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RE: Repetitive Use of Design[Subject Prev][Subject Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
- To: "'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'" <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
- Subject: RE: Repetitive Use of Design
- From: "Caldwell, Stan" <scaldwell(--nospam--at)halff.com>
- Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2003 13:51:30 -0500
Let's say that you design just one septic tank, based on site-specific geotechnical and seismic data. Your professional liability would be "X". Now, if your design was subsequently re-used 19 times at virtually identical sites, you total liability would probably be about 20X. Of course, some of those sites might have substantially different geotechnical or seismic conditions, and some might have differing embedment depths. In these cases, your potential liability goes well beyond 20X. Keep this in mind when you consider your fee structure. My advice is to keep your fees proportional to your liability, regardless of the effort that may or may not be required for "adaptive re-use".
Ironically, chain restaurants have at least one thing in common with septic tanks. The architects and their clients that dot the landscape with these gastronomical marvels expect to pay the structural engineer a "full" fee for Store #1 (the prototype), and a token fee for subsequent re-use (rollouts, or site-adapts). Often, the re-use fee is as low as $300, even though there are changes in applicable codes, environmental loadings, and site-specific geotechnical conditions. Surprisingly, many structural engineers actually compete for these great "opportunities". I'm not one of them!
Stan R. Caldwell, P.E.
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