Overloads on Japan's 130-mph Railroad Structures

by Tatsuo Nishiki, Pres.; Railway Tech. Res. Inst., Japanese Natl. Railways, Tokyo, Japan,
Shunta Shiraishi, (M.ASCE), Pres.; Chika Kohji Consultants, Inc., Tokyo, Japan,

Serial Information: Journal of the Structural Division, 1970, Vol. 96, Issue 6, Pg. 1017-1023

Document Type: Journal Paper


Rapidly increasing traffic loads on the 130-mph New Tokaido Line of the Japanese National Railways was considered to affect life endurance of the closely designed structures supporting the line and endanger train operation in the future. In 4.5 yr since its opening to traffic on October 1, 1964, the average daily number of passengers has more than tripled from the initial figure of 60,539 while the average daily number of trains increased by about 2.7 times. Passengers much in excess of seating capacity had to be loaded while the original design load had been determined taking the weight of seated passengers only. The future trend of increases in weight and frequency of loadings and its effect were studied elaborately using statistical data and probability theories. It showed that 5% to 6% shortening of life expectancy is probable in certain short-span beams where the frequency and intensity of stresses are relatively high. Design load for future extension of the NTL was revised taking the aforementioned matter into account.

Subject Headings: Passengers | Load bearing capacity | Overloads | Rail transportation | Load and resistance factor design | Traffic management | Lifeline systems | Highway and road design | Japan | Asia

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