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Pontoons Pass Safety Analysis Despite Missing Pieces

December 26, 2012

The Department of Transportation has said that after a thorough analysis of the first round of pontoons built for the SR 520 Bridge, despite a design flaw, these pontoons should last 75 years or more.

In November, WSDOT reported that rebar with hooked ends was omitted during the first cycle of construction of three longitudinal pontoons. The end walls were designed to have rebar bent as a design measure to minimize potential cracking.

Program director Julie Meredith said. “…we have been very thorough in our investigation and study of this question about the omitted hook bars in three of the first six pontoons built in the Aberdeen casting basin. We now have confirmation that the structural integrity of the pontoons is sound. ”

The top slab of pontoon V still meets structural requirements because of the extensive rebar and added strength from the bolt beam in this location and because the rebar is sufficiently embedded in the concrete. Both of these factors are included in the analysis verified by WSDOT.

Based on this analysis, WSDOT Bridge and Structures Engineer Jugesh Kapur said “there is no reduction in structural capacity”.


Categories: Harbor News
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