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Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

I need some help with your opinions on this. I am a transportation/civil engineer and we did the design on a ( Roadway & underground utilities) project that is currently being built by a contractor. The plans include demolition of existing roadway/sidewalk/vaults/shed in the way of the proposed design (all marked for removal).
The contractor keeps submitting RFIs asking us very specifically every detail on how they should do the demolitions. As a civil designer, are we required to tell them exactly how these items (like the shed) should be removed? I am guessing this is really about charging the work...which i understand if they haven't included in their estimate with the client...but why should we have to keep working on providing them details on how this should be done. My understanding is that we're only supposed to how the items and areas that need to be removed...Isn't it their responsibility to have the means and methods to remove it properly. Have any experience on this? what would you respond to this contractor?
Appreciate your help on this.

RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

That seems like means and methods to me. The only thing the engineer should be supplying is the items to demolish and the phasing of demo.
There could be some safety requirements that would be on the civil plans. Something like "Ensure electrical power is cut at pole X before demolishing electrical equipment from building."
I can't think of any other items the engineer should be responsible for.

This may be indicative of a larger problem with the contractor such as inexperience or setting up for a change order.

RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities


1. Isn't it their responsibility to have the means and methods to remove it properly?
2. Have any experience on this?
3.What would you respond to this contractor?

1. Yes, unless the contract documents state otherwise. For example, is it specified that any of the items will be reused (by others)?

2. Yes, both as a Contractor and an Owner's Representative.

3. Arrange a formal (sit down) meeting with the Contractor. Go over the exact details on this part of the contract documents. The Contractor can ask any questions he has in mind at this time. Go over answers (or that there will not be answers) depending on the wording of the contract documents. If the Contractor has future questions on this subject, he can request another formal meeting. You don't want to tell the Contractor NOT to ask questions, but you DO want to make the asking of frivolous questions reasonably unpleasant for the Contractor. Per your description of the current situation, the Contractor just (easily) sends you an RFI putting the burden on you to respond.

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RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

Thank you very much for your responses! This is exactly what i needed.

RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

The project should provide a complete work scope and order to contractor, and walk through it before starting the work. The more details of the work descriptions may reduce the questions during the work. However, there is no perfect work order to cover 100% actual work.

Ask Contractor to reduce the RFIs if redundant or not necessary, so to minimize the documents which may cause the time and effort. As work progressing, you want to ensure that the RFI response or solution were covered in the original scope without impacting to the cost or schedule, or trying to minimize the impact.

RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

Also... if they do something and 'break it', they 'bought it'... if you give them instructions on how to do something and they 'break it', guess who 'bought it'.

Unless the contract or scope of work stipulates otherwise, this is clearly a 'means and methods' issue.


RE: Civil Engineering Demo Requirements/Responsibilities

Although I think the contractor's means and methods applies here, I also think that it is a term thrown around a lot by engineers anytime they are questioned about how to build something. Sometimes, your design is not constructable and the contractor is simply asking "how do you expect me to build this?". As long as its constructable then it is up to the contractor how to get it done. If you had a specific method in mind during design and it is not feasible for the contractor then further discussion and coordination with the contractor is warranted.

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