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Fwd: Re: building code minimums for wood frame

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Lynn Howard wrote:
>
> If you want to take significant steps in increasing the quality of
> Structural Engineering, I would suggest the following steps be taken:
> 
> 1.  Require licensed structural engineers to sign structural drawings
> and calculations on all structures, including single family residential.

This would be fairly easy to enact by simply adopting the California
version
of the UBC. I suggested this (informally) at a SEAOSC dinner meeting
right
after Northridge. The concept was really "poo-pooed". While I certainly
feel
that adopting the CA version (particularly in seismic zones 3 and 4)
would
reduce damage to structures (due to S.E.R. as well as testing and
inspections),
I also realize that it would eliminate several well qualified engineers
who
posess the C.E. only. We CERTAINLY should disqualify Architects. I know
they're
out there, but in my 20 years, I haven't personally met one who could
design
a wood beam, much less perform a seismic analysis. Maybe C.E.'s with 10
years,
I don't know. I don't like the fact that a C.E. can stamp and sign plans
two
years out of school.

> 2.  Make the C.E. exam more difficult to pass, possibly having a special
> section on structures required to be passed if you intend to take the SE
> exam in the future. [the SE exam is already tough enough, no need to
> mess with that:)]

There are a LOT of C.E.s out there who don't care about structures. I've
never understood the relationship between the two. I believe the only
advantage
there is with making structurals take the C.E. is to make them wait and
get
experience. I would support a method whereby one could get a S.E.
without a
C.E., much like one can get a Phd. w/o a Masters. If you REALLY want to
tip
the supply-demand curve, make the S.E. exam required every 4 years!!!
(Just
kidding...)

> 3.  Make the E.I.T exam more difficult to pass.

Same as comment above.
> 4.  Require 4 years of experience between taking the E.I.T exam and the
> C.E. exam.

I think this is in the works and I support it. There currently is a
re-write
of the Business and Professions Code. I'm not sure about the entire
content of
the changes (I just know one of my areas of interests - better
protection for
the word "engineer" is not happening), but I received a name of a
contact person
regarding the re-write. His name is Kevin Schunke at (916)-263-2020.
Those
interested might want to contact him regarding the changes.

> 5.  Require that a University degree be required to take the E.I.T.
> exam.  The University Engineering program must meet certain minimum
> standards to qualify as a qualified University degree.

I think this is already the case, at least in California.

> 6.  Require some kind of continuing education for those who hold their
> SE license.  So many credits would be required before an SE could renew
> his license.

I think this is in the works also. I'm not sure how effective it would
be, but
it won't hurt (as long as I could do mine in Maui!!)

> This would make it much more difficult for people to qualify as a person
> who could do structural design.  No more Architects, GeoTechnical,
> Mechanical Engineers, or Civil Engineers doing structural design.
> This would not eliminate all sub-standard designs, but it would in my
> opinion, significantly increase the overall quality of structural
> engineering.
 
> As a side benefit to those who would still be qualified to do this kind
> of work, you can bet that the fees to do this kind of work would go up
> significantly.  Why you ask?  Because we will be tampering with the
> "supply - demand" curve.  We will decrease the supply of people who can
> do this kind of work, and that will result in an increase in the price
> of that service.

I hate to keep going back to this (not really), but, if we were paid
more, we
could afford to spend more time on a project. I know that there is not a
direct coorelation between the two, but we engineers are pretty sick
(business-
wise) people. We study problems even when we are out of budget. It just
would
be nice to relieve some of the financial pressure from doing so.

Regards,
Bill Allen


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Date: Sun, 02 Mar 1997 17:58:21 -0800
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