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RE: IBC "Oops" (Was Residential Design Discussion)

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My first response bounced back.  I will try it again.

Your frustrations are real.  I had the same frustrations in regard to
structures.  The problem (and opportunity) is that the code
development process has changed significantly.  And I think it is for the
better.  The people that are at the leading edge of the seismic code
development sit on the BSSC Provisions Update Committee and on TS 1 - Wood
Structures.  I would suggest sharing your concerns with members of that
committee.  We are into the 2003 cycle currently.  It would be a very
opportune time to express your concerns.  

Members of TS 7 include building code officials, college professors, APA,
American Forest and Paper Assn., the Engineered Wood Assn., NAHB Research
Center, and several others.  Look on page 356 of the 2000 NEHRP for a
specific listing.  

These are the individuals that can develop a specific proposal
to effect the change that you desire.  This is kind of a flow chart
	TS 7 initiates and develops proposals and presents them to the PUC.

	The PUC initiates very few proposals.  But the PUC must pass all
 		that are then presented to the full BSSC.
	After the full BSSC votes on the proposals, NEHRP happens.  
	The NEHRP is the starting point for the ASCE 7 Seismic Subcommittee.

I hope that this helps you effect the change that is of concern.

By the way, I have designed in wood.  I have also designed residential,
"stick" construction.  
Since I don't do it often, I am not very efficient.

Harold O. Sprague

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Structuralist [SMTP:dennis.wish(--nospam--at)]
> Sent:	Tuesday, October 01, 2002 1:38 AM
> To:	seaint(--nospam--at)
> Subject:	RE: IBC "Oops" (Was Residential Design Discussion)
> Scott,
> I'm not trying to criticise you as your comments are very accurate and
> valid. However, you have over complicate the issues which I believe need
> to go back to the source. If the code creation process subsequent to
> writing or creating or even accumulating the methods, as the Seismology
> Committee has done, then the system is flawed. There should be a means
> for those who create and err to correct their error without complicating
> the issues.
> I'm not arguing the process, but where the "blame" lies in the intial
> creation and the subsequent dismissal of those whose livelihood depend
> on the "practical application" of the code. Let's not lose site of the
> practicality of design of residential structures - this is where we got
> into trouble.
> I too am a member of BSSC but the TS-7 committee which really only
> affects the prescriptive methods of residential design. The committee
> accepts the drafts from NEHRP as well as CUREe. My point is that there
> is little for the members to do but review the draft (unless they were
> involved at the beginning of the creation process) and correct it for
> any errors or omissions. However, the code is not intended to comply
> with what has been the UBC chapter 16 and whatever it has been converted
> to in the IBC. However, this is the prescriptive method - not the
> full-compliance methods and I have been forbidden from helping to create
> a method for members to communicate on the issues without attending the
> formal meetings.
> Let's not lose sight of the creation process - not the codification
> process. What was done is what is affecting all engineers in high risk
> regions under the provisions of the UBC. If this is not sufficient while
> compared to the needs of the rest of the US then we are, once again,
> being dismissed without needful cause.
> Scott, both you and Harold are very knowledgable on the code process. If
> possible, I would like to use what you know to create a flow chart as I
> suggested before. The chart would help others to understand the latest
> code creation cycle and to identify who the "players" are and what part
> they play in the creation of Seismic and Wind design. This assumes that
> the Steel provisions are left to AISC, the concrete issues to ACI, the
> masonry issues to the MIA, the cold form issues to both the AISI and the
> LGSEA, trusses to WTCA and so forth.
> The design of wood residential structures is a bit different - it allows
> two different design methodologies without combining them into one
> governing body that identifies and helps to bridge the gap that creates
> an incentive to abuse and profit from the abuse without disclosure to
> the public. When you bought your home, don't you believe you have the
> right to know where the hidden costs are. If the home was prescriptively
> designed and you reside in a high risk zone, don't you have the right to
> understand where your hidden costs are so you can plan accordingly or
> chose a home that you believe will perform better? If you move into a
> community that is low-income housing constructed to prescriptive methods
> and a few years later decide to sell the home at three times what you
> paid - doesn't the next owner deserve to understand that what they are
> purchasing is a starter home without the care and design that an
> engineer would contribute based on the restrictive nature of the code
> that he must follow? This is an advantage to the owner - more so than
> the purchase of the home next door that may look identical and be priced
> the same, but which yields a much higher profit margin for the builder
> or owner?
> If the designer of a code is erred in their lack of understanding how
> the code affects every form of construction that they restrict it to,
> then it is their repsponsibility to correct it or to disclose the
> deficiency to the buyer.
> Dennis
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Scott Maxwell [mailto:smaxwell(--nospam--at)] 
> Sent: Monday, September 30, 2002 2:21 PM
> To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)'
> Subject: RE: IBC "Oops" (Was Residential Design Discussion)
> Dennis,
> And to further illustrate that California engineers don't control the
> process, our good friend and wealth of information (including
> interesting trips back to his steel worker days) Harold is the past
> chair of the BSSC TS 13 and is still a member of that TS.  I do believe
> that he also worked with the ASCE 7 Seismic Task group (and may still do
> so).  And amazingly enough he is out of Kansas City, NOT California.
> The other thing that has not been mentioned too much is that even _IF_ a
> proposal gets past the BSSC TS and then past the PUC in the NEHRP
> process, it must still get past the BSSC members, which are
> organizations like ACI, AISC, SEAOC, SEAW, SDI, PCA, PCI, etc.  Thus,
> some things that appear to be self-serving to a particular region in the
> country or particular material have the potential to get knocked down at
> this point.
> HTH,
> Scott
> Ypsilanti, MI

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