Case Studies

"Case Studies" > Construction - Defect > Redesign of Shipyard Crane Railbeds Inadequate to Support Weight

Redesign of Shipyard Crane Railbeds Inadequate to Support Weight


Several discrete tutorials were designed to introduce the jury to shipyard
operations, the long range economic impact of adding larger cranes to
operations, geology of the bayside property, the defendant’s design and
why it was inadequate, and plaintiff’s remedy, which solved the problem
once and for all.

Plaintiff shipyard engaged defendant engineering company to bolster its crane railbeds to accommodate new 300-ton cranes, almost double the capacity of its existing 175-ton cranes. Defendant designed a novel and untested system that deepened a series of existing support pilings in the soft bay deposit under the rails.

However, shortly after the new cranes began operation, the railbeds experienced unacceptable out-of-tolerance differential settlement between the rails, causing the shipyard to halt the use of its larger cranes. Plaintiff’s analysis revealed that defendant’s design was inadequate to support the heavier cranes.

After plaintiff hired a different firm to install a more robust remedy, defendant was sued for damages related to their inadequate design.

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