This report provides a brief overview of bridge performance in the January 17, 1994, Northridge Earthquake. Three general observations are (1) structures designed to current seismic design criteria performed well, (2) structures retrofitted to current retrofit standards also performed well, and (3) structures retrofitted after the 1971 San Fernando earthquake to early retrofit details did not always perform well but were sufficiently effective to limit damage and prevent structure collapse in many cases. Some of the key findings made by the CALTRANS post-earthquake investigative team are: Substructures with varying stiffness may be vulnerable to early shear failures; Inadequate seat widths can contribute to structure collapse; Skew is a complexity that combines poorly with other details and conditions; Column flares may not perform as anticipated; End diaphragm abutments protected structures better than seat-type abutments; and Bridges on a tight radius tend to move outward. This report is organized as follows: Introductory Remarks; The Bad News; The Good News; Technical Observations from the Northridge Earthquake; Columns; Variable Substructure Geometry; Abutments; Superstructures; Case Histories - New Bridges, Older Bridges, Retrofit Bridges; and Summary.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute

    933 North Plum Grove Road
    Schaumburg, IL  United States  60173
  • Publication Date: 1994


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 12 p.
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00672458
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 29 1995 12:00AM