Tag Archives: bridge construction

Heavy Equipment that builds bridges

In order to merge two cities or places that is divided by a huge mass of water, we make bridges. Bridges that are strong enough to carry the load of heavy vehicles and cars all running at the same time over it. In order to build something that needs to be so strong, one can easily imagine the kind of heavy equipment that were used to construct such a bridge. The kind of heavy equipment that one can see in a construction or a mining site may not be very useful when it comes to construction of bridges over the water but if we are building a bridge covering a small area that has more of land, then the utility of equipment like backhoe loaders or an excavator becomes essential.

Building a bridge requires deep study of the location and skilled men who can execute the work. An operator who has been working all his life operating machines in a construction site may not find this work as his cup of tea and may probably not even understand how to go ahead with a given task. It is because the kind of work he has been doing all his life is entirely different from the work that has been assigned to him.

Utility of an excavator:-

Heavy equipment like an excavator are ideally used for building bridges that does not have a huge water body beneath and it needs certain degree of excavation to be done. Excavators are usually required for building bridges. Simultaneously, it has the capability to pull out the dirt from one place and put it on the truck. Though an excavator may not be required while building bridges over a huge water body or perhaps its use is limited during the initial phase of the construction and then it is replaced by other heavy equipments.

Bulldozer is needed to level the roads:-

A bulldozer is primarily required at the time of building roads on the bridge. There are used to level the roads over the bridge. The roll of a bulldozer is also quite limited and not used extensively during the construction of a bridge.

Heavy crane bridge building machine:-

In order to build big bridges, you require huge cranes that will help to put the slabs on the face of the pillars. It is unimaginable to place those heavy slabs without the involvement of a heavy crane. These cranes are initially used to give a structure to the bridge and once the structure is formed, the slabs are placed over it with the help of these cranes. Unlike an excavator or a bulldozer which may have limited use, these cranes are extensively used during the construction of big or small bridges.

Since the making of two bridges are not the same, crane manufacturing companies have come up with different types of cranes required for the construction. Each type of crane is meant for constructing a specific kind of bridge. They comes in different shape and sizes and it varies depending upon the sort of bridge that needs to be constructed.


How to construct a strong bridge?

Bruce Jackson once said – “Bridges become frames for looking at the world around us”. This statement is perhaps enough to turn one’s mind to the importance of constructing a strong bridge. A well- designed bridge should be able to withstand the wear and tear of time. It should stand erect to enable the passenger to overcome the physical hurdles that come in their way such as valley, river or roads. There are three questions of “what” involved in constructing a bridge:-

  1. What is the time limit of your bridge construction?
  2. What is the purpose of constructing the bridge?
  3. What is the span of this bridge?

Steps to start constructing a bridge

Are you ready to add a bridge to your residential /commercial area? If yes, then follow the following steps:-

  • The first thing you have to do is to seek permission from one of the governmental authority. The agencies such as Water Control Districts, Department of Environmental Regulation etc. are authorised to give such permissions.
  • Now set your budget. Your budget should be high enough to buy all the necessary elements require building that bridge.
  • Then, think why you are constructing the bridge. If it is for commercial development, then it should be constructed with an attractive design. For that, you can also refer to a professional engineer.
  • Now, determine the length of the bridge. For this, calculate the gap between bottom of the bridge and the high water rise. It should be 5-10 feet from the top of the bank. It should be wide enough to provide a smooth clearance.
  • Then at last, design your bridge by referring to Americans Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

Types of design in constructing a bridge

  • Arch Bridges:- Arch bridges have connections at the supports and the centre point of the arch. It permits the bridge to respond strongly to heavy stresses and loads.
  • Truss Bridges:- This type of bridge is composed of many smaller parts. They are mostly made of metals. This bridge has generally triangle-shaped structure.
  • Covered Bridges:- Here, the enclosing roof protects the bridge from all kinds of withering. Thus it elongates the life of the bridge.
  • Pratt Truss Bridges:- In this type of bridge, the middle-section has cross diagonal members. This enables the bridge to get a lighter structure. It is the most common type of truss bridges.
  • Warren Truss Bridges:- It has many isosceles or equilateral triangles to connect the top and bottom line.
  • Suspension Bridges:- Here, the deck is hung from wire-rope suspenders. It consists of a tied arch that prevents the drifting of its bearings.

However, many times we lack the perceiving to build beautiful yet strong bridges. So, we can start by building small bridges that are strong enough to carry us. After learning the skills properly and getting trained, we can start making bridges that is needed to make the nation look beautiful and work perfectly.