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Old 1st July 2019, 10:25 AM   #161
theprestige
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The crazy thing about the OSHA report is that they didn't start looking at the bridge until after the collapse. All the documentary evidence in their report is stuff that was produced before the collapse. Before OSHA even knew about the bridge, really.

Am I the only one a little weirded out that this degree of detailed, damning evidence would have been collected by people who weren't investigating a collapse?

Of course I'm more weirded out that they collected all this clear and damning evidence, but didn't realize it pointed to an imminent collapse.
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Old 1st July 2019, 11:21 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Hmm I wonder if the Engineer of Record in that is going to prison for manslaughter.

That never happens. They just lose their licenses, but then they move to different states and get re-licensed.
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Old 1st July 2019, 03:15 PM   #163
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The root of the issue seems to be that the span was not structurally sound in the temporary configuration it was placed in during that stage of construction. (The main thrust of the report is then to examine all the different ways this fact could and should have been detected and corrected before it actually collapsed, but never was.)

The report didn't go into whether or not it would have been structurally sound with all construction completed. No reason they should bother, as it's kind of a moot point. But I'm kind of curious anyhow. Would the full structure have stood? (The cable stays appear intended to have been primarily decorative, given that they expected the span to hold up without them for weeks.)
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Old 1st July 2019, 03:26 PM   #164
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
The root of the issue seems to be that the span was not structurally sound in the temporary configuration it was placed in during that stage of construction. (The main thrust of the report is then to examine all the different ways this fact could and should have been detected and corrected before it actually collapsed, but never was.)

The report didn't go into whether or not it would have been structurally sound with all construction completed. No reason they should bother, as it's kind of a moot point. But I'm kind of curious anyhow. Would the full structure have stood? (The cable stays appear intended to have been primarily decorative, given that they expected the span to hold up without them for weeks.)
The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load, while the suspension structure was being built.

The cable stays were in no way decorative. They were there to help the span support the additional live load of many people moving around on the span at the same time. Earlier in the thread there's some discussion about how surprisingly heavy "people walking around" actually is.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:11 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load, while the suspension structure was being built.

The cable stays were in no way decorative. They were there to help the span support the additional live load of many people moving around on the span at the same time. Earlier in the thread there's some discussion about how surprisingly heavy "people walking around" actually is.

Okay, fair enough, but it doesn't answer my main question. The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load during that phase of construction, but it turned out it wasn't. The completed structure was supposed to be strong enough to support the completed structure plus the live loads with suitable safety margins. But would it have been? At this point nobody's bothering to investigate that, because it's kind of a moot point. But I'm curious.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:23 PM   #166
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Okay, fair enough, but it doesn't answer my main question. The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load during that phase of construction, but it turned out it wasn't. The completed structure was supposed to be strong enough to support the completed structure plus the live loads with suitable safety margins. But would it have been? At this point nobody's bothering to investigate that, because it's kind of a moot point. But I'm curious.
I'm not sure I understand.

Are you asking if the defective span would have been strong enough to support the live load of pedestrians, with the help of the cable stays?

Or are you asking if a non-defective version of the span would have been strong enough for that?

Or are you assuming that the span and its support pillars were free of defects, and it was the design itself that failed (by designing a perfect span that was simply too weak to support itself)?
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:38 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Okay, fair enough, but it doesn't answer my main question. The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load during that phase of construction, but it turned out it wasn't. The completed structure was supposed to be strong enough to support the completed structure plus the live loads with suitable safety margins. But would it have been? At this point nobody's bothering to investigate that, because it's kind of a moot point. But I'm curious.
I suspect it would have been. That part of the design was audited by an independent engineering firm. The intermediate phase where the span had to support itself was not audited independently. Had it been, the flaws might have been discovered.

I'm also not sure it wasn't investigated. It may well have been, but if the design for that stage was adequate, what's there to say? It wasn't a contributing factor in the collapse, and accepting that part of the design wasn't misconduct.
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Old 4th July 2019, 11:14 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Okay, fair enough, but it doesn't answer my main question. The span was supposed to be strong enough to support its own load during that phase of construction, but it turned out it wasn't. The completed structure was supposed to be strong enough to support the completed structure plus the live loads with suitable safety margins. But would it have been? At this point nobody's bothering to investigate that, because it's kind of a moot point. But I'm curious.


Among the many things I read I was given the impression that one of the end structures had been built in a different location, farther out than its original design position, and that possibly the impact of this on the the structural integrity of the temporary (construction phase) support was not properly updated.

Not sure how that has been viewed since the original flurry of hypotheses.
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Old 4th July 2019, 11:34 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
Among the many things I read I was given the impression that one of the end structures had been built in a different location, farther out than its original design position, and that possibly the impact of this on the the structural integrity of the temporary (construction phase) support was not properly updated.

Not sure how that has been viewed since the original flurry of hypotheses.
I read through the executive summary in the OSHA investigation report, and it didn't mention anything about that. I haven't read the whole report (it's pretty long), but the absence of any mention in the executive summary suggests that if that happened, it wasn't really significant.
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Old 8th July 2019, 08:02 AM   #170
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
That never happens. They just lose their licenses, but then they move to different states and get re-licensed.
That is actually quite difficult to do in the US. In order to get a license you need to provide your college transcripts and records of your work an employment between graduation and the time you are applying. Including letters signed by references and former employers.

You must explain gaps in employment and list the locations you are currently or were previously licensed in and explain why you are no longer licensed.
I'm sure you can lie about much if not all of this but you could also change your name an get a license in the same state by lying too.

Some states do background checks and most government agencies require contractor's and consultant's employees to get background checks too. It would not be easy for an engineer to just move to another state.

Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
The crazy thing about the OSHA report is that they didn't start looking at the bridge until after the collapse. All the documentary evidence in their report is stuff that was produced before the collapse. Before OSHA even knew about the bridge, really.

Am I the only one a little weirded out that this degree of detailed, damning evidence would have been collected by people who weren't investigating a collapse?

Of course I'm more weirded out that they collected all this clear and damning evidence, but didn't realize it pointed to an imminent collapse.
It should be encouraging really. It shows you the typical sort of record keeping for major construction projects and how difficult it is for something like this to happen. There was clear evidence of a major structure problem that many folks had to rationalize away. The EOR is not the only person or firm responsible.

Seriously, the EOR basically said, "I don't know what these giant cracks are but they aren't structural and its safe!" The Contractor, the Owner, and multiple third party reviews missed even though the problems were evident.

Last edited by ahhell; 8th July 2019 at 08:06 AM.
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Old 8th July 2019, 01:25 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
That is actually quite difficult to do in the US. In order to get a license you need to provide your college transcripts and records of your work an employment between graduation and the time you are applying. Including letters signed by references and former employers.

You must explain gaps in employment and list the locations you are currently or were previously licensed in and explain why you are no longer licensed.
I'm sure you can lie about much if not all of this but you could also change your name an get a license in the same state by lying too.

Some states do background checks and most government agencies require contractor's and consultant's employees to get background checks too. It would not be easy for an engineer to just move to another state.

My original post was based on what I'd seen and read about the engineers responsible for the Hyatt Regency walkway collapseWP, and how they'd continued working in other states. However upon investigation it appears that they continued working without being licensed, at least as structural engineers. I discovered that the junior engineer was also a licensed architect in Illinois, and continued as such until 2012. That restores some of my faith in the system.
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Old 8th July 2019, 01:47 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
I've been digging a bit through the report. I'm no expert, and I know that concrete can crack without it being a problem. But some of those cracks... wow. They look bad. Really, really bad. You can see obvious displacement between the two sides.
All concrete cracks but those cracks were clearly not typical concrete shrinkage cracking. They were on the order of 1 to 2 inches wide.

I suspect there was strong pressure to keep the project on time which resulted in a lot of people trying very hard to convince themselves that it would be ok.
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Old 8th July 2019, 02:02 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
All concrete cracks but those cracks were clearly not typical concrete shrinkage cracking. They were on the order of 1 to 2 inches wide.

I suspect there was strong pressure to keep the project on time which resulted in a lot of people trying very hard to convince themselves that it would be ok.
I read through the report. I'm not sure if I share your enthusiasm that this will never happen again since everyone involved kept twiddling their thumbs and looking at someone else i.e. like they always do when things start to get a bit pear-shaped.
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Old 8th July 2019, 02:24 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
I read through the report. I'm not sure if I share your enthusiasm that this will never happen again since everyone involved kept twiddling their thumbs and looking at someone else i.e. like they always do when things start to get a bit pear-shaped.
I don't believe I ever said something like this will never happen again.
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Old 8th July 2019, 02:28 PM   #175
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Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
I don't believe I ever said something like this will never happen again.
OK, fair point, I was embellishing a bit ...
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Old 9th July 2019, 02:58 AM   #176
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Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
All concrete cracks but those cracks were clearly not typical concrete shrinkage cracking. They were on the order of 1 to 2 inches wide.

I suspect there was strong pressure to keep the project on time which resulted in a lot of people trying very hard to convince themselves that it would be ok.
Yea when you can put a ruler into a crack 6+" in a major load area that is not a superficial minor crack.

In some ways this feels much worse than the Hyatt Regency because this one gave plenty of warnings. It was bad design but it was telling people it was failing and they were just not listening.
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