5543.20 Responsibility for bridge inspection.

The county engineer shall inspect all bridges or portions thereof on the county highway system inside and outside of municipalities, bridges on township roads, and other bridges or portions of bridges for which responsibility for inspection is by law or agreement assigned to the county. If the responsibility for inspection of a bridge is not fixed by law or agreement and the county performs the largest share of maintenance on a bridge, inspection shall be made by the engineer.

This section does not prohibit a board of township trustees from inspecting bridges within a township.

Such inspection shall be made annually, or more frequently if required by the board of county commissioners, in accordance with the manual of bridge inspection described in section 5501.47 of the Revised Code.

Counties may contract for inspection services.

The engineer shall maintain an updated inventory of all bridges in the county, except those on the state highway system and those within a municipality for which the engineer has no duty to inspect, and indicate on the inventory record who is responsible for inspection and for maintenance, and the authority for such responsibilities.

The engineer shall report the condition of all bridges to the board of county commissioners not later than sixty days after his annual inspection or he shall report more frequently if the board so requires. Any bridge for which the county has inspection or maintenance responsibility which, at any time, is found to be in a condition that is a potential danger to life or property shall be identified in the reports, and if the engineer determines that the condition of any bridge represents an immediate danger he shall immediately report the condition to the board. With respect to those bridges where there exists joint maintenance responsibility, the engineer shall furnish a copy of his report to each party responsible for a share of maintenance. The engineer shall furnish each board of township trustees with a report of the condition of bridges on the township road system of such township and furnish the legislative authority of each municipality in the county with a report of the condition of bridges in such municipality for which the county has responsibility for inspection.

"Maintenance" as used in this division means actual performance of maintenance work.

Effective Date: 09-28-1973