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Re: What a disaster!

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See, in order to agree totally we had to have started from a point of
disagreement and worked through the differences which supports my point - we
are involved.

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Allen,S.E. <BAllenSE(--nospam--at)>
To: seaoc(--nospam--at) <seaoc(--nospam--at)>
Date: Friday, January 23, 1998 2:36 PM
Subject: Re: What a disaster!

>I don't believe it. Mark your calender. I actually agree with everything
>Wish has said in this post regarding CE vs. SE vs architect. I guess if we
>put a man on the moon, anything is possible!!
>Good Post!
>Bill Allen
>wish wrote:
>> Rick,
>> You are ignoring the other 50% of the SEAOC membership - CE's who
>> Structural Engineering.  Our complaints with Architects extend to Civils
>> that have no experience in Structures who we affectionatly refer to as
>> Civil-Civils. The rest of us activly practicing Structural Engineering
>> been refered to as Civil-Structurals.
>> I recommend that you go back over the archives on the SEAOC web site for
>> last three years and spend the time to review our "threads" on the issue
>> CE verses SE and Architects Vs. Engineers and more. We have attempted to
>> transfer this information to BORPEL's without luck and to SEAOC without
>> hearing us. If I am correct, you are a past president of SEAOSC (within
>> last three to five years). If this is the case, why were our discussions
>> discussed over board meetings to address the problems that exist within
>> own community as well as between professions?
>> The fact remains that many of us who are CE's are registered with OES (I
>> prior to Northridge but not activated for some reason). I would venture
>> say that you may be lumping all CE-Structurals into one catagory. If so,
>> miss the essence of this discussion.
>> The main reason why we have debated this issue is that many incompetent
>> engineers and architects responded to the needs of the public after
>> Northridge (and I venture to guess Loma Prieta and others). This included
>> SE's who worked for large companies that did very little if anything with
>> residential wood frameing. These engineers lacked the understanding of
>> and had difficulty assessing a structures extent of damage by not having
>> developed a feel for the materials. (Possibly these are the SE's who felt
>> cheated that their abilities were not used). For those of you who are
>> offended by my comments, please don't be, I have tutored a few SE's in
>> design. There is no shame here to identify your weakness. For the same
>> token, I would not feel comfortable accessing problems with steel and
>> concrete framed buildings.
>> More to the point: A financial market was created that opened the door to
>> our "bottom feeders" and unscrupulus non-structural professionals to step
>> over their bounds of experience simply because their license allows them
>> do so. This may have created a greater potential for harm to the public
>> may have attacked their pocketbooks by over-designers. Mind you, proper
>> engineering skills and the competent understanding of engineering basics
>> what is in question, not whether a repair or retrofit design is over or
>> under designed when the choice is subjectivly based upon the EOR's
>> judgement. The professionals I am attacking are those who spend their
>> doing geotechnical, surveying, grading plans etc, but who never design
>> buildings or foundations. These professionals (and I use the term
>> swarmed over the private sector and insurance adjusters looking for
>> profitable work. We can debate profit motivation, but when it comes to
>> charging for services and receiving a report or retro design that is so
>> offbase it eithers breaks the homeowner or the insurance company is not
>> professional. Those of us with structural engineering abilities are more
>> than simple purveyors of calculations. We need to understand the
>> of design and be creative in our work. This is not the case for the
>> feeder who goes out to rape the tree of it's fruit.
>> If you see us attacking our own profession, please understand that
>> the majority of those on this list who are SE's would love for me to join
>> the fraternaty, they are still willing to accept my understanding of
>> structural engineering from my experience with SEA and this list. What
>> all the others whose abilities are not known by the community, who don't
>> participate in SEA, CELSOC or any of the other professional organizations
>> that help the public differentiate between a CE(land) and a
>> Who protects the public when the title is too general (Civil Engineer).
>> latest changes suggested by Borpels simply help the profession police
>> themselves, but do nothing to alert and educate the public of the
>> differences and why a CE is not a CE is not an SE is not an Architect and
>> forth and so on. Structurally speaking, there is a discontinuity occuring
>> our own profession.
>> Rick, the problem is that Architects (and non-structurals) should not be
>> used for judgement calls simply because some SE refuses to evaluate
>> residential or complains about not be used to the best of his ability.
>> fact is that residential structural design falls under the SE's title as
>> part of his knowledge more so that an Architect. Ego and Superiority have
>> place in emergency response when your goal is to help the public whether
>> they be a single family or a building full of employees.
>> I understand your frustration with the problem. Possibly you can
>> ours. You have more power within SEA than the combined lot of us and can
>> open many eyes to our collective needs. Again, I highly recommend that
>> review past threads to come up to speed with the concensus of Listservice
>> members. When you do, I would be honored to have you raise the issues and
>> offer some constructive means to getting the needs of the community
>> the thick skulls of board members (Borpels and SEA).
>> Respectfully
>> Dennis Wish PE
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Richard_Ranous/OES(--nospam--at) <Richard_Ranous/OES(--nospam--at)>
>> To: seaoc(--nospam--at) <seaoc(--nospam--at)>
>> Date: Friday, January 23, 1998 11:55 AM
>> Subject: What a disaster!
>> >
>> >I orginally posed a very possible scenario to something that WILL happen
>> >California.  I got some very good suggestions on an approach to solving
>> >problem and will be pursuing those suggestions.  Suddenly, the
>> >have moved to the value of architects and some of you have taken quite a
>> >firm stand.
>> >
>> >I guess you have given me the opportunity to get on my soap box and
>> >the problems I have had with structural engineers (and I have been one
>> >a good number of years).  I came to OES after 16 years of structural
>> >engineering with various consultants including two offices of my own.
>> >major responsiblility was and is to organize the "design community" to
>> >able to assist local government when disaster strikes and they need
>> >evaluations of buildings.
>> >
>> >Ever since Loma Prieta I have been conducting after action meetings with
>> >the responding personnel to hear from them what worked and what did not.
>> >Without exception the responding structural engineers have complained
>> >they were used improperly by the requesting cities.  Their complaints
>> >centered on evaluating the safety of houses, mobile homes, and minor
>> >structurces.  This was a waste of their expertiese.  There request was
>> >OES had to do something to make sure that they were used "properly."
>> >
>> >In 1991 we opened discuscions with AIA about joining our safety
>> >program.  As a part of those discussions we looked at areas where they
>> >could most effectively be used.  The architects were happy to do
>> >evaluations of houses and apartments.  They were willing to do whatever
>> >asked of them.  They simply wanted to be involved and help.
>> >
>> >As a State representative I have no control over how individuals are
>> >assigned to perform evaluations.  Until you have been in a building
>> >officials shoes in organizing and performing a safety assessment
>> >you can not talk about how right or wrong their actions where.
>> >
>> >Now, some of you are telling us that architects have no business being
>> >involved in safety evaluations at all.  Okay, answer this question for
>> >
>> >If SEs don't want to do homes, mobile homes, and small structures; and
>> >do not want architects to be involved in safety evaluations how do I get
>> >the resources necessary to get people back into their homes and
>> >in a timely fashion?  Let's look at Northridge:  113000 structures were
>> >evaluated!  86% of those structures were residential?  Under this
>> >discussion who should have evaluated them?
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >