At 11:19 AM 1/7/2007, Michael Hatzakis Jr MD wrote:
>What surprises me is that one guy wire failure could bring down the whole
>tower... isn't there usually some degree of redundancy built into these
Maybe it took out not just one wire, but the whole anchor?
And, the guy system is designed for expected wind loads, not
something big suddenly yanking hard on a guy and pulling it in a
different direction than expected. It's one thing to have a guy
wire fail or get over tensioned in the normal direction. Another to
have something remove the normal force holding the tower up and apply
a force in a different direction.
Could be all sorts of things that went wrong. Usually, with a
collapse of some sort, it's a combination of two things (often
unrelated) that result in the event.
In the engineering failure analysis biz, they're called "systems
failures"... all the parts worked pretty much as planned, but the
combination didn't, or there was some unforeseen interaction. It's
an area of some study.. the things like material failure and simple
design problems are pretty well understood, and can be
prevented. It's the complex interactions that are less amenable to
analysis and prevention. Generally, the phrase that springs to mind
after one of these "events" is "Who'd have known?".
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