The ability of the engineer of record to make sound engineering assumptions and judgments during the process of design is heavily dependent upon their knowledge and experience. Valid assumptions can be made when the engineer has either worked through the numbers on enough occasions to know what effect the assumptions will have on the analysis, or the assumptions are so basic in nature there is no question of their validity. Failure by the engineer of record to fully understand the ramifications of particular assumptions opens the Pandora's Box of negligence, since the bench-approved jury instruction (BAJI) clearly includes the mandate to use reasonable diligence and best judgment. The paper reinforces the importance of these points by examining a hypothetical situation where an apparently logical, rational engineering assumption is made to simplify the structural analysis of a cantilever truss bridge during the load-rating analysis process. The validity of the assumption is then double-checked. Conclusions are presented regarding the designer's responsibility to perform the analysis in a harmonious manner with the BAJI that includes reasonable diligence and best judgment.


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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00802074
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 10 2000 12:00AM