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[SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] office boys

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HARRISENGR(--nospam--at) wrote:
>      The best way to start a discussion would be to put your own thoughts
> forward.
>      On the coluseum project , i think there needs to be better communication
> between inspectors and engineers.
>      Perhaps by including inspectors in the structural observation mandatory
> pre-construction meeting. I can think of two recent jobs where the deputy
> inspector and i were out of sinc.
>      One ( Ventura County ), yesterday, the general contractor called to ask
> how the calc's on the broken post tension cable in a slab was coming. I was
> unaware of the break but told him i would be right out to see if  the
> tensioner could regrip by chipping out some concrete. I was surprised to find
> that the building was nearly complete and the slab side was covered with
> stucco so i could not check the cable hole. The break had occured many weeks
> ago but i had not been notified. I called the deputy and asked why he had not
> sent a report or called. He said he was waiting for the fix to be complete
> and then he would send out his reports. We agreed he would send reports in a
> more timely manner next time.
>      On another job ( L.A. city )the caissons had the wrong dowels sticking
> out of the concrete when i went to observe the grade beam rebar before the
> next pour. I asked the deputy about the rebar discrepancy. The deputy had a
> good answer that i wish i had known earlier. He said if he is scheduled to go
> out on the day of the concrete pour, all he has time to do is inspect the
> concrete that is being poured ( 100-200 +/- yards poured that day). He said
> if i wanted him to inspect the rebar he should have been scheduled for the
> preceeding day as well. In retrospect i can see his point. A meeting of the
> engineer and deputy inspector in advance may have helped quality control.
>      I would value thoughts on improvements here.
> Tom Harris , SE3803
> Thousand Oaks, CA
> ...

Mr. Harris:

Thanks for your resonse. I notice it was the only one, however. I am an 
inspector for the City of Los Angeles, Bureau of Contract 
Administration, all of which means that I inspect work the city will 
own. In this regard, I have somewhat more time available for inspection 
as we are usually resident; however, I am called out to other city 
projects on occasion, and run into the above scenario often. My 
experience is the contractor is notified of the discrepancy and told to 
write his RFI to the engineer. This can take time, depending upon the 
urgency or how much the contractor feels his errors will cost him. In my 
own attempts to by-pass the bottleneck and go directly to the engineer, 
I often must draw a sketch and fax it over; usually, the engineer then 
goes to the contractor with either questions or answers; this causes 
problems for me later during job meetings as "sabotage" or whatever. The 
worst part is not being given the corrective fix. I know this seems 
petty, and would not read well in the Metro section of the Times,but 
such are the things that plague contruction.