An upper storey extension was designed without considering the effect on the structure below. A further four attempts to prove the proposed new structure failed to demonstrate adequacy.

For owners and clients:

  • Ensure engineers are competent for the project in hand before appointing them. Engineers should be Chartered Professional Engineers (CPEng) and have experience working in this type of project. The industry is busy at the moment, expect long lead times from engineers and other professionals when planning your project.

For all built environment professionals:

  • Work within the limits of your competence. You can use the competency article on the Engineering New Zealand website to help check whether you’re working within your bounds of competence and how you can work to upskill.
  • All professionals should understand the code of conduct of their qualifying institution(s), which they are obligated to uphold. Did you know about the Engineering New Zealand Practice Note about Ethical Conduct?
  • Supervision of design by experienced engineers can allow less experienced engineers to develop their competence
  • Engineers should undertake full assessments of existing structures when considering alterations
  • Independent checking is good practice. Make sure you read through Practice Note 2 – Peer Reviews. Also make sure that your design office is working to the required standard by complying with the system outlined in Practice Note 14 – Design Office Practice.

Read the full CROSS report.