Engineers and Geoscientists BC issued a Notice of Inquiry alleging that Mr. Tscheppe demonstrated unprofessional conduct in relation to engineering services he provided for excavation work at a residential property in Kamloops. Instead of proceeding to a disciplinary inquiry, Mr. Tscheppe agreed to a Consent Order, in which his membership is cancelled effective October 15, 2019, and which requires that he pay $5,000 toward the association’s legal and investigative costs.
Engineers and Geoscientists BC issued a Notice of Inquiry to Gerhard Tscheppe, P.Eng., in April 2019, regarding his conduct related to engineering services he provided for an excavation at a residential property in Kamloops, BC. Instead of proceeding to a disciplinary inquiry, Mr. Tscheppe agreed to a Consent Order, dated September 4, 2019.
In the Consent Order, Mr. Tscheppe admitted that he demonstrated unprofessional conduct and that his conduct was contrary to Principle 1 of the Code of Ethics, which requires all members and licensees “hold paramount the safety, health and welfare of the public, the protection of the environment, and to promote health and safety in the workplace”.
Mr. Tscheppe agreed that he demonstrated unprofessional conduct and violated Principle 1 of the Code of Ethics when he signed and sealed two site instructions required under the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, (B.C. Reg. 143/2017). Mr. Tscheppe agreed the site instructions, dated May 18 and 28, 2017, were inadequate because they:
- failed to include drawings, sketches, plans, or sections and/or clearly written descriptions and instructions with respect to the embankments and the concrete lock blocks on the perimeter of the embankments;
- failed to adequately describe the geology and soil conditions of the embankments;
- failed to include the instructions and/or conditions to be followed by workers in proximity to the excavation;
- failed to explain the consequences of a failure of the embankments or the concrete lock blocks on the perimeter of the embankments; and
- failed to provide an adequate description of the influence of changing weather conditions and an adequate description of the precautions that should be taken as a result of weather conditions.
In addition to these inadequacies, the site instructions dated May 18, 2017 also failed to:
- identify any limitations for machinery or equipment being used adjacent to the excavation; and
- set out the time period for which the site instructions applied.
Mr. Tscheppe agreed that he also demonstrated unprofessional conduct and violated Principle 1 of the association’s Code of Ethics when he failed to adequately investigate and assess the stability of the embankments of the excavation and the concrete lock blocks on the perimeter of the excavation. He also agreed that he failed to perform or directly supervise calculations in relation to the stability of the embankments of the excavation and concrete lock blocks on the perimeter of the excavation.
As part of the Consent Order, Mr. Tscheppe agreed to the following provisions.
- His membership in Engineers and Geoscientists BC is cancelled, effective October 15, 2019.
- From September 4, 2019 to October 15, 2019, he will make reasonable arrangements for the orderly transfer of his professional engineering project files to other professional engineers and will limit his practice to projects he is currently engaged on, and not take on any new project files or other engineering work.
- He will pay $5,000 toward the association’s legal and investigative costs.
- If he fails to comply with any of the terms of the Consent Order prior to the cancellation of his membership, then his membership will be suspended until every default has been remedied in accordance with the terms of the Consent Order.
The full text of the Consent Order can be found in the Disciplinary Notices section of our website, at egbc.ca/Discipline-Notices.
Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s website contains information on the complaint, investigation, and discipline processes. You can contact us at 604.558.6647 or toll-free at 1.888.430.8035 ext. 6647, or by email at [email protected].