Incredible Bridge Structures throughout the World

Researching bridges, who knew it could be this interesting, here are three bridges that caught my attention. A bridge is not just a from of infrastructure for the use of transport, but they turn into historical landmarks within the cities and countries they are built in.

Here are some landmarks:

The longest bridge in the world is known as Danyang – Kunshan Grand Bridge, construction on this bridge started in 2006 and the bridge was opened on 30 June 2011. Employing 10,000 workers, and built at a cost of about $8.5 million. This bridge stretches a length of 165 kilometres over the waters in China, part of the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway. The bridge averages about 100 feet (31 meters) off the ground. This bridge type is called Viaduct.

The longest bridge in South Africa was built in March 1879, there were no details logged as to how long it took to build the bridge. This bridge is situated the Orange River, connecting the Eastern Cape and Free State, situated just outside the towns. The arched D.H. Steyn Bridge (also known as Hennie Steyn Bridge) is 1,152 km long and 51,5 meter high over water levels. This bridge is not only accessible for vehicles, but also has railway access.

The most visited bridge in South Africa is the Nelson Mandela bridge located in Johannesburg. This bridge took a budget of R102-120 million to build. The construction took place over 42 railway lines without disturbing any traffic, there are no logs as to when the construction actually started, but the bridge was completed in 2003. This bridge ranges in length of 284m and 27m high.

A bridge project that is currently taking place in Africa is known as the Bahir Dar Abay Bridge in Ethiopia.

Visit Leads 2 Business website for more information on bridges under construction in South Africa and Africa.

 

Sources:
Wikipedia
Mype
Google


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Common Mistakes in Bridge Construction

Common Mistakes in Bridge Construction

The best way to avoid bridge failures is to expect them to happen and develop a good risk management strategy. Don’t just wait to cross that bridge when you get there. This is the only way to protect the public from injuries, loss of life, property damage and destruction. Some bridge collapses are mysteries when they first happen. It isn’t until a detailed investigation is completed that the true cause is revealed.

I am going to list a few common mistakes in bridge construction:

1. Poor Bridge Maintenance: The collapsing of bridges could be prevented with more strict inspections and frequent routine maintenance. Rusted parts must be replaced, drainage areas cleared in case of natural disasters and reinforcements added especially when the use of the bridge has increased. The Connecticut Turnpike over the Mianus River collapsed due to the failure of steel pins that had corroded. I can not believe the lack of bridge maintenance! Can’t get over it.

2. Cheap Materials: A bridge is only as strong as what it’s built with. No one likes to spend money, but excessive cost-cutting can leave the bridge vulnerable to collapses. Not only is the bridge put in a more precarious situation, but saving money on materials can also lead to more costly repairs down the line.

3. Design Defect: While some bridges are constructed perfectly with high-end materials, they can still fail if the design is flawed. Bridges with a poor design could fail to hold enough weight or withstand natural conditions. There are bridges whose collapse was unpreventable before the bridge was ever built.

4. Natural Disasters: Today’s changing climate and the extreme weather events associated with it is causing chaotic weather. Most collapses happen on bridges that were built a long time ago when designers couldn’t imagine the kind of storms they’d have to withstand today. We can’t control the weather, but we can build structures strong enough to withstand such natural disasters. There is always room for improvement.

5. Accidents: Whether it’s a truck hitting a support post, a train falling off the tracks or a boat colliding into a foundation, accidents are one of the leading reasons bridges are damaged or come down. Bridge engineers must plan for all types of incidents. They will have to also bear in mind what the future holds for us. Will there be driverless cars, larger ocean tankers, and cruise ships, along with pilotless drones that could impact bridges in the near and distant future? I think it’s possible, most of it is already happening.

I am definitely no expert in any of these aspects, but keep these failures in mind next time you sitting in your car under a train bridge and the robot for you to go is red.

Sources:
Wikipedia
Civil Digital
Asset Works
Engineers Journal


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About Sonet Du Plooy

I started working at Leads 2 Business in 2014. I was part of the Tenders Africa team and have now recently moved to Private Projects. I love every second of it!