Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Roads and Routes: California I-5
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profdant139

Southern California

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Posted: 06/04/18 09:21am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

How is it that other states with heavy truck traffic are able to design roads that stand up to abuse? I assume that some truckers are over-weight, despite the scales. That is foreseeable. And I assume that it is possible to pave a road to withstand that extra pounding. But in all my travels throughout the West, there is nothing like the Calif highway system, where the right lane is just trashed.

This is not a political issue -- it has to be an engineering issue, at least in part.

The cost of this mess is not only in terms of ruined tires and suspensions. It has to result in more accidents per mile. A blowout on a big rig or an RV is dangerous to everyone.


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IBcarguy

Northern CA

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Posted: 06/04/18 10:18am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have to be careful how I word this... I disagree though, it has everything to do with politics and how the government of CA spends money.

* This post was edited 06/04/18 01:07pm by IBcarguy *

F-TROUP

VISALIA, CALIF

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Posted: 06/04/18 10:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ed_Gee wrote:

For what it’s worth, California just implemented a massive fuel and vehicle tax increase to allow them to start repairing these problems. Such repairs have already taken place on some roads....but given the huge number of miles of roadways it will take years...



For what it's worth, this money will end up in the High Speed Rail toilet just like every other tax.

Ski Pro 3

Placerville, CA

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Posted: 06/04/18 11:38am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not only is California paying more now in registration and fuel taxes to fix the roads, just read in the newspaper how they are planning to add the lanes needed on I80 over the Yolo causeway from Sacramento through Davis with a toll road. Pay taxes, pay more taxes, then pay the toll if you want to drive the 'good' lane. Frustrating for tax payers.


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gafidler

Texas/South Dakota

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Posted: 06/04/18 12:55pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

But the flowers along side the road are nice.





IBcarguy

Northern CA

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Posted: 06/04/18 01:06pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

gafidler wrote:

But the flowers along side the road are nice.

Not anymore...the flowers are all littered with trash and garbage that never seems to get cleaned up.

dedmiston

Valencia

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Posted: 06/04/18 01:12pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

PLEASE KEEP THE POLITICS OUT OF THIS THREAD, OR IT WILL BE DELETED TOO (AGAIN).

Thanks,
Dave


profdant139

Southern California

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Posted: 06/04/18 01:39pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

With reference to engineering, I have noticed in other states that the joints between the concrete sections of pavement are reinforced by horizontal rods that span the gap -- you can see the different texture of the pavement at those joints. I am guessing that this technique keeps the adjacent sections from flexing up and down as heavy trucks pass over the joints.

If I am right about this, that sounds like a cost-effective way to minimize wear and tear on the roadway.

Does anyone here have more info on that technique? I looked and was unable to find much about it.

paulj

Seattle

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Posted: 06/04/18 03:15pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Many miles of Interstate were built with concrete slabs which have tended to shift with use. Often one end tips down a bit, the other up. When a heavily loaded truck tire crosses from the up end of one slab to the next, it drops and puts further downward pressure on the next. The result is a sawtooth surface. If the period of that surface coincides with the RV suspension tuning the ride can be very rough.

On a different scale it's like the washboard that can develop with use on a gravel road. The click-clack of railways is also caused by the same thing - the move from loaded rail to an unloaded one.

States have been trying to fix this problem for decades.

The most effective, but expensive, fix is to tear up the road bed, and pour new slabs with some sort of ties to keep them in line. And with a heavier duty base. In the 1980s I drove Montana freeways where all traffic was on one side, while they rebuilt the other.

A more common fix is cut slots in the adjacent slabs, and install tie rods (dowels) to link the slabs. You want to keep them in line vertically, but still allow for horizontal motion (temperature expansion and contraction). I saw that being done on Illinois freeways in the 1980s. This still requires closing lanes for quite some time.

A quicker, but somewhat temporary fix, is to grind down the road surface to remove the steps, and lay down a layer of asphalt. Grinding and reapplying asphalt is relatively fast and cheap, and can be done without long term closures.

For smaller jumps, such as at bridge approaches, engineers have developed an injection fix - holes are drilled in the slab, and precise quantities of some sort of grout or polymer are injected, bringing slab(s) back into alignment.

I'm sure California engineers know about all these methods (and may have pioneered some), and used them where feasible, and funding allows.

The problems with Donner Pass mentioned in another I80 thread are different. There, apparently, truck traffic, especially with chains, has worn grooves in the pavement. These are probably ok if your wheels fit the grooves (as other trucks) but uncomfortable if one wheel is in a grove, and other rides in and out.

Maintenance like this is a big headache if traffic is heavy. The traffic wears the road faster, but also makes it harder to fix. If there aren't convenient detours, the work has to be done piecemeal, lane by lane, section by section, often at night to avoid disrupting traffic any more than necessary. Urban and mountain freeways tend to be worst.


PolyLevel dealers in California

Federal manual on dowel placement


WSdot on pavement patching and repair

profdant139

Southern California

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Posted: 06/04/18 04:18pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks, Paul! Very informative.

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