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Re: Metal building frames blown over

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> From: "Sprague, Harold O." <SpragueHO(--nospam--at)>

> There is a certain amount of time when erecting pre-engineered buildings
> that you are vulnerable.  Each frame is set one at a time.  Until you have 2

Why are pre-eng frames different in this respect?

When I do work for pre-eng companies (extraordinary projects using
system components), I frequently augment their basic erection
instructions where I see fit. I walk a fine line and get told off from
both ends (the manufacturer AND the contractor or erector). Usually, the
contractor/erector doesn't want me to put anything in writing that the
owner may hold him to perform without additional compensation. Usually,
that dreaded phrase, "I've been doing it this way for ...", comes up.

> And give the hard hats a break.  WE are the ones that have been trained and

I wasn't necessarily referring to the guys assembling the pieces. There
has to be somebody responsible for the methods and means on a site,
regardless of what I design. Somebody watching to ensure that the guys
lifting the iron aren't exceeding the laws of physics or the labour
laws. On some projects, I could write any play-by-play instructions that
I wanted and nobody would enforce them.

> I attended a meeting of iron workers after the failure.  They were pissed
> that our profession does not appear interested in their problems.  We are
> sitting in our offices, and they are the ones that are getting killed.

Things are getting better. As I mentioned at the top, you have to follow
the money trail to understand who should be fixing some problems. When
OSHA makes a change, it is either politically motivated or financially
motivated by government or insurance companies. We have discussed the
issues surrounding low-bid engineering on this list but, obviously, the
problem isn't restricted to the design office.

> I would love to get some of my engineering colleagues out on the iron to see
> what it is like.  Some call it empathy, I call it Socratic wisdom.

I have been threatened by iron workers on more than one site. Usually,
at the end of the day we both go home knowing a little more and my next
project is that much better for it.

Paul Ransom, P. Eng.
Burlington, Ontario, Canada
<mailto:ad026(--nospam--at)> <>

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