Authors: Hilary Bakamwesiga; Jackson A. Mwakali; Sven Thelandersson
Addresses: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Makerere University, P.O. Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda ' Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Makerere University, P.O. Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda ' Division of Structural Engineering, Lund University, P.O. Box 118, S-22100 Lund, Sweden
Abstract: The increasing frequency of bridge failures in Uganda over the past few years has raised concern at the technical, management, and policy levels. In sub-Saharan Africa, where roads dominate the transport systems, the bridge stock serves as an insurance system to support livelihoods. Despite this dominance, it is only in South Africa (SA) where significant studies on Bridge Management (BM) have been conducted. The ever-increasing traffic volume and erratic climatic factors have resulted in the rise in demand for a reliable bridge network. The main causes of bridge failure are overload, ageing, overuse and inappropriate maintenance. In this paper, we highlight the causes of recent bridge collapses; analyse the reactive 'firefighting' as opposed to proactive interventions in bridge failure, and analyse the strengths and weaknesses of BM in Uganda. We recommend the development of an appropriate Bridge Management System (BMS). The recommendation, if implemented, will delay the deterioration on bridges.
Keywords: bridge management systems; climatic factors; bridge overload; bridge ageing; bridge overuse; inappropriate maintenance; bridge maintenance; Uganda; bridge failures; bridges.
International Journal of Forensic Engineering, 2017 Vol.3 No.3, pp.235 - 254
Accepted: 06 Aug 2016
Published online: 17 Mar 2017 *