International engineering firm Thornton Tomasetti is currently lending a hand to the city of Joplin, Mo., following a deadly May 22, 2011 tornado. A team of up to eight engineers has begun damage assessment and will likely remain on site for the immediate future.
The EF-5 tornado, packing 200-mph winds, blasted a six mile path through the city and left 142 dead and nearly 900 injured, making it the deadliest single tornado in nearly 60 years, according to the National Weather Service. The tornado crushed nearly a third of the city, pounded close to 2,000 buildings, and damaged water treatment and sewage plants.
“Our engineering teams conduct damage assessment to determine if buildings are safe for reoccupancy or if they are no longer economically feasible structures,” said senior engineer Erik Wetzler, who witnessed the damage firsthand. “We are also assisting insurance providers and their representatives in determining the extent and severity of the damage so that recovery efforts can move forward.”
Thornton Tomasetti is currently working on 30 projects, but Wetzler, who described the scene as one of “total destruction,” said that figure could rise to 50 or so. “While the recovery is a very fluid process, our primary goal is to ensure that damage assessments are performed in an efficient and timely manner so that we may assist in the rebuilding effort.”
About Thornton Tomasetti (www.ThorntonTomasetti.com)
Thornton Tomasetti provides engineering design, investigation and analysis services to clients worldwide on projects of every size and level of complexity. We fulfill the needs of our clients at every stage in the building life cycle through seven integrated practices in Structural Engineering, Façade Engineering, Forensics, Renewal, Construction Engineering, Property Loss Consulting and Sustainability. Founded in 1956, today Thornton Tomasetti is an 800-person organization of engineers, architects and other professionals collaborating from offices across the United States and in Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.
Great Ink Communications – 212.741.2977
Eric Gerard/Lindsay Church
Thornton Tomasetti – 917.661.7800
James M. Kent, JKent@ThorntonTomasetti.com
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