The National Academies

NCHRP 12-51 [Completed]

Effect of Truck Weight on Bridge Network Costs

  Project Data
Funds: $399,998
Research Agency: Wayne State University
Principal Investigator: Gongkang Fu
Effective Date: 12/1/1998
Completion Date: 12/31/2002

NCHRP Report 495, Effect of Truck Weight on Bridge Network Costs (Download: Report and Appendix A), contains the findings of a study to develop a methodology for estimating the impact of changes in truck weight limits on bridge network costs. The report describes the research effort and the recommended methodology and illustrates application of the methodology. The accompanying CD-ROM contains the software module implementing the recommended methodology, a user's manual, and the application examples described in the Appendix.

TRB Special Reports 225 and 227, Truck Weight Limits: Issues and Options and New Trucks for Greater Productivity and Less Road Wear: An Evaluation of the Turner Proposal, respectively, noted that trucks produce significant damage to highway bridges. A truck's gross weight, axle weights, and axle configuration directly affect the useful life of highway bridge superstructures. Damage typically occurs in the bridge deck and in the superstructure elements including floor beams and girders, diaphragms, joints, and bearings. Bridge costs associated with increased truck weights are the result of the accelerated maintenance, rehabilitation, or replacement work that is required to keep structures at an acceptable level of service.

The objective of NCHRP Project 12-51 was to develop a methodology for estimating the bridge network costs associated with changes in legal and permit gross weight, axle weights, or axle configurations. This objective has been achieved with a recommended methodology for estimating changes in truck-weight histograms and for calculating the cost of fatigue and overstress in bridge components. To automate the recommended methodology, a software module that can be integrated with AASHTOWare BridgeWare was also developed.

NCHRP Report 495 - Effect of Truck Weight on Bridge Network Costs
Download: Report and Appendix A

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