May 3, 2017
By Doug Fell, PE – Executive Vice President/Chief Operations Officer
Storms, floods, lightning, excessive rain or snow, impacts, arson, vandalism, terrorism, fire, material or design defects, construction issues, structural overloading, structural modification – these and other natural and manmade situations can result in catastrophic damage requiring emergency response.
The more you learn about something, the more you realize how much you didn’t know before. This applies to structural engineers responding to an emergency situation with damage to facilities and structures.
Many facilities have long and successful relationships with contractors and structural engineers who address the day-to-day repairs and modifications to their facilities. But when serious catastrophic damage occurs, it may be time to call in someone with the appropriate training and experience to deal with these kinds of events. This experience and training can be crucial in protecting the safety of those needing to enter the damaged structure, as well as protecting site data that may be helpful in the investigation and reduce the time for the facility to be returned to service.
Having a structural engineer responding to an emergency without the appropriate training and experience can lead to some significant problems:
Emergency events do not need to be large or catastrophic to require the assistance of a well-trained experienced emergency response structural engineer.
By all means, keep your relationship with the contractors and structural engineers you rely on for the day-to-day needs of your facility. Add to that the peace of mind of having a relationship with a well-qualified, properly trained, and experienced structural engineer that specializes in emergency response structural engineering cases and that can be called in on short notice to assist in your facility needs after an emergency damage event.