Quantcast Failure of the Outlooker-Handrail System

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a change order and direction from the government were required to allow him to
proceed.  The contractor stated that the contract requires him to use
excavated material for backfill.  The contract does not state that he must
treat or dry the soil in any special way. Therefore, he is not responsible if
compaction requirements are not met and if the pipe is bowed and misaligned.
The contractor felt he has performed his work in fulfillment of the intent of
the contract and since the work is unsatisfactory to the Government, a change
order should be executed for time and money for him to proceed.
Collection of Facts:  The Government's position was that the contractor has
not fulfilled the requirements of the contract and has not fulfilled the
intent of the contract by not producing useable, satisfactory work.  The
contract states that a dewatering system is to be in place and operating
before excavation.  This has not happened.  The Government felt that a
dewatering system before excavation would render the excavated material
suitable for backfill and allow it to meet compaction requirements. A
dewatering plan would affect the softness of the trench floor, and in
conjunction with excavation methods described in the contract, will provide a
more stable bed for the pipeline and reduce the additional gravel bed the
contractor claims is required.  The contractor has not excavated the trench in
conformance with the contract specifications.
Solution:  Fill the open trench area as soon as possible and provide flood
protection from the river.  Leaving the trench open was viewed as a safety
hazard endangering the lives of personnel working on the base, as well as a
potential risk to property.
The contractor was directed several times to fulfill the requirements of the
contract.  He has been reminded that the contract does not specify that he
must use a wellpoint system and that the selection of another system is his
choice as long as the dewatering and compaction requirements are met.  To the
time of this writing, the matter has not been resolved.
It is felt that the specification was clear and adequate. Therefore, the
Government may initiate default proceedings for non-performance. All
requirements and provisions of Clause 5 of the General Provisions should be
CASE CC9 - Failure of the Outlooker-Handrail System, M. Yachnis
Failure of the Outlooker-Handrail System, on BEQ at Henderson Hall
Cracks in concrete in the area of the anchoring studs.
Collection of Facts:  At 2:OO p.m. on August 24, 1981, the connections between
the balcony cantilever beams - outlookers - and the concrete handrails failed
catastrophically causing the third floor handrails on the outside balcony of
the south building (Fig. 20) to fall on the handrails of the second floor
which in turn fell on the ground.  Ten of the outlookers totally failed and
fifteen others suffered damage of various magnitude.
An engineering investigation, which included destructive and
non-destructive testing, was performed.


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