Development of a Strategy to Address Load Posted Bridges through Reduction in Uncertainty in Load Ratings

According to the 2015 National Bridge Inventory data, the state of Texas houses over 2300 bridges posted at load levels below the legal limit. While load postings are generally a management issue, there can be commerce, traffic, and emergency egress issues. For this reason, removing postings is always of interest. Posted structures come in all shapes and sizes, built in different eras and environments, and exhibit vastly different structural behaviors. As such, there is no clear-cut single solution for addressing the possibility of removing postings. The researcher team’s approach to addressing posted bridges will develop a strategy to reduce uncertainty in a safe and appropriate manner, targeted based on the specific details of the bridge and load rating that are easiest to adjust. Examples will include more accurate material properties, refined modeling for less conservative load distribution modeling, and field testing for verification of acceptable load levels. The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Manual for Bridge Evaluation allows for refined rating, but does not address the challenge of identifying the appropriate structures. The researcher team will quantify the population of load posted bridges in Texas, identify and examine areas of opportunity, assess the benefits of refined load ratings for Texas bridges, and develop an implementation strategy.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $444344
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Texas Department of Transportation

    125 E. 11th Street
    Austin, TX  United States  78701-2483
  • Project Managers:

    Kuhr, James

  • Performing Organizations:

    Texas Transportation Institute

    Texas A&M University System
    3135 TAMU
    College Station, TX  United States  77843-3135
  • Principal Investigators:

    Hueste, Mary Beth

  • Start Date: 20170901
  • Expected Completion Date: 20191031
  • Actual Completion Date: 20201031

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01648612
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Texas Department of Transportation
  • Contract Numbers: 0-6955
  • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
  • Created Date: Oct 20 2017 10:38AM