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construction loading on pipe culverts

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I’m looking for a rule of thumb regarding how long of a 1” steel plate to lay over a shallow culvert (CMP) to keep from crushing the pipe.  I’m thinking 4x the depth to the invert and centered over the crossing.  I have several of these, depth unknown and need to get some construction equip. across them w/o replacing them.


Any thoughts?


Candi Anderson, P.E.

Associate/Chief Engineer

Mercado Consultants, Inc.

17830 New Hampshire Ave.  #200

Ashton, Md 20861

Office: 301-260-0090;  FAX: 301-260-0018