Reaction Pieters on report about "Eindhoven"
On 18 October 2018, the Dutch Safety Board published its report on the state of affairs in the construction of the parking garage in Eindhoven, which collapsed on 27 May 2017. The Dutch Safety Board investigated how the collapse could have occurred with the aim of drawing lessons from it. Although Pieters was not involved in the design of this parking garage, we obviously take these incidents very seriously. We can learn a lot from this, which is why Pieters thoroughly studied the report. We greatly appreciate the thoroughness of the research and take the points for improvement mentioned by the Research Council to heart.
The Council concludes that the collapse is the result of the design choice to turn the wide slabs in the floor of the car park a quarter turn in relation to the usual application, without it being recognized that extra attention had to be paid to the slab joints between the floor slabs. . This conclusion roughly corresponds to the findings of previous studies by bureau Hageman and TNO and is also in line with the Information Document on the safety of wide-area slabs for existing buildings. The Dutch Safety Board does place more emphasis on the consequences of the presence of lattice girders along the edge of the sheet. Pieters Bouwtechniek carried out a lot of research over the past year on existing wide-slab floors concerning this problem and the report from the Dutch Safety Board does not lead to any significant changes in the findings of our investigations. We are still awaiting the new calculation rules for the assessment of wide slab floors of the Working Group Wide Sheet Floors that are expected to be ready by the end of 2018.
We continue to cooperate with other parties in analyzing the safety of existing wide slab floors. From the moment that the contours of the problem began to emerge in 2017, Pieters Bouwtechniek, as a designing engineer, avoided sheet seams in the middle of the span when prescribing floors with wide slabs or when inspecting the laying plans. Should there still be plate seams in the middle, then the detailing of the joint has been examined very critically.
The report also reveals a number of defects that go beyond the collapse of the parking garage in Eindhoven and the wide-spread problem. After an incident, parties in the construction sector seem to be more concerned with shifting the debt than to focus on what they themselves can contribute to improving safety. There is an urgent need for building parties that take responsibility for safety, both of the construction process and the end product. Pieters Bouwtechniek shares this criticism and sees it as a challenge for the future to jointly achieve better risk management in the construction industry. As constructive designers we have to dare to reflect critically on our own actions in all construction phases. Our quality system is also equipped for this.
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