On January 27, 2020, Engineers and Geoscientists BC issued a Notice of Inquiry alleging that Mr. Petrovich demonstrated unprofessional conduct, incompetence, or negligence in relation to engineering services he provided with respect to the design and installation of screw piles for new deck piles at a residential property. Instead of proceeding to a disciplinary inquiry, Mr. Petrovich agreed to a Consent Order, in which his membership is suspended for three months, beginning April 17, 2020. After Mr. Petrovich’s membership is reinstated, he must, within 6 months, undergo a Practice Review conducted by Engineers and Geoscientists BC. Mr. Petrovich must also complete and pass the Professional Practice Examination by October 6, 2020. He must also pay $2,000 towards the association’s legal and investigation costs.
Engineers and Geoscientists BC issued a Notice of Inquiry to Stephen Petrovich, P.Eng., in January 2020, regarding his conduct related to engineering services he provided with respect to the design and installation of screw piles (the Piles) for new deck piles at a residential property in Edgewater, BC (the Property). Instead of proceeding to a disciplinary inquiry, Mr. Petrovich agreed to a Consent Order, dated April 6, 2020.
In the Consent Order, Mr. Petrovich admitted he demonstrated incompetence, negligence, or unprofessional conduct. He also agreed that his conduct was contrary to Principle 1 of Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s Code of Ethics and Bylaw 14(b), by failing to design the Piles to the reasonable standard expected of a professional engineer. Mr. Petrovich admitted that he did so by failing to:
- adequately or at all assess on-site soil conditions at the Property;
- obtain sufficient information about the Property to conduct a proper analysis of factors that might have, and did, affect the Piles;
- sufficiently document the design for the Piles;
- provide the qualification for the design to the installer; and
- provide a design drawing to the installer.
Three additional conduct items were outlined in the Consent Order.
First, Mr. Petrovich signed and affixed his seal to a letter, dated April 14, 2016, regarding “Screw Pile Inspection/Compliance” for the Property. The letter states that “a detailed inspection was completed by a Professional Civil Engineer for the screw pile installed at [the Property]” on April 7, 2016, when he knew neither he nor a professional civil engineer under his supervision had conducted a site visit to inspect the Piles on that day, or at all. He knew, or ought to have known, that the wording of the letter was misleading. Mr. Petrovich admitted that his conduct relating to this letter was contrary to s. 20(9) of the Engineers and Geoscientists Act, Bylaw 14(b), and Principle 1 and Principle 3 of the Code of Ethics.
Second, Mr. Petrovich failed to conduct a site visit at the Property in a reasonable amount of time after the owner of the Property made him aware of issues associated with the Piles on or around June 2017. Mr. Petrovich admitted that his conduct relating to this was contrary to Principle 7 of the Code of Ethics.
Third, Mr. Petrovich failed to make field review notes when making a site visit on or around December 26, 2017. He admitted his conduct in relation to this was contrary to Bylaw 14(b).
As part of the Consent Order, Mr. Petrovich agreed that his membership will be suspended for 3 months, beginning April 17, 2020, and that from April 6 to April 17, 2020, he will arrange for the transfer of his ongoing project files to other professional engineers. He also agreed that, during this period, he will limit his practice to those project files on which he was engaged, and not accept any new projects or engineering work. Further, Mr. Petrovich agreed that he will complete the Professional Practice Examination by October 6, 2020, and a Practice Review within six months of resuming practice following the suspension. Mr. Petrovich is required to bear the cost of the Practice Review, and pay $2,000 towards Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s legal and investigation costs.
The full text of the Consent Order can be found in the Disciplinary Notices section of our website, at egbc.ca/Complaints-Discipline/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].