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Re: Architects Doing Engineering -Enough!

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Even if it is legal under the conventional wood framing provisions.  The
philosophy of the Code is to provide SAFE structures, engineeered or
unengineered, to the public.  Regardless of the Code, it is always
illegal, at least in my dictionary, to provide unsafe structures to the
public.  I believe the public is not educated about the intent of the
Building Code which do not even mention the word, SAFE STRUCTURE, but
only act as a design guide to MINIMIZE life safety, if one follows the
minimum Code standards.  We can go on and discuss how do you define the
word, safe structure.  

For instance, let's say there were two identical houses of the same
construction and design(Code conformed)located in different area.  One
of them suffered major damage and caused loss of life, because of its
proximity to the epic center. While the other one suffered only minor
damage 20 miles away from each other.  I don't think the public is aware
of this.  Most people would assume that if the house is built and
conformed to Code, it is a safe structure.  But the Code never assure
that.  Now, it is sad to hear from Frank Lew's assumption that his
mother's 91 years old house went through some earthquakes and did not
suffered major damage and therefore he doesn't have to worry about other
similar houses. I hope other engineers or building officials do not have
the same mentality.  I, myself, had not used any of the conventional
wood framing provisions and will not intend to.  Yes, we need to lobby
for changes but more important, we also need to educate the public what
the Code is providing them and let them make the choices. Conventional
nonengineered, engineered, performance based design etc...or else it is
just another Microsoft Bill Gates example: "use the conventional
provisions, it's cheaper, better than engineered structure, legal
because it is conformed to Code and the so-called experts works on it
for years, it's good for American economy, you can't change it, our
browser(conventional provisions) is the best and free( no need to
engineer)".  Safe or unsafe, I know, you know but the consumer do not
know. Now Bill Allen is going to say," How are we going to do that?" 
Frank Lew is going to say, " NO... it is legal therefore safe, no action
is needed." I don't know quite how to do it, but if we cannot change
that through SEAOC, ICBO etc.... Then educate the public through SEAOC
and let the force of the public to do the lobbying.

Just my thought!

Dennis S. Wish wrote:
> My friends, we are still missing the point. These provisions are legal. We
> need to change them as a professional community, but we don't have the votes
> on the floor of ICBO. We need support (lobbying) from the insurance industry
> to gain strength against National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and
> the AIA who are trying to protect their profession from loss of work.
> Nothing can be accomplished until this section of the code is considered
> complete and at least as restrictive as any engineered product.
> Dennis
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tom Chiu [mailto:Tomchiu(--nospam--at)]
> Sent: Thursday, May 21, 1998 9:45 AM
> To: seaoc(--nospam--at)
> Subject: Re: Architects Doing Engineering -Enough!
> MRodrig273 wrote:
> >
> > The argument that I receive from other architects is that there are a lot
> of
> > people suffering every day from being homeless so their job to design
> homes
> > that are afordable is more important to them than making it seismicly
> stable.
> >
> If I were you, I would not work that kind of Architect with that kind of
> mentality. Designing illegal seismically unstable (UNSAFE) homes for
> people, do not made it affordable. It simply translate into more profit
> for the builders and therefore continuous job inflow for the unethical
> designers.  A couple of holdowns here and there won't increase the cost
> that much.
> Good luck for your career!
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