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Surname 1
Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
Course
Date
Causes of Foundation Failures
Construction failures are the undesira...
Surname 2
of foundation soils must be stabilized to avert any foundation disasters such as the collapse of the
Highland To...
Surname 3
Another project started in 1991 on the hill near the towers and it led to the clearing of all land-
covering pla...
Surname 4
Works Cited
Chen, Fan. Foundations on Expansive Soils. Amsterdam: Elsevier Scientific Pub. Co, 1975.
Internet re...
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Civil Engineering-Revision

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Civil Engineering-Revision

  1. 1. Surname 1 Student’s Name Professor’s Name Course Date Causes of Foundation Failures Construction failures are the undesirable differences between observed and expected performance. Therefore, construction failures occur to properties or infrastructures at the time of construction. Similarly, construction failures include the assets that have collapsed after the construction of a building, especially before the end of its design life (Chen 160). In most instances, soil types at the construction sites are responsible for foundation problems; hence, engineers must understand the various soil formations or soil types to address such complexities. Research indicates that shrink-wells or expansive soils are widely associated with various foundation problems across the world. Depending on the moisture content in the ground, expansive soils always experience vicissitudes in the volume of more than 30 percent (Chen 174). Furthermore, foundation soils with shrink-well or expansive characteristics will heave and cause the lifting of structures or buildings during times of high moisture. Equally, when the soil moisture deteriorates, expansive soils may lead to structural settlement. Whichever way, the damage caused by expansive soils is always extensive (Chen 167). Furthermore, expansive soils can exert pressure on a foundation’s vertical face, thereby causing lateral movements. According to Chen, shrink-well soils can expand because of high moisture in the ground, which cause the soil to lose its capacity or strength. When the soil loses its strength, it can cause different forms of slope failures as well as foundation problems (Chen 189). Subsequently, the moisture content
  2. 2. Surname 2 of foundation soils must be stabilized to avert any foundation disasters such as the collapse of the Highland Towers in Malaysia. The Collapse of the Highland Towers in Malaysia The Highland Towers collapsed on December 11, 1993, in Selangor, Taman Hill view, Malaysia (Gutenberg par. 1). Specifically, only the first block of the buildings collapsed, leading to the death of more than 48 people. Due to the accident, individuals residing in the other two blocks of the building were evacuated to ensure their safety. Research suggests that the building collapsed as a result of elevated water content in its surrounding soils (Gutenberg par. 2). The soil became viscous and eventually became muddy because of the saturated water. In addition to the muddy soils, a landslide of approximately 100 square meters smashed into the building’s foundation (Gutenberg par. 3). Subsequently, the water exerted constant pressure on the building’s foundations and weakened it. The collapse twelve stories building Cause of the Collapse The towers were widely built near a creek that flowed across the construction site. Later, the creek was diverted using different pipes to bypass the location where the towers were situated.
  3. 3. Surname 3 Another project started in 1991 on the hill near the towers and it led to the clearing of all land- covering plants and trees, thereby exposing the soil to erosion (Gutenberg par. 8). Moreover, the contractors built retaining walls to hold the soil, but the soil was too exposed and saturated. When it rained heavily, the soil could not hold the foundation; therefore, the twelve stories collapsed (Gutenberg par. 11). My Thoughts Building collapse as a consequence of poor foundation has resulted in numerous deaths across the world. However, engineers can minimize foundation failures by learning from past mistakes to enable them build stronger buildings. Additionally, engineers need to conduct soil tests to establish the particular soil types that can withstand earthquakes and landslides as well as the ones that cannot. Additionally, the number of floors in a building should be determined based on the soil type. Conclusion In sum, foundation failures are common in various regions across the globe. Some of the factors that cause foundation failures include poor maintenance, bomb explosion, and failure to adhere to construction guidelines. However, foundations should be solid to withstand the day-to-day forces of nature. In most instances, expansive soils must always be analyzed whenever there are substantial foundational movements. Besides, it is significant for engineers to realize that variations in the moisture contents in foundation soils can lead to structural challenges.
  4. 4. Surname 4 Works Cited Chen, Fan. Foundations on Expansive Soils. Amsterdam: Elsevier Scientific Pub. Co, 1975. Internet resource. Gutenberg. Highland Towers Collapse. Web. Sept 1, 2015. http://self.gutenberg.org/articles/highland_towers_collapse

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