Using microsimulation to estimate highway bridge traffic load

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In bridge traffic loading there is an often-made assumption that free-flowing traffic incorporating dynamic effects governs for spans up to about 40 m and that thereafter congested traffic governs. This study uses traffic microsimulation as a basis for the comparison of regularly-used free and congested traffic flow models. Traffic microsimulation offers a comprehensive approach to the modelling of traffic as it models individual vehicle and driver behaviour giving a more realistic picture of traffic states and their consequent load effects on bridges. For a range of bridge lengths and load effects, and for each traffic model, a dynamic ratio that would be required for free-flowing traffic to govern is determined. It is shown that this required dynamic ratio is higher than that expected for a range of spans and load effects. This work concludes that, for a range of spans, the governing form of traffic may be congested traffic, contrary to the common assumption made in bridge traffic load estimation. © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, London.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBridge Maintenance, Safety, Management and Life-Cycle Optimization (IABMAS 2010)
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Bridge Maintenance, Safety and Management, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, 11-15 July 2010
EditorsDan M Frangopol, Richard Sause, Chad S Kusko
Place of PublicationBoca Raton, FL
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9780415891370
ISBN (Print)9780415877862
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Bridge Maintenance, Safety and Management (IABMAS) 2010 - Philadelphia, United States of America
Duration: 11 Jul 201015 Jul 2010
Conference number: 5th (Proceedings)


ConferenceInternational Conference on Bridge Maintenance, Safety and Management (IABMAS) 2010
Abbreviated titleIABMAS 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited States of America
OtherThe International Association for Bridge Maintenance and Safety (IABMAS) encompasses all aspects of bridge maintenance, safety, and management. Specifically, it deals with: bridge repair and rehabilitation issues; bridge management systems; needs of bridge owners, financial planning, whole life costing and investment for the future; bridge related safety and risk issues; economic and other implications. The objective of IABMAS is to promote international cooperation in the fields of bridge maintenance, safety, and management for the purpose of enhancing the welfare of society.
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