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Put an end to the Eurocode fiasco

LETTERS

It can be no surprise that 'switching to structural Eurocodes will cost design consultancies millions. . .'

(NCE 22 July). What is surprising is that engineers expect the public to pay '. . . the government must invest at least £10M. . .' (NCE 29 July).

BS 449 was introduced in 1932 and CP114 (under another name) in 1934. Over the next 60 years or so, hundreds of thousands of adequate structures, based on these codes, were built not only in the UK but throughout the British influenced world.

In 1972 CP110 was introduced. The man from the Cement & Concrete Association explained that the new code would produce the same design as if CP114 had been used, more or less.

So what's the point? some wag asked. He was quickly put in his place - it's a whole new philosophy - the limit state philosophy.

In 1987 members of the Institution of Structural Engineers were asked 'Should permissible stress codes such as CP114 and BS449 be updated and made available for design purposes. . .'? Of those who replied, 78% said yes - the wrong answer apparently.

As the present government can axe all tram schemes at the stroke of a pen, perhaps it can also end the Eurocode fiasco in a similarly dramatic manner.

Malcolm Millais (M), malcolm. millais@clix. pt

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