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Retaining/Basement Wall Surcharge

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This question relates to live load surcharge behind a deep basement (four stories below grade).  We have a fire truck live loading criterion adjacent to the basement wall.  For this load condition, we normally treat the fire truck as an equivalent uniform load of 250 psf.  In basement wall design, the geotechs will normally provide a coefficient which converts the uniform surcharge load into an equivalent uniform horizontal load against the back of the wall.  For our case, where the basement is 40 ft to 50 ft deep, this seems overly conservative for the lowest wall levels, where the surcharge pressure must have dissipated significantly.  Is anyone aware of a published reference which provides some information related to this issue?






Eric R. Ober, P.E., S.E.


Holbert Apple Associates, Inc.

3423 Olney-Laytonsville Road

Suite 6

Olney, Maryland  20832