Hamilton, N.J. — Mitch Cohen, P.E., vice president in the Construction Division at New Day Underwriting Mangers, was joined by Sammy Powell, P.E., vice president at Long Engineering, to discuss the catastrophic construction design failures that can cost millions, while endangering lives. Titled, When Engineering Design Fails…The Impact of Faulty Design and Collapses, the one-hour webinar explored the many “deadly lessons learned” from the most notorious collapses in recent U.S. history.
“This session shared firsthand knowledge of the wrongful design and construction errors that led to some of our country’s greatest structural failures,” says Cohen. “While design processes are far more formalized due to the latest design software advances, it must be emphasized that even seemingly simple changes to plans and specifications in the field can have tragic results.”
Throughout the webinar, Cohen and Powell reviewed the engineering design fails resulting in the Hyatt Hotel walkway collapse in July 1981 that killed 114 people and injured 216; the W. Mississippi River Bridge collapse of 2007 that resulted in the inspection of 700 U.S. bridges of similar construction; the “leaning Tower” of South Padre Island, Texas; and the Tropicana Hotel parking deck collapse in Atlantic City, N.J., among others.
“Almost all design failures do not show up until the construction phase begins,” explains Cohen. “Despite the upgrade in electronic data processes, shop-drawing review, fast-tracked construction practices and construction management failures are leading to an increasing number of design and building errors. Even the most innocuous changes can cost lives and destroy careers.
“As a result, it’s imperative that the proper risk management tools are in place from the start of the first designs. Unfortunately, the fault of any challenge can be linked to any number of errors and even the incidental actions of those involved.”
For more information, visit the New Day Underwriting Managers website at www.newdayunderwriting.com or call 609-298-3516.