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RE: 2003 IBC & Inspection

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Enforcement of Special Inspections varies throughout the country. In
some areas (my home state of Connecticut being one of them) a building
official won't issue a building permit unless a Statement of Special
Inspections, - including a schedule of all items requiring special
inspections (per Chap 17), and who's responsible for performing each of
those inspections - is submitted by the engineer.  

CASE has guidelines and forms available for download on their web-site
at 

http://www.acec.org/about/case-committees.cfm#si

They also have a standard agreement (contract) between an owner and
structural engineer for providing special inspection services.

http://store.acec.org/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=10240&Catego
ry_Code=CONTRACTS_CASE&Product_Count=4

I think that the agreement will come with older versions of the CASE
forms.

I usually don't include Special Inspections info in the drawings
themselves, I fill out the form and include it as a section in the
specifications.  The form can either list all of the inspections - or it
can refer to other spec sections for detailed test/inspection
requirements - e.g. 03300 may have a Field Quality Control Section that
specifies the frequency of concrete cylinder tests required, the number
of tests at 7, 14, and or 28 days, the ASTM number for the test, etc.
the form can reference that spec, or you could put all the info into the
form.

I have done a Seismic QA program.  I haven't had to do Wind yet.  The QA
portion of the Code is kind of pointless.  It doesn't really require
much beyond the Special Inspections - mostly more paperwork.
Nonetheless, it remains in most areas.  CASE has combined the Quality
Assurance with the Statement of Special Inspections.  It basically
requires you to explain the lateral force resisting system, identify
what needs to be inspected, and it requires the Contractor to write a QA
plan, and sign a Statement of Responsibility.  Good luck chasing that
down.  

Observations are intended to be performed by a structural engineer as
opposed to a testing technician.  I interpret them to be much more
general in nature.  For example if you inspect work for a concrete
moment frame, you verify rebar sizes, spacing, surface conditions, etc.
If you observe it, you generally note that additional ties appear to
have been provided where necessary, or things appear to be in general
conformance with contract documents without physically verifying every
little thing at every placement.  My sense is that it aim behind it is
to get engineers out to job sites to verify things seem to be going
right - especially for complex systems, buildings of high importance, or
buildings in higher risk areas.

I've gone on too long now....

Peter Griem, PE
Director - Structural Engineers Coalition of Connecticut
The  S / L / A / M  Collaborative, Inc.
Glastonbury, CT 
Griem(nospam)@slamcoll.com
www.slamcoll.com


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