Earth Pressure & Slope Failure on Route A16

April 14, 2014 by  
Filed under Geotech

Contributed by: Gabriel Candia
Postdoctoral Researcher at CIGIDEN
Universidad del Desarrollo

Traffic disruption due to displaced slopes and rock movements.

Traffic on route A16 between the cities of Iquique and Alto Hospicio was interrupted as a result of several slopes displacements and rock falls. This route is of strategic importance for regional economy, and following the earthquake, an 80 m long section descended 40 cm displacing over 2500m3 of soil. In addition, rock falls on the hillside caused major traffic delays, until the flow was partially restored two days after the earthquake.

Slope Failure on route A16. Avg. displacements: vertical 40cm, horizontal 10cm. (20°14"38.35' S 70°7"25.10 W). Slope dipping 20°.

Slope Failure on route A16. Avg. displacements: vertical 40cm, horizontal 10cm. (20°14″38.35′ S 70°7″25.10 W). Slope dipping 20°.

Earth Retaining Structures

Overall, basement walls, bridge abutments, and retaining walls performed well as expected for the measured ground accelerations (PGA < 0.3g). Nevertheless, the cantilever walls of Cerro Dragon in Iquique sustained significant rotations (Δ/H~1%-8%) due to the insufficient size of the footing and the lack of moment connections. Many of these walls were previously damaged during the Mw=7.8 Tarapacá Earthquake (2005) and the Mw=7.7 Tocopilla Earthquake (2007).

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