admin April 23, 2020 No Comment
A geotechnical report is an undertaking of work that helps to communicate the condition of a site, including any design or construction recommendations, to personnel involved in build design, site planning, and building.
Geotechnical reports are used to provide specific geographical information on any subsurface soil, water or rock conditions of a proposed construction site. The results of these reports are usually interpreted by a geotechnical engineer who will then make design and construction recommendations based on their findings.
At what stage in the construction process is a geotechnical report referred to?
The information found in a geotechnical report is typically taken into consideration during the design period, during construction and even after a project has been completed – usually to help resolve any claims which may arise. A geotechnical report should, therefore, be as concise and accurate as possible.
Is a geotechnical report necessary?
To ensure a safe and cost-effective construction project, geotechnical reports and adequate site investigations are highly recommended. Engineers require these reports to conduct adequate materials reviews (for example, when taking into account any retaining walls, foundations or earthworks and whether the materials will be workable with the natural surroundings).
What does a geotechnical report contain?
Reports can vary from project to project, although all geotechnical reports should contain basic information including:
• A summary of all subsurface exploration information, including a soil profile, exploration logs, laboratory test results and groundwater information.
• Detailed analysis of the subsurface data.
• Engineering recommendations for design and construction.
• Discussion of any anticipated problems, and how to solve them.
What happens if I don’t commission a geotechnical report?
Some building departments will require that a geotechnical report is commissioned by county or state law, but this is not always the case. Without a geotechnical report, engineers are left to make assumptions about the design criteria and soil conditions of the construction area.
By neglecting to arrange a geotechnical report, clients are essentially assuming all responsibility for any adverse soil or subsoil conditions that may be encountered during construction. They are also assuming risk for any structural defects which relate to soil conditions.
What are the most common geotechnical concerns?
Erosion potential, bedrock, lava cap, expansive soils, high water tables, frost heave potential, mudflow and liquefication potential are all concerns commonly highlighted in geotechnical reports. If encountered, these can significantly increase project costs, with the client bearing all the additional engineering/construction costs.
While we don’t undertake geotechnical reports, we do feel that they are reliable when it comes to determining the properties of soil and would strongly recommend a geotechnical report for any construction project.