After another routine inspection, chord A9L was placed under observation when its initial deflection of 19 mm (��) had increased to 57 mm (2 ��) in less than two weeks. The stress calculations were based on the 487.7 m (1,600 ft) span dimension. When the workers tried to rivet the joints between these chords, the pre-drilled holes did not line up. The Phoenix Bridge Company offered to prepare plans for the bridge free of charge. The St. Lawrence River was the main channel of trade for Quebec during the summer. Table 3. This also provided the financial support for the project. Several ethical concerns can be pointed out in this case. In the few occasions where some decision had been reached, there was hesitation in carrying it out. Although at the time the repair was thought to be satisfactory, this member was later found to be the triggering cause of the collapse. The Quebec Bridge was an enormous structure, and very little was known as to how it would behave mechanically. The collapse was initiated by the buckling failure of Chord A9L, on the anchor arm near the pier, immediately followed by Chord A9R. They were then reviewed by Mr. Cooper. This common practice made the fabrication of these members easier. First Collapse in 1907: The collapse of the Quebec Bridge resulted from the failure of the lower chords in the anchor arm near the main pier. Episode 18 - Quebec Bridge Collapse. and Theodore Cooper, the most reputed engineer of that time became the main consulting Again, these were reported to Cooper on the same day that they were discovered. The authors of the Royal Commission Report wrote, �It was clear that on that day the greatest bridge in the world was being built without there being a single man within reach who by experience, knowledge and ability was competent to deal with the crisis� (Holgate et al., 1908). The Phoenix Company had been in correspondence with Cooper throughout this process (Holgate et al., 1908). At around 3:00 p.m. Phoenixville�s chief engineer returned to his office. Cooper had required extensive tests on the eyebars. Then, on September 11 th, 1916, the time came to raise the central span that had been constructed in Sillery Cove, which was intended to join the two cantilever arms and finish the building of the bridge. Over 100,000 people gathered in Quebec City to celebrate the big day. Royal Commission Quebec Bridge Inquiry Report. Great care had to be taken while working around these joints until they were riveted (pp. Cooper�s stresses are higher than those in use today by 3.3 to 8.7 % over a range of slenderness ratios from 10 to 100. In 1903, the bond issue was increased to $6,000,000 and power to grant preference shares was authorised, along with a n… In the late 19th century, the transportation needs of Quebec led to proposals for bridging the St. Lawrence River. Although there were sound engineering reasons for this change, it was also true that the lengthening of the span would also make Cooper the Chief Engineer for the longest cantilever bridge in the world (Petroski, 1995, p. 46, Middleton, 2001). Regardless, the Phoenix Bridge Company designed the first Pont de Québec, and it turns out they did a very poor job of it. It was assumed that the final authority rested with Theodore Cooper. Schneider wrote in his report, which was published as an appendix to the Royal Commission Report, �If a column is made up of several shapes or parts, they have to be connected in such a manner that they will act as a unit. and Theodore Cooper, the most reputed engineer of that time became the main consulting In the late 19th century, the transportation needs of Quebec led to proposals for bridging the St. Lawrence River. Through the story of the 1907 Quebec Bridge disaster, in which seventy-six men died, author Dan Levert teaches a powerful object lesson in what can happen when that Obligation is forgotten. 55, January 26, pgs. 73 � 74, Middleton, 2001). In it he wrote, �The suggested action by Mr. Schreiber would place the business in a much worse condition than it was originally in.� He also wrote, �� it is simply being necessary to have Schreiber�s signature as a matter of form.� To further these implications, in a another letter from Deans to Cooper, he wrote, �I have written him again, (Schreiber) and urged him to stop entirely this proposed plan, and explaining that the sole purpose of the order in council was to give you the final authority to settle all details, the government approval being a mere formality, and in this way save time which was so valuable� (Holgate et al., 1908). Ideas over building a bridge that connected the north part of the St. Lawrence River to the south part were popular in the mid to late 1800’s to allow ease of transport. Earlier, noted French engineer Gustave Eiffel had considered the problem and found that a cantilever design would be superior to either a suspension or an arch bridge for the Quebec site (pp. The desire to bridge the St. Lawrence River was fueled by Quebec�s need to be competitive in trade. The failure of these chords was due to their defective design.” In the late 19th century, the transportation needs of Quebec led to proposals for bridging the St. Lawrence River. It was ignored in the absence of the chief engineer. �A Disaster in the Making.� American Heritage of Invention and Technology, Spring 1986, 10-17. http://www.civeng.carleton.ca/Exhibits/Quebec_Bridge/intro.html, http://www.mysteriesofcanada.com/Quebec/quebec_bridge_collapse.htm, http://www.civ.toronto.edu/funstuff/disaster/quebec.htm, https://www.structurae.net/en/structures/data/str00479.php, https://helios.physics.uoguelph.ca/summer/scor/articles/scor213.htm, http://www.disastershq.com/features/quebec.asp, ASCE Technical Council on Forensic Engineering (TCFE), 9201 University City Blvd., Charlotte, NC 28223-0001, © 2013 UNC Charlotte | All Rights Reserved |, The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Bridge superintendent of erection for 1st year of work, General foreman of erection for remainder of project. It took three tries and cost 89 lives, but the city of Quebec was determined to compete with provincial rival Montreal for commercial rail traffic in the late 19th century. In conclusion of this thought, �Cooper�s engineering expertise became the sole factor that was relied upon for assuring structural integrity of the bridge.� (Roddis, 1993). The concept of the cantilever structure was first used in 1867. Others were still insisting that the bends were the result of a pre-existing condition. With a site selected, bridge design proposals poured in (p. 26, Middleton, 2001). Table 1. 119(5), 1539-1555. With the financial support of the government in 1903, the project moved ahead with more speed than at any time since 1899. Due to the unprecedented size of this structure, innovative construction methods proved necessary (ER, 1907c). They were found to be as much as 10 percent in excess of those previously calculated (p. 65, Middleton, 2001). The bridge project was financially troubled from the beginning. Two months later the company awarded contracts to the Phoenix Bridge Company for construction of the superstructure and to the Davis Firm for construction of the substructure. Associate Professor, Dept. 55, January 12, pgs. Theodore Cooper, who learned of the Quebec Bridge project at the ASCE meeting, offered his consulting services to the Quebec Bridge Company (pp. A disturbing pattern was emerging. He also accepted the responsibility of shop inspector of the steel fabrication and erection. (1907a). Cooper insisted on retaining full control of the project, even at a considerable distance. These butt splices were bolted to allow for movement. Construction of the bridge officially began on October 2, 1900, after a grand ceremony. The Engineering Hevs commented 'The fall of this bridge ranks with the greatest engineering disasters in history. 1 QUEBEC BRIDGE COLLAPSE -1907 1.1 INVESTIGATE ALLOCATED EXAMPLES OF ENGINEERING FAILURE: The Quebex Bridge was a long time in planning, the original design come from the Quebec Bridge Company in 1887, of which Hon. The Quebec Bridge is the longest cantilever span in the world, with a centre-distance of … The Quebec Bridge was twenty years in the making, from the founding of the Quebec Bridge Company in 1887 to the bridge�s collapse in 1907. The eyebars formed major tension members in the top chords. 56, Sept. 14, pg. Although the need was great, the job of bridging the St. Lawrence would prove to be no easy task (pp. Another ethical concern was Cooper�s rejection to having an independent engineer check his work. After finding out this news, Cooper, the Quebec Bridge Company, and the Phoenix Bridge Company immediately objected. In his long career, he had written an award-winning paper pioneering the use of steel for railway bridges, and had prepared general specifications for iron and steel bridges. However, some of the joints failed to close. At Quebec, the greatest bridge in the world was under construction in 1907 under severe financial constraints, with inadequate funds provided for either engineering work or the bridge itself. 92-94. Engineers of Dreams: Great Bridge Builders and the Spanning of America, Knopf, New York. On October 2, 1900, the Prime Minister of Canada, Sir Wilfrid Laurier, placed the cornerstone of the Quebec Bridge. Given the lower and uncertain quality of the materials available to Cooper, along with the less developed state of knowledge of compression members at that time, Cooper�s formula clearly represents an unsafe practice. The members with these deflections were the lower chords of the truss on either side of the pier � the members with the highest compressive loads under the negative moment across the pier. Meanwhile, back at the construction site, at about the same time the decision-makers in Phoenixville were ending their meeting, the Quebec Bridge collapsed at 5:30 p.m. Engineering Record (ER). The next day, McLure went to New York to seek advice from Cooper (pp. �The Quebec Bridge Superstructure Details, Part VIII,� (1907), The Engineering record, building record and the sanitary engineer. The anchorage arm and the north-south cantilever were built between 1913 and 1916. Theodore Cooper had been the consulting engineer for the Quebec Bridge project, and most of the blame for the disaster fell on his shoulders. This caused many setbacks in the design and construction. 72 � 73, Middleton, 2001). They were Henry Holgate, of Montreal, John George Gale Kerry of Campbellford, Ontario, and John Galbraith of Toronto. (1986). Only eleven of the workers on the span were recovered alive, and some bodies were never found. The failure of these chords was due to their defective design. After a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the collapse [of the Quebec Bridge in August 1907 ], construction started on a second bridge. The cantilever arms would reach a distance of 171.5 m (562.5 ft.). This development quickly established Montreal as Canada�s leading eastern port. 2. The top and bottom chords for the anchor and cantilever arms of a bridge were typically designed as straight members. Graduate Student, Dept. After review, Theodore Cooper stated, �I hereby conclude and report that the cantilever superstructure plan of the Phoenix Bridge Company is the �best and cheapest� plan and proposal submitted to me for examination and report.� (p. 15, Holgate et al., 1908, p. 34, Middleton, 2001). This erroneous assumption was made by Mr. Szlapka and accepted by Mr. Cooper, and tended to hasten the disaster. Work started shortly afterwards and was completed late in 1902. Six tenders were submitted for the superstructure, and two for the substructure. At the time this error was discovered, a large portion of the fabrication had been completed and a considerable amount of bridge erection was finished. William Middleton gives a clear definition of a cantilever bridge in his book: �Cantilever bridge: a bridge form based upon the cantilever principal. The second bridge was finally completed in 1917 and weighed two and a half times as much as the first one (Tarkov, 1986). Sessional Paper No 154. (1907b). The Quebec Bridge Company did contract with William Davis & Sons to build the substructure on August 22, 1899. Thirteen workers were lost in the second collapse. It would bridge the St Lawrence River approximately 14 km (9 miles) North of Quebec connecting into the Grand Trunk rail line. No clear chain of command existed. His only other alternatives were to start over, strengthen the bridge in place, or abandon the project. In practice, however, as stated before, bending will occur before the buckling load is reached, causing shearing strains which have to be transferred through the connections, as latticing, tie plates or cover plates. The floor system was designed to carry a live load of well over 2.79 MN (280 tons) (ER, 1907d). We will write a custom Essay on Quebec Bridge Collapse specifically for you for only $16.05 $11/page. View The Collapse of the Quebec Bridge.edited.docx from CE MISC at Business Management & Finance High School. They were stiffened by the use of diagonal latticing to make them act as one unit. Indiana University Press, Indiana, USA. Cooper�s formula is compared to contemporary allowable stresses from the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC, 1989) as well as the 96.5 MPa (14 ksi) allowable stress adopted for the second bridge (p. 107, Middleton, 2001) in figure 4. 1, 1919. The Quebec Bridge (Pont de Québec in French) is a road, rail and pedestrian bridge across the lower Saint Lawrence River between Sainte-Foy (since 2002 a western suburb of Quebec City) and Lévis, Quebec, Canada. This unprecedented large scale testing and studying of compression members and their connections led to major advancements in the field of engineering. 9 � 10, Holgate et al., 1908): The fall of this massive bridge can be traced back to several technical factors. Ideas over building a bridge that connected the north part of the St. Lawrence River to the south part were popular in the mid to late 1800’s to allow ease of transport. Petroski (1995) notes Cooper�s strong qualifications for this project. In a properly computed bridge the assumed dead load concentrations upon which the make-up of the members is based should agree closely with the weight computed from the dimensions in the finished design and with actual weights� (Holgate et al., 1908). Quebec City, QC Bridge Collapse, Sept 1916. He eventually became vice president of the company. The thunderous roar of the collapse was heard ten km (six miles) away in Quebec (p.80, Middleton, 2001). Source: Quebec Bridge Report of the Government Board of Engineers, Vol. The serious defects were fundamental errors in design.�, �The professional knowledge of the present day concerning the action of steel columns under load is not sufficient to enable engineers to economically design such structures as the Quebec bridge. However, when McLure and Cooper disagreed on the cause of the deflections, McLure did not have the confidence to contradict Cooper. Buy Quebec Bridge 1907 Nview Of The Quebec Bridge Following Its Collapse On 29 August 1907 Poster Print by (24 x 36) online on Amazon.ae at best prices. Fast and free shipping free returns cash on delivery available on eligible purchase. N. S. Parent is president and M. P. Davis, of Ottawa, was the leading contractor for the masonry and the Phoenix Bridge company for the steelwork . 7 � 8, Middleton, 2001). It was at time of construction the longest cantilever bridge in the world with clear span of 1800 ft. During testing, the lattice system failed explosively due to shearing of its rivets, immediately followed by buckling of the chord. As the bridge was erected, workers and supervisors found noticeable deflections in some of the chords. Some of the key players in the construction and failure of the bridge are listed in Table 1. The bridge project was financially troubled from the beginning. The engineers on site argued among themselves as to the cause. �This error was sufficient to have condemned the bridge had it not fallen owing to other causes.� (p. 37, Holgate et al., 1908). of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stilwell Hall SH 108, Cleveland State Univ., 2121 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44115-2214. 1. and Norbert Delatte, M.ASCE. The members under the highest compressive loads were gradually buckling. September 11, 1916, Quebec Bridge Collapse After a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the collapse, construction started on a second bridge. In his haste to get to his destination, he neglected to send the information. Otherwise, the company would pay $5,000 per month after this deadline to the Quebec Bridge Company until the project was finished (Holgate et al., 1908, Middleton, 2001). In its typical form cantilever arms projecting toward the center of the span from main piers are continuous with and counterbalanced by anchor arms extending between the main piers and anchor pier at each end. Of 38 Caughnawaga Mohawk ironworkers who had left their village to work on the bridge, 33 were killed and two were injured (p. 84, Middleton, 2001). The entire south half of the bridge, approximately 189 MN (19,000 tons) of steel, fell into the waters of the St. Lawrence within 15 seconds. �The Anchor Pier Towers of the Quebec Bridge� (1907), Engineering Record, Vol. These constraints had delayed engineering analysis and led to adoption of unconservative specifications. His decisions were not questioned, even when they seemed to be unusual. �None of the explanations for the bent chord stand the test of logic. In addition, the Quebec Bridge Company was in favor of the Phoenix Bridge Company to win the tender (Tarkov, 1986). The Engineering Hevs commented 'The fall of this bridge ranks with the greatest engineering disasters in history. Although the workers who failed to report to work because of the deformations lacked the technical expertise, they seemed to be the only ones who properly understood what was really happening to the bridge (p. 78, Middleton, 2001). Szlapka continued his duties as chief designer for the Phoenix Company. 2 di Inquiry, Canada Royal Commission: spedizione gratuita per i clienti Prime e per ordini a partire da 29€ spediti da Amazon. The piers were made of huge granite facing stones with concrete backing. In its final design, the clear span was 548.6 m (1,800 ft) long. The bridge initially collapsed on August 29, 1907. Interest in building the Quebec Bridge arose as early as 1850. A few years later, on August 29, 1907, the south section of the bridge collapsed and killed 76 workers, including 33 Mohawk workers from the Kahnawake community. He allowed 145 MPa (21 ksi) for normal loading and 165 MPa (24 ksi) under extreme loading conditions. The only reason given for this decision was in a note from Hoare to Cooper stating, �the moral effect of holding up the work would be very bad on all concerned and might also stop the work for this season on account of losing the men.� Two days later, news of the matter reached the Phoenixville office and the project superiors there met and discussed the problem. The bridge collapsed during construction on August 29, 1907, killing eighty-six workers. The failure of these chords was due to their defective design. McLure had assured Cooper that he would wire the information to the site on his way to the Phoenixville office. In Schneider�s opinion, �These members consist of four separate ribs, not particularly well developed as compression members, and their connections to each other are not of sufficient strength to make them act as a unit� (p. 97, Middleton, 2001). The project failed twice, at the cost of 88 lives, and took over 30 years to complete. The collapse was initiated by the buckling failure of Chord A9L, on the anchor arm near the pier, immediately followed by Chord A9R. His health was poor and because of this, he never visited the site once construction began on the superstructure. The Quebec Bridge was the longest cantilever structure attempted until that time. In its ﬁnal design, the clear span was 548.6 m (1,800 ft) long. This error was of sufficient magnitude to have required the condemnation of the bridge, even if the details of the lower chords had been of sufficient strength, because, if the bridge had been completed as designed, the actual stresses would have been considerably greater than those permitted by the specifications. The wreckage is shown in figure 3. Digitized By Villanova University. During the winter, ice became stuck in the narrowing and piled up as high as 15 m (50 ft.) (p. 3, Middleton, 2001). • In 1882 Quebec Bridge Company was granted the contract for the bridge • Due to short finance , nothing was done until 1887 when Quebec Bridge was incorporated with the Railway Company • Now the new management demanded to get the project rolling a.s.a.p. Erection of the superstructure portion of the bridge did not begin until July 22, 1905. On August 27, the same day construction was halted; McLure sent a message to Cooper informing him that construction would not resume until he reviewed the matter. His consulting services were based on the information that was reported to him by others in charge. 70 � 72, Middleton, 2001). The Royal Commission Report, which investigated the collapse and identified the engineering and procedural errors that had lead to it, remains a pioneering document in the field of forensic engineering. Each pier rested on a concrete filled caisson that was 14.9 m (49 ft) wide, 7.6 m (25 ft.) high, and 45.7 m (150 ft.) long, weighing 16.2 MN (1,600 tons) (pp. Cooper�s reluctance to travel to the site, based on his poor health, led to confusion about responsibility and site supervision. However, in May 1900, this span was increased to 548.6 m (1,800 ft.) by Theodore Cooper. After seeing the message, he arranged for a group meeting as soon as McLure arrived. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stilwell Hall SH 108, 2121 Euclid Ave., Cleveland State Univ., Cleveland, OH 44115-2214 (corresponding author). Bridge at Quebec. The lives of those involved with the Quebec Bridge, from the designers to the construction workers, were forever changed after the accident. In the meantime, McLure was meeting with Cooper in New York. The cross sectional area of the critical compression member for the old bridge had been 543,000 mm2 (842 in.2), whereas that of the new bridge was 1,250,000 mm2 (1,941 in.2) (p. 113, Petroski, 1995, p. 116, Middleton, 2001). A second attempt to bridge the St. Lawrence River was made. The specifications were accepted without protest by all interested.�, �A grave error was made in assuming the dead load for the calculations at too low a value and not afterwards revising this assumption. The load transferred to the opposite A9R chord that also buckled. Cooper was also very poorly compensated for his work (Petroski, 1995, Middleton, 2001). The Quebec Bridge (Pont de Québec in French) is a road, rail and pedestrian bridge across the lower Saint Lawrence River between Sainte-Foy (since 2002 a western suburb of Quebec City) and Lévis, Quebec, Canada.The project failed twice, at the cost of 88 lives, and took over 30 years to complete. Cooper�s official eyes and ears on the construction site was Norman McLure, a young civil engineer who had been appointed by Cooper himself. After the collapse, the government took over the design and construction of the new bridge. 302. The Quebec Bridge was the longest cantilever structure attempted until that time. American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) (1989), Manual of Steel Construction, Allowable Stress Design, Ninth Edition, Chicago, Illinois. A distinguished panel was assembled to investigate the disaster. The 50 MN (5,000 ton) span sank to the bottom of the river to rest beside the wreckage of the first bridge, which still remains there today. The velocity of the river reached 13 or 14 kph (8 or 9 mph) at times, and the tides ranged as high as 5 m (18 ft). The A9L notation refers to the chord located in the anchor arm, within the ninth panel, and on the left or West side of the bridge. The Quebec Bridge Company was first incorporated by Act of Parliament under the government of Sir John A. Macdonald in 1887, later revived in 1891, once again revived for good in 1897 by the government of Wilfrid Laurier, who granted them an extension of time in 1900. Collapse of the Quebec Bridge, 1907. A cantilever bridge was proposed as the most feasible design to bridge the harsh, icy waters of the St. Lawrence River. Due to the high level of interest in the project, the Canadian Parliament passed an act, which incorporated the committee into the Quebec Bridge Company, with a million-dollar capital and the power to issue bonds (p. 27, Middleton, 2001). Cooper wired a message back referring to chords 7L and 8L, asking, �How did bend occur in both chords?� The chief engineer of the Phoenix Company replied to Cooper saying that he did not know (pp. Another advancement was the formation of two organizations, the American Institute for Steel Construction in 1921, and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials in 1914. He was one of the foremost American bridge builders of his day. I have evolved another theory, which is a possible if not the probable one. Theodore Cooper had been the consulting engineer for the Quebec Bridge project, and most of the blame for the disaster fell on his shoulders. Compression tests were performed on one-third scale models of the compression chords in November 1907 and January 1908 to verify this theory. Collapse of the Quebec Bridge, 1907. In a letter to Edward Hoare, Cooper wrote, �This puts me in the position of a subordinate, which I cannot accept.� (p. 52, Middleton, 2001). He found that they would be approximately 7 percent more. The solution was a rail bridge across the St. Lawrence River requiring a single cantilever span 1,800 feet long - the longest ever attempted. The first collapse in 1907. Government funding was requested. Cooper withdrew from practice to live out a lonely retirement. They had somehow reached the conclusion that the bends in the chords had occurred before they left the yard. 276, Sept. 21, pg. Listed below are some of the major findings (pp. On June 19, 1903, a final contract was entered into between the two companies, and the name of the Quebec Bridge Company was changed to the Quebec Bridge and Railway Company (pp. �Structural failures and engineering ethics.� Journal of Structural Engineering. The Quebec Bridge was twenty years in the making, from the founding of the Quebec Bridge Company in 1887 to the bridge�s collapse in 1907. The tension eyebars were designed to withstand a maximum stress of 108.5 MPa (15,730 psi) and were about 12.8 m (42 ft) long (ER, 1907a). 45 � 47, Middleton, 2001). Over time, some of the member deflections increased. Whenever the need arose, the authorities on site would confer with each other before making any decision. The splices initially touched only at one end, and could not fully transfer their load until they had deflected enough to cause full contact at the splices. The new units stresses were accepted anyway based solely on Cooper�s reputation (Holgate, et al., 1908). Financial matters were finally resolved in 1903, when additional funds became available from a government grant. This resulted in a loose and inefficient supervision of all parts of the work on the part of the Quebec Bridge and Railway Company.�, �The work done by the Phoenix Bridge Company in making the detail drawings and in planning and carrying out the erection, and by the Phoenix Iron Company in fabricating the material was good, and the steel used was of good quality. With each other before making any decision and not afterwards revising this assumption chords with their own of. Piers were the result of a pre-existing condition in May 1900, after Grand. With a site selected, bridge design proposals poured in ( p.,! Bridge until matters could be resolved another ethical concern was Cooper�s rejection to having an independent engineer check work... To Cooper on the bridge was the longest cantilever structure attempted until that time would behave mechanically both! For aesthetic reasons May have not allowed the higher than normal design stresses, seemed to be the of. 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Bridge down are higher than those in use today by 3.3 to 8.7 % over a range of slenderness from! Also provided the financial support for the National Transcontinental Railway Commission unclear definition of just much! And was completed late in 1902 McLure went to work for a group meeting as soon as McLure arrived Cooper. He arranged for a few meeting his design was approved with very few by!
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