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IDOT SureClose Gate Hinge by D&D Technology

Action: Notice, Request for Comments

Web posting date: January 8, 2014

Close of Comment Period: January 23, 2014

SUMMARY:

IDOT has requested a waiver from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) regarding the Buy America requirements contained in 49 U.S.C. 24405(a). The request pertains to the Sureclose Gate Hinge manufactured in Italy by D&D Technology.  IDOT contends that use of a self-closing, force adjustable gate hinge such as the Sureclose Hinge is essential for maintaining safe pedestrian grade crossings and that a similar hinge is not available from a U.S. source.

Before deciding whether to grant this waiver, FRA is requesting public comments.  A detailed justification for IDOT’s waiver request is available here. 

DATES:

Comments regarding this waiver request should be submitted directly on the form provided below. Commenters should be aware that offensive language, Privacy Act protected, or other inappropriate material will not be posted. The FRA will consider all comments to this waiver request received in the initial 15-day comment period. Comments received after the initial 15-day comment period will be considered to the extent practical. 

General questions about this web notice or FRA’s Buy America requirements may be directed to Ms. Linda Martin, Attorney Advisor, via e-mail at Linda.Martin@dot.gov or by telephone at 202-493-6062

 

Comments

Anthony Altonaga 1/8/2014 6:45:47 PM
is it due to the electronics of the part that they have to be manufactured offshore.

Please include the details of the item.

FRA Response: details of the item are included in waiver request, which is available on: http://www.fra.dot.gov/eLib/Details/L04905
Joseph Gabriel 1/8/2014 7:09:48 PM
Why foreign made? Make them in the USA. Plenty of rail yards in the USA.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. This is not a traditional "rail" item. Details of waiver can found on: http://www.fra.dot.gov/eLib/Details/L04905.
Dennis J. Smith 1/8/2014 7:29:56 PM
My first concern is can the purchase of these items in the USA? Second, if price is a concern,why not compromise on the price in order to buy America. I sense some one is searching for "slave prices from China. Dennis. 571-230-3840.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. IDOT has stated a gate hinge with needed features is not available from a US source. http://www.fra.dot.gov/eLib/Details/L04905. The hinges are manufactured in Italy.
John Tropea 1/9/2014 6:01:32 AM
They should not get a waiver to the buy American requirements. There are plenty of American companies that can make the parts and plenty of people right here that need the work. We get enough part from foreign suppliers and it has cost enough jobs we don't beef to loose anymore

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. We agree with the commenter. American jobs are a priority for FRA and the US Department of Transportation. The waiver will only be granted if no gate hinges with the needed features are available from a domestic source. In addition, should a waiver be granted it will be time-limited and specific to this project.
M. Kennedy 1/9/2014 9:58:06 AM
This is one where I scratch my head and wonder why a custom-made hinge that meets safety standards can not be made in America?

The cost of the hinges are immaterial compared to the total project cost. However, in reality it's $190,000 leaving our American workplace. No waiver. Find a custom manufacturer that can produce this job and similar jobs in the future. If the Italians can do it, so can we.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. Before deciding whether to grant a waiver, FRA will consider all options available to IDOT for gate hinges for use in this project.
Jim Lamberson 1/9/2014 12:30:02 PM
We must always try to use America made!!! However, if the selected company fron Italy is your only available source, I'm okay with them. I'm also okay with Japan, or PI, or UK. No other country though. Thanks for the opportunity to provide my comments.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment.
douglas r. small 1/9/2014 1:55:00 PM
AMERICAN MADE STEEL IS A BETTER PRODUCT!!!

BUY AMERICAN---KEEP AMERICANS WORKING!!


FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. We agree with the commenter. American jobs are a priority for FRA and the US Department of Transportation. The waiver will only be granted if no gate hinges with the needed features are available from a domestic source. In addition, should a waiver be granted it will be time-limited and specific to this project. The gate hinges are primarily aluminum, though may have some steel subcomponents.
Pete Varma 1/9/2014 2:48:29 PM
My recommendation is to work with the existing American manufacture and come up with a design that will meet the specification. If we don't give the American manufactures the opportunity to redesign the gate hinges than the hole purpose of Buy America Act is waste of time and use of tax payers money. I know there are few manufactures in US who may be interested on the challenge. Please purchase American made products.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. Before deciding whether to grant a waiver, FRA will consider all options available to IDOT for gate hinges for use in this project.
Donald M. Pearsall 1/10/2014 2:24:05 PM
I recommend the waiver of the Buy America Act in this instance, Sureclose Hinge Gate.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment.
Jimmy Tench 1/10/2014 9:17:02 PM
After working for the railroad for 40 years I would trust someone in the U. S. to build this hinge. Has this hinge been tested and guaranteed not to malfunction. All I am thinking about is safety to ever one.
Thanks

FRA RESPONSE: Details about the testing IDOT and the ICC put the hinges through is available in the waiver request. see http://www.fra.dot.gov/eLib/Details/L04905, page 8.
Don A. McKenzie 1/11/2014 2:03:13 PM
WHAT GOOD IS A BUY AMERICAN LAW IF YOU KEEP GOING AROUND THE LAW TO BUY FOREIGN PRODUCTS? SURELY SOMEBODY IN THIS COUNTRY CAN MAKE A HINGE?

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. We agree with the commenter. American jobs are a priority for FRA and the US Department of Transportation.

FRA will consider all options avaiable to IDOT for use in this project before deciding whether to grant a waiver. The waiver will only be granted if no gate hinges with the needed features are available from a domestic source. In addition, should a waiver be granted it will be time-limited and specific to this project.
John D 1/13/2014 11:06:33 AM
What is the purpose of Buy America when all I see is Waiver requests to NOT buying America??? I am against any waiver requests because I want to see the people of this country have GOOD paying jobs and get back to work.

FRA RESPONSE: Thank you for your comment. FRA agrees with the commenter that American jobs are a priority. The waiver will only be granted if no gate hinges with the needed features are available from a domestic source. In addition, should a waiver be granted it will be time-limited and specific to this project.

 

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