About the author  ⁄ Williston L. Warren, IV, S.E., SECB

Williston L. Warren, IV is Principal Structural Engineer, SESOL, Inc., Newport Beach, California. Treasurer of the National Council of Structural Engineering Associations (NCSEA), Member of the NCSEA Code Advisory Committee (CAC), Chair of the CAC Evaluation Service Committee, Member of the Applied Technology Council (ATC) Board of Directors, and ATC Board Representative on the Project Review Panel for ATC 58-2, ATC-110 and ATC-124.

Have you ever been in a discussion, adversarial or entertaining, with a non-engineer or even an engineer, about what code requirements exist for construction activities? For example, a discussion about the generation of structural calculations for an existing building where the construction does not comply with the permitted construction drawings and, in some cases, with specific code requirements.

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After you finish the engineering on a project and it goes out the door, what happens to it? Who is responsible? How will it perform versus the engineering assumptions?

Over the years, the reality of what gets engineered versus what gets constructed has become more concerning. Performing site visits to observe construction configuration and specifics of the contractor’s interpretations of the permitted drawings has been, to say the least, enlightening.

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