Thursday, August 25, 2011

From the series Buildings at Work: The Forensic Engineering Unit

The Forensic Engineering Unit is an elite team of engineers charged with assessing the structural stability of buildings during major emergencies and overseeing the repairs of these structures. The video is narrated by the Unit's Executive Director, Timothy Lynch, P.E.

The Unit has four forensic engineers on duty. They each handle somewhere in the neighborhood of 120 "uncontrolled construction incidents" per year. That's a lot of shit covered fans to clean up after.

For those readers who have been following OUR story, I actually met Mr. Timothy Lynch, P.E. after the Armory Plaza excavation debacle back in 2007 after much of the damage had already been inflicted on our properties.

1504 Eighth  Avenue in Brooklyn had been served with multiple emergency vacate orders after literally cracking in half and Mr. Lynch was put in charge of protecting the public's safety at the site.   We, the surrounding property owners, were afraid our buildings would be next to fall into the hole and were seeking a time out until someone could reassure us that the excavation contractor/developer knew what he was doing.  We were seeking an explanation as to why after repeated complaints noone actually did anything.  There was a meeting.   As I recall it didn't go very well.

The Buildings Department ultimately decided at the time it was more dangerous to leave the site in its current fucked up condition than to delay the work and risk the clusterfuckation of the entire block. A partial stop work order violation allowed the project to continue with some major changes in the way the pilings were to be installed.   They also brought in another engineering firm to oversee the completion of the foundation.

We didn't know this at the time, but our fears were correct. The whole site was dangerously close to imploding in on itself.  We learned later that engineers detected that the pilings were caving inward.

Cracked 1504 Eighth Avenue teeters above the braced excavation, site of the future Armory Plaza Apartments 406 15th Street.

 Attorney for the Armory Plaza developers,  Ravi Batra, pictured center w/lapel flag pin, pleads his client's case to  DoB Engineers. 


Kelly Williams said...

Forensic engineering use forensic investigation for the physical reasons for the incidents along with other sources of lawsuits. Those who are in back of this are the forensic engineers who can be called on to execute examinations as well as determine the factors of accidental injuries.

Mike Johnson said...

Building colossal structures and buildings was not so easy without the noteworthy contributions made in the field of scientific research where the field of forensic engineering adds another great value of validating the structure is safe by utilizing its great expertise such as model building of the same structure in order to identify the root causes that can develop a situation of vulnerability through its team of highly qualified and experienced analysts.

Mike Johnson said...

The field of scientific research has been continuously contributing its marvelous findings and innovative ways of making the world more secure by making use of the vast expertise and skills of forensic engineering all over the world.