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Pavement design is the major component in the road construction. Nearly one-third

or one-half of the total cost of construction , so careful consideration should be taken

in design of pavement.

Flexible pavements will transmit wheel load stresses to the lower layers by grain-to-

grain transfer through the points of contact in the granular structure.

The wheel load acting on the pavement will be distributed to a wider area, and the

stress decreases with the depth. Taking advantage of this stress distribution

characteristic, flexible pavements normally has many layers. Hence, the design of

flexible pavement uses the concept of layered system. Based on this, flexible

pavement may be constructed in a number of layers and the top layer has to be of best

quality to sustain maximum compressive stress, in addition to wear and tear. The

lower layers will experience lesser magnitude of stress and low quality material can

be used. Flexible pavements are constructed using bituminous materials. These can be

either in the form of surface treatments (such as bituminous surface treatments

generally found on low volume roads) or, asphalt concrete surface courses (generally

used on high volume roads such as national highways). Flexible pavement layers

reflect the deformation of the lower layers on to the surface layer (e.g., if there is any

undulation in sub-grade then it will be transferred to the surface layer). In the case of
flexible pavement, the design is based on overall performance of flexible pavement,

and the stresses produced should be kept well below the allowable stresses of each

pavement layer.

The major flexible pavement failures are fatigue cracking, rutting, and thermal

cracking. The fatigue cracking of flexible pavement is due to horizontal tensile strain

at the bottom of the asphaltic concrete. The failure criterion relates allowable number

of load repetitions to tensile strain and this relation can be determined in the

laboratory fatigue test on asphaltic concrete specimens. Rutting occurs only on

flexible pavements as indicated by permanent deformation or rut depth along wheel

load path. Two design methods have been used to control rutting: one to limit the

vertical compressive strain on the top of subgrade and other to limit rutting to a

tolerable amount (12 mm normally). Thermal cracking includes both low-temperature

cracking and thermal fatigue cracking.

Rigid pavements have sufficient flexural strength to transmit the wheel load stresses

to a wider area below. A typical cross section of the rigid pavement is shown in Figure

3. Compared to flexible pavement, rigid pavements are placed either directly on the

prepared sub-grade or on a single layer of granular or stabilized material. Since there

is only one layer of material between the concrete and the sub-grade, this layer can be

called as base or sub-base course.

Traditionally fatigue cracking has been considered as the major, or only criterion for

rigid pavement design. The allowable number of load repetitions to cause fatigue

cracking depends on the stress ratio between flexural tensile stress and concrete

modulus of rupture. Of late, pumping is identified as an important failure criterion.

Pumping is the ejection of soil slurry through the joints and cracks of cement concrete

pavement, caused during the downward movement of slab under the heavy wheel

loads. Other major types of distress in rigid pavements include faulting, spalling, and



The objective of the present study are:

1. To identify the different locations of pavement distresses in the highway.

2. To identify the frequency of the pavement distress.
3. To obtain more knowledge about pavement distresses and road construction.
4. To study possible causes of these distresses and at the meantime

suggesting/recommending remedies and solutions fo these distresses.


The study of pavement distresses is advantageous for the highway engineers because

of the following reasons:

1. The knowledge about pavement distresses enables us to make more efficient

and high performance pavement.

2. High performance pavement ensures efficient traffic flow and safety to the

3. The study of pavement distress of a place helps in the improvement and
development in the design of the pavement.



Cracks in flexible pavements are caused by deflection of the surface over an unstable

foundation, shrinkage of the surface, thermal expansion and contraction of the

surface, poorly constructed lane joints, or reflection cracking. The following types of

cracks commonly occur in flexible pavements.

Alligator (Fatigue) Cracking

A series of interconnected cracks caused by fatigue failure of the HMA surface under

repeated traffic loading. As the number and magnitude of loads becomes too great,

longitudinal cracks begin to form (usually in the wheelpaths). After repeated loading,

these longitudinal cracks connect forming many-sided sharp-angled pieces that

develop into a pattern resembling the back of an alligator or crocodile.


A film of asphalt binder on the pavement surface. It usually creates a shiny, glass-like

reflecting surface that can become sticky when dry and slippery when wet.

Block Cracking

Interconnected cracks that divide the pavement up into rectangular pieces. Blocks
range in size from approximately 1 ft2 to 100 ft2. Larger blocks are generally

classified as longitudinal and transverse cracking. Block cracking normally occurs

over a large portion of pavement area but sometimes will occur only in non-traffic


Corrugation and Shoving

A form of plastic movement typified by ripples (corrugation) or an abrupt wave

(shoving) across the pavement surface. The distortion is perpendicular to the traffic

direction. Usually occurs at points where traffic starts and stops (corrugation) or areas

where HMA abuts a rigid object (shoving).


Localized pavement surface areas with slightly lower elevations than the surrounding

pavement. Depressions are very noticeable after a rain when they fill with water.


Cracking, breaking or chipping of joint/crack edges. Usually occurs within about 0.6

m of joint/crack edge on airports and about 0.5 m on roads and generally angles

downward to intersect the joint.

Longitudinal Cracking

Cracks parallel to the pavement’s centerline or laydown direction. Usually a type of

fatigue cracking. They may be caused by (1) a poorly constructed paving lane joint,
(2) shrinkage of the AC surface due to low temperatures or hardening of the asphalt,

or (3) a reflective crack caused by cracks beneath the surface course, including cracks

in PCC slabs (but not at PCC joints).


An area of pavement that has been replaced with new material to repair the existing

pavement. A patch is considered a defect no matter how well it performs.


Small, bowl-shaped depressions in the pavement surface that penetrate all the way

through the HMA layer down to the base course. They generally have sharp edges and

vertical sides near the top of the hole. Potholes are most likely to occur on roads with

thin HMA surfaces (1 to 2 inches) and seldom occur on roads with 4 inch or deeper

HMA surfaces.


Loose debris on the pavement, roughness, water collecting in the raveled locations

resulting in vehicle hydroplaning, loss of skid resistance.

Transverse Cracking

Cracks perpendicular to the pavement’s centerline or laydown direction. Usually a

type of thermal cracking. They may be caused by items 2 or 3 above. These types of

cracks are not usually load associated. If the pavement is fragmented along a crack,
the crack is said to be spalled.


These cracks, which divide the slab into two or three pieces, are usually caused by a

combination of load repetition, curling stresses, and shrinkage stresses. (For slabs

divided into four or more pieces, see Shattered Slab/ Intersecting Cracks.) Low

severity cracks are usually warping or friction related and are not considered major

structural distresses. Medium or high severity cracks are usually working cracks and

are considered major structural distresses. Hairline cracks that are only a few feet long

and do not extend across the entire slab are rated as shrinkage cracks.


Load repetition, combined with loss of support and curling stresses, usually causes

cracks at the slab corner. The lack of support may be caused by pumping or loss of

load transfer at the joint. Corner breaks are characterized by a crack that intersects the

joints at a distance less than or equal to one-half of the slab length on both sides,

measured from the corner of the slab. A corner break differs from a corner spall in that

the break extends vertically through the entire slab thickness; a corner spall intersects

the joint at an angle.

Scaling, Map Cracking or Crazing

This distress refers to a network of shallow, fine, or hair-like cracks that extend only

through the upper surface of the concrete. Generally scaling is exhibit by

delamination or disintegration of the slab surface to the depth of the defect usually 6

to 13 mm. Map cracking or crazing usually results from improper curing and/or

finishing of the concrete and may lead to scaling of the surface. This distress is often

noticeable with little or no surface deterioration. Severe cases of scaling, map

cracking, or crazing can produce considerable foreign objects debris (FOD), which

can damage propellers and jet engines.


The resesrchers msde use of descriptive form of presenting the steps in conducting

this study.

A. Gathering Data
The resesrchers made use of camera in capturing the details presented in the

documentation part. The researchers also used internet in gathering some

informations and through observations. The data were recorded snd showed to

be more organized.

B. Analyzing the Gathered Data

The gathered data were also analyzed in order that the researchers will identify

the problem of the study and to understand every details. Analysis of every

data was needed to provide more accurate results.

C. Creating Solution to the Problem

After analyzing the data, the researchers seek for solution to the problem

through the use of books and internet as references.

D. Formulation of Recommendation
The researchers formulated recommendations that could help in the

development and improvement of the said problem.


Distresses Possible Causes Probable Treatment

Fatigue/Alligator  Inadequate pavement  Strengthen the pavement or

Cracking thickness reconstruction

 Poor base drainage  Improve the drainage and

Edge Cracking  Alignment which  Pavement widening and

encourages drivers to realignment

 Proper and efficient drainage
travel on the pavement

 Seepage and heavy

Longitudinal  Displacement of joints at  Reconstruction of joints
 Crushed aggregate overlay or
Cracking pavement widening
 Differential settlement reconstruction of joints

between cut and fill

Potholes  Loss of surface course  Patching
 Cut and patch
due to heavy rainfall
 Moisture entry to base

course through a cracked

Traverse Cracking  Construction joint in  Crack sealant
 Crushed aggregate overlay or
bituminous surfacing
 Reflection of joints in the reconstruction of joints

underlying base
Raveling  Inadequate compaction  Thin bituminous overlay

or construction during

wet weather
Patching  Weak, loose layer  Reconstruction of weak

immediately layers
 Seepage of water through  Replace wearing course or

asphalt, especially in thin bituminous overlay

cracks, to break the bond

between surface and

lower layers



 Immediate repair and maintenance is required either overlay or resurfacing.

 All the materials should be up to the standard recommend.
 There should be side drainages and must also be maintained and cleaned.
 Weight of vehicles and the average rate of traffice should be considered.
 The curing time (28 days) must be followed to obtain the strength of the road.