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Re: EOR in California

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At 01:21 PM 9/14/99 -0700, you wrote:

>Perhaps one of you have had this situation:  A building is under
>construction in California.  During the course of construction the EOR has
>become unresponsive to the owner.  We had been asked and have provided a
>field fix for a particular element of the structure.  Now the Building
>Official is asking that we assume the position of EOR for the project.  We
>are aware of 1997 UBC section 106.3.4.1  (1998 CBC.)  

>We were wondering if
>there is anything in the Professional Engineer Act, Business & Professions
>Code or any where else that one of you may know of that relates to this
>issue.  Thank you in advance, George Richards.
-------------------------------------------------

This reply only addresses PE Act aspects of your question. The Cal PE Act is
on-line at the Board's website; see <www.dca.ca.gov/pels>; then go to Laws
and Rules.

This question usually comes up in connection with "overstamping" --where the
EOR is pressed to sign and stamp an already stamped design by others for a
component of the project. There are several threads on this in this list's
archives in the Seaint website.

I believe the PE Act and Board Rules are silent on the entire matter of two
or more engineers in the same PE practice branch dividing the design work
between them. 

In a SEAOCC evening meeting forum on "overstamping" in the early 1980's,
then-SE Board member Jimmie Yee succinctly stated that "The PE Act does not
require a single engineer of record." The Act bears this out and still does.

The PE Act and Board Rules do however make an issue of "responsible charge."
This term related to the span of control a signing and stamping engineer has
over the creation of the design, report, etc., being signed. The idea is
that any such instrument reveals ONE identifiable, properly licensed
engineer who actually exercised responsible charge over its creation. 

But again, this relates to what an engineer does, not to what a project has.
Except in enumerating projects, and portions thereof, that are exempt from
the act's provisions, the PE Act is essentially about engineers and
engineering, not about projects. The Building Code in contrast is
essentially about projects, not about engineers and engineering practice. 

The PE Act has provisions that accept an engineer being in responsible
charge of design of one incidental element of a project otherwise designed
by others. Sec 6737.1 is an example; it covers residential projects.

The PE Act has nothing in the subject area usually called "ethics" (ie,about
an engineer's conduct with respect to other people) other than in making
breach of contract, fraud, deceit, etc.  disciplinable offenses. See sec
6775 and vicinity. 

The concept of Engineer Of Record originated outside the PE Act world, and
is recognized in particularized Calif statutes on public school projects and
hospital construction. Engineers familiar with the concept have worked it
into model building code where you have found it. The PE Board and its staff
have no track record of wise understanding in these matters.

Charles O. Greenlaw  SE       Sacramento CA