Decision analytic approach for the reclassification of concrete bridges by using elastic limit information from proof loading

Medha Kapoor, Christian Overgaard Christensen, Jacob Wittrup Schmidt, John Dalsgaard Sørensen, Sebastian Thöns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Reclassification of bridges, i.e., a change in load rating, using reliability-based methods and a direct update with proof load information has been presented by many authors. However, bridge reclassification has hardly been studied from a decision analytic perspective, i.e., with quantification of the risks and benefits of different classification choices, and the expected benefit gain from proof loading. We derive, explain and exemplify a decision analytic approach for bridge reclassification along with models for (1) elastic and ultimate capacity and their adaptation with proof load information, (2) proof load information with classification outcomes accounting for target reliabilities and, (3) utilities including socio-economic benefits from reclassification. The approach and models are exemplified with a case study based on reclassification of bridges with a low existing classification. Decision rules, for practical use by a highway authority to find the optimal classification, are identified and documented based on: (1) the measurement of the capacity at elastic limit by proof loading, (2) the bridge reclassification benefits, and, (3) the required annual reliability level. From a Value of Information analysis, it is concluded that the proof load information is highly valuable for reclassification in cases of high socio-economic benefits and high reliability requirements.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109049
JournalReliability Engineering and System Safety
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Apr

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Infrastructure Engineering
  • Transport Systems and Logistics

Free keywords

  • Decision analysis
  • Proof loading
  • Structural reliability
  • Value of information


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