Vehicle Collision with Bridge Piers

Inelastic transient finite element simulations are used to investigate the demands generated during collisions between vehicles and bridge piers. Such collisions have occurred in the past, sometimes with catastrophic consequences. Two different types of trucks and two different bridge/pier systems are used in the simulations. The approach speeds for the trucks range from 55 to 135 kph. Various quantities of interest are extracted from the finite element results and used to develop a better understanding of the vehicle/pier crash process and to critique current specifications addressing such events. Although physical vehicle-pier impact tests were not carried out as part of this research, a variety of exercises are conducted to provide confidence in the analysis results. The simulations show that current collision design provisions could be unconservative and that there may be a population of bridge piers that are vulnerable to accidental or malicious impact by heavy trucks.

  • Availability:
  • Authors:
    • El-Tawil, Sherif
    • Severino, Edward
    • Fonseca, Priscilla
  • Publication Date: 2005-5


  • English

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01000109
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 5 2005 2:21PM