Q.: With all the concern about bridges that need repair and bridges that are about to fall down, why doesn't somebody prepare a maintenance manual for bridges? It would be useful to know the preventive measures that might forestall at least some of the repairs.

A.: ACI Committee 345 has done just that. Their report, "Routine Maintenance of Concrete Bridges," appears in the October 1983 issue of Concrete International (pages 13-24). It discusses cleaning and flushing surfaces, joints and drains; maintaining the bearings, the substructures, and the adjoining slopes; leveling and surfacing the approaches; and keeping the stream channels clear. Repair operations are also covered.