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Fwd: Joel Castro’s Article, Lincoln Electric’s Reponse, and Castro’s Rebuttal

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For all you top-feeders, you'll want to read the March 1997 edition of the
California Construction Law Reporter. Its published by Bancroft-Whitney at PO
Box 7005, San Francisco, CA 94120-7005. Subscriptions are $200/year
Joel Castro an attorney who specializes in construction defect litigation has
written a lengthy article about welded steel moment frames. Katherine Bryan
Jenks and Geoffrey J. Ritts has written a response, also published in the
same edition presumably on behalf of the Lincoln Electric. Castro has added a
one page rebuttal to their response. 
Castro argues that strict product liability may apply to "defective" welds
and that sellers and seller's attorneys have a duty to disclose when selling
property. Castro also argues that the "unequivocal intent of welded steel
moment connections is ductility" and thus "information now available should
put engineers and developers on notice that only ductile welded connections
can produce an energy absorbing ductile moment frame, and owners should know
that brittle welds must be replaced or disclosed." 
Jenks and Ritts responds by describing Castro's article as "chicken little,
alarmist." They argue that strictly liability does not apply. 
Castro rebuts that Jenks and Ritts are "disingenuous. " He concludes that
"Lincoln promoted its E70T-4 as the 'truck' capable of 'seismic resistance,'
and instead delivered the 'compact car.'"

FYI - We  are not close to seeing the last of this debate.
Fred Turner
Staff Structural Engineer
Seismic Safety Commission
1900 K St. #100 Sacramento, CA 95814
916-327-1606 916-322-9476 Fax

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