September 20 - September 26, 2015

It seems that bridge failures have been making the headlines more frequently, and many U.S. bridges are nearing or exceeding their life expectancy. Do you think most bridges are safe?

Answers Votes
Some are safe, some are not; they are like anything else people build. 36%
Most are safe; you only hear of the few that fail out of the millions that are out there. 28%
Most are not safe; too many are well past their life expectancy or were never built/coated correctly. 21%
Primarily concrete bridges are not as safe as steel bridges, and those are the ones that are failing. 9%
Primarily steel bridges are no safer than concrete bridges; corrosion eventually takes over. 7%

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Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Bridges; Concrete; Corrosion; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Infrastructure; Latin America; North America; Quality Control; Steel

Comment from Car F., (9/22/2015, 10:57 AM)

Most of the public infrastructure's maintenance has been ignored in favor of budget cuts, balance budget fictions, privatization and general disregard for safety. The nation is too preoccupied invading, fighting wars and expending money in places that the average citizen can’t even find on a map, let alone pronounce correctly.

Comment from Stephen Dobrosielski, (9/23/2015, 8:04 AM)

Define "Safe". All bridges have a capacity for sustaining a loading. The question of whether a bridge is safe depends on how you are using the bridge - driving your SUV, driving a loaded pickup truck, driving a tri-axle truck loaded with asphalt or driving an 18 wheeler with a couple of steel coils all have different perspectives on the word "safe" and that is based on structure's load carrying capacity. Another perspective is function - looking at aspects like clearances and alignment. There have been a few too many instances over the past several years where an impact from a vehicle has resulted in a catastrophic structural failure - not a capacity problem as long as the structural member functioned as designed. For me personally, all bridges that I drive over (and under) are safe for my personal use, but if I'm on a 100 year old through truss steel structure (recently repainted) with eyebars as primary load carrying members, I tend to allow more space between me and the car ahead of me, especially when I see that asphalt loaded tri-axle coming toward me going the opposite direction. Love the "bounce".

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