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A crane collapse onto an electrical switchyard building causing a complete shut down of an oil refinery plant. The refinery company hired a large well known management company to manage and supervise the lifting of heat exchangers for maintenance, repair and replacement. The management company retained the services of a lifting contractor.
During a recent conversation with a friend who had purchased a small construction company he mentioned in passing that one of his employees had injured his ankle on the job but didn't report it to his work comp carrier as it was a minor incident, no days off work, didn't want his rates to go up, why bother. All is good. Right?
You have a shiny new building with a shiny new crane and everything looks great. For some reason, though, the crane won't clear the building columns, even though the contractor and the crane manufacturer are saying everything is to spec and it's not their problem. Common sense says somebody is wrong and that somebody should have to pay (because it's going to cost a bundle).
It is absolutely critical in the evaluation of a legal case involving cranes, to determine what type crane is involved. The word "Crane" is a generic term that covers virtually anything that lifts with a hook, but each crane type is a whole different industry with different industry associations (which compile the industry product specifications), different governing specification and different OSHA requirements. As a matter of fact, some cranes don't even have hooks!
Brick masonry chimneys have been prevalent for centuries, but it wasnt until recent decades that brick-clad, wood-framed chimneys became common in residential construction. This trend resulted from the increasing popularity of metal insert fireplaces. While they may appear similar from the exterior, the structure and weather-resistant envelope of wood-framed chimneys are very different than masonry-built chimneys. Prior to studying damage, it is important to understand critical elements in the structural support and weather-resistant envelope of wood-framed chimneys and the types of damage that can result from improper construction.
Construction delays and over runs / in millions of dollars.
For the forensic investigator, damage assessments require taking a global look at the loss to determine all causes, including possible design and construction deficiencies.
Large losses present a unique set of challenges from the perspective of managing an expert or team of experts. For the purposes of this column, let's assume that a large loss is one that exceeds $250,000. These might include heavy civil construction, infrastructure, transportation, or a catastrophic event affecting a large building.
As a construction expert witness, I am often asked about the importance of using safety equipment. I have many years of personal experiences with the proper observance of safety procedures and appropriate safety equipment requirements.
Wood bowstring trusses were used extensively in commercial buildings from the 1920s to the 1960s. Wood bowstring roof trusses provided long clear spans necessary in warehouse and industrial buildings. Many roofs supported by bowstring trusses are still in service today. Compared with other structural timber-truss types, bowstring trusses have exhibited more frequent structural problems. The structural deficiencies encountered are attributable to deficiencies in the original design of the trusses combined with damage due to exposure and age.