Geotechnical Society of Edmonton

NEWS 2018

Posted October 3, 2018

Event: October 12, 2018

GSE/CGS CCLT: Dr. Alex Sy, P.Eng.,FEIC, Vice President, Technical, Klohn Cripper Berger Ltd. - Lessons Learned from Geotechnical Failures

Location: Winspear Room, Faculty Club, University of Alberta (11435 Saskatchewan Drive)

Time: 11:30am Registration, 12:00pm Lunch, 12:30pm Presentation

Cost: $30 Members, $40 Non-Members, $10 Students
(At the door) $35 Members, $45 Non-Members, $15 Students

Registration is now closed.

Despite advances in geotechnical engineering, failures do occasionally occur because of unknowns, uncertainties, inexperience, miscommunications, etc. However, failures do provide valuable lessons for the profession that can be learned to minimize future failures. This lecture will present three examples of geotechnical failures in British Columbia, in which the author was engaged to carry out forensic engineering. Pertinent details of the geotechnical failures and their causes are described for the following three case histories: (1) the dyke breach at the Stanley Street Pump Station located on the North Arm of the Fraser River in New Westminster; (2) the excessive foundation settlement at the Queensborough Middle School using stone column foundations in very soft soils at the east end of Lulu Island; and (3) the damaging ground movements at the Panorama/Ridgeview Subdivision located on an old landslide or "earthflow" in Chilliwack. Subsequent remedial solutions and lessons learned are also discussed.

Alex Sy, Ph.D., P.Eng., FEIC is Vice President, Technical at Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd. in Vancouver, BC. He has more than 40 years of experience in geotechnical and earthquake engineering for transportation, water and wastewater infrastructures, heavy industrial facilities, hydroelectric and water retention dams, and mine tailings dams. He has worked throughout Canada and internationally. Alex has provided forensic engineering and expert witness services for infrastructure failures involving dams, dykes, bridges, pipelines, buildings and landslides. He currently serves on Independent Technical Review Boards for several major water supply projects and tailings storage facilities in high seismic environments.

Alex has a Bachelor in Civil Engineering from the University of Queensland in Australia, and a Master and Ph.D. in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of British Columbia. He is also an Adjunct Professor in the Civil Engineering Department of the University of British Columbia. He has authored more than 50 technical papers in various aspects of geotechnical and geoseismic engineering.

Alex received the Canadian Geotechnical Colloquium award from the Canadian Geotechnical Society in 1996, and the VGS Award from the Vancouver Geotechnical Society in 2015. He is a Fellow of the Engineering Institute of Canada.

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