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Fwd: Min. Code Design

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Caught in between:

There has been some discussion in our office about designing to the minimum
standards that the 1994 UBC will allow.  On one side we are doing the owner
a service at a economic point of view to design to the minimum.  And on
another side there is some opinion that to design with a 20 percent (+ - )
safety factor would be prudent due to construction problems, architects
revisions after the structure is under construction, and any other
circumstances that possibility could and will occur.  Both sides agree that
the UBC code has many built in safety factors but if any of the above items
occur and we design to code minimum we would possibility have to do a
redesign to meet the code and the owner would have to pay.  It seems that
at times you will get mud in your face no matter what direction you take,
engineers seem to get caught in the middle.  Also, who is to say that all
the criteria in the code is 100 percent accurate.   

You do not want to be know as an engineer who over engineers structrues,
our field is much to competative, there is a fine line, but safety should
be number one. 

I am wondering what other office policies have implemented for their design
standards, any comments?   

Thank You

Tom Long P.E.
Spieler Structural Engineers

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Richard Lewis, P.E.
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