University of Ottawa
Vicki L. Brown
In construction, concrete, mixtures of sand, cement, and gravel are commonly used.
Concrete is normally used to create the foundation, walls and roof of a building structure. The use of concrete has strict procedures and regulations that must be followed. Violating these standards can lead to successful legal action.
The main problem with concrete is its tendency to stretch, despite its high strength. This problem is normally solved by various concrete preparation methods that prevent this type of damage from occurring. For example, it is common to use steel reinforcing bars, which put additional pressure and stress on the concrete, preventing it from collapsing.
Consequences when regulations for the manufacturing and the installation of concrete are not followed can be disastrous. Detecting problems with concrete of an existing building, or after a problem, requires the participation of an expert who has experience in analyzing failures and assessing construction defects. Their involvement makes it possible to detect a problem in building materials even before they are put into operation.
When a case involving concrete goes to court it is often related to improper production and directed against the general contractor, construction company or concrete manufacturer. A concrete expert often plays a vital role in how the court rules on such lawsuits.