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RE: Steel Stairs

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Isolate the stairs.  Typically the stairs are the exit path for after the
earthquake.  All you need is for the stairs to pull themselves apart during
the earthquake and be non-existant after the earthquake.  If the SER didn't
give you a story drift ratio to design for, contact them and find out what
it needs to be.

Jake Watson, P.E.
Salt Lake City, Utah

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike Auchter [mailto:mikea(--nospam--at)tetercon.com]
Sent: Wednesday, September 18, 2002 4:30 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: Steel Stairs


The firm I work with has recently accepted some work from a steel fabricator
for the engineering design/approval of steel stairs.  Normally, we have been
on the end of the drawings that defer that design to others, but now that
the shoe is on the other foot, we have run into some questions regarding the
need for isolation of the stairs from the main lateral system.

It would seem that the two designs are either to isolate the stairs with
slotted hole connections or to not isolate the stairs with direct welded or
bolted connections.  The details we have seen from this fabricator and
others typically show a directly welded connection of the stringers to the
floor beams or intermediate landing beams.

The UBC has the deformation compatibility requirement (section 1633.2.4),
but doesn't seem to otherwise directly address steel stairs.

Does anyone have any thoughts/insight regarding code requirements/general
design practices when it comes to whether to isolate or not isolate steel
stairs from the main structure?

Thanks in advance for any responses.

Mike Auchter, EIT

Teter Consultants, LLP
Visalia, CA 93291
(559) 625-5246
mikea(--nospam--at)tetercon.com


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