I posted this to the listserver over two weeks ago but have not received a
single comment in response. I am reposting this message as it is hard for me
to believe that no one on this listserver has an opinion on this.
For the past couple of years I have been contemplating how the "Standard of
Care" can improved and better defined for structural engineering projects.
This is due to a variance in the standard of care I have seen on past
projects from various sources. I have concluded that it would be desirable
to have a written description of "quality assurance" requirements in
engineering contracts, such as those produced by EJCDC. Thus I have drafted
some ideas on wording which would provide a selection of quality assurance
requirements, depending upon both the type of project and the Owner's
preferences. I am submitting this draft to the SEAINT Listserver for
comments and suggestions. I would like this to be a useful tool but not to
become excessively long or burdensome to follow.
Following are my proposed QA requirements for Standard of Care:
Engineering services shall be performed in accordance with the applicable
standard of care for the type of work being performed. The standard of care
for this project shall also include the specific quality assurance
procedures identified for the Level of Quality Assurance as selected below.
The Level of Quality Assurance shall be selected by the Owner and shall be
specified in the contract for engineering services. Additional quality
assurance requirements may be specified in the Special Conditions.
Level I Quality Assurance
[Note: This level of quality will generally apply to low-rise structures
which represent a relatively low hazard to human life, such as storage
facilities and agricultural facilities, and to residential construction.]
Structures shall be designed by a Professional Engineer registered in the
state where the work is to be constructed. The Professional Engineer shall
not perform design work which is outside their general field of knowledge
and experience, unless they have consulted with another experienced
professional regarding the specialized design work. Where required by local
regulations, plans shall be reviewed by the building official.
Level II Quality Assurance
[Note: This level of quality will generally apply to standard occupancy
structures which are not included in Levels I and III.]
In addition to the requirements of Quality Level I, this Quality Level will
require checking of calculations and drawings per the following:
1. Calculations: all calculations essential to the strength and stability of
a structure shall be checked by a qualified individual other than the
preparer. Names of the preparer and checker shall be clearly identified on
the cover sheet of each calculation.
2. Drawings: all construction drawings shall be cross-checked for
consistency between different engineering disciplines, between drawing
sheets, and between checked calculations and final drawing details, prior to
issue for construction.
Level III Quality Assurance
[Note: This level of quality will generally apply to high occupancy
structures, such as with a capacity over 300 in one assembly area or over
5000 total building capacity; structures critical to public health and
safety, such as public utility facilities; and structures containing
hazardous materials. Ref: 1997 UBC, Table 16-K]
In addition to the requirements of Quality Levels I and II, this Quality
Level will require a written Quality Assurance Program (QAP) and an
independent design review per the following:
1. A written Quality Assurance Program shall be provided, incorporating the
essential quality assurance procedures required for this Contract. All
appropriate project team members shall be made aware of and be provided
access to this QAP. The QAP shall include provisions for documentation of
the quality assurance steps which have been taken and completed.
2. Design documents shall undergo an independent design review by a
qualified individual or individuals other than the responsible Professional
Engineer(s). Recommendations shall be made by the independent reviewer(s)
and acceptance or reasons for rejection of recommendations shall be prepared
in writing by the responsible Professional Engineer(s). The responsible
Professional Engineer(s) shall remain responsible for the technical adequacy
of the final construction documents.
Note: The above quality assurance requirements shall apply to subconsultants
who perform engineering services for the Engineer and shall apply to
deferred engineered items which are part of the permanent construction and
which are to be designed by an engineer hired by the Contractor. The
Engineer shall be responsible for including these requirements in
subcontracts for engineering services and in construction specifications as
applicable. Deferred designs shall be reviewed by the Engineer for
consistency with design intent; however such review shall not relieve the PE
hired by the contractor from technical responsibility for the design of the
William C. Sherman
Camp Dresser & McKee, Inc.
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