Advisory Clarifies Independent Reviews for Retaining Walls

Posted on June 7, 2018

Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia has issued an advisory to members and licensees, reminding them that engineering professionals must subject retaining walls to an independent review.

All engineering and geoscience professionals must meet the intent of the quality management guidelines, relevant to their field of practice, published by Engineers and Geoscientists BC. Member Advisory 2018-03 - Independent Reviews of Retaining Walls, points out that the association’s Quality Management Guidelines – Documented Independent Review of Structural Designs states that “Engineering Professionals carrying out structural design must meet the requirement of Bylaw 14(b)(4) by having Independent Reviews of any structural designs they prepare carried out by another qualified Engineering Professional, before the documents are issued for construction”.  

The advisory notes that audits conducted under the Organizational Quality Management (OQM) Program identified a “common misconception” that independent reviews of structural design did not apply to retaining walls.

The advisory says that independently supported structures, such as retaining walls, large signage, and support towers, must undergo an independent review of structural design.

The association is developing a practice guideline specifically for retaining walls, scheduled for release in late 2018, which will provide further guidance regarding independent review of retaining walls. Until then, members should refer to Quality Management Guidelines – Documented Independent Review of Structural Designs for guidance on how to meet the intent of carrying out independent reviews on retaining walls.

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