Harry J. Dales – Civil Engineer
Looking for a civil engineering expert? Make sure the engineer you engage has the background and experience that you need.
Civil engineers design, build, and supervise infrastructure projects and systems. Civil engineering is likely the oldest engineering discipline dealing with the built environment. These engineers are trained to solve the design, construction, and maintenance concerns of the natural and physically built environment. The work of a civil engineer includes highways, railroads, bridges, buildings, and water and energy systems. Civil engineers are also involved in site development and stormwater drainage, as well as the soils and geology supporting the constructed product. Additionally, they plan and oversee the construction of facilities as construction managers. Some engineers dedicate their background to one specific area, while others develop a broader background with involvement in multiple areas of civil engineering. The civil engineer’s experience provides them with the knowledge and skills to analyze cases within the built environment.
Constructing a building is an extensive job that often involves hundreds of people, both on-site and off-site. The civil engineer plans and designs a project and also oversees the construction. After construction is completed, the engineer is involved in maintenance programs. It is the civil engineers’ job to determine solutions to the challenges of a transforming and growing built environment that is subject to changing code requirements. Whether it is a design, construction, or maintenance program, the civil engineer addresses safety. The likelihood of accidents, both minor and major, is quite high at construction sites. Therefore, the engineer is involved in the application of OSHA safety requirements. The built environment is used by industries and the public, which are locations where accidents often occur. Therefore, the American Society for Civil Engineers Code of Ethics requires that civil engineers use “their knowledge and skill for the enhancement of human welfare and the environment… Engineers shall hold paramount the safety, health and welfare of the Public.”
Therefore, when engaging a civil engineer to investigate a failure or injury, you should look at the specific experience derived from their design, construction, and maintenance background. Your go-to expert may be a good choice. Then again, perhaps for the case at hand, another expert would be better, even if they are both civil engineers.
Finally, do not overlook the capabilities of the firm. Often an investigation starts out as a civil engineering issue. However, during discovery a move may be necessary to address a biomechanical consideration as to the cause of or mechanism of an injury. Working with a firm providing a broad array of expertise results in an easy and less costly transition rather than engaging a new expert and firm and starting over. So, when it comes to civil engineers, we all have similar education. However, the application of our education can be in varied fields of civil engineering and may be broad or rather focused on specific construction or materials of construction.
Choose wisely or you may end up leaving a lot on the table and never knowing what was overlooked.
Contact us to see if we have the right Civil Engineer for your matter.