Lehigh Gap Slope Stabilization and Rock Fall Protection

Carbon and Northampton Counties, Pennsylvania

Under a construction inspection indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract, KCI provided slope stabilization/rock fall protection near the Appalachian National Scenic Trail at the Lehigh Gap CERCLA Site in Pennsylvania. The mountain is a superfund site—zinc smelters defoliated the ridge, leaving nothing to prevent erosion. FHWA needed to protect two roads below the mountain that had been regularly experiencing falling rock events.

Lehigh-Gap-Slope-Stabilization-and-Rock-Fall-Protection-Helicopter-Materials-DeliveryDesign engineers identified the areas to be contained by cable netting and locations for anchor points of the steel mesh. Heavy equipment and the giant swathes of steel netting were flown into the site by helicopter, while repelling contractors drilled and installed the anchors and fixed the netting to the mountain.

KCI’s responsibilities included inspection and documentation of these activities, with additional care taken for maintenance and protection of traffic on the roads below. Through the use of a webcam, KCI recorded still photos every 30 minutes for communication with our client and archival purposes. On the mountain, KCI’s quality control inspector confirmed that contractors embedded the correct number of anchors and tested them as required, that the cable netting enclosed the required amount of the rock face, and that proper clean-up and safety measures were taken.