Shale Scour at BNRR Yellowstone River Bridge, MT

by Gary L. Lewis, HDR Engineering Inc, Denver, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


Both the Burlington Northern Railroad and Montana Department of Transportation bridges across the Yellowstone river just south of Laurel, Montana, are founded on spread footings placed on claystone shale, buried approximately 10 feet below a gravel layer. A 1974 flood caused a significant shift in the channel attack angle, creating severe scour at the BNRR piers and abutments. A scour assessment and geotechnical investigation of the shale were conducted to evaluate the scour vulnerability and recommended countermeasures for stabilizing the bridge footings.

Subject Headings: Shale | Scour | Rivers and streams | Bridges | Railroad bridges | Rail transportation | Footings | Bridge abutments | Montana | United States

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