Blog - The Stress Point

Insights from EDT experts, so you're equipped to tackle the next engineering challenge.

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Hydroelectric Dams

A while back, I was lucky enough to drive the full length of the Columbia River Gorge on a crisp spring morning. For those of you not familiar with this iconic geographical area, it is beyond bucket list worthy. Cut into the Cascade Mountains by the Columbia River and located just east of Portland...

Residential Renovation: Design & Construction Defects

portrait photo of Jeffrey

Jeffrey W. Pitzer, P.E.

EDT was assigned to determine the cause of damages to a single-story residence. The residence, constructed in the 1950’s, was renovated in 2015. The work consisted of a complete teardown of the structure and cladding. The replacement structure was constructed on the existing timber floor beams and...

Gas Turbines - A Brief History Lesson

What is a gas turbine? Let's first look at an engine that most of us know well; the gas engine in your car. In a gasoline reciprocating engine, the piston compresses the air fuel mixture, the mixture is ignited and the expanding gases push the piston inside the cylinder, the exhaust is purged from...

Roof Collapse

portrait photo of Charles

Charles E. Whitley, P.E.

In a perfect world of consulting engineering, every investigation would result in a single, concise cause of damage to the product, structure, or system under investigation. In the real world, this rarely happens.

Barge Foundering

Most of the time, damages to marine vessels and structures are straight forward: there’s a collision, allision, or sinking due to mechanical failure, procedural failure, negligence, or an unfortunate concurrence of events. The involved vessels/structures are damaged, the damages are tallied up, and...

Static Ignition of Gasoline

portrait photo of Richard

Richard T. Edwards, P.E.

EDT was called to investigate a case where a victim was burned at a gas station due to static ignition of gasoline. Based on the measurements and the unique circumstances, we found that the victim created a static charge when he left the nozzle still pumping gas to return to his driver seat...

Furnace Safety Devices

Earlier this year, I was called to investigate a fire in an attic of a single story home. The fire damage was minimal, mostly related to smoke. The residence was occupied at the time of the fire, and the occupants turned the furnace electrical breaker off when they observed smoke coming out of the...

How Old is Old?

When working on scope of damage/value of loss files, I am frequently asked how long should electrical equipment last? In this case, I was tasked with a fire origin and cause in a lumber yard. Upon first look, it was obvious that this was not actually a fire - it was something else...

The Third Option

EDT was asked to review a proposal to replace a fire alarm system in a large multi-story hotel. The existing fire alarm panel had been damaged when a worker made a wiring error while connecting a new HVAC component to the fire alarm system.