More Than Just Counting Rainy Days: Documenting Weather Delays

mdcsystems.com construction project analysis, claims and forensic engineer company-Documenting Weather Delays

by Michelle N. Delehanty, PE, PMP
MDCSystems® Consultant

According to the farmer’s almanac, this upcoming winter is predicted to be more severe than last year, which already seems as if it were one for the record books. For many regions throughout the United States, that means a multitude of storms, extreme cold, and potential closings to schools, offices, and, most problematic, construction sites. These closings of construction projects can lead to schedule delays, change order requests, and ultimately claims. In order for a contractor to justify to the owner that there is indeed a weather-related construction delay, they must demonstrate four specific things: (1) that the delay is within the terms of the contract (2) that the activity delayed had a direct effect on the project end date (was on the critical path), (3) the weather event occurred in excess of the “normal” weather for the season, and (4) there is documentation of which specific activities were delayed on each weather occurrence.

What is “Substantial Completion” and How Do We Know When We Get There?

mdcsystems.com construction project analysis, claims and forensic engineer company-substantial Completion

by E. Mitchell Swann, PE, MDCSystems® Consulting Engineer

Substantial Completion. These two words can change the course of history. Well, the course of your project or payment hsubstantial_completionistory, anyway. Many contracts contain that phrase as a key indicator of a major project milestone for the release of retainage, but there are other key elements of a project which can be impacted by the crossing the marker line of substantial completion even when you can’t be sure when it’s ‘done.’ New processes, requirements and performance objectives can greatly impact when a building is ‘substantially complete’ and with that many of the key acceptance elements that flow from that completion.

What Standard? Under Whose Care?

mdcsystems.com construction project analysis, claims and forensic engineer company-design build

By Robert C. McCue, PE and E. Mitchell Swann, PE
Consulting Engineers, MDCSystems®

design-build-graphicCan a Designer or Owner shift responsibility for design errors and omissions by requiring an enhanced effort for construction coordination drawings by contractors?

To answer this question we will recount an example project that was bid as Design-Bid-Build where the fundamental element of the dispute was design defects with regard to spatial arrangement and sizing of system features.

The Dreaded Change Order

mdcsystems.com construction project analysis, claims and forensic engineer company-Dreaded Change Order

by David LaPenta, Vice President, Remington Group, Inc.

We have never met an Owner who was happy to hear, “We need a change order.” What we’ve learned over the years is that even though change orders are facts of life in construction, there are strategies to help you avoid them.changeorders-graphic

Change orders (CO) fall into two categories – owner driven and non-owner driven. Both can be mitigated.

Owner driven change orders happen when Owners change their minds, adding a window here or changing the carpet there. We’ve even seen buildings moved and floors added mid-project, which leads us to the first CO avoidance strategy