In spite of the best efforts of engineers, contractors, and owners, failures of engineered structures continue to occur. In some cases the failures are dramatic and may even result in loss of life, and in other cases the failure may not be particularly newsworthy. Regardless of the type of failure, they almost all result in expensive litigation, and they all provide information that can be used to improve our professional practice.
June 15, 2010 - Ed Nachtmann, SE, PE (center), is flanked by James Cohen, PE of ARUP (left) and Paul Roppa, PE (right)
In June 2010, the ASCE Met Section held a symposium on forensic engineering, the title of which was "Sources of Errors and Opportunities for Catching Them."
The Symposium explored ways to minimize failures, both large and small, and ways to minimize the liability that is associated with them. The Symposium featured a presentation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) on the I-35W Minneapolis Bridge Collapse, a special session on adjacent construction issues, the Midtown Manhattan steam pipe explosion, crane accidents, façade failures, geotechnical problems, catastrophes, and legal issues. Speakers included experts with national reputations from major engineering firms, public agencies, and universities.
The Symposium was held at The Frederick P. Rose Auditorium, located in the dramatic new building at 41 Cooper Square, which is part of The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City. Lectures were held over a span of four Tuesday evenings: June 8th, 15th, 22nd, and 29th.
See the event flyer for the list of speakers and daily programs. The four-evening seminar offered a total of 12 PDHs in continuing education credits.
Below is the link to view the Proceedings from this recent 2010 Forensic Engineering Symposium, including all 22 presentations which took place.
The url is: http://www.ascemetsection.org/images/files/forensic/2010_seminar/