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re: Collapse in Jerusalem

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when the media tries to describe technical engineering matters (most
especially preliminary reports on structural collapse) the engineering
community typically shudders. it is strange, if this involved a medical
issue, or a matter of law, respective professionals would have been
consulted for at least correct terminology...but for a collapse the media
goes ahead reporting without any consultation...actually, come to think of
it, when i was approached by the media re a collapse several years ago, i
gave them the correct terminology, information, engineering facts etc and
they still reported it misquoting the facts....

the following is from the New York Times journo William A. Orme Jr. He
states the hall in Jerusalem collapse as follows:

"A ragged 100-foot-wide hole left in the center of the top banquet hall
revealed sandy concrete flooring underpinned by wire mesh, but without
visible crossbeams or supporting columns from below....."

he goes on to say...

"...Buckling under the weight of dozens of dancers, the entire central
section of the floor collapsed onto the dining hall below...."

"....cement flooring crushed..."

"Views of the damage inside showed a calamity caused not by political
strife, but a mundane yet deadly combination of overcrowding and visible
construction problems..."


"...there appeared to be a serious technical fault in the building...."

my comments....

from the single newspaper photo i saw (ex Honolulu Star-Bulletin) it appears
to be flat slab RC construction with punching shear failure around the drop
(not the column). it is also evident that the floor was topped (looks like a
dissimilar color top layer with wire mesh).

Mark Geoghegan BE (Hons.-Structural)
S T R U C T U R A L   T E C H

>Can anyone give a little less vague description to this "method?"
>"...The method, which uses metal plates and thinner layers of cement than
>standard ceilings, was barred in 1996..."
>Sharon Robertson Bonds, PE
>Salerno/Livingston Architects
>363 Fifth Avenue, Third Floor
>San Diego, California  92101
>(619) 234-7471

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