SP-37 Highway Rockfall Research Report


The pilot study that developed the methodology for evaluating and prioritizing slopes for rockfall hazards along Colorado’s highways. Incorporates accident data, maintenance input and geologic characteristics into the rating. 27 pages. 6 figures. 3 tables. Digital PDF download. SP-37D

This research project developed and demonstrated a cost-effective system for evaluating and prioritizing highway rockfall hazards state-wide. The project was designed to produce a method for evaluating large segments of the highway system without getting bogged down with minor maintenance or rare rockfall issues.

The prototype system consisted of three parts: 1) a computer-sorted set of data bases, including past highway rockfall accidents since 1976; 2) a ride-through program with maintenance patrol personnel, and 3) a system for categorizing and ranking individual highway rockfall hazard sites. The study demonstrated that data developed and collected by this three-part approach can be used to direct the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) to those sites having the highest rockfall hazard.