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Wed Mar 27, 2013, 12:57 AM

30 of 288 giant bolts on new SF Bay Bridge have snapped, even before opening

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

At least 30 of the giant bolts that hold together the new, $6.4 billion eastern span of the Bay Bridge have snapped.

As a result, Caltrans is considering replacing all 288 of the bolts on the new bridge before it opens, The Chronicle has learned.

Caltrans insists the new span is safe and that plans to open it the day after Labor Day are still on track.

... Unlike the Chinese-built deck sections, the bolts - some as long 17 feet - were produced in the United States.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Bay-Bridge-inspections-busted-bolts-4386943.php

33 replies, 3099 views

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Reply 30 of 288 giant bolts on new SF Bay Bridge have snapped, even before opening (Original post)
Newsjock Mar 2013 OP
Hekate Mar 2013 #1
RedCappedBandit Mar 2013 #4
Hekate Mar 2013 #5
Riftaxe Mar 2013 #6
amandabeech Mar 2013 #24
burrowowl Mar 2013 #2
Gregorian Mar 2013 #3
liberal_at_heart Mar 2013 #8
rhett o rick Mar 2013 #17
lumberjack_jeff Mar 2013 #19
AnotherDreamWeaver Mar 2013 #7
NYC_SKP Mar 2013 #9
Yo_Mama Mar 2013 #10
Spitfire of ATJ Mar 2013 #11
Duppers Mar 2013 #12
leveymg Mar 2013 #13
green for victory Mar 2013 #16
JVS Mar 2013 #20
amandabeech Mar 2013 #25
BlueStreak Mar 2013 #30
NBachers Mar 2013 #14
BVictor1 Mar 2013 #15
BlueStreak Mar 2013 #32
rhett o rick Mar 2013 #18
Thav Mar 2013 #21
Hell Hath No Fury Mar 2013 #22
OldDem2012 Mar 2013 #23
Hell Hath No Fury Mar 2013 #29
gcomeau Mar 2013 #26
Bennyboy Mar 2013 #27
formercia Mar 2013 #28
Sirveri Mar 2013 #33
Taverner Mar 2013 #31

Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:01 AM

1. Chinese bolts made with pot metal and no QC

When is the US going to effing learn?

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Response to Hekate (Reply #1)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:08 AM

4. Oddly enough, the bolts were US made

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Response to RedCappedBandit (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:16 AM

5. That'll larn me to read the link, won't it

I was flashing on an older story, couple of years back, about Chinese-made fasteners of distinctly inferior quality being used in US construction. In things like bridges and earthquake-retrofitted buildings that could be quite the problem.

There have been several other instances of bad problems in unexpected places with Chinese-made materials for building.

So I leaped to an erroneous conclusion. Apologies.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #5)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:34 AM

6. Safe to assume they have 'larned'

not to use US products then?

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Response to Hekate (Reply #5)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:19 PM

24. There have been lots of problems with Chinese-made sheet rock being

contaminated with formaldehyde, I believe.

All had to be removed and replaced due to the fumes.

It's a shame that US made products failed, too.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:05 AM

2. Not Good!

Not good at all!

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:08 AM

3. Wow. Interesting. As an engineer, I sometimes like to hear about problems.

I just finished my own steel mezzanine and curved steel staircase, and was pretty humiliated by the dumb assumptions and lack of proper assumptions that I made on it. Then an engineering friend told me about the issues they have where he works, and I felt a lot better.

I'm really surprised to see hydrogen embrittlement in a modern project like this. I thought that was pretty basic stuff to avoid.

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Response to Gregorian (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:40 AM

8. do some research on the new 520 floating bridge in Seattle. Crappy construction being done.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #8)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 09:18 AM

17. I think the blame there was on crapy specifications. nm

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #17)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 10:05 AM

19. ... And poor design.

The people building it are blameless.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:39 AM

7. The story doesn't say who made the bolts.... "Cover up"? nt

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:00 AM

9. The concrete deck sections were made in Stockton, California, and sent to site on barges.

Other parts were made in China, true.

I had shitty sourced and inaccurate articles.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:04 AM

10. Not good! n/t

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:17 AM

11. Wonder if the bolts are the type used in Iraq.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:43 AM

12. NASA developed NDE for all kinds of bolts

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:51 AM

13. Boeing can't build safe airplanes, and Americans can't build bridges. Another bolt in the coffin.

Have we just ceased knowing how to make things that work?

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Response to leveymg (Reply #13)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 03:14 AM

16. uh...no

 



another drone on the way! coffins are for those that disagree, drones are our new BFF's

Learn to love it!

"Everything that isn't mandatory is now prohibited "

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Response to green for victory (Reply #16)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 10:24 AM

20. Drones are not exactly high tech.

The high tech part about it is the computerized remote control, avionics, and camera communications that allow it to be operated remotely from a great distance.

On the materials and design end, it's very much 1950s-1960s level technology.

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Response to leveymg (Reply #13)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:22 PM

25. Boeings problem is that it assembled the plane in Seattle after contracting

and allowing subcontracting of parts in every country where it hoped to sell the plane.

Many were substandard and many just didn't fit right.

Only some of the parts were made here.

The last I read, Boeing was going to bring a lot back in-house or to contracts that have proven records with Boeing.

The design, however, is Boeings, and the design appears to be a problem.

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Response to amandabeech (Reply #25)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:52 PM

30. The grounding had nothing to do with suppliers. This is 100% on Boeing

They specified batteries using a chemistry the entire automotive endustry long ago rejected because it was inherently unsafe. Tell me what kind of an aircraft engineer and what kind of an aircraft company chooses batteries that are not even safe to be in ground-based vehicles?

Damned idiots.

The whole thing was so unnecessary. There were better battery choices available with very little compromise. At worst, you're talking about reducing the maximum range of the Dreamliner by 5 wiles or something. And for that, they are willing to risk the lives of 300 people burning to death at 40,000 feet? Although to be fair, the plane won't stay at 40,000 feet too long when it is on fire.

And their "fix" retains these same batteries, and just tries to put a fire wrapper around it.

Damned idiots.

I'll never get on one of those planes.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 03:03 AM

14. And what else . . .

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 03:04 AM

15. Sounds like the steel used to build the Titanic.

 

Um, yeah...

Wouldn't want to be on it in an earthquake.

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Response to BVictor1 (Reply #15)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:56 PM

32. Hydrogen contamination is a problem that has been around a long time

This is not a new, exotic, high-tech problem.

Goodrich had similar problems (on a much smaller scale) in the 1960s with aircraft brake systems. And I am sure there are thousands of similar examples. Making high quality steel is a lot harder than melting down some iron and pouring it out into a mold.

But it sure seems like in today's days of austerity and deregulation, we have forgotten a lot of important lessons.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 09:19 AM

18. It shouldnt matter where they were made if the specifications and quality control were thorough.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #18)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 10:32 AM

21. Where's the profit in that?

Following spec and QC is EXPENSIVE!

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 12:01 PM

22. As someone who will be driving on that bridge --

this does not instill confidence in me. There were already accusations of welding issues a few years ago. And there's the Chinese built deck sections -- I've seen a few too many pictures of collapsed Chinese infrastructure and heard too many stories about bad materials.

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Response to Hell Hath No Fury (Reply #22)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 12:17 PM

23. The US infrastructure has been falling apart for quite some time...

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #23)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:49 PM

29. That is old infastructure that needs repair/replacement --

This is a brand new bridge that is supposed to last us for the next 100 years and survive a major quake. A little different. With that said, we need MAJOR investments across our country to fix/rebuild/replace the failures waiting to happen.

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Response to Hell Hath No Fury (Reply #22)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:37 PM

26. Ummm... don't follow this link.

http://t4america.org/resources/bridges/

It won't do wonders for your peace of mind.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:47 PM

27. Inspections, another case made for "Big Governement".....

 

That's twice, on this project that inspections found things wrong with the bridge.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:48 PM

28. Think how much Money they saved....

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Response to formercia (Reply #28)

Thu Mar 28, 2013, 04:08 AM

33. All so we can employ the Chinese to build it!

What a great use of our tax dollars!

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:54 PM

31. Aw shit...

 

It's times like these that I regret supporting Willie Brown

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