Engineering the Digital Civilization

Search Here...

Monday, 8 June 2020

Testing Concrete post COVID-19 | Your building might be at risk!

Most construction sites were closed due to the lockdowns put in action to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Such lockdowns have a great impact on construction practices and might show severe consequences on a later stage. 

In India RCC is the most common form of construction technology and as its name suggests it is based on concrete. All buildings and structures primarily involve concrete as a structural material and proper casting of the concrete and its curing during hardening is important to attain the desirable strength characteristics. 

While lockdowns are in place I feel activities such as curing or quality testing of concrete might be compromised at many construction sites due to a variety of reasons. Curing is a process that helps the concrete to gain strength and reduce the effects such as superficial cracks and other imperfections. It is always required to have curing for the concrete after it has been casted so that proper strength is achieved. 

Now that no one is available on the site to perform this activity and with the compromise in quality and ethics observed at many sites I doubt that this activity would have been handled to its due respect. We might see the effects of this negligence in a couple of years as structure ages and it is being utilized. I have personally witnessed a construction site wherein the columns failed due to such negligence (not actually this but this might be one of the causes). 

So what is the solution?

Testing for strength:
The site manager should employ testing to confirm the strength of the concrete. These tests could be NDT such as pulse velocity, rebound hammer, etc. or tests such as taking a core of samples.

These tests will provide proof of the real status and help in conducting corrective measures. It will be worth spending resources and efforts on testing and correction now rather than taking a huge loss on a later stage. Sometimes this loss could include life and goodwill of the people and organization involved.

These were just a few thoughts looking at the present situation under COVID-19 lockdowns.

Thanks for reading

No comments:

Post a comment