter instance.

In this regard, it is now considered that each such engineering error should be considered on its own merits to determine whether any corrective work is eligible for Federal participation. Where carelessness, negligence, incompetence, or understaffing on the part of the State are not contributing factors, favorable consideration may be justified for the type of errors that might occasionally occur despite the exercise of normal diligence. In all other instances Federal participation should continue to be denied. Questionable cases should be referred to this office for advance review and advice.

We believe that the foregoing will provide you with the requested information. Please advise if further comment is desired.

Updated: 06/27/2017
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