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RE: Architects Doing Engineering -Enough!

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Chris, not to sound ignorant, but do Architects often cross the line when it
comes to "highway or rail bridges or machinery supports or ag structures
like bins"? Do land civils (civil-civil) need to be an SE to design these
types of structures or is the concession that the basic Civil license
provides enough competency for "highway or rail bridges or machinery
supports or ag structures like bins"?
I don't mean this argumentativly, but I think the issue is that those
practicing structural engineering in the private sector are infiltrated by
unqualified professionals who, by the current licensing acts are allowed to
design structures.
If you find that the same problem exists for "public work" type projects,
then some sort of specific engineering classification needs to be assigned
to distinguish those who can prove competency in these area's from those
that can't.
It seems ludicrus that those of us who use are registration to practice
area's that we are competent need to further prove our skills simply to weed
out the bad seeds. It isn't fair to use to prove what we already know.
HOWEVER, I would be willing to make the sacrifice if it meant that we can
finally bar those who cross the line and prevent them from endangering the
public.
I think that Bill's one test idea is the best solution to the problem that I
have heard to date. If anyone has something better to offer, please do.

I also agree with Bill that the biggest enemy we have is not the Architect
or unqualified engineer, but our own apathy.
Personally, I have written articles, letters (many) to SEAOSC and tried to
bring the attention to this problem into focus on our list. I have never
received a response from any SEAOSC commitee member working on this section
of the code, or my letters were never forwarded to the proper people. I once
received a response from an ICBO employee who simply pointed me to comments
in the ICBO magazine that justifies their decision to publish the
Conventional Framing Section of the code.
My biggest problem is that I believe the majority of those who helped
develop this section of the code do not practice single family wood framed
construction and have no idea how their prescriptive method is being
bastardized at the expense of the home-buyer.

IF ANY DECISION OR POLICY MAKER (COMMITTEE MEMBER) WHO IS WORKING ON THIS
SECTION OF THE IBC IS READING THIS OR ON OUR LIST, I URGE YOU TO TAKE THIS
THREAD TO YOUR COMMITTEE AND DISCUSS OUR CONCERN AND REPORT BACK TO US
WHETHER YOU AGREE OR NOT AND WHY. ALLOW US THE OPORTUNITY TO DISCUSS THIS
ISSUE WITH YOU VIA OUR MEDIUM (THE LISTSERVICE) SO THAT YOU CAN HAVE THE
OPINIONS OF PRACTICING ENGINEERS WHO ARE INTERNATIONAL AND NOT SPECIFICALLY
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA.
I am also working on my web site and have received pictures from Rick
Raneous which I will scan and place on the website. I have many pictures of
my own that clearly shows the effects of conventional construction and the
diferences compared to properly engineered products.

Personally, I don't know what more I can do without the active support of
each one of you on this list that has an opinion on the subject.

YOU NEED NOT AGREE WITH ME OR ANY ADVOCATE AGAINST CONVENTIONAL FRAMING.
FRANK LEWS COMMENTS SHOULD BE INCLUDED WITH OURS SO THAT BOTH SIDES OF THE
DISCUSSION CAN BE REVIEWED.

At the very least, I think that Franks comments clearly show where the
problem in code creation lies. It has been historic practice to base codes
upon statistical analysis for loss of life. However, I believe that the
majority no longer agree with this methodology. This may be the root that we
need to attack to instill change, but we won't be able to do it without some
activity or support from those committees that work on this section of the
code.

James Lai is on this list and President Elect of SEAOSC (sorry if I am being
politically incorrect). James, please take the lead and pass this thread on
to those who can put it to the best use.
If not James, than Rick Raneous, or Rawn Nelson or Bill Warren or any of the
other members who reside on  SEAOSC committees are are active in the
organizations. You are the members who can direct these comments to the
appropriate people in our behalf.

I urge each of you to open the table of discussion. Create the link with us
and let us become a part of the decision process.

Respectfully
Dennis Wish PE

-----Original Message-----
From: Christopher Wright [mailto:chrisw(--nospam--at)skypoint.com]
Sent: Saturday, May 23, 1998 9:36 AM
To: SEAOC Newsletter
Subject: RE: Architects Doing Engineering -Enough!


>c.. Require civil-civils who wish to do structural engineering pass a
>one problem, long hand test which will clearly demonstrate that the person
>knows how to design and detail a lateral load path (see my sample problem
>previously submitted). The civil engineers who currently practice
structural
>engineering full time will have no problem whatsoever with this exam. This
>exam would be proctored and graded by SEs.
And and will this one problem test help grade those who do highway or
rail bridges or machinery supports or ag structures like bins? A single
problem test is way too narrow. Residential construction is important but
homes aren't the only structures and seismic/wind isn't the only hazard.
Nor is any one or two day test a proper classifier of competence.
Engineering registration testing should be far more concerned with first
principles. My guess is that a thoughtfully planned continuing education
requirement will go a helluva lot further toward improving competence
than a one problem make-or-break exam.

Christopher Wright P.E.    |"They couldn't hit an elephant from
chrisw(--nospam--at)skypoint.com        | this distance"   (last words of Gen.
___________________________| John Sedgwick, Spotsylvania 1864)
http://www.skypoint.com/~chrisw