[quote="Naran"]It's great that Romney is finally moving to get rid of the MTA head... meanwhile, what's he going to do about the lousy tunnels? What a total disaster.[/quote]
Don't get too carried away here, the tunnels aren't collapsing, a panel failed, it has nothing to do with the structure of the tunnel. Romney isn't fixing much, someone just as incompetent will replace Amorello.
[quote="Gaffer"]I was told that some the state concrete inspectors were not really engineers as there were not enough EEOC numbers. They took secretaries and made them enginers to do the concrete tests and most of them had no idea what they were doing.[/quote]
I doubt that this was a widespread problem, if it occurred at all. You can't make someone an engineer, just like you can't make someone a doctor or a lawyer. I believe that Bechtel played a major role in the project management, they are a very competent firm.
Go look at this blog: [url]http://www.massbackwards.blogspot.com/[/url] and
this one [url]http://massbackwards.blogspot.com/2005/03/inside-dirt-vol-1.html[/url] by mAss Backwards. He worked on the tunnel and blogged about the shoddy work.
Gaffer, that's an interesting read. If he's accurate, then the engineers with the PE stamps (Professional Engineer, not just a degreed engineer) are going to fry.
Chris' comments are insightful.
A politically derived project, funded by politicians, managed by politicians, staffed by politicians, and corrupted by politicians and he plows all that debris aside to reveal a private contractor.
Liberals do see the involvement of gov't in programs they don't like, however, ie Iraq War. And I don't mean Chris in this case.
When do liberals exonerate the State Dept and the White House and the Pentagon and then search for a private contractor supplying the soda pop or the trucks as the culprits for a problematic war.
Mark: Chris can't help himself, he was born a liberal, thus common sense is not a part of his being. What is a part of his being is to stir the pot and agitate those who do have common sense. He is after all a lawyer!
[size=18]Legislation passed to give Romney control over Big Dig inspections[/size]
Friday, July 14,2006
BOSTON (AP) - Gov. Mitt Romney moved Thursday to seize control over inspections in the tunnel system where a woman was crushed by falling ceiling panels, as the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority revealed there are at least 242 other points where bolts are separating from the tunnel roof.
I suggest that Chris listen to Howie Carr.
If the article linked above is correct, and there are other places the bolts are separating, I think we can indeed deem this an ongoing disaster for Massachusetts and Boston.
[quote]During a news conference, Michael Lewis, director of the Big Dig project, said not only had 50 bolt assemblies come loose in the eastbound section of the tunnel where Del Valle was killed, but there were 68 suspect assemblies in the westbound section, 45 in the section carrying carpool traffic, as well as 79 suspect assemblies in ramps connecting Interstate 90 with Interstate 93. A day earlier, Lewis had only cited 60 potential trouble spots.
Romney has also started legal proceedings to remove the Turnpike chairman.
That's a bit dramatic Naran. This is a big deal and must be addressed, but it's not catastrophic.
Tell that to the dead woman, and her family.
You were referring to the engineering challenges with the bolts:
[quote]If the article linked above is correct, and there are other places the bolts are separating, I think we can indeed deem this an ongoing disaster for Massachusetts and Boston. [/quote]
From media reports, these are essentially cosmetic issues, not structural. The tunnels are not collapsing (at least not yet).
I disagree. This entire project, from start to finish, has been one huge sinkhole of disaster, both monetarily, and now fatally for one woman and her family.
There is no end to the reports of leaks, concrete problems, engineering failures, and now this. In fact, I predict this is indeed only the BEGINNING of the disaster for Massachusetts.
The largest law firm in Boston is providing pro-bono services to help the governor remove Amorello, and to my mind, it can't happen fast enough.
I spent 22 years dealing with the graft and politics in Massachusetts. Hardly anything gets done unless someone is paid off or favors swapped in the government circles. This Big Dig was the epitomy of those favors and payoffs. Everyone looks the other way until something really bad happens and then the blame game starts. That will continue until they find a sacrificial lamb to blame it on and then it will all be forgotten until the next time.
This whole Big Dig mess is just a perfect picture of government at its finest. Graft, corruption and fortunes made by those willing to take shortcuts with safety and quality. The people at risk are those who must ride through the tunnels but the rest of us were ripped off big time in terms of money and what we expect from government. This is obvious only because it cost a life, probably the first of many; but just about every government project has the same sham going on and we look the other way and don't demand better. We get what we allow by our total apathy.
[quote="Naran"]I disagree. This entire project, from start to finish, has been one huge sinkhole of disaster, both monetarily, and now fatally for one woman and her family.
The largest law firm in Boston is providing pro-bono services to help the governor remove Amorello, and to my mind, it can't happen fast enough.[/quote]
Gaffer is right, business in Massachusetts is unique, but you're off base Naran. The financial part of this project was a disaster, but anyone with any intelligence could predict that once they started this project, it had to be finished regardless of cost. It was a wonderful way for everyone to take advantage of the system since there was no fallback once construction began. Where was the outcry over the last 7 years? Seems a bit late to say "I told you so".
For a project of this magnitude there will be reams of data documenting problems, how could this project go perfectly? Impossible. Please give me some examples of engineering failures that you are familiar with on this issue, other than the panel anchors.
You're obviously determined to "picayune" the process instead of looking at this as I do, from a common-sense perspective.
Anything that comes in so far over budget, and with the problems that have been documented over the construction process, ain't what I'd call a raving success.
What's the opposite of "raving success" in your book?
Water leaks, faulty concrete resulting in criminal indictments, faulty ceiling systems in 282 spots, what more do you need? There will doubtless be an unfortunate answer in years to come.
Massachusetts positively loves her corrupt politicians. They shake their heads and chuckle as they tell of the shady, backroom deals, the jobs created for otherwise unemployable but connected people, etc. Hundreds of thousands of dollars are spent campaigning for positions on the Boston School Board, an unpaid position, because the graft makes it worth it. This is not the fault of politicians or private contractors; this is the inevitable result of the voters' actions and the fault is theirs.
[i]...But this could never happen in Maine![/i]
[quote]Publication [b]Date: 26-JAN-04[/b] Author: William J. Angelo
Foundation work has begun on a new Waldo-Hancock bridge over Maineâ€™s Penobscot River. [b]The $65-million [/b]single-plane, cable-stayed concrete segmental structure will incorporate an observatory deck in one of two pylons to view nearby historic Fort Knox. But steel proponents think the design choice is too costly and are lobbying for language in the new ... [/quote]
By Aileen Cho
Three years later, [b]the $84-million [/b]two-lane Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Observatory is moving toward a Christmas opening, with final completion in May 2007, says Tom Doe, MDOT project manager.
There is still almost a full year left. Would anyone be surprised if the costs finally exceed $90-million?
Now if there was a way to find out the true cost of the State Capital and offices buildings renovations compared to the original budget, the 30% over budget bridge project would pale.
[quote="Naran"]You're obviously determined to "picayune" the process instead of looking at this as I do, from a common-sense perspective.
Water leaks, faulty concrete resulting in criminal indictments, faulty ceiling systems in 282 spots, what more do you need? There will doubtless be an unfortunate answer in years to come.[/quote]
Nice deflection. There's no argument that the project was a political and economic fiasco. I disagree that it's the equivalent of the Tacoma Narrows bridge as you seem to believe. The failure in the panel fastening system was in not properly identifying the failure modes and preventing this event. This was an avoidable situation.
Are you interested in a classic example of inept state engineering? Check out the mess on Rt 2 in Greenbush. The DOT is literally in a hole and they won't stop digging!
From the 7/14/2006 BDN, p B1
[b]Wall along Rt 2 tumbles, Granite barrier fails as expected[/b]
[quote]Fill it, let it fail, then fill it again. It takes time said DOT official Jerry Waldo. In fact the new rock wall to be built over the next week isn't expected to hold either. It's a little bit of a crap shoot, said Waldo earlier Thursday in an interview. [/quote]
Keep wasting our money Jerry!
Fox News reports that some 275 overhead attachment bolts are defective in the Big Dig.
Take 495 to the Cape or vacation in Maine.
By Casey Ross
Boston Herald Reporter
Monday, July 17, 2006 - Updated: 12:59 AM EST
Hub driversâ€™ nightmares will last for â€œmonths,â€ Gov. Mitt Romney said yesterday, announcing tests of epoxy-anchored bolts in the Interstate 90 network have revealed a â€œsystemic failureâ€ of the ceiling suspension system that will require millions of dollars in time-consuming repairs.
Gee - I'm sorry - what part of this did someone call no big deal?
Will they have to dig up Rose Kennedy park to make repairs?
From the Boston Herald article linked above:
[quote]As the tally of defects continues to mount, Romney said problems in the three-year-old tunnel system are far worse than first imagined, with ceiling supports pulling away in hundreds of locations and engineers contemplating a complete replacement of all 696 epoxy-bolted fixtures.
â€œItâ€™s pretty clear to us that what happened last (Monday) was not just an anomaly, but was a systemic failure in the fastening system,â€ Romney said. â€œFor the entire system to be repaired and safe is probably going to take at least a couple of months, and perhaps longer.â€[/quote]
To paraphrase from a pretty good article in Sunday's Globe, now that Mitt Romney has taken over the project, will he also take the blame/responsibility for problems found?
[quote]But if taking ownership of the megaproject gives Romney a chance to showcase himself as a take-charge problem-solver, it carries significant risk: He is now clearly accountable for what happens on Big Dig roads, bridges, and tunnels.
Put simply, any future safety problems will be laid at his feet.[/quote]
From [url=http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2006/07/16/dirty_work_left_und... #2[/url]
[quote]Governor Mitt Romney even invoked his role in the Winter Olympics turnaround in Salt Lake City in 2002 to underscore his credentials as a crisis manager. The problem with that analogy is that Romney is not just currently learning about problems with the Big Dig. There has been a Republican in office through every phase of design and construction.[/quote]
[b]Romney: Number of problems in tunnel now 1,454[/b]
[quote][b]Report: Big Dig Tunnel Accident Caused By Wrong Glue[/b]
[i]Turnpike Authority Failed To Inspect, Detect Slipping Bolts[/i]
By M.R.F. Buckley,
UPDATED: 1:49 pm EDT July 10, 2007
BOSTON -- A yearlong study by federal investigators into the cause of the Interstate 90 tunnel connector ceiling collapse that killed a Boston woman in July 2006 has led to the conclusion that contractors and builders probably used the wrong kind of epoxy glue to secure ceiling panel anchors.[/quote]
Don't scare me like that! Especially with the "BREAKING NEWS!" headline still intact. I thought it had happened again.
Sorry - I have been chided by certain AMG posters in the recent past when I changed headlines, so I daresn't try again.
You scared me too, and I don't scare that easy.
I have changed the title. If anyone kvetches, so be it.