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Building Bridges: using heavy equipment to make historic structures

One of the major steps forward in the industrialisation and development of the human race was the creation of bridges. Many major cities around the world have developed due to the building of bridges, but what is required in terms of heavy equipment to successfully build a bridge?

The construction of new bridges can be time consuming and costly. Bridges have to be strong enough to carry the weight of a large quantity of vehicles and potentially heavy vehicles, such as lorries. Unlike other engineering and construction projects, heaving machinery used in the construction of bridges face the added challenge of building an infrastructure over water. The construction process also requires staff who are skilled in working in such locations; an operator who has worked in construction all their life might not be used to working on a water based construction site as opposed to a land based one.

Excavators are sometimes used for building bridges. Excavators can pull out dirt to load on to trucks that are used to remove debris from the site. They are often used during the early phases of bridge construction, before being replaced by larger equipment.

Heavy cranes are used in all types of bridge construction projects, no matter their size. Heavy cranes are used to pull gigantic concrete slabs into place over the bridge’s pillar structures. It is a delicate and time consuming process, laying out the pillars across the water, then placing on top the infrastructure that will eventually become the road. The larger the bridge, the more weight a heavy crane will be required to deal with.

It is during the final stages of construction of a bridge that smaller plant hire equipment can be brought on to the built structure to make the finishing touches Bulldozers are used once a foundation and structure is in place. They are used to smooth the road surfaces on the bridge and make it suitable for vehicles. .

For each bridge construction project there will be different requirements depending on the size and style of the structure. Some mega cities see a huge number of vehicles passing through each day. They require bridges capable of taking the consistent weight of rush hour traffic and future proofed construction that lasts for many decades. Building a bridge is a challenging and impressive feat of construction that just would not be possible without heavy machinery.