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[SEAOC] Future Seismic Codes in United States

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Fred Turner's message, entitled "Don't Teach LRFD", dated June 1, 1996, is very 
important to those who believe that Allowable Stress Design (ASD) should be 
provided for in the future seismic codes in United States.  The results of the 
Bruce Bates' recent informal SEAOC List Server survey indicated that ASD 
is used approximately twice as often as LRFD for steel design was very 
revealing.  Why eliminate ASD in future seismic codes when ASD is used by so 
many structural design offices, by a ratio of 2:1?
The Building Seismic Safety Council (BSSC) has done a good job to update the 
NEHRP Provisions using the same talented structural engineers who help update 
the Uniform Building Code on a voluntary basis.  However, some engineers are 
concerned that the NEHRP Provisions have taken on the perception of a federally 
mandated national building code for seismic provisions.  Many years ago the 
leading structural engineers in California were very concerned about the 
possibility of a "federally mandated national seismic code", even when the 
advocates for the NEHRP Provisions told us that the NEHRP Provisions would never 
used for that purpose.  When we have a "federally mandated national seismic 
code", because federal funding can be tied to acceptance of such a seismic code, 
then we can loose local state control of our building code provisions.
If you are concerned about this possible elimination of ASD provisions in the 
national seismic codes, then one course of action would be to contact your local 
civil and structural professional engineering and building offical 
organizations, including the Board of Directors and voting members of BSSC, and 
express your opinions. The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.   
Frank McClure  fmcclure(--nospam--at)