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- To: "seaint" <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
- Subject: Deliberate yada yada yada
- From: "Rodrigo Lema" <rodrigolema(--nospam--at)softhome.net>
- Date: Wed, 27 Jan 1999 21:24:29 -0300
"(e) "Loma Prieta Earthquake" publication, p.6, Earth Sciences, Lesson 6,
Recommendations: "Seismologists and geologists must increase their efforts to
understand and quantify the nature of strong ground shake .... and engineers
must give special attention to the placement and design of structures in these
areas." Comment: (1) If seismologists and geologists do not understand what
they are doing, then the entity responsible for their incompetency are the
universities that produced these "professionals". We should ask the
universities whether they feel responsible for the professional incompetency
of their graduates. I also hope the seismologists and geologists read the
above statement made by NRC so they also are aware of what "decision makers"
think of their abilities. (2) The engineers do not pay attention and do not
care how the structure is designed and they are incapable to give special
attention to anything only because everything they do is a "special attention"
case. (3) if an organization (governmentnal or otherwise) has enough courage
to deliberately and publicly offend the professions which, within the
limitations established by "the decision makers," are doing their utmost to
protect the safety of the public, then one should seriously investigate the
qualifications of "decision makers" in the positions in which they function."
I think what this really means is that we should try to further understand the seismic phenomena, I don't think it's an offense.
"(f) "Loma Prieta Earthquake" publication, p.8, Lesson 12: "With appropriate
application of existing knowledge and more attention to detail, practicing
professionals licensed to site, design, and retrofit buildings .. could
significantly reduce the loss of life and the damage resulting in loss of
function." Comment: see Comment 4(e)."
"(h) "Loma Prieta Earthquake" publication, p.9, Lesson 16: "There were
numerous structures ... that were seriously damaged ... because of design or
construction errors that should have been found during the building inspection
process. Local building departments rarely have the necessary resources to
accomplish this fundamental step in the construction process, and design
professionals often shy away from providing the needed oversight." Comment: I
fully agree that design professionals, as reported by governmental snoopers,
are habitually visiting local topless bars while on the field trip to inspect
the job instead of taking a good look at what is happening at their site. "
I'm afraid that everywhere in the world there are 2 kinds of people (and of course, engineers), the ones who care and those who don't. And we can't feel that someone is insulting us if we care and we can sleep during the nights with clear conscience. (Sorry about the last expressions, I roughly translated 2 spanish expressions and I'm not sure if they're correct)
"(g) "Loma Prieta Earthquake" publication, p.9, Lesson 15: Recommendation:
"The codes and most seismic strengthening of buildings are intended to protect
life and to minimize catastrophic damage." Comment: I might agree with the
above statement, except I don't know what measuring "yardstick" to use when
describing the damage as catastrophic. Is it a 10% of the assessed value of
the structure, or is it 30%, or maybe 50%, or even 90%?. It would be good to
know what we are talking about so that, as suggested by "decision makers," we
can communicate better."
Of course you understand,Yank, that for every increase in the seismic coeffient, God (I am an ahteist, but what the heck, let's call it poetic license) can send an EQ with an even bigger "seismic coefficient". So, it's at least ridiculous to try to measure to what extent the catastrophic damage is minimized. It only means that the damage will be less than the one you could expect if the building was not by the code.
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