F. Costa, O. Esquilín-Mangual, D. Valdes, C. Crane, S. Wood, W. Long
This article summarizes the lessons learned from the evaluation of failed concrete utility poles in Puerto Rico as a consequence of Hurricane Maria. Teams were deployed between October 3rd to 11th 2017, to cover the west, northwest, south, and east of the island. The evaluation presents sample cases of the failed poles around the island but does not attempt to conduct an inventory. The Puerto Rico building code was being updated based on changes in the International Building Code and the effects of Hurricane Georges. However, many poles made from previous designs are still in service, and many of them failed as a consequence of design deficiencies and improper construction practices. Poles manufactured under the updated codes failed mostly due to foundation issues or structural overload from nearby vegetation impact and the failure of in-line poles, especially wood poles and pre-Georges concrete poles.
Published on 16/02/21Accepted on 16/02/21Submitted on 16/02/21
Volume 19-20, 2021Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license
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