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Re: Ethics 101

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Per the California Attorney's General Office:  AG Opinion NO. 85-208:

"A registered engineer retained to investigate the integrity of a building
who determines, based on structural deficiencies in violation of applicable
building standards, that there is an imminent risk of serious injury to the
occupants thereof, and who is advised by the owner that no disclosure or
remedial action is intended and that such determinations are to remain
confidential, has a duty to warn the identifiable occupants, or if not
feasible, to notify the local building officials or other appropriate
authority of such determinations"

So far:

1.      Inspected old masonry commerical store (Colorado) on a Friday
morning.  Advised moving out of the building.  People did.  I worried all
weekend if I did the right thing.  The next Monday the building collasped.

2.      Inspected 1877 Masonry building in Belmont, Ca.  Advised moving
students out that day.  Building retrofit cost over half million.  I didn't
get the job.  (Broken trusses holding suspended 2nd floor; dry rot at
supporting edges of 1x10 laminated wood floor).

3.      "Friends of the Library" owned building, Burlingame, Ca.  Building
made of concrete block with numerous cells with reinforcing not filled.
One wall clay tile.  Steel roof supporting beams laying on top of wall.  No
connection.  Roof joists spanning over steel beams, but not connected.  The
"Friends" said that they had a good building until I came along.  Someone
else (an architect) completed the retrofit.

Neil Moore, S.E.

>I'm collecting and collating (anonymous) responses to these
>five ethics questions, and will be distributing them nationally
>to engineering colleges for their use in Ethics education.
>And those who think these are simple problems to resolve,
>I'd suggest they've never faced them (or been blackballed).
>Robert Marmaduke PE