The Good, The Bad & The UGLY - A Construction Defect Case Study


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The Good, The Bad & The UGLY - A Construction Defect Case Study

  1. 1. The Good, The Bad & The UGLY One Long, Dark Adventure in Construction Defect Litigation Presentation © S M Sanders
  2. 2. Uncovering Defective Conditions Discovery & Forensic Investigation The Ugly
  3. 3. Per testimony, Contractor drove over hubs, disturbed stakes, and then failed to resurvey prior to drilling piles.
  4. 4. Negligence: Contractor disturbed old surveyor hubs during construction and failed to timely or adequately resurvey building site in advance of pile drilling.
  5. 5. Negligence: Piles drilled and poured in wrong locations and out of plumb, compounding congestion problems that transferred up into building columns & walls
  6. 6. Gymnasium floor slab poured & finished out of specification tolerances by Contractor.
  7. 7. Contractor waterproofing failed in subterranean basement. BEFORE AFTER
  8. 8. Significant Contractor welding defects in structural steel, missed by original Welder, Inspector & Ultrasound Testing
  9. 9. Contractor Concealment The Bad
  10. 10. Culpability: Key Contractor Progress Photos produced during Litigation.
  11. 11. Contractor Progress Photos Depict Concealed Voids located by Contractor, hidden behind an Insulated Concrete Form Product
  12. 12. Contractor sack & patch in same location later discovered and examined during forensic Investigation
  13. 13. Contractor botched their secret repair undertaken without notice to Owner, Engineer or City Inspector
  14. 14. After discovering the true extent of their own defective work, the Prime and its Subcontractors failed to immediately stop work and notify the Owner, the Engineer of Record and the City as to their knowledge of various concealed job problems.
  15. 15. Forensic Analysis showed the Contractor had an isolated $150,000 problem and, by keeping a lid on it, turned it into a $2.5 Million disaster (inc. hard & soft repair costs, exclusive of 5 years of litigation costs, etc.), as their negligent methodology was then replicated again and again in pours throughout their after-progress on concrete construction.
  16. 16. Voids were found to be replete throughout the 3 Story, 22,000 sq. ft., structure designated A2.1 Public, with a max. 800 Person Occupancy, located in a Zone 4 Earthquake District.
  17. 17. Revealed Problem: Dozens of areas of significant daylight seen thru 8” PIP Walls
  18. 18. Revealed Problem: Poor Consolidation & Significant Structural Rock Pockets in virtually every PIP wall
  19. 19. Revealed Problem: Non-Engineered Vertical & Horizontal Cold Joints
  20. 20. Forensic Plan vs. As-Built & Progress Document analysis showed that Prime & Subcontractors knowingly encountered obvious, patent plan inconsistencies in the building dimensions, and failed to generate RFIs, choosing instead to proceed in error.
  21. 21. As-built dimensional bust -- Contractor mislocated piles/columns in relation to walls when laying out steel & pours, setting Columns 1” to 3” too far south.
  22. 22. Finding a Solution Maintaining Public Safety But Still Mitigating Client Costs The Good
  23. 23. Project Forensic Construction Superintendent commissioned an internal/external construction control survey & layout of the as-built construction
  24. 24. An elevation survey of the Gym Floor was commissioned to develop a remediation plan.
  25. 25. Ground Penetrating Radar & other methods were used in an attempt to locate hidden voids beneath the concrete surface.
  26. 26. Core testing utilized at selected locations
  27. 27. Attorney & Consultant Designed Forensic Mock Ups – Mimicking As-Built Placement Conditions and Misplaced Vertical Reinforcement
  28. 28. Forensic mock ups duplicated bad horizontal steel placement, other congestive conditions
  29. 29. Remediation Consultant-Designed Completion Mock Ups – Testing Various Mix Designs & Staging Times for Delivery, Placement & Vibration
  30. 30. Forensic Mock-ups show a sound mix & placement methodology could have been utilized by Contractor in this application, supporting the continued use of the ICF product.
  31. 31. Eng. & City Approves Phased Repair Plans
  32. 32. The Fix Engineered, Selective Demolition & Repair, WITHOUT a costly complete tear down & replacement
  33. 33. 8” Shotcrete On Basement Retaining Walls
  34. 34. Localized Demolition around Voids
  35. 35. Chase Down Rock Pockets & Cold Joints
  36. 36. Engineered Sack & Patch where possible
  37. 37. Total demolition & re-pour of Engineer Selected/City Approved Sections
  38. 38. Leveling Pour Above Repaired Walls
  39. 39. Choice made to continue the use of the ICF System with a proprietary Tall Wall Scaffolding after determining failures were contractor error.
  40. 40. Installation of defect-corrected structural steel on plumb-corrected walls & columns
  41. 41. Construction of a curtain wall to cover original contractor pile/column vs. wall dimension bust to the south, and other out-of-plumb conditions.
  42. 42. Tricky siding installation on as-built out-of- plumb but repaired walls
  43. 43. Gymnasium slab floor repaired & and hardwood installed
  44. 44. Completion & Occupancy
  45. 45. Litigation <ul><li>A </li></ul><ul><li>WAR OF ATTRITION </li></ul><ul><li>For </li></ul><ul><li>Five Years </li></ul><ul><li>Before </li></ul><ul><li>Reaching a Settlement </li></ul>