American Society of Civil Engineers

Bridge Pile Bent Number of Pile and X-Bracing System: Impact on Pushover Capacity as Scour Increases

by Doug Hughes, (Struct. Engr., Carpenter Wright Engrs., P.L.L.C., 304 9th Ave. South, Nashville, TN 37203. E-mail: dhughes@carpenterwright sn), George E. Ramey, (Prof., Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Harbert Engrg.Ctr., Auburn Univ., Auburn, AL 36849. E-mail:, and Mary L. Hughes, (Asst. Prof., Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Harbert Engrg. Ctr., Auburn Univ., Auburn, AL 36849. E-mail:

Practice Periodical on Structural Design and Construction, Vol. 12, No. 2, May 2007, pp. 82-95, (doi:

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Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: A common design/construction procedure for highway bridges over marshes, small creeks, and streams is to have the bridge superstructure supported on pile bents. The focus of this article is to compare the relative lateral stiffness and pushover capacities of X-braced three-, four-, five-, and six-pile bents under combined gravity loadings and extreme flood/scour events. The relative performances of single- and two-story X-braced bents with and without a horizontal bracing strut at the bottom of the lower X-bracing were examined. Bent pushover capacities for the various combinations of the numbers of bent piles, bent heights, and X-bracing conditions previously described are presented in this paper.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Bridge failures
Structural stability