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Bent Gusset Plates on MN I-35W Bridge

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Does anyone with more experience care to comment on this photo? Is this a smoking gun or are we just looking at the results of initial self-limiting plastic deformation at the connection as the deck beams were loaded during construction? I don’t think I would find this alarming unless analysis and testing showed some evidence of fatigue by stress reversal under moving live loads. I suppose a settlement at an abutment could also cause this type of rotation at a truss joint. It is difficult to tell if the beam is loaded anywhere except at the joints.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/Mississippi-River-National-Transportation-Safety-Board/photo//080323/480/3c323cc238024a9b966898900280b9c4//s:/ap/20080323/ap_on_re_us/bridge_collapse_plates;_ylt=Au.9y.ThpLGxtpVVarFkZh1H2ocA

 

Christopher Banbury, PE

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