Bridge Load Posting Based on Actual Arkansas Truck Traffic

An evaluation of the need to restrict truck travel across bridges is required by the National Bridge Inspection Standards. The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) uses a suite of commercial motor vehicle (CMV) configurations and loadings with the designations ‘CODE 4’, ‘CODE 9’, and ‘CODE 5’ as weight limit posting vehicles to represent trucks using AR bridges. However, these truck configurations and weights may be outdated or not representative of current vehicle configurations. For example, the five-axle semi-truck, CODE 5, wheel configuration is overly conservative for many five-axle semi-trucks that have an outer axle group distance (axle group 2 – axle group 5) greater than 16 feet resulting in unnecessary bridge restrictions for many five-axle semi-trucks. Also, AHTD evaluates truck configurations and axle loadings given in the AASHTO Manual for Bridge Evaluation: SU4 (GVW = 54k), SU5 (GVW = 62k), SU6 (GVW = 69.5k), SU7 (GVW = 77.5k), and Notional Rating Load (NRL) (GVW = 80k). If a bridge can adequately carry the NRL loading, cases SU4-7 do not need to be considered for bridge posting loads. Consequently, there is a need to correctly identify Arkansas truck traffic weights and configurations so that AHTD bridge engineers can accurately assess bridge weight limit values.


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    • Funding: $109594
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department

      P.O. Box 2261
      Little Rock, AR  United States  72203
    • Project Managers:

      Signorelli, Bryan

    • Performing Organizations:

      University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

      Board of Trustees
      Fayetteville, AR  United States 
    • Principal Investigators:

      Heymsfield, Ernest

      Hernandez, Sarah

    • Start Date: 20160701
    • Expected Completion Date: 20170630
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01631680
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department
    • Contract Numbers: TRC1701
    • Files: RiP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Mar 31 2017 5:09PM