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RE: Turkey Earthquake and Moral Responsibilities

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Well said !!!

A. Yango
> ----------
> From: 	Seaintonln(--nospam--at)[SMTP:Seaintonln(--nospam--at)]
> Reply To: 	seaint(--nospam--at)
> Sent: 	Monday, August 23, 1999 2:10 AM
> To: 	seaint(--nospam--at)
> Subject: 	Re: Turkey Earthquake and Moral Responsibilities
> In a message dated 8/22/99 8:04:46 AM Pacific Daylight Time,
> Nd1942(--nospam--at) 
> writes:
> << Much worse, in my opinion, are the lazy and corrupt politicians on the 
> local 
>  level of every country who thwart what are basically well-meaning laws
> and 
>  codes, either by corruption or indifference.
>  David Owens >>
> Why is it so difficult to disclose factual information to the public?
> Barry's 
> comments were well taken, although I think that he may have misunderstood
> my 
> post regarding building owners. I do believe that the building owner
> desires 
> safety for his family as well as all of those who occupy the building.
> My complaint is more toward the developer / builder who is only interested
> in 
> meeting minimum expectations and yet maximize his or her profit by using
> the 
> weakness of the code to their best advantage -  namely non-disclosure. 
> The owner of a building has every right to choose the level of compliance 
> that he wishes to construct to. However, if his building is to be used for
> occupancy by others, he should have an obligation to post the level of 
> performance for the knowledge and safety of the general public who may be 
> seeking refuge in the time of a natural diseaster.
> My complaint addresses lack of proper implimentation of the structural
> design 
> and the possiblity that some (in my area many) smaller developer /
> builders 
> will choose the conventional prescriptive methodology to avoid compliance
> to 
> more restrictive and costlier construction - regardless of who the owner
> ends 
> up to be. The fact is that I don't know of one developer who, when 
> investigated as to construction quality, demonstrated full compliance to
> the 
> engineers plans. Corners were cut, omissions occured and the final owners 
> were never the wiser. Now that the engineering community is required to 
> provide observation and methodologies will yeild more conservative
> results, 
> these developers will be forced to adopt prescriptive methods of Chapter
> 2320 
> to avoid the additional protection of the code. 
> The line becomes much more important as the cost of compliance to a more 
> restrictive code infringes on the developers profits. Very little change
> is 
> needed in a typical tract design to eliminate an irregularity or
> unsupported 
> truss length so as to make a sturcture compliant to prescriptive methods.
> Yet 
> the builder or developer is never required to disclose this to the public.
> This may not seem like a problem to most, but I need to focus my attention
> on 
> the thousands of available properties in the small towns around my area
> that 
> are affected by this problem. I receive calls daily from owners in 
> communities that believe they have structural defects when most is simply 
> poor quality of constructions.
> One of the largest and most prominent of housing communities in my area
> has 
> just one a suit against the developer / builder who was found to be
> negligent 
> and did not comply to more than 60% of the structural load path details
> that 
> were to be built. These were not cheap homes - they start aroung
> $250,000.00 
> and up to around $500,000.00.  The home owners associations has limited
> funds 
> to retrofit these homes since the award, after legal fees, is still not 
> sufficient to strip the homes and rebuild the structural systems.  The 
> project is expected to take 3 to 7 years and impacts 1233 condominium
> units 
> along with certain common area's. As the client stated in the request for 
> services:
> "In general, the construction defect repairs will include but not
> necessarily 
> be limited to life-safety issues, structural corrections, improper
> building 
> component installations, code non-compliance, mechanical/electrical 
> deficiencies, concrete failures, and problem soil conditions."
> This is pretty scary considering that these were engineered products that
> did 
> not required observation or inspection by the engineer at the time of 
> construction. The design was not wrong - the construction was deficient.
> The best thing that we can do for the public is to rewrite the
> conventional 
> framing section so that it truely complies with a minimum engineed
> solution. 
> I don't suggest abolishing the prescriptive approach - just bring it up to
> date so as not to give the profiteer a choice to wrongfully promote his 
> product.
> Dennis S. Wish PE