Skip to main content


Project Dates
04/01/2008 - 12/31/2011
Principal Investigators
Project Status
Project Description

The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) is experiencing close to 200 bridge hits a year. These accidents are attributed to numerous factors including: improperly stored equipment on trucks; violation of vehicle posting signs; illegal commercial vehicles on parkways, etc. The objectives of this research are to:

  • Review the major factors contributing to bridge impacts for each bridge that the NYSDOT bridge hit database identifies as being hit multiple times during the last five years;
  • Provide recommendations to the NYSDOT on means of reducing the likelihood of future bridge hits to those frequently hit bridges;
  • Provide long term, feasible and economical suggestions to reduce the likelihood of bridge hits for the complete population of bridges in New York State; and
  • Review and comment on the NYSDOT Collision Vulnerability Assessment Procedure and provide recommended improvements.

The focus of this research shall be on commercial vehicles hitting structural members of bridges above, as well as those vehicles that hit structural members located above the roadway, such as through girders and truss members. This study is not concerned with auto accidents that occur on or below bridges and strike the bridge in the process. Nor is this study about water vessels colliding with highway bridges.

The outcome of the research shall be a report documenting contributing factors for bridge hits at specific locations; recommendations to reduce the likelihood of bridge hits at specific, frequently hit bridges; recommendations to reduce the incidence of bridge hits on the general bridge population; industry education outreach materials; and a computer program to analyze bridge hits data systematically and regularly. The above objectives shall be achieved through 8 research tasks described in the Scope of Work.

Research Categories