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RE: Strange stuff that I don't understand.

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Title: RE: Strange stuff that I don't understand.

John Ott wrote:

I do not know if software was used in the design of the building in question.  I simply know that whatever method was used does not work.

It would appear that the engineer that designed the structure for the restaurant
building missed doing a careful design and the building department simply didn't check it.

The building was permitted and is currently under construction. It has what I would consider some serious design flaws....What do I do with the heavy thought that this building may be designed to less than the Code provisions?

There are two items that concern me. They are:

1. The extremely tall (22' high) vertical walls that are only 8" thick and are only anchored at the base to the foundation. [i.e. They are cantilevered out of the foundation] Refer to my original post.

2. The apparent excessive roof deflection caused by the Architect moving on the now constructed roof. The bracing system is a rigid frame composed of 22' high W8x?? columns with a much larger beam. It doesn't look right in the field, but worse the Architect claimed he could move the roof structure 1/2" either side of a fixed reference point with simply his 190 lb weight.

Appreciate your comments.

John:

I don't think that you are going to like my comments very much!  I assume that you are a licensed professional engineer.  As such, your duty to the health, safety, and welfare of the public is paramount.  Read the first portion of the California (or any other state) PE rules and regulations, it's right there in black and white.  Your relationship with your client pales by comparison.  It does not matter that you are not the engineer-of record.  It does not matter that some building official permitted the construction.  The fact is that you have become aware of a situation that, in your professional opinion, is unsafe. 

It is your professional duty to take appropriate action (beyond your posts to this listserv).  I suggest that you first contact the architect and state your concerns, both in verbally and in writing.  He should at least end up thanking you for alerting him to a potential threat to his practice.  However, if he isn't interested and doesn't propose to do anything, then promptly contact appropriate city and/or state officials (again, verbally and in writing).

Regards,

Stan R. Caldwell, P.E.
Dallas, Texas
(Hockeytown South)