Bridges are an important part of a nation’s infrastructure and reliable monitoring methods are necessary to ensure their safety and efficiency. Most bridges in use today were built decades ago and are now subjected to changes in load patterns that can cause localized distress, which can result in bridge failure if not corrected. Early detection of damage helps in prolonging lives of bridges and preventing catastrophic failures. This paper briefly reviews the various technologies currently used in health monitoring of bridge structures and in particular discusses the application and challenges of acoustic emission (AE) technology. Some of the results from laboratory experiments on a bridge model are also presented. The main objectives of these experiments are source localisation and assessment. The findings of the study can be expected to enhance the knowledge of acoustic emission process and thereby aid in the development of an effective bridge structure diagnostics system.