• Defining Foundation or Structural Failure July 1, 2016 | Republished, Kirby T. Meyer, P.E.

    When has a foundation or any other structural unit failed?  There are three categories in which a structure could be placed with regard to structural performance: I. Obvious failure: a.  Collapse b.  Major distress and distortion c.  Functionality ...

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  • Testing Laboratory Problems April 1, 2016 | Kirby T. Meyer, P.E., Republished

    Testing laboratories are very useful entities and can provide valuable quality control testing of construction materials or construction procedures.  However, some misconceptions need to be cleared up about the proper role and capabilities of testing laboratories. The most common ...

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  • Settlement, Heave & Creep: Types of Foundation Movement January 1, 2016 | Kirby T. Meyer, P.E., Republished

    The general types of movement which can contribute to foundation distress and building damage are settlement, heave and creep.  Another type of phenomena is shear failure of a footing.  Shear failure is unusual in residential or light commercial structures because of light ...

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  • Trees & Slabs October 1, 2015 | Kirby T. Meyer, P.E., Republished

    Trees are common fixtures around the constructed environment and greatly enhance the livability and value of homes, offices, shopping centers, and other facilities used by man.  If you have a shallow soil supported foundation or pavement supported on a high plasticity clay, trees can ...

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  • Expansive Clay & Foundations July 1, 2015 | Kirby T. Meyer, P.E., Republished

    This subject has received attention from many sources for many years, but nevertheless remains a hot topic with regard to design and construction of lightly loaded, shallow foundations in Texas.  The prime design problem for these foundations is swelling or expansive clays.  A ...

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  • Excavation Safety April 1, 2015 | Republished, Kirby T. Meyer, P.E.

    Excavations are common on construction sites in the form of pits, trenches and cuts adjacent to hillsides. Excavations are necessary for construction but can be dangerous. Stiff to hard clays seem very strong and will stand temporarily on vertical cuts for great depths. Clays are, however, ...

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