Standards and Codes

Updated ASTM Standards and Work Items

ASTM has released some updated standards. From here on out, I will post a list of some of the ones that are related to our fields. Sometimes their relativity may be a stretch, but I’ll let you folks decide. This time around one that caught my eye was D4719 – Standard Test Method for Prebored Pressuremeter Testing in Soils. Read on for links and a full list.

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Geologic Hazards

New Madrid Fault Zone Controversey

Geologists and seismologists have long studied the New Madrid Seismic Zone after three magnitude 8 earthquakes struck the area in the Winter of 1811-1812. However a forthcoming report by Seth Stein and published by the American Geological Society contends the hazard has been overstated. His colleagues at the USGS and the University of Memphis disagree.

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Regional

Sheet Piling Controversy in New Orleans

An article by the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports that some of the sheet piles used in the levee along the 17th Street Canal are only 4.5-ft below sea level. The US Army Corps of Engineers say they have done "the most extensive technical analysis ever performed" on the drainage canal, but at least one person is not finding comfort in that claim. (Photo by pixelshutter20)

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Project Related

Soil Instability Puts $150 M U.S. 20 Project in Jeopardy

[Update 5/11/07] The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has fined ODOT $90,000 for violating their stormwater discharge permit at least 37 times between September and January. ODOT is going to try to get the contractor to pay at least part of the fine. [/Update]

The $150 million Oregon Department of Transportation project, U.S. 20: Pioneer Mountain to Eddyville project is in jeopardy after three landslides (one major and two minor) have been discovered during the construction process. Yaquina River Constructors (YRC), a joint venture of Granite Construction Inc. and Wilder Construction has formally requested "that further work on the project cease under a Termination for Convenience. At a minimum the project should be suspended." Read on for more information. (Photo by decoder420)

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Regional

Water Resources in the West

The NY Times has a very interesting article on some of the water resource issues in the Western US. The west has been experiencing drought conditions since 1999, and rising global temperatures will adversely effect watter supply as well. Another recent article published by the North County Times discusses the issues faced in the State of California. (Photo by sbisson.)

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Miscellaneous

Earthquake Kills Coral Reef in Indonesia

Update: Satellite images available for the area. A strong earthquake that struck Indonesia’s Sumatra island two years ago caused one of the biggest coral die-offs ever documented, a study by scientists from two conservation groups […]

Geologic Hazards

Telegraph Hill landslide

On February 27, 2007 a 75-ft wide section of greywacke sandstone failed on the south end of Telegraph Hill, in the very pricey North Beach district of San Francisco. No one was injured, but as many as 120 people were displaced from their homes as city building inspectors red-tagged 7 building effected by the slide.

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