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Newsletter No 44 - October 2016

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Report Overview

CROSS is keen to receive reports about damage caused by weather events and a new section of the web site has been opened for the purpose – Weather damage. This is a long term project sponsored by the Department of Communities and Local Government to help determine whether the Buildings Regulations might need to be amended. In addition, of course, we continue to need reports about concerns, or possible failures, or failure events. They are sent by consulting engineers, contractors, owners and operators of large infrastructure groups, local authority building controllers, and others. After processing to remove names and identification details they are reviewed by our panel of experts who provide comments that can help others to learn from these experiences. Reports and comments are published on the web site and many are included in these Newsletters which are freely available and widely read. There is still much work to do by identifying risks during design, construction, and operation, and using these to create a safer environment for the public and for those in the industry so please contribute. The success of the CROSS programme depends on receiving reports, and individuals and firms are encouraged to participate by sending concerns in confidence to Structural-Safety. In this issue however the high standard of reports continues with concerns about: crane base bolts, inadequate bracing in a design, more on the sudden hole in a piling mat, an embankment slip, hybrid concrete construction, wind damage to a roof with PV panels, and the safe fixing of grave stones.

Overview of Reports in this Newsletter

585 Failure of supposedly grade 10.9 bolts

There was a high potential for collapse when supposedly Grade 10.9 high strength holding bolts failed on a crane base. Sixteen bolts, which had been pre-tensioned in the standard way, all failed within four days.

597 Inadequate structural design at a school

On review of a design for a school extension a reporter noted several major issues including an almost total lack of vertical bracing throughout the extension, and a total lack of roof bracing in the hall.

596 Sudden hole in piling mat - No.2

This is further information about Report 566 Sudden Hole in Piling Mat which was published in the April 2016 Newsletter. The report at that stage was not conclusive about the cause of the hole and does not reflect the conclusions of later investigation. The report has therefore been updated.

572 Embankment slip

Vertical movement was observed on the safety critical surface at the top of an 8m high embankment. This occurred over a distance of some 25m directly above a length of rockfill shear key being installed at the embankment toe. Had there been a failure of the embankment the consequences could have been severe.

574 Responsibilities for hybrid concrete construction

There was a report about a problem during the construction of a hybrid concrete over-bridge. A substantial pre-cast element, weighing over 10t, had been placed in position and used as part of the shuttering for an insitu pour. During the pour the element was pushed out of alignment by the pressure of wet concrete and there was a substantial spillage onto an operating area below.

590 Wind damage to roof with PV panels

A reporter has a house which was built in 2011 and had solar panels installed on the roof flush with the tiling. Later the same year she had external PV panels fitted. During the heavy storm a big area of roof tiles blew down.

601 Fixing systems for gravestones

This report is about the safety of pins used to hold headstones in place.

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