This IM is intended to provide additional instruction in the acceptance of steel and iron products as it relates to the Buy America requirements in 23 CFR 635.410 and Standard Specification 1107.06.  A manufactured product is considered subject to Buy America if it is predominantly steel or iron.  A product is considered predominantly steel or iron if the product consists of at least 90% steel or iron content, by weight, when it is delivered to the job site for installation.



The following lists of products, at a minimum, are subject to the Buy America requirements. 


Group 1 – Products requiring mill test reports with shipments to projects

IM 451 – Steel Reinforcement

IM 451.02 – Galvanized Steel Bars

IM 451.03B – Epoxy-Coated Steel Reinforcement

IM 452 – Deformed and Plain Stainless Steel Bars for Concrete Reinforcement

IM 453.06B – High Strength Fasteners

IM 453.07 – Stainless Steel Fasteners

IM 453.08 – Anchor Bolts

IM 467 – Steel Piles

IM 467.01 – Steel H-Piles

IM 467.02 – Steel Sheet Piles

IM 467.03 – Steel Pipe Piles

IM 468 – Pile Points for Steel H-Piles

IM 557 – Qualification of Steel Fabrication Shops & Plants


Group 2 – Products not requiring mill test reports with shipments to projects

IM 411 – Truncated Domes/Detectable Warning Systems

IM 441 – Corrugated Metal Culvert Pipe

IM 441.01 –  Coupling devices for corrugated metal culvert pipe

IM 443.01 – Rodent Guards

IM 443.02 – Safety Grates

IM 444 – Corrugated Zinc-Coated Steel Plates for Pipes & Arches

IM 445 – Precast Concrete

IM 445.01 – Concrete Pipe & Special Sections

IM 445.02 – Precast Box Culverts

IM 445.03 – Mechanically-Stabilized Earth (MSE) Retaining Wall Panels

IM 445.06 – Precast Concrete Noise Walls

IM 449.05 – Inspection & Acceptance of Utility Access Adjustment Rings

IM 451.01 – Reinforcing Steel Supports

IM 453.04 – Steel Castings (Carbon), Gray Iron Castings, and Ductile Iron Castings

IM 453.09 – Concrete Anchors

IM 453.10 – Shear Stud Connectors

IM 454.10 – Chain-Link Fence and Field Fence

IM 455.01 – High Tension Cable Guardrail

IM 455.02 – Formed Steel Beam Railing, Cable Rail, Anchor Cable & Steel Post for Guardrail

IM 485 – Light Pole Bases

IM 485.10 – Inspection & Acceptance of Rigid Steel Conduit

IM 486.10 – Perforated Square Steel Tube Post and Anchor

IM 558 – Structural Field Welding & Inspection

IM 565 – Steel Fabrication Shop Documentation

IM 570 – Precast & Prestressed Concrete Bridge Units

IM 571 – Plants for Production of Precast Concrete Barrier


Per FHWA Memorandum dated December 21, 2012, examples of miscellaneous steel or iron components, subcomponents and hardware not subject to Buy America coverage include, but are not limited to, “cabinets, covers, shelves, clamps, fittings, sleeves, washers, bolts, nuts, screws, tie wire, spacers, chairs, lifting hooks, faucets, door hinges, etc.”



The required documentation for all steel and iron products incorporated in a project will be at a minimum the mill test report and materials identification in addition to all product specific information identified in the pertinent IM. 


The mill test reports must be signed, stamped and dated.  The materials identification must provide traceability by heat number, grade and type.  As an example, the bill of lading may help provide this traceability.


Mill test reports must contain a certification statement indicating all steel or iron has been melted and manufactured in the USA in accordance with the Buy America requirements.  In addition, coated steel or iron must have a certification statement indicating all coatings have been applied in the USA.


A.    Products from Approved Fabricators/Suppliers

The approved fabricator/supplier is required to maintain a file containing all required documentation for a minimum of seven years from the time the products are shipped for incorporation into a project.  The required documentation will be at a minimum the information indicated above plus anything product specific identified in the pertinent IM.


B.    Project Documentation from Approved Fabricators/Suppliers


1.     Product IMs identified above in Group 1 indicate the fabricator/supplier will be required to provide mill test reports with shipments to the project.


2.     For products in Group 2, the fabricator/supplier must provide a letter certifying all of the materials are in compliance with Buy America and the necessary supporting documentation will be retained as indicated in A above.


C.    Products from Unapproved Fabricators/Suppliers

All documentation from unapproved fabricators/suppliers must be provided at the time of shipment and prior to incorporation.