A Study of Accidents Involving Highway Bridges

Report No: 70-R34

Published in 1971

About the report:

Accident reports, field evaluations, state police and highway engineer questionnaire replies, and other data sources were used to conduct a general study of accidents involving highway bridges in Virginia. The bridges included in the study were divided into three groups. These were: (a) Arterial and primary system bridges, (b) interstate system bridges, and (c) draw and swing span bridges. Several geometric type characteristics were found to predominate at many of the arterial and primary system bridges investigated. On interstate bridges poor surface conditions were found to prevail during a significantly high number of accidents, and rear end collisions proved to be a significant problem on several toll draw or swing span structures. A more detailed listing of these and other findings are summarized under the conclusions of the report. The upgrading of existing bridge rail-approach guardrail systems, widening of certain narrow roadway width bridges, and certain precautionary considerations for use during planning and design are among a number of recommendations offered at the end of the report.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Other Authors

Marvin H. Hilton, J. R. Redick

Last updated: February 12, 2024

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