Performance Evaluation and Maintenance of Concrete Bridges in Cold Regions


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Title: Performance Evaluation and Maintenance of Concrete Bridges in Cold Regions

Author(s): A. Hmidan, Y.J. Kim, D.K. Yoon, and S. Yazdani

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 277


Appears on pages(s): 21-38

Keywords: cold region, concrete bridge, decks, deterioration, evaluation, geographical information system (GIS), maintenance, national bridge inventory (NBI)

Date: 3/1/2011

This paper presents a unique approach to examine the performance of constructed concrete bridges in cold regions, based on a combined statistical analysis and geographic information system (GIS) method. A total of 3,013 bridges and 1,126 bridge decks selected from the State of North Dakota (one of the coldest regions in the United States) are analyzed. Detailed technical information of the examined bridges is obtained from the National Bridge Inventory (NBI) database constructed between 2006 and 2007. A statistical analysis is conducted to identify the critical sources of bridge deterioration in cold regions, in particular concrete bridges, using the ordinary least-square multiple regression method. The performance of concrete bridges under cold weather is in general satisfactory, while the deck slabs are the critical structural members and may require regular maintenance and repair. The contribution of the year-built and the presence of water are the most critical factors to the bridge deterioration. A case study is presented based on a 29-span bridge consisting of cast-in-place deck slabs supported by prestressed concrete and steel plate girders. Detailed inspection results are reported and adequate maintenance methods are discussed.