The structurally deficient rating is an early warning sign for engineers to prioritize funding and to rehabilitate or to begin the process to replace the bridge.
The rating applies to three main elements of a bridge:
These elements are rated on a scale from zero (closed to traffic) to nine (relatively new). If any of the three elements is rated as a four or less, the bridge is categorized as structurally deficient by federal standards. This does not mean that the bridge is unsafe.
The summary below is taken from the
annual submission (PDF, 52kb) to FHWA made in March 2018. This submission reports that there are 2569 bridges on the Maryland State Highway System, of which 67, or about 3%, are classified as structurally deficient. The number of structurally deficient bridges decreased from 143 in 2006 to 62 in 2018.
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