The project was a seismic retrofit of a 15-story, 750,000 sq. ft. office building constructed in 1991. The steel portion of the project consisted of systematically strengthening the moment connections throughout the building and installing over 200 dampers without interrupting the operation of the tenants. The contract dictated that the work would start in the basement, progress through the ground floor and the parking garage (floors 2-5), and then continue through the occupied office floors (6-15). The contractor could only occupy three half-floors at any one time. Although my team was extremely experienced, with over 20 years of seismic experience and over 50 years of steel work experience, this project provided us with some significant lessons to take with us to our next project.
Robert is a project manager for a steel erection firm with projects in Northern California, Southern California, and Nevada. His current project types include wind energy, occupied building seismic retrofits, existing bridge seismic retrofits, and new bridge erection. Robert graduated from the University of Missouri Rolla with a Masters in Engineering Management and from the United States Military Academy with a Bachelors Degree in International Relations. Robert has also worked in the luxury residential sector in Florida and as an Officer in the Corps of Engineers.
Ask your safety manager or operations risk manager and they will tell you about the numerous additional hazards a crew will face at night. Consult work studies and you will see that working at night lowers the efficiency of any of your work crews. Unfortunately, few studies or safety managers will tell you about the managerial and contractual challenges contractors face when they take on night work.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published “Cranes and Derricks in Construction: Final Rule” on August 9, 2010, and it is set to take effect on November 7, 2010. OSHA hopes that this new standard will prevent 22 fatalities and 175 nonfatal injuries annually. Although it is difficult to evaluate how effective the new rules will be, all contractors must comply with them. Here is an overview of the new standard, which is intended to not only combat fatality and injury associated with working with cranes and derricks but also to account for technological advances in this equipment.
Advancements in technology have revolutionized the way we do business, but we must not lose sight of the benefits of personal interaction. I find myself getting more and more email every day and having less time to actually talk to or even see the people I am working with. I am probably more guilty of this then many because I am what you might call a “satellite” project manager, working remotely on out-of-town jobs.
The project was a seismic retrofit of a 15-story building constructed in 1991. The steel portion of the project consisted of systematically strengthening the moment connections throughout the building and installing over 200 dampers in a 750,000 sq. ft. office building without interrupting the operation of the tenants. The contract dictated that the work would start in the basement, progress through the ground floor and the parking garage (floors 2-5), and then continue through the occupied office floors (6-15). The contractor could only occupy three half floors at any one time and a set number of parking spaces due to contract restrictions. The contract also restricted work hours, noise levels, and delivery times. These restrictions would drive the pace of the work.