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RE: Seattle Earthquake Interviews

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My favorite is "When structural engineers practice architecture, the results
are horrifying. When architects practice structural engineering, the results
are terrifying!"

-----Original Message-----
From: Donn Wooldridge [mailto:dowo(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Thursday, March 01, 2001 9:16 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Re: Seattle Earthquake Interviews

My response to the question "what do structural engineers do"   is  "the
architect makes the building look pretty"  the structural engineer "makes
the building stand up"
Donn Wooldridge PE, Structural
Phoenix, AZ

----- Original Message -----
From: Roger Turk
Sent: Thursday, March 01, 2001 5:09 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Seattle Earthquake Interviews


An over simplified explanation of a Structural Engineer that I use, is, "The
Architect draws the pretty picture, and the Structural Engineer figures out
how to hold it up."  (Sometimes I think even that is too complicated for

As far as Structural Engineers getting the recognition for the good
performance of engineered structures, why don't you or SEAW write letters to
the offending media and express dismay that they didn't interview structural
engineers instead of architects?  Most media have "contact" lists of people
to contact in the event of some newsworthy event.  Get structural engineers
on those contact lists.

A local (Tucson) TV station excitedly reported that the Seattle quake was
felt in Tucson, when all they were talking about was that the quake, like
virtually all significant earthquakes anywhere in the world, was recorded on
the University of Arizona seismograph (TUC).  Media tends to know little or
nothing about technical matters other than what is spoon fed to them, and
then they manage to screw that up, too.

A. Roger Turk, P.E.(Structural)
Tucson, Arizona

Paul Crocker wrote:

. > "AIA Prez even had time to mention that AIA dispatches members to
. > participate
. > on quake recovery teams."

. > Well, you want to make sure that any necessary repair work fits the look
. > of the neighborhood, right?  I heard an interview with the head of the
. > King County Council (the county that Seattle is in) in which he credited
. > the work of local architects with good building performance. I don't
. > think 9 out of 10 people understand what we do. I have had more than one
. > conversation where upon hearing that I work on building design, the
. > will say "so you're an architect, right?" I take time to explain exactly
. > what it is a engineer does, to which they respond, "so you're a
. > specialized kind of architect, then?"  Of course, in Seattle, when
. > someone hears you're an engineer, they assume you work for Boeing.

. > Paul Crocker, P.E.


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