Emergency Assistance Provided for PA Turnpike Delaware River Bridge Project

MECHANICSBURG, PA | Modjeski and Masters, Inc. (M&M) recently provided engineering assistance for emergency repairs needed on the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission’s (PTC) Delaware River Bridge. On January 20th, the bridge was shut down after a fracture was discovered on a 14-inch truss member on the west approach deck truss structure.

 The 1.2-mile bridge, which carries approximately 42,000 vehicles a day, is over 60 years old and connects the Pennsylvania and New Jersey Turnpikes. The structure is a combination of girder spans, continuous deck truss spans, and through-arch truss spans.

M&M was called-on to provide analysis of the fractured truss member, field inspection and testing, and field repairs oversight. Specifically, M&M provided: material testing to categorize material used on the bridge and confirm probable cause of the fracture (in conjunction with Lehigh University), ultrasonic testing for structural steel containing weld-filled holes (the confirmed cause of the fracture), and live load testing to confirm the behavior of the bridge under live structural loads.

Working around the clock with the PTC, the contractor, Lehigh University, and numerous expert engineers, the project was successfully completed and the bridge reopened on March 9th, well ahead of schedule.

For more information, visit the PTC’s project page: https://www.paturnpike.com/DRBAlert.aspx

About Modjeski and Masters

M&M is one of the world’s leading bridge engineering firms, with a reputation for technical excellence and innovation that goes beyond current standards. Established more than 120 years ago, the firm is responsible for the design and maintenance of some of our nation’s most recognizable structures. Services include fixed and movable bridge design, inspection and rehabilitation, and all facets of lifecycle maintenance, research and code development. For more information, including in-depth videos of M&M at work, please visit www.modjeski.com.