Evaluating the Overheight Detection System at the Eklutna River/Glenn Highway Bridge

AUTC project number: RR08.09

PI(s):

Ming Lee (UAF)

Funding:
  • US Department of Transportation (RITA)
  • Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities
  • Start Date: Jul 1, 2008
  • End Date: Jul 31, 2010

Project Documents

Final Report

Project Summary

The Eklutna River/Glenn Highway bridge has sustained repeated impacts from overheight trucks. In 2006, ADOT&PF installed an overheight vehicle warning system. The system includes laser detectors, alarms, and message boards. Since installation, personnel have seen no new damage, and no sign that the alarm system has been triggered. Although this is good news, the particulars are a mystery: Is the system working? Is the presence of the equipment enough to deter drivers from gambling with a vehicle that might be over the height limit? Is it worth installing similar systems at other overpasses? This project is examining the bridge for any evidence of damage, and is fitting the system with a datalogger to record and video any events that trigger the warning system. Finally, just to be sure, researchers will test the system with (officially) overheight vehicles. Project results will help ADOT&PF determine if this system is functioning, and if a similar system installed at other bridges would be cost-effective.