Design of N.Y. sewage plant's collapsed wall was not code-compliant

Inadequate length of rebar lap splices likely contributed to the collapse of a 100-foot section of a concrete wall at the Binghamton-Johnson City Joint Sewage Plant in New York. ACI's code requirement calls for 104-inch rebar splices, but only 81-inch splices were specified for the wall in question, and engineers found them to be only 64 inches long during a May inspection. "[T]he cause and origin of the collapse appears to be a combination of a design that did not comply to code and modifications made during construction of the facility that further reduced the strength of the wall," noted Edgar Eslinger, the structural engineer who wrote the report.

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